Thursday, April 23, 2015

Food Drive Update!

We did it!! The 2nd graders at ESC brought in 813 items (with more still rolling in)
to be donated to the food bank and this is what it looks like. We have learned so much from this project, but most importantly that it doesn't matter how old you are you can make a difference. Thank you for all of the support!!
"Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It's not." -The Lorax by Dr Seuss

Will you accept our challenge?

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Food Drive Challenge

My second grade students are challenging others. See their challenge below!

(Insert your school name here), 

Would you like to join the Food Drive Challenge with East Sac Elementary School in Sac City, Iowa? The challenge is to bring in 600 items or more for your local food bank. We have over 55 people in Sac County who take food from the food bank, which is about 30 families who would be hungry without the help of our food bank. When our food bank runs out of food they have to go to Des Moines, Iowa to get more.

Will you accept our challenge? Our teacher thought it might be a lot of work, but we have proven her wrong. Our 2nd grade class at ESC has planned the whole thing! We read the book If the World Was a Village that taught us almost half the people in the world don’t have enough food to eat. We wanted to do something to help! We started with visiting our local food bank and asked them questions. They told us they needed items like canned goods and things like shampoo and toilet paper. We then created a marketing committee, a data keeping committee and a group to collect all of the food. We decided to challenge the other grades to see who could bring in the most and that is why we want to challenge you too! We will have our challenge from April 9th-23rd. Do you think you could beat our goal of 600 items? We will let you know how many items we bring in when we finish our challenge.

If you have any questions our teacher Mrs. Voyles would love to answer them. She might even ask us for our help! We are so excited, please join our challenge!

Data Keeping Committee – East Sac County 2nd graders

(Kellie, Pete, Noah H. and Caden) 

Please contact me at if you have any questions! 

Monday, August 22, 2011

Talking the Talk

Today is the first day back at school! What an exciting time for everyone involved with a school district; teachers entering refreshed and renewed after summer vacation, and students entering the school a year older, with new school supplies (one of my favorite things!), and new teachers. Every year I feel it is the job of the administrators to get everyone excited about coming back to school and giving it their all for another 180 days. This year our district had guest speaker, Brent Matthias @BrentMatthais come to talk with us about the upcoming year. This short speech really got me thinking and excited about the school year that is upon us. The following are a few important points that I will take away from Brent's speech. 
  • TEAM - Being part of a team is a much better way to get things accomplished. There is no way I can do what I do without those around me for support. I would also like to feel that I'm a valuable asset to that team as well. Also, when working as a TEAM no one person should receive all of the credit. Give credit where credit is due. 
  • MAKE A DIFFERENCE - As Dr. Fiene talked today he discussed each person who works in a school will make a difference in a child's life. You are to ask yourself what kind of difference will that be. Brent added on to this by reminding us that we spend more time with the children in our classes than their own parents. We need to take that responsibly seriously and make a POSITIVE difference.
  • BE GENEROUS - We heard two stories of Brent's generosity in the short time he was with us. He looks pretty successful. I know that I may not always be able to be generous with my money, but I know each day I can be generous with my time and talent. Not only will I reap the benefits, but so will the children that I work with
  • BE HAPPY - What more is there to say? If you can't say at the end of the day that the work you do and the people you surround yourself make you happy, than there is something wrong with your picture.
Now back to the title of this post, "Talking the Talk". Typically when hearing this saying it is followed up by, "and walking the walk". I did hear a lot of talk today and now I have to continually challenge myself and those that are part of my team to now "walk the walk."

What does "walking that walk" look like? In my mind that means putting the children at the forefront of any decision making process and continuing to know that they are the business we are in. My job today as it is for the next 180 days of this school year is to challenge my students and make that positive difference in their life. Follow my journey this year and please continue to encourage me as I attempt to, "walk the walk" and not just "talk the talk". And if I'm able to accomplish this I know that I will BE HAPPY!


Thursday, April 14, 2011

Small Town Pride

On Saturday, April 9th our small Iowa communities were hit by 4 tornadoes. After spending some time in the basement praying I came to the surface to see my home was fine. As the reports started to come in I have been overwhelmed by the feeling of SO BLESSED. We had some wind damage and lost our old windmill, but other than about an hour without power my home was intact and my family was safe. However, others just miles away were not so lucky. Many have been completely devastated. With so much to be cleaned up our school decided to join the effort to help the farmers clean up.

On Wednesday more than 1100 students, teachers and other volunteers joined the effort to help with the clean up. At noon those volunteers headed to the Nemaha Fire Station to join in some food and fellowship. It was amazing to hear the stories from the students over lunch of what they have found. I heard from many of the families about how amazing it was to see busloads of kids cleaning up the fields and farms. Many stating that they couldn't have planted the fields until it was picked up. We all knew that it couldn't have been done without a HUGE effort. It's true what they say, many hands make for light work. We had such a great day that we were able to pick up more acres than they had set out to help with. What a great service learning project for these students. All day today the students couldn't help but talk about all of the farmers that they worked with and the things that they had found. I'm so proud of each of them! I'm full of PRIDE tonight to be from such a great community who really knows what it means to come together to help out!

What Would You Miss Most...continued

Here are few other students' ideas about what they would miss most if they could not read or write. All of these students were trying to create something that could be used with young readers to encourage them to read. They would love to have you share them with others!

Bugs Bunny explains the importance of reading 

One student's Powerpoint slide about the importance of learning to read.

Some students felt making a Storybird would be the best way to spread the message. 

Ally also chose to do a Powerpoint.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Asking for Help!

I currently work with at-risk Middle School students who have failed courses. I am looking for ways to improve this program and bring it into the 21st century. I would like to throw out the worksheets and have the students working on tasks that matter to them. Does anyone have any ideas on how I can have these students recover a semester of a core subject, with limited time and while helping them understand the "Why"? Any suggestions would be helpful at this point! Please help!!

Friday, March 25, 2011

What Would You Miss Most If You Could Not Read or Write?

After reading Angela Maier's Assignment for World Read Aloud Day, I took this question into my classroom and asked some of my students what their thoughts were. I was amazed with the discussion we had. The students that I've heard tell me, "This is dumb" and ask "Why do I have to do this?" all year really came up with some GENIUS thoughts and discussion. For most of the discussions the students came to the understanding that they are lucky because they have the opportunity to have an education.

After the discussion I challenged the students to spread their knowledge to others. There assignment was to get others excited about reading. Here is one student's thoughts on reading. Look for more to come.