Monthly Archives: February 2010

Random Acts of Kindness At School

A Note To My Colleagues at CTK:

On Monday, you should have discovered a note to you either on your door (if you have one) or in your box in the faculty room. While the great majority of those notes were left for you anonymously, I feel I should at least let you know…it was us! The Seventh Grade. I’m not sharing which student created which note, but I thought you might like to know that the class as a whole was thinking of you.

The purpose of the notes is explained below in a portion of a post I wrote for another blog. Yesterday I had my students reflect on the experience and the comments they shared were overwhelmingly positive. They loved the experience! Everyone agreed that it’s important to let the people in our lives know that they are appreciated for who they are and for the part they play in our lives.

And now it’s your turn. We would love to hear from you about the notes we left around campus. Here are some of the questions the seventh grade came up with yesterday:

  • What was your first reaction when you found your note?
  • Did you know who the note was from? Have any ideas? Were you curious at all?
  • What did you do with your note?
  • Would you be willing to “pay it forward” and write positive notes like ours for the people (or even strangers) in your life? Perhaps a note for someone else here at school?
  • How can we make Random Acts of Kindness something we do more frequently here?
  • Do you have any questions for us?

If you would be so kind, we would love to hear from you in a comment to this post. If you’ve never left a blog comment before, it’s very simple. Directly below the title of the post you will see either “Leave A Comment” or “# Comments” (where # = the number of comments already added). Click on that link and you will be sent to a new page where you can enter your comment. You will be asked for your name, email address (which is required, but remains private), and your website (which is not required. Most people use that box to enter their blog or wiki address.) Use the last box to add your comment and then click “Submit.” That’s it!

We are looking forward to hearing from you! Thank you for your help with our project!

[The following is a portion of the blog post I wrote for the Just A Thought blog]:

Last week was Random Acts of Kindness Week. To celebrate, I asked each of my seventh graders to make one card. Actually, they were more like large notes…one for each and every person who works on our campus. The notes were to be anonymous and had to contain some sort of positive message for all the people at our school who make a difference in the lives of our children. We would deliver them in secret, hopefully, leaving them someplace that their recipient would find them and, again…hopefully…enjoy a moment of appreciation.

Each of my students drew a name out of a hat. Well, not so much a “hat” as a small cardboard box that I just happened to have on my desk. I made note of which student had each member of the faculty and staff, and the students set about making their cards. While I was walking around the room, one of the girls asked me if my name was in the box. I told her I’d kept my name out as we had more grown-ups on campus than I had students.

Care to guess what that student did?

Wait…I’m getting ahead of myself. More on that later.

So today we delivered our notes. All over campus! It was quite amusing to watch these goofy seventh graders trying to tape large notes to classroom doors without being spotted! I even had to run interference for one pair who was trying to tape a note to the Health Room door with its recipient sitting about two feet from them! The two boys got the biggest kick out of that. You would have thought we were secret agents or something.

One of my favorite moments came when I was standing in the computer lab and watched as three of my students delivered their notes to the small office off of the library (we call it the Hot Dog Room for some reason). These students were practically giddy as they snuck into the small room. I had thought they were just going to tape their notes to the door, as we had discussed, but they decided to take advantage of the fact that no one was in that office at the time. They taped three notes to the door and then ventured inside to deliver two more notes.

We had our note adventures late in the day today, so we haven’t yet heard any reaction from anyone on campus except for our school secretary. The student who drew Mrs. Wilson’s name actually taped her note to the large window that Mrs. Wilson sits behind. Nothing secret agent-like about that one, I’m afraid.

Tomorrow I’m going to ask my students to write a reflection on this experience and then ask members of the faculty and staff to share their thoughts as well. You can count on hearing more about this…hopefully tomorrow!

Oh, I guess before I sign off I should share with you what was waiting for me on my door when we got back from computers:

McTeachy. [sigh]



Filed under Students

Two Bee Oar Knot Too Bea

I’ve often mentioned to you, my seventh grade lovelies, of the potential horrors of relying on spellcheck. I was perusing the web this morning and came across a poem I think you might be able to relate to. Keep it in mind the next time you only use spellcheck, thinking you don’t need to have someone proofread it for you!

Candidate for a Pullet Surprise

I have a spelling checker,
It came with my PC.
It plane lee marks four my revue
Miss steaks aye can knot sea.

Eye ran this poem threw it,
Your sure reel glad two no.
Its vary polished in it’s weigh.
My checker tolled me sew.

A checker is a bless sing,
It freeze yew lodes of thyme.
It helps me right awl stiles two reed,
And aides me when eye rime.

Each frays come posed up on my screen
Eye trussed too bee a joule.
The checker pours o’er every word
To cheque sum spelling rule.

Bee fore a veiling checker’s
Hour spelling mite decline,
And if we’re lacks oar have a laps,
We wood bee maid too wine.

Butt now bee cause my spelling
Is checked with such grate flare,
Their are know fault’s with in my cite,
Of nun eye am a wear.

Now spelling does knot phase me,
It does knot bring a tier.
My pay purrs awl due glad den
With wrapped word’s fare as hear.

To rite with care is quite a feet
Of witch won should bee proud,
And wee mussed dew the best wee can,
Sew flaw’s are knot aloud.

Sow ewe can sea why aye dew prays
Such soft wear four pea seas,
And why eye brake in two averse
Buy righting want too pleas.

Jerrold H. Zar

From the Spelling Society website

By the way…have you ever noticed that spellcheck doesn’t like the word “spellcheck”?


Filed under Writing

Percy Jackson

I know many of my students will be venturing out to the movie theater this weekend to see the new Percy Jackson movie. And I know that most of you have also read The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan, so I thought it would be interesting to compare the two. After you see the movie this weekend, please leave a comment to this post telling everyone what you thought about the movie and how well it compared to the book.


Filed under Books

Vocabulary Comics

Your homework for this evening is to create a comic strip using your vocabulary words (Unit 9 please). Here’s an example comic that I created last year (for a different unit):

Unit Ten by McTeach,

Here’s what you do:

  • Go to
  • Click on “Cartoon Playground”
  • Create your comic strip using the tools provided. Be sure to use at least one vocab word per square.
  • Give your comic a title and add your first name, last initial
  • Click on “publish” and review your comic
  • If everything is okay, click on “save” (but don’t save it to the gallery!)
  • After it’s published, email it to yourself and to me (ctkmcmillan @ mac . com)

Let me know if you have any questions. I’ll be adding your comics to the Vocabulary page on this blog (I’m taking screenshots since we can’t seem to use the HTML code).


Filed under Homework