Friday, June 12, 2009

Fourth Grade Falcons cake

My daughter's class was called the falcons this year. They had a great year, with an awesome teacher, Mr. Chris. He is from New York, and I must say, he endured quite a bit of "Good ole California hazing" and was a very good sport about it. It was really fun for the kids to learn about California history, especially since it was kinda new to their teacher too. They had fun discovering new things about our state. And I have always been curious about what New York is like, so I asked him a million questions about it. He's very patient.
Many of the parents in the class have had older kids come through the school, so they are what I like to call the "OG Parents", which made it a really fun year, because it's like visiting with old friends every time you go to work in the class. The class took a trip to Sacramento to see the capital, which was awesome for the kids, but really fun for the adults. We had a great time hanging out. What a fun memory.
The cake I made for the class had a book on the bottom titled, " How to train a Falcon" because I feel like fourth grade is a transitional year for kids. They are kinda growing out of the "I listen to adults all the time because they are cool" stage, and are still grossed out when people kiss on tv. This year, many of the students really pushed buttons and experimented with boundaries. And I think they were doing it more maybe because Chris was new this year, but he really handled every situation very calmly and earned their love and respect right away. The kids are so attached to him, he really took the time to get to know each and every one of them this year.
I put two of Dr. Seuss's Sneetches on the book, because he used the story to teach the kids a lesson about discrimination. I especially liked it because my daughter ended up being one of the randomly chosen non-star belly sneetches, who had to do math problems while the star belly ones got to play. She was soooooo pissed off, I think it was more of a learning experience for her than anything else. Which is great, because that's one of those life lessons you can't learn from a book, it has to be experienced.
In fourth grade, the students learn about California missions, so the middle cake is a mission. I knew how to do this because my daughter and I built a model of a mission for her assignment.
And, of course, a gold nugget because the students got to pan for gold on their Sacramento trip and also at school. It was really funny, Chris greeted the students one morning wearing these red suspenders. The parents looked at each other like, WTF, before we all realized why he was wearing them.
On the top was a falcon, made out of rice krispies and fondant. I heard that the teachers eventually cut it up and all shared a piece of it. Hope it tasted yummy!
Thank you so much for an awesome year Chris! It's been fun! Your falcons will miss you next year, and you know you'll miss all of us too!!!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Flipping Dolphins end of year cake

So, yesterday was the end of the year school picnic, and I made a cake for each of my kids' classes. Thank goodness I only have two kids! Otherwise I would have had to write off the three hours of sleep I got that night. It was also my birthday. Yes I'm a little bit crazy.
My son is finishing up his kindergarten year, so the design of the cake was very tied to my emotions. On the bottom is a play on that book "All I really need to know I learned in kindergarten" (the class is in Room 1) which, if you read the book, it is so true. The teacher, Elizabeth (who also earned the teacher of the year award) is such an amazing person, she is the perfect teacher to set a strong foundation for the kids' educational experience. I mean, they love the hell out of learning, reading, singing, dancing, exploring, etc. Never in my life have I seen so many kids LOVE to learn and have fun doing it. Need I say more? Elizabeth rocks!!
The middle tier is a recreation of the tadpole tank they were watching. Even though the tadpoles actually became frogs, I painted them on the cake as tadpoles still, because even though our kids are done with kindergarten, a little piece of their "babyhood" is staying behind in room 1. They will always look back and remember their first day of school EVER, and their first teacher EVER. And even though they will become frogs one day, they will always be Elizabeth's babies, her tadpoles.
The top tier, the sun, has the words to the song she plays every morning when cuddle time is over and it's time for mommies and daddies to say goodbye until the afternoon. I chose to put this one on the top because the picnic was our final goodbye to the amazing year. Every time I hear that song I have to stop myself from crying, because I'm not ready for kindergarten to end. I'm not ready for my son to become a first grader, to leave the security of Elizabeth's class.
This year was such a huge year for my son, and for me, as a parent. It took a few months for my son to get used to having so many kids around him, and to grow socially. But as a parent, this was the first time I had to "let go" and let him figure things out by himself. I didn't get it in the beginning, but now I get it. They need to do things on their own, to empower themselves.
Thank you for an amazing awesome year, Elizabeth!!! We will always remember your class, we will always be the Flipping Dolphins!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

*~ Wyatt ~*

My daughter's former teacher, Colleen, is having a baby, and she is going to name him Wyatt. Actually as I write this, I think they're probably in the maternity ward right now. I heard she was induced yesterday! Yay!
The theme for the baby shower that another teacher threw for her was cowboy/western.
I can't wait to see the baby, I'm sure he's so adorable !!
Congratulations Colleen and Kyle!!! Welcome to the world, Wyatt !!