A-Z of me (part 2)

Happy Monday!

Thank you so much for your lovely comments about my post last Monday – A-Z of Me (part 1). You are all wonderful. As promised, today is the second part of that blog post. So here we go…

azme2

N – Nebby

This is a word I use ALL the time and it is a word that confuses the hell out of a lot of people. It’s a wonderfully Geordie word which means nosy. It’s one of my favourite Geordie words.

O – Oranges

satsuma

SPECIFICALLY SATSUMAS. GUYS I LOVE SATSUMAS. They don’t get enough love to be honest. I just love them: they’re the perfect amount of sweet and sour. You have to get the ones which are more than yellow than orange though. People often tell me that there’s no difference between satsumas, tangerines and clementines and let me tell you, there is. I LOVE SATSUMAS OK?

P – Pride

 

Now, this isn’t something I talk about very often because I don’t feel like it’s something that I NEED to talk about, nor is it something I’m asked about often. I am incredibly proud of who I am. No, I’m not straight. No, I don’t feel the need to tell everyone about it all of the time. No, I don’t know how I identify. I am attracted to the people I’m attracted to. 

Q – Quilliams

 

Ha. Those of you who know me will know this is no surprise. So Quilliams is a wonderful teahouse in Newcastle where I am OFTEN found. It’s one of my favourite places to visit. I’m usually found there on a Sunday. I don’t go every Sunday, but I probably go twice a month. I’m not a massive breakfast fan, but when I want a cooked breakfast, then I’ll go to Quilliams. If you’re ever in Newcastle and you want somewhere to go for breakfast, I can not recommend Quilliams enough!

R – Recommending books

2019 loves

I’m very lucky to have this platform and a job which allows me to recommend books which I love the most. I’m also really lucky to have friends who will take on my recommendations (thanks Charlotte) and read them and then let me freak out about them as much as I want. Recommending books and giving them to their “perfect reader” gives me such joy. There’s nothing better as a teacher to give a child a book you think will be perfect for them and then seeing them fall completely for that book. It does happen. It never stops being wonderful.

S – Scarves

This was originally stationery because I LOVE stationery, but now that it’s Autumn, it’s SCARF WEATHER. I bloody love a scarf. So so much. I think I even wrote a whole blog post about it once… you’ll find it here! The bigger, the warmer and the more checky the scarf, the more I love it!

T – Trains

img_4738

I bloody love a bit of train travel. If I could travel on trains to everywhere, I think I would. I think living in the North means you have to appreciate train travel because that’s one of the only ways to get to the South (where everything bloody happens). I don’t drive and have no ambition to drive at all, so train travel is my go to. I love a journey down to London because I can get so much reading done, I can do some blog planning or life planning and still have time to have a little snack. Let’s be honest… one of the best bits of going on a train is train snacks. I must say though for all I love travelling on a train I STILL get unbelievable anxiety around train travel… luckily I have some absolute brilliant friends who accept the fact I need to be at the train station an hour before my train. (thanks pals)

U – University

 

(Sunderland graduation 2017//Newcastle graduation 2018)

For those of you who are new around here, you might not know about my journey into teaching, but it wasn’t your usual journey. I didn’t go to uni until I was 25. I wasn’t ready for university when I was 18, so I didn’t go. I worked my arse off at the shoe shop I worked at, and then I left at 20 to go and work in the school I work at now. I worked there for a few years until I was eventually ready to go to university. I did it part time through Sunderland and as exhausting as it was going to university 5-9 every Thursday, it was incredible. I was in a cohort that was really small (I think there were only 14 of us) and we were from such diverse education backgrounds that I learned so so much. Most of the people on my course worked in apprenticeships, so something totally different to my experience. My time at Sunderland helped me gain a degree in Education and then I did a SCITT (School Centred Initial Teacher Training) at the school I work in through Newcastle University and the local high school SCITT. It was a GRUELLING year with more essays that I dare to recall, but it was incredible. I FINALLY graduated as a teacher in July 2018 and, despite the fact my journey was not conventional, I wouldn’t change it for the world. The friends I’ve made, the things I’ve learned and the people I met made the whole experience so incredible. Follow your dreams friends. It’s really bloody important that if you’re passionate about something to do it!

V – Vocabulary

Here. I am a MASSIVE fan of learning new words. And a massive fan of teaching new words. One of my favourite things to teach is new words, using them, working out what they mean and trying to get used to it. Learning new words is one of those gorgeous things in life. I have my own little “new vocab” book in my handbag for any time I come across a new word in whatever book I’m reading. There’s something so full of potential with a new word – you might finally have a word for something you’ve never had before. I’m really quite secretly a massive nerd.

W – Writing stories

This is one of my favourite things to do. I don’t do it because I want to be published one day, oh no. I don’t think I have that kind of story in me to be honest, but whenever I need a model for school for the children to see what I’m looking for, there’s nothing better than coming up with it myself. I think it’s a BRILLIANT thing to do. It keeps my brain ticking over. It gives the kids such wonder and awe to know that I wrote the stories. They’re probably not perfect, but it brings me joy!

(Soz X, but I genuinely can’t think of something for you pal!)

Y – Year 5

img_0819

I think ever since I knew I wanted to be a teacher, I knew I wanted to be a teacher of primary school children. I can’t imagine being a secondary teacher – I think they’re a very special group of people who can tolerate teenagers, but I don’t have that skill set. When I qualified, I was asked what my ideal year group was and I genuinely didn’t know. I just knew I wanted to be a teacher. This year sees me being in Year 5 for the second time and I genuinely love it – I think it’s the perfect place for me right now. I would never say no to going to another year group, but I really love being a Year 5 teacher. Year 5 feels where I need to be right now.

Z – Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Sleep. Sleep is my friend. I’m one of these people who CAN function on 4-5 hours of sleep a day, but I don’t think you’d like to meet me on those days. I try and get 8 hours a night sleep and most nights I succeed. There’s nothing more wonderful than snuggling in bed with my pyjamas on, especially when it’s cold outside!

A-Z of me! (part 1)

Hello one and all!

After the success of my A-Z of Back to Schools posts (see part 1 and part 2), someone suggested an A-Z of me post! I thought this was a great idea. For new followers, long time followers and everyone in the middle, I’m going to try to give you the A-Z of me. See this as an insight into me!

azme

A – Auntie Spot

Ha. An interesting one to start with, but quite a big part of my life! My goddaughers, Ruby and Poppy, and my godson, Joey, call me Auntie Spot and they’re the absolute lights of my life. I feel so bloody lucky that I have them in my life. My cousin Kate (their mam) is one of the best people in my life, so any time I get to spend with them is just the best.

B – Books, books, books

img_3146

I guess this one is quite predictable. I am SURROUNDED by books. I wouldn’t have my life any other way though. I think books are important and necessary in the world. If my blog didn’t give that away, then I might need to rethink this whole blogging thing, ha! I’ll not rabbit on too much about this one!

C – Colouring in

img_0818

One of the things I do when I’m most stressed/anxious/sad/whatever is colour in. I find it’s great for just switching my brain off and it’s just really relaxing. I’m not a fan of colouring in pictures, more a fan of colouring in patterns. If they’re geometric, that’s even better. A good set of felt tip pens, Youtube and a colouring book is what I need when I’m at my most stressed!

D – Dreams

img_0819

There’s so many things I’m doing now that I never even dreamt that I could do. I chair events; I talk about books every day; People read what I have to say; I get to teach in my very own classroom. Some of these things were just pipe dreams a few years ago, some of these things weren’t even dreams because I didn’t know they were possible. I’m a firm believer in following in your dreams. If you want something bad enough, you’ll get it… you’ve just got to work for it.

E – Emotional

img_4914

If you know me in the real world, you’ll know that I’m very in touch with my emotions. I’m not afraid to cry. I’m not afraid to be happy. I’m not afraid to express myself. I feel every emotion quite deeply. I love hard. I fall hard. I cry hard.

F – Finishing books

This might seem like a strange one, but this is something I am quite stubborn with. If I start a book, I am DETERMINED to finish it. I always think that books can redeem themselves, so I worry if I give up on a book that it’s not going to get the chance to redeem itself. I think there’s like 3 books in the past 3 years that I have DNF’d. I just don’t believe in DNF’ing books! I also think that just because you’re not enjoying a book at a certain point in your life, doesn’t mean you’ll never enjoy it. I’ve found myself reading a few chapters of a book and then just putting it down with the idea that I will come back to it.

G – Geordie extraordinaire!

img_0803

Being a Geordie is a BIG part of my identity. I’m awfully proud to be a Geordie. I’m often told that I don’t SOUND like a Geordie because everyone has this stereotypical impression that we go round saying, “whey aye man” and things all the time. We do say them… just not all the time. I love being from the North East… I just wish it weren’t so far away from EVERYTHING ELSE. All the best things come from the north: Ant and Dec, Geordie Gifts, the Great North Run and me!

H – Holidays

Now… I am A BIG FAN of a holiday. I love my time at work, but man I’ ready for a rest when it comes to holiday time. More so than just being off work, I love GOING on holiday. I haven’t been on holiday for a while, but my gosh, give me the sunshine, an unlimited supply of drinks and a massive pile of books and there you have my perfect idea of a holiday. I’m not a big sightseeing kind of holiday gal, but I’ll do a day or two!

I – Inspirational quotes

img_0774

It might seem cheesy to some people, but I love a quote. I think it’s nice to know that you aren’t alone; that you’re not the only person who has ever gone through the thing that you’re going through. They crop up occasionally on my Instagram feed and it’s really reminiscent to look through and think “Woah, yeah that’s how I felt at that time, but I don’t feel like that any more”. They’re not for everyone, and some people really hate them, but I love them!

J – Journeys

img_4738

Life’s full of journeys. However, I mean literal journeys here. I love going places. Discovering new places is a great joy in life. More than that, I love the ACTUAL journey. Give me a train/car/bus journey of more than 10 mins and I’m a happy happy gal. Journeys are where I do the biggest chunk of my reading and I love that!

K – Kids

Yes, I want my own kids. Yes, I feel like a bit of a failure because I haven’t got my own kids yet. I also know that I have 30 kids every day (well 5 of 7) who rely on me. Whenever anyone asks me if I have kids yet (eyeroll, you should never ask someone that question), I always say I have 30. Now THAT gets some interesting reactions! I’d love to be blessed with my own kids one day because being a mam is one of the things I’d love most in life… but for now, my 30 kids at school keep me on my toes enough!

L – Laughter

img_0216

Something people comment about me most often is my laugh. Ask anyone who has met me, my laugh is one of the most notable things about me. I’ve been told it’s one of the best sounds on the planet. I have a big laugh and I love it.

M – “Miss”

Being a teacher is a massive part of my identity. It’s probably too big of a part sometimes, but when you’ve chased a dream for as long as I had, you’re allowed to. I’ve always wanted to be a teacher since I can ever remember. It was something I’ve wanted since I was about 6 or 7. I didn’t have the traditional route into teaching. I didn’t do my GCSEs, then my A Levels, then go to uni, then qualify. I did my GCSEs, did my A Levels, wasn’t ready for uni and worked full time in a shoe shop (which I adored). The time came though that my dream needed to be chased, so I became a TA in my school. A few years later, my dream was shouting at me. I didn’t go to uni til I was 25. I was determined to qualify before I was 30 and I did. I made it with 6 months to spare. Hearing those 30 kids say “Miss” every day might be irritating (trust me), but it reminds me that I’ve made it. I’ve got a lot to learn, but I’m doing it now.

And there you go! The A-Z of Me (part 1). Part 2 will come next Monday! I hope you enjoyed learning a little bit about me!

Have any of these things surprised you?
Have you learned anything about me?
Is there anything you’d like to learn more about?

Let me know in the comments!

S x

Thursday Tag: 30 Interesting Questions Tag

Hello there!

It’s Thursday again. As if. Following on in the tradition of the past few weeks, I’m stealing a tag from my friend Charlotte’s blog. No shame at all. I love a good tag. Plus I love a tag which means I find out new things about people and allows you to find out things about me (which arent’ necessarily bookish things!)

(If you want to check out Charlotte’s post, it is HERE. Don’t tell her I sent you though!)

Let’s go…

What are your nicknames? What do you prefer to be called?

I have SO MANY nicknames. In a family as big as mine, it is inevitable. Some of the more notable ones are: Peach, Spot, Size, Cowbag, Eena. Outside of that I get Steph a lot. I much prefer being called Steph over Stephanie.

How often do you doodle? What do your doodles look like?

I’m a frequent doodler. I like to doodle as I’m listening. All of my university notes and staff meeting notes are COVERED in doodles.  I tend to doodle shapes over actual things though.

What do you do if you can’t sleep? Do you count sheep? Toss and turn? Get up and try and be productive?

None of those things. I tend to put on a podcast/video of something that I can tune out of and have it on as white noise. I’m usually quite a good sleeper, but there are times when I just can’t get to sleep. (Shout out to Safiya Nygaard videos here)

Do people consider you talkative or quiet?

Now this is an interesting one – it depends who you are and where you know me from. Probably a bit of everything in my life. I’m a proper introvert, but I can extrovert when I need to.

What makes you cry?

That question should be what DOESN’T make you cry? I cry at EVERYTHING. The most recent things to make me cry: books, my new baby cousin, the Queer Eye advert, thinking about my kids going into Year 6, stress.

What is your biggest pet peeve?

Ghosting. Lateness. Cockiness. Those are my top 3. I hate people who do these things.

How many times a day do you look at yourself in the mirror?

I have no idea. Probably 3-5 times? It depends what I’m doing.

What is the strangest thing you believed as a child?

Who knows. Let’s be real: a lot of things we believe as children are bizarre. A man who can travel around the world in a night and deliver millions of presents? Strange. A fairy who collects teeth and in exchange leaves you money? WEIRD.

What is the guilty pleasure you enjoy too much to give up?

Why should I have a guilty pleasure? Surely something that gives me pleasure should be something that is embraced.

Who performs the most random acts of kindness you know?

Charlotte (the very one I stole this tag from). She’s one of the loveliest people I know, but she only wants people to know that she is the Queen of Fire (which she is).

How often do you read the newspaper? Which sections?

Very rarely. I don’t really read the paper. I’m more likely to catch up on the news online where I’ll read the Education news, Entertainment news and local news.

Which animal scares you most?

Spiders. No question. I don’t know why. But no.

Are you more likely to avoid conflict or engage in it?

Avoid. I do not enjoy conflict at all. I’m one for people to just get on with each other. I’m not great in an argument cause I just fold and give in and I don’t want people to see that weakness (ha, deep)

What is the most recent compliment you received?

Hmmm… *shrug*. It probably came from one of my kids, colleagues or Charlotte though.

What question are you tired of hearing?

When are you going to have kids?
When are you going to move out?
When are you going to get married?
Do you want to be a head teacher?

What is the strangest thing you’ve eaten?

Snails. They’re just like mushrooms to be honest.

Do you have a whole lot of acquaintances or just a very few close friends?

Both? Like, I know a lot of people and can socialise with lots of different pockets of people depending on what’s going on, but I definitely have a very close bunch of friends who I trust with my life.

Do you have a catchphrase?

Things I say often:
Why are people?
I’m so tired.
Right.
I own it, but I haven’t read it yet.

What is your all time favourite town or city? Why?

I’m going to be predictable af here, but Newcastle. It’s home. It’s comfort. It’s the people I love the most. It’s Geordies. It’s the Quayside. It’s my friends. It’s growing up.

If you had to change your first name, what would you change it to?

I don’t know? I’ve been asked this question before and I still haven’t got an answer to that question.

When was the last time you lied?

Erm… who even knows.

What’s something that amazes you?

How incredibly kind humans can be. I am OFTEN floored (and cry) when I see those videos about people helping other people out in times of need. I know the world is a shitty place to live sometimes, but kindness absolutely floors me. More of those videos thanks.

Would you rather be the first person to explore a planet or the inventor of a drug that cures a deadly disease?

Anyone who knows me knows that I am absolutely not the kind of person who will go exploring an unkknown planet. Saving lives however would be my jam, so inventing a drug that cures a deadly disease.

What is your favourite amateur activity?

Swimming. One of my favourite things to do is getting in the pool and just swimming back and forth.

What was your first thought when you got up this morning?

‘What time is it?’ (generally my first thought every morning)

What is your favourite song (at least at the moment)?

Hmmm… The Best in Me by Ed Sheeran. I am loving his new album.

List someone you know and describe them in 5 words

Kelly: best dragon owner on Earth.

You can select one person from history and have them truthfully answer one question. Who would you select and what would the question be?

Well that’s a loaded question. I wanna be like “oh, I’d ask Hitler why he was such a dick” when in reality it would be something/someone a lot less political.

Which celebrity or artist do you resemble the most?

I do not know? Someone tell me their thoughts!

What do you want me to know?

You know what, you’re amazing. If you’re having a good day, remember it. If you’re having a bad day, remember that you’ve probably made someone smile today. Whether you realise it or not, the world needs you around. You’re someone’s best friend; you’re someone’s favourite person on the planet. 

And that’s it!

Did anything surprise you in this post?
Have you got any random questions you’d like me to answer?

Let me know in the comments!

S x

 

#AskMissElliott 2

IMG_3988

Last week I tried this for the first time and the kids asked me every single day if they were doing to get the chance to ask me more questions so I told them they could! If you want to see the questions I asked the first week see Ask Miss Elliott. It’s certainly a whole lot of fun! 

This week’s questions included:

IMG_4056
Have you always worn glasses?

No I haven’t! I started wearing glasses in secondary school I think. I always WANTED to wear glasses though. Wear glasses and have curly hair… I have both of those things ha! 

IMG_4057

 

Where were you born and what is your middle name?

(Sneaky 2 questions on one sheet there!) I was born in Newcastle, I am a thoroughbred Geordie! My middle name is Danielle. I have an awfully long name ha!

IMG_4058
What books did you like to read as a kid? What is your favourite book?

The books I loved the most as kids were anything by Roald Dahl, The Secret Garden, Charlotte’s Web, The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe but I was one of those kids that would read just about anything! I’m still very much like that now. It will come as no surprise to you all that Matilda is my favourite book.

IMG_4059
Can you speak Spanish?

Nope, sadly. I can speak bits and bobs but not that much. It’s one of the languages I would like to learn to speak most. I think it’s a gorgeous language. Alas my secondary school did not teach it! I can speak French and German.
So those were some of this week’s questions! This is quickly becoming the kids’ favourite thing to do! I will keep going as long as they have questions. 

If any of you have questions then holler and I will happily answer them! Post them in the comments or ask on twitter (@eenalol)

S x

 

Ask Miss Elliott

I really enjoy taking you guys inside my classroom and sharing my ideas in the classroom. I love it even more when I’m taken into someone else’s classroom and I see their ideas that I know that I need to magpie and try myself! Enter Mr N. He wrote a blog post titled #AskMrN in which he got his class to ask him questions to answer! I thought this was a wonderful idea, so I asked if I could magpie it and try it with my Year 4s! So here goes…

IMG_3988

On Friday morning, the children came into this in the classroom. (We usually have a picture from Once Upon a Picture or Twinkl Imagine for which they have a discussion and they write their thoughts down on a post it note!) They were a bit confused at first but I explained that they could ask me anything (within reason, nothing silly otherwise it won’t be answered) and that throughout the day they would be answered! Here are some of the questions they asked: 

IMG_3989

 

Do you like sports?

Yes! I am a massive fan of tennis and football. I like rugby too. Roger Federer is my absolute tennis idol. I think he’s incredible. Obviously, being from Newcastle, I’m a huge Newcastle fan (win or lose, I am black and white all over).

IMG_3990

 

What was your favourite subject at school?

When I was in school I always loved English and German. I was much better at German than French (which is surprising because I teach French now!) I loved studying and analysing stories (although I’m glad I just get to read books now!)

IMG_3993
What subject were you worst at? What subject were you really bad at? (I had this in a few different forms!)

PE. I have never been the fittest or most sporty person. I LIKED PE but I was NEVER good at it. My PE teachers weren’t particularly supportive either though. Except when it came to rounders… man could I hit and throw!

IMG_3994


How many brothers and sisters do you have? Do you have brothers or sisters?

I have 1 brother. He lives in Sweden! He’s 4 years older than me and one of my best friends. We were really close growing up. He always has wise words for me. I love him and I miss him every day. But we speak quite often! He is really happy in Sweden so that’s what matters!

So that’s the first installment of #AskMissElliott! I have another one coming next week! I hope you guys enjoyed reading this and if you have any questions don’t hesitate to ask me on twitter (@eenalol) or leave me a comment! My kids loved doing this and they asked if we could do it again. Thanks again to Mr N (@TeachMrN on twitter and TeachMrN blog!)

S x