(More) April Updates

Library Course: I previously had mentioned that I completed my course in the first week of January. Got my OCT certification upgraded. This means that I can receive calls for this subject area!

YTT Weekend: Just finished a wonderful weekend We had a lovely day with Carly Stong, from Kingston, Ontario. She is a fat activist and yogi who has been teaching us about body positivity and explained why the word fat is not an insult. If you’d like to hear more about Carly, check out this podcast interview with her from Kathryn Bruni-Young. Here’s a shot of my lovely studio while it’s empty on the lunch break:


Kids’ Yoga: I’m now volunteering to teach an hour of kids’ yoga at a local elementary school. I’ve blocked off my Wednesdays for work. Good to add to my resume if I do decide to apply for yoga teaching jobs in the future. So far, I’ve completed two sessions.

Walking: I’m pretty much afraid to show people my pedometer; it is an embarrassing mess and I’m nowhere near 10,000 steps a day.* Thankfully, I can be motivated by friends and am in an online step challenge with high school friends on the Canadian-funded Carrot Rewards app. Yup, sometimes shaming works! It has helped a lot since I check the app everyday and if my steps are low, I’ll take a walk at the end of the day to hit my goal.

Here’s a shot of the beautiful Victoria Park in Kitchener, Ontario.

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Health: Earlier last month, I got a local family doctor, which is hard to come by in Kitchener-Waterloo. I got a general blood test and it appears I have healthy levels of vitamin B12 but low levels of iron storage. Currently trying to find a brand of iron supplements.

Also, I recently discovered this amazing chia seed pudding at Freshii, which is a Canadian fast food restaurant chain. OMG – sprinkled with mango, strawberries and coconut, this healthy dessert is soooo delicious!


*I do try to set down my cellphone, which is what is tracking my steps, when I’m at home. This likely reduces my step count. I’m waiting to get a FitBit off of Bunz. The trade has been negotiated but the original swap got canceled due to the great ice storm last weekend.


April Update

Claiming EI: Got a letter from Service Canada stating that I am not eligible for Employment Insurance over March Break, since I do not have 700 hours. This is actually because of another issues …

No ROE: In January, I resigned and contacted Human Resources of my last employer, asking them to close my file. I got a response that the process would be initiated and they’d send off a Record Of Employment. Whoever was suppose to hasn’t done it yet – three months later – and now Service Canada thinks I don’t have enough hours to receive EI since they’re not counting my hours in the north! And on top of that …

Pension transfer to Ontario: Since no ROE has been initiated, Retraite Quebec still believes I am working for the Quebec school board. Therefore, I’ve not been able to transfer my pension over to my home province of Ontario. Argh! If someone would just start the paperwork …

Teacher Librarian AQ: I’m doooooooone!!! I was a lazy butt though, as I handed in my last assignment two days late. No provincial subsidy for this course, but I may choose my next course based on the subsidies available.

Volleyball: Have been asked by high school friends if I want to join their Wednesday night volleyball league. I played for 4 seasons many years ago and am happy to be part of Ashbridge’s Bay again! It will mean driving back and forth between Waterloo and Toronto, but that’s okay. I won’t play all the games, but I’m looking forward to some beach volleyball and hanging with friends. Plus sand between my toes!

In other exciting news, I got to watch my first hockey game – Kitchener Rangers versus Sarnia Stingers. I’m not much of a hockey fan, but I have to admit it was really cool!


Signing Up for An AQ

As I had previously mentioned, I was wondering whether I should register for another Additional Qualification this year. Of course, yes. The school board pays for it.

However, I was wondering whether I should start in November or wait until February. My mom* said, just sign up for November. I put my application in and got accepted yesterday forIntegration of Information & Computer Technology in Instruction – Part 1.

Just paid for my course!

Time to enjoy my long weekend.

screen-shot-2016-10-07-at-5-47-56-pm*My mom is pretty smart so I try to listen to her as much as possible. 

Looking Ahead: Professional Development

In my school board, once you have worked for 2 years and become full-time permanent, you are entitled to approximately $900 for courses and professional development under a program called “Teacher Improvement Plan.”

Last summer, I used this opportunity to have a credit covered covered and took an in-class Additional Qualification for Senior Math. This was during my vacation, of course, but going to an in-person class at University of Toronto was actually well worth it. The class was small but we had such a great time. It really made me even more passionate as a math teacher and for the first time, I was inspiring and mentoring younger, less-experienced teachers.

I’m trying to decide which AQ to take this year. I chatted with my mom on the phone and told her that I would either get my Senior Geography teachable or Integration of Information & Computer Technology in Instruction – Part 1. She suggested that I focus on my strength; the long-term goal to becoming an expert at #edtech means that I could work towards being a specialist. This could even open up the door of becoming a consultant, since education technology will not be going away any time soon!

On the weekend, I browsed through the Queen’s University website. I’m still trying to decide if I should sign up for the Fall or the Winter session. I guess I still have a month to think about it!


Reimbursement for AQ


I got a cheque for $735 last week for the Senior Math Additional Qualification (AQ) that I took over the summer. This is the fifth course I’ve taken, but it’s the first one that I’ve gotten reimbursed*. You can see all the other ones I’ve taken on my Ontario College of Teachers profile. Definitely it’s nice to finally get it covered (although it does help with the taxes).

Of course, I’m not around any banks up north, but thank goodness I can deposit it digitally!

*At approximately $750 a pop, that means I’ve paid $3000 out of my own pocket already.