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Sleep? Who Me?
by Stephanie Blackburn

Stephanie Blackburn is working toward National Board Certification as a Middle Childhood Generalist.

August 1, 2003

At 4:30 am. I shot straight up in bed"The Box! I haven't inventoried the box yet." My mind started wandering. What if I don't have what I need? I've had the box for three weeks now and I haven't even opened it up.

I tossed and turned, and tossed and turned some more. In the introductory class I had taken two months ago, the instructor warned us to check out the materials as soon as they arrived. I just didn't have the time or energy to go through it; it was the end of the school year. It would be my luck that I was missing a piece and wouldn't be able to rectify the problem due to my procrastination. At 5 a.m., my feet hit the floor. I was on my way to inventory my box.

I opened it up to find some labels, envelopes, a CD-ROM, a bag, and a sheet of paper listing the contents of my box. This is it? I am awake at 5 a.m. on my first day to sleep in and this is all that's here? Convinced that I was missing something, I turned on the computer and began reading the portfolio instructions on the CD-ROM. It was basically the same thing I had downloaded off the Web site. Thankfully, however, it was all there.

I began a list of things to do:

  • Print all of the standards.
  • Print all the scoring guides.
  • Get some sleep!
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Meet Stephanie Blackburn

Stephanie Blackburn, one of Education World's 2002-2003 teacher diarists, received her bachelor's degree in elementary education from the University of Rhode Island in May 1994. For the first two years of her teaching career, Stephanie worked as an enrichment specialist in the talent development program for the Westerly, Rhode Island, school district. For the past seven years, she has taught fourth grade at Bradford Elementary School in Westerly. Stephanie was awarded a 2002 National Educator Award by the Milken Family Foundation, in a program that provides recognizes elementary and secondary school teachers, principals, and other education professionals who are furthering excellence in education.

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