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The Crunch Is On
by Stephanie Capalbo

Stephanie Capalbo is working toward National Board Certification as an Early Childhood Generalist.

February 9, 2004

Well, the crunch is officially on! Just one month remains before I have to pack my box of entries and ship it off to the certification board. I have so much left to do! Where will I find the time? Thankfully, Mother Nature kicked in to help out by offering three recent snow days! Two of those days resulted in a five-day weekend -- devoted entirely to the Boards.

I have revised Entry 4 -- Documented Accomplishments -- so many times, I can't bear to read it again! I just had to decide "enough is enough," and officially declare that entry done. After several revisions of Entry 3 -- Integrating Mathematics and Science -- and after watching the video so many times I could recite it from memory, I put that entry to bed as well. Entry 3 is officially sealed in its envelope. I feel confident about what I wrote, how I analyzed the videotaped lesson, and how I incorporated the standards.

Next on my agenda is to finish analyzing the writing of two of my students and finalize Entry 1. I also need to review my taped social studies lessons to determine which 15-minute clip to use for that entry. As it turned out, the plan for the social studies lesson came to me easily while doing an activity that was perfect for highlighting and celebrating the diversity among the children in my class. I'll pull this off by my deadline -- even if it does mean a few sleepless nights!

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Meet Stephanie Capalbo

Stephanie Capalbo received a bachelor's degree in psychology with a concentration in elementary education from Rhode Island College in May 1995. She became certified in early childhood education in August 1997. For the past six years, Stephanie has been teaching kindergarten at Bradford Elementary School in Westerly, Rhode Island. In the fall of 2000, the kindergarten at Bradford became the first and only kindergarten in the district to receive accreditation by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC). In 2003, Stephanie was named Westerly's Wal-Mart Teacher of the Year.

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