Welcome to Sixth Grade!

Welcome to Room C10. We will spend time together every day this year. We will be reading and writing a lot! I have spent lots of time preparing and I have a few surprises ready for you. If you are wondering what it takes to be successful in this class, the answer is easy…

Show up.
Do your best.
Be kind.
Make mistakes.
Be honest.
Work hard.
Take risks.
Ask questions.

This is going to be a great year! Please stop by our class Twitter account at @haseltineclass and our class Instagram at @haseltineclass. We have a facebook page too: Ms. Haseltine’s Class.

I can’t wait to get started!

Bella LOVES her new blanket.

Bella LOVES her new blanket.


I Love Bella!


Bella is my sweet dog. She’s three years old. I rescued her from our local shelter almost two years ago. She has such a sweet face and on her side, there’s a patch of white fur that’s in the shape of a heart.  I love Bella! She’s smart and sweet and quirky.


Bella loves…

lounging in the sunshine

chasing birds

long walks

treats short spurts of cuddling (she’s independent)

being pet

belly rubs

playing in the snow

time alone

throwing her toys and chasing them herself

squeaky toys the most


My favorite Bella story is that Bella doesn’t like it when I cook. I live in a small condo and the fire alarm tends to go off when I cook. Ugh! Lately, when Bella notices that I turn on the stove, she hustles upstairs until the cooking is finished. As soon as dinner is served, she runs back downstairs to see if there’s anything for her.

She is a smart dog and learns commands easily. She’s also stubborn and when the phone rings, she jumps into my lap immediately. She loves me. She forgives me when I’m cranky and she comforts me when I’m sad. She plays with me whenever I want and she’s always there.


I love my sweet Bella!


On My Way…

It’s 4:22 and I’m on my way to Massachusetts. Here’s are a couple of pictures of Bella as I was dropping her off at the kennel.




Remember to make good choices today! I can’t wait to read your posts and comments! Keep writing and reading!!!

Annoyed or Grateful?!?! I Pick Grateful!

Today is my 10th  slice for the March Slice of Life Challenge on Two Writing Teachers.

I like to stay positive, but I’m going to get real today. I’m going to write about things that annoy me. (It’s a great generating writing idea to do with students too!) Here’s my list of things that annoy me… they all happened on Monday!!!


1. Less sleep.
I know my post on Sunday was about celebrating the time change, but Monday I was TIRED. The students were TIRED. It was a slow moving day!

2. Spelling errors.
We all make mistakes. I get that. (I feel like there are many days when I make more than most!) BUT, a spelling error on a document that went out to hundreds of people! REALLY?!?! What about spell check? What about having a colleague proofread your draft?!?! This got me crazy!!!!

3. Group texts.
OK. I’m going to say it…at the risk of alienating friends and colleagues. No offense is intended, but I DESPISE group texts! With the constant replies that never seem to end. I want out. Please no more group texts. Group emails…that works. And NO group texts at night!!

OK…so I don’t leave things here on a negative note…I will counteract this list of annoying things with three things I’m grateful for on Monday…

1. I got to talk with my niece and nephew. Hearing giggles and “I love you Auntie Chelle!” is all I need to make me smile. I love hearing Jillian excited about her birthday gift and Jack telling me about his sight words and the words on his word wall!

2. Laughing with my students. The new running joke in class is my obsession with pens. They are so funny!

3. Finding exactly what I need at the store AND having that item be on sale! Kind and smiling workers. Friendly customers.

4. Ending my day with Bella cuddles and a long walk in the warm weather.

I guess…the gratitude outweighed the annoyances! 


The Choka Challenge!

We have been challenged by Mrs. Simon’s class to write a poem for National Day on Writing. Here’s the challenge: 
Write a choka.
What is a choka?
A double haiku of 5,7,5,5,7,5 syllables or 5,7,7,5,7,7 syllable count.
My dog Bella had her first session with an amazing trainer this weekend and that’s how I thought of this poem…


No. No. Shhh! No bark…
the trainer tells me to say
But don’t say her name.
Bella. Oh, Bella.
Oh what a good girl you are.
At last, she listens.


I had another idea for this post…until I got distracted. There are so many opportunities for distractions in our daily lives. We try to multitask to keep up with everything. There are times that I find myself in places and I don’t remember how I got there or why I’m there because I’m thinking about a million other things. 

Monday night I got home late, so I grabbed Bella’s retractable leash and took her on a walk. 

Feeling the time crunch, I brought my phone so I could check my email. She usually barks a lot at that first walk after work. It’s like she’s saying hello to everyone after a long day cooped up. I’m getting used to that. But tonight, as I was distracted checking my phone she ran into the street AT a car. I’m so grateful that the driver wasn’t distracted. He stopped. She’s fine. It’s by the grace of God that Bella is unharmed. I feel awful. I should have been more present and less distracted. She could have been killed! 

What will I take from this? First of all, I’m going to get Bella some training on the leash. Second, I’m taking this as a reminder to be present. Be in the moment. What was so important that I couldn’t have waited ten minutes?!?!

Life is precious. Some days I feel like I’m sleep walking through and other days I feel like I’m speed walking through. The moments when I feel happiest are the moments when I’m the most present. I need to unplug more. I’m reminded of an article I read about only checking email twice a day. No checking while waiting at the light or checking in line at the grocery store or when I’m walking the dog. From now on, Bella gets my full attention on our walks. Less distractions. Be. In the moment. Present. 


P.S. As I was looking for some pictures of Bella for this post, I noticed something. Bella is an expert at BEing in the moment. She’s fully present…all the time. Here are some examples…


She’s an example for me…reminding me to just BE.

Flash Slices

I am so impressed with your writing! Writing slices about ourselves has been fun and interesting. This week, we will continue writing narrative nonfiction but with a twist. You need to tell an entire story of your life in 35-60 words. Be brief. Be clear. Every single word is necessary and important, so don’t waste your words!

This challenge is hard for me because I feel like I need lots of words to convey my message. Let’s see if I can do it. Here’s one about losing my dog, Leo and getting Bella…

Empty house without Leo. Quiet. Clean. Sad. Lonely. I need a dog. My new dog won’t be Leo. I worry. After weeks of looking, there she is. Belle. I think I’ll call her Bella. My new friend. My companion, looking after me, since Leo left.


Welcome Bella!


 I love my crate!

I love my crate!

On Saturday afternoon, I drove to the animal shelter looking for a new dog. I’d seen her on Petfinder and I immediately fell in love with her. I had to wait a whole week to meet her, so when I was driving on Saturday, I could hardly wait to see her in real life. I arrived and walked back and found her immediately. She was lounging on a doggie cot. She was perfect! I asked to see her and after spending a few minutes with her and then taking her outside for a few minutes, I knew it…she was coming home with me. 

I filled out all of the paperwork and paid for her. I left her there for an hour or so while I left to get supplies. When I got back, she got her new collar and leash and we left to go home.

First picture of Bella

Look at where she sat…

Bella coming home

We got into the house and it took a long time for her to settle down. She ran around sniffing everywhere.

Exploring the new home

We took a few walks and explored her new home. Bella didn’t want to go to sleep. I noticed her eyes would start to close and she’d force them back open. She was nervous. She discovered how much she loves looking out the window.


When we came upstairs, she found a comfy pillow and fell asleep. Bella likes to sleep.


She sighs just like Leo used to…that makes me smile. In the morning, when she wakes up she does that doggie stretch….forward and then backward and then she drops her hind legs and drags her belly around…it’s adorable! Bella’s only been here a day and a half, but she’s already family!

photo 5

Thank you to everyone who helped me look…I found her as I was checking out profiles from your persuasive essays…so YOU are the reason that Bella is home now. Job well done!