I had professional development days this past week. On Thursday, my cooperating teacher advised me to take the day off as I would probably be able to get more valuable work done than going to hear a speaker with the whole district. I gladly accepted the day off. I was able to sleep in (all the way to 7:30), go for a long run outside, and spend some time baking. I was also able catch up on homework and watch The Princess Frog with Tamara the night before (we stayed up past 10!). Woah! It was such a wild and crazy day off. On Friday, I went into school for professional development and I found it really fascinating. It was like a whole semester of school of education classes rolled into 3 hours. We talked about teaching literacies across curriculums and the common core state standards in mathematics. I found this really helpful and fascinating, but also overwhelming. It is pretty crazy to think that I have to not only meet students where they are and help them advance, but I also have to make sure that they are meeting grade level standards. But, what if a 6th grader is at a 3rd grade level? That would mean that I would have to get them to advance to a 6th grade level, but meet them at a 3rd grade level first. Plus, I would have to do this process for each individual kid at each of their levels. It is a daunting task, but I suppose that is what is so exciting and scary about teaching. You get to impact children in such a meaningful way, but you have to do this for so many children that it become overwhelming and frustrating when you do not have the supports to do all that you can. That is where professional development comes in. The district people who were leading the discussions were providing us with ideas and frameworks for support in our teaching. Overall, it was a great day and I learned a lot.
All this time off from the kiddos means that I was able to bake a ton! Casey (also the author of the Buffalo Chicken Dip) came to me a while back and suggested molten chocolate lava cake. So, I went and bought some ramekins and we made them the other night! They turned out pretty darn amazing, but next time, I would use dark chocolate instead of bittersweet and I would bake them for slightly less time. I got nervous this time around and left them in for too long! The cake was still fantastic and it was great to enjoy a little treat with my "fraternity son." We made three little cakes in 5 oz ramekins (one for him, one for me, and then one for Margo who stopped by to help us bake!). It was super duper fun!
Molten Chocolate Lava Cake (adapted from Delicious Shots)
4 oz bittersweet chocolate
4 tbsp unsalted butter
1 egg white
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup flour (we used whole wheat and it was great!)
1 tbsp espresso powder
1/2 tsp vanilla
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees and lightly grease the ramekins.
2. In a double boiler, melt the chocolate with the butter, stirring continuously, until it is well combined. Remove from heat.
3. Beat the egg and egg white with the sugar until it turns a pale yellow. Beat in the vanilla and then add in the chocolate mixture until combined. Mix in the flour and espresso powder.
4. Divide the batter among the ramekins and bake for 15 minutes. Serve immediately with a sprinkling of powdered sugar. Serve in the ramekins or, using a knife, run it along the sides of the ramekins and tip the cake out onto a plate.
P.S. Ice cream and/or a nice glass of milk go great with these lovely little cakes!