What can I say………..
The school year has begun and I am so excited to implement ideas and projects from my mentor to my kids at school. As my mentor Phaedra gave me a tour of IBM, I was amazed at the atmosphere of the “office space”. Many people were working while standing up at an adjustable leveled desk with their laptops, others were conversing in a reserved room while writing on walls made for dry erase markers (a teachers dream). I was taking pictures of everything, I know the IBM office people were like, “What is she doing?”.
Before school started I bothered/badgered school custodian for adjustable tables, AND he found some!! I have 4 grouped tables in my room that seat 6 students and one of the groups is a stand-up table which we call “The High Rollers Table”. The students are asking, “Can our group work stand at the High Rollers Table today?”. I was totally geeked out, and calmly said, “Yes”.
In my Math II class we were discussing how rotations, reflections, and translations relate to real-life jobs and income (they honestly could not see how). One of my students aspires to be a clothing designer, as a class discussion we discovered how the symmetry of a piece of fabric reflects to form the opposite side in a pattern. When that particular student was able to correlate the connection I seriously got chills.
As a woman teaching at an all male academy, I realize that I am here to foster ideas and influence a plan to give vision to their future.
In the beginning I felt a little unsure of “educational” self and the task at hand. There were both challenges and successes. My mentor and has been a great inspiration to my ideas which encouraged my excitement. My mentor set the goal and my cohort gave me ideas to achieve my goal. The successes would be, the collaboration with my cohort, we listen to each others program and share ideas on how to improve the quality of the lesson. The struggles have been in operating “real world” where sitting down and finding time to think and plan of what the outcome should be.
The highlight of my week was of course the NOC white water rafting. I have always wanted to have that experience and this portion of the fellowship certainly provided. I was nervous and excited at the same time before we got on the raft. Once we got on the raft and started on out on our educational botany journey on a river I became so peaceful and thankful for what has been presented for us. Then I was hoping for the uncertainty of the slight throws of the river. The water was brisk but refreshing and needed in my life. Thank you Kenan. Oh and let me not forget about the FOOD, delicious. That is all.
Before the Kenan program I had a fragmented idea of how I would implement planning, pedagogy, and personal development. After the sessions I was able to piece together and create a bridge to all the parts floating around in my mind. Being that I “Flip the Classroom” and use Tenmarks for homework, classwork and engagement were in the unknown areas of my educational outlook. After the workshops I now know that I will have a timer to create scheduled time between practice and PBL learning. I will also use Classcraft to engage students in their own behavioral expectations. I am excited to use “pocket points” for incentives for less usage of cell phones and “try engineering” to challenge my guys to be strong thinkers and engineers.
Compared to other professional developments, this was very helpful. I truly enjoyed listening to other teachers during the EDcamp. I tend to be the one to talk first and I thought to my self, “let someone else go first” and I feel that by listening I can gain so much more. Although I spent most of the sessions pursing my lips, I was able to write down some ideas that I will definitely use this upcoming year and future years.
I also enjoyed the experts, they were great in their presentations. Each one of them gave me a morsel of what I could definitely use in my ever changing curriculum of middle school math. Other PD’s can be somewhat surreptitious but this week was more than notable.
Once again, thank you Kenan!
When I saw the question, “What do you hope to gain from your fellowship experience?”. I honestly stopped and tried to catch one thought that was running through my mind. After I caught the first I wrote it down because if I didn’t, it would forever be lost in my inner cosmos.
So the first thought is making new connections with colleagues. When listening to other colleagues tell “war stories” and they all sound similar to my own so they are confirming my professional experience.
The other thought I was able to catch in the stream of my cosmos is having a greater sense of professionalism. I love it when someone asks me, “What do you do?”, I take pride in saying, “I’M A TEACHER”. This experience is helping me to renew my love for what I do for a living. I love how that “old school” idea of a teacher being a pillar of the community is still a lingering glimpse of how things used to be. I’m dreaming for a new respect of teachers to be more than a person who releases information out into the atmosphere.