This summer I have spent many an hour working at being blogger savvy along with 1:1 technology ready for my 5th grade class this year. There are still so many little things that trip me up, like forgetting to add a > to the end of a link, or forgetting to switch to html! Hang in there, I promise that like a fine wine, I will improve with some blogging age!
Personal: I have been writing for several years and have finally worked up the courage to submit a manuscript to contests. I was blown away when I won one of them this summer. Now the hard work begins, shopping the manuscript, once the rest of the edits are finished that is!! I have always written with my students to whatever prompt they are writing to. I believe in modeling and showing them the writing process of what happens when an adult writer gets stuck? I believe that this is my year, I just have to believe and keep writing! As my husband reminds me daily, all writing is rewriting!
Organization: Somehow I start off with a clean slate. Papers accounted for, everything in its place. Then somehow, a paper bomb explodes and there are things to check, review, and grade sticking out of every square inch in my room. This year, I believe will be different though as my classroom is now a 1:1 iPad room. I have been learning quite a bit about going paperless via Edmodo, Evernote, and GoogleDocs. I know this will be my learning curve year, but I believe the feedback to the students will be much faster and more meaningful.
Planning: My 5th grade team has definitely been a TEAM when it comes to planning our curriculum. The 4 of us have met weekly to review what we are teaching, the materials we are incorporating, (GLAD, technology, Common Core, etc.) and sharing resources and examples. This year my team split up!! One became the district GLAD resource teacher (the perfect person for the job!), one decided to switch grade levels to grow professionally (personally I think going to K from 5th is torture, but she will be an amazing Kinder teacher!), and the third is taking part of the year off to stay with and provide care for her miracle, baby Rose. I am not panicking though as I know both of the new additions to my team. One of them was with our team for years, but had to move school sites, and because of reducing class size, he is back!! YEAH!! A male to teach the Boy/Girl talk in the spring.. can I get a woot woot?!! And the sub who is taking baby Rose's mom's classroom was there last year and she is amazing!! Planning will go on, just this year we get to stop and really think on how to effectively get our students to utilize our technology for their learning benefit! Great times are ahead for us all!!
Professional: I am not going to beat a dead horse into the ground, (I have to remember to look up where that idiom came from! My students will definitely want to know!) but I have really immersed my summer in learning ways to educate my students, provide them the tools they need to research, find answers, start conversations, while they search for different ways to solve problems and cite evidence. I am excited about this new adventure.
Students: I have always believed that if students are not engaged or an active part of their learning, then they will shut down and just cruise through the day. Lopez Land is an active, fun, engaging environment and each student will find the opportunity to grow, question, interact, and demonstrate.
Motto: You snooze, you lose isn't really a motto you might think of in terms of being crucial to learning. But, I believe it is. There is no time like the present for our, MY, students to take the bull by the horns and wrestle Common Core, 21st century learning skills, and technology than the present. Many of my students do not have access to technology at home and I have seen them leave behavior issues at the door when technology is being included in the instruction. They don't have a minute to lose in their day by snoozing and it will be up to me to make sure no catnaps take place!
Longwinded, but when ya give a girl a chance to tell you her goals, what do you expect? As a matter of fact, I am going to have my students create one of these little goodies. I am currently working on how to edit this... like I say, I have learned a lot, but not every thing!! Suggestions?