Sunday, January 12, 2014

And So It Begins...

"You have far more influence over the volition and engagement of your students than you may realize." -Unknown

Many would consider a fifth year teacher relatively new to the profession, or even a "21st Century Learning Expert", which is far from where I consider myself to be. I have been relying on textbooks, file cabinets, paper, and pencils for the last five years. I've been also working endless hours to ensure my students are learning the material they need to succeed in all statewide assessments. For those who aren't aware, education has drastically changed over the past ten to fifteen years. There has been a tremendous shift towards testing, state and national standards, student scores, meeting criteria, etc. With that being said, I knew both my students and myself have fallen into a huge rut. We need a change. The change we've been looking for not only needs to ensure that student learning will be aligned to district objectives and state standards, but the change also needs to focus on higher-level thinking, creativity, and relevance/meaning to my kids' lives. I took it upon myself to enroll into  the Apple Foundations Training and apply for the iPad Academy. In December 2013, I was chosen to be part of the academy. I am blessed to be part of such an elite group of educators!

I've always been a huge advocate for the implementation of classroom technology. Given the opportunity, I've always made sure I could incorporate it every single day. I'm a huge believer in making the classroom a 1:1 setting. I am excited to show my kids that iPads are not just fun and games, but they're also powerful learning tools. The possibilities are endless!  I will admit, I am nervous too. While technology is a great tool, sometimes things can go haywire. With the help of my coach, Ann Feldmann, I am confident in knowing that I will be able to handle any challenge that may arise!

So this semester, I will periodically post about our transition from the traditional classroom to my ideal classroom, a 1:1 tech-savvy place. I am excited to see what's in store for the Cougars at Central. Here's to a semester of curiosity, creativity, and craziness!