Here we are at the start of another new school year. I haven’t always been excited to come back to work after summer, but working at Beaver Local has changed my perspective. I could have probably gone back to work after the Fourth of July pretty happily. I missed my classroom. I missed my kids. I was going stir crazy at home. August 24 did seem to come quickly though, and before I knew it I was back at school and listening to our new superintendent address the staff. He’s top notch, and I’m excited to work for him. I know there is so much I can learn from him. Also, his relentless pursuit of optimism and positivity goes right along with the way I like to live my life. He had so many great points over the course of our inservice time, but the one that has really stuck with me and I’m hoping to focus on for the year is Be More Dog.
On day two of inservice, Mr. Lowe showed us the following video encouraging us to Be More Dog.
This just hit me. I can be whatever kind of teacher I want to be. If I want to be a technology using, costume wearing, super teacher, then that is what I will be. Go for it. Dive in head first. RUN. Be More Dog.
After we watched the commercial, we were sent out to the back parking lot and instructed to do a carpool karaoke video with our PLC groups we will be working in all year long. Most of us were out of our comfort zone, but the inspiration was written on our faces. Be More Dog. Go for it.
Here’s my group’s Buspool Karaoke. Please note how much of a star Mrs. Schreffler is! She was born for the stage.
The Be More Dog mentality starts at the top, and they practice what they preach. Here is the Beaver Local Administration showing that they can cut loose and have fun too. The guy with the Beaver mascot head is our superintendent. You can spot the school treasurer in the back left wearing pink. High school principal has the microphone first. High school assistant principal is on the right with the sunglasses holding a stuffed Beaver. Oh, and don’t forget to check out my beautiful momma in the very front right with the hat and sunglasses on. She inspires me every single day to be the best teacher I can be.
We control the type of teacher we are. We control our happiness. We control the environment we create for students. Being great is hard work, but it’s worth it when we connect and change the lives of our students. Make a choice, decide the type of teacher you want to be, and just do it. Be More Dog.
Join me (and many other Beaver Local Teachers) as we Be More Dog.
Holy, cow! It’s already November. It feels like only a few weeks ago I was beginning this crazy journey at Beaver Local High School. The 2015-2016 school year marks my seventh year as a public school teacher, but eighth total year teaching. I thought that by year seven, I had found my groove, but switching from WV to Ohio has been enough to push me out of my groove and into orbit. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, as I am still totally out of my comfort zone (see my last post about the goal of breaking out of the comfort zone). But I am feeling a lot like the hamster on the week. My little legs are pumping and pumping, but I’m not always getting ahead of the rat race.
I haven’t taught the literature I am teaching to my students this year since 2008 during my student teaching. We have come a long way since 2008, so I don’t really have anything from then and I have been creating everything I’m using from scratch. This material creation has been exhausting, but so worth while. I have been pushing myself to think creatively on every single assignment. I have been pushing myself out of the box and I’m really enjoying the results I’m seeing from my students.
My sophomores just finished reading Antigone and my Seniors are about half way through with Beowulf. The first time I taught these difficult texts, my students really struggled. I remember teaching these the way my advising teacher did during my student teaching, and the students were checked out. This time around, I have worked hard to bring the text to life and it shows in the knowledge, understanding, and appreciation my students have shown of these texts. A coworker showed me the website Kahoot It. I have been using that to help us review. A student actually asked to take the test last week because he was so confident in his understanding of Antigone. That’s something that has never happened in my career. I know when I give these kids the formal test, they’re going to nail it because of the hard work I put into the planning stages of teaching. I typically revamp and create some new material as I go along, but I haven’t started from scratch like this since my first year. I challenge you to throw your old material out and start fresh. It will bring a new and great perspective to the classroom.
My new school has a 1-1 initiative. Every kid has an iPad. Some take their iPads home, and some keep them in their 7th period teacher’s room. Because of this initiative, I’m so excited to start blogging this week. We will begin by student creation on Thursday of this week. I plan to let the students create and experiment with their blog on Thursday and Friday. By Friday they will have to have an About Me Section on their page.
Stop back and check out our blogs next week! I’m so excited to get my kids writing and blogging.