I recently received an email from a colleague that pointed out that I have not been posting as much on social media. Even though I’m not too big of a social media person I had to agree. Over the past few weeks I have been pretty quiet. Between my family, friends, and new position I haven’t had much time to post on my blog. I thought I would share with everyone a quick recap of some of the things that I’m currently working on both professionally and personally.
One of my big focuses this year is being the site lead for my school’s CASA service learning projects. When I was in the classroom I heard about CASA but never had to participate since I was teaching math and science. This year has been a crash course in CASA. Overall I really like the program. My students have done some great things as part of their CASA work. Our sixth grade has focused on learning about agents of change. Our seventh grade has researched and created persuasive presentations about the recent election. They also took a walking field trip to a local shopping center to register voters. Our 8th grade class had an assembly with Dr. Terrance Roberts and asked some awesome questions. During the second semester we are going to really focus on Day of Service and final presentations.
Google Apps for Education
Being a former tech coordinator I obviously want to see technology being used in my school. Over the past few weeks I have been working with another teacher to deliver PD on Google Forms, Flubaroo, Google Drawings, Google Classroom, and random Google tips and tricks. Overall the feedback to these sessions has been positive. A few teachers are even starting to incorporate what they have learned into their lessons. I’ve been super excited to see how one of my new teachers has stepped up and taken on an ed tech leadership role at my school.
Show and Tell
One of my favorite recent reads is Show and Tell by Dan Roam. It’s a very short book that contains tons of visuals and great ideas about creating presentations. Presentation design and story telling has been one of my personal areas of interest for the past few months. What I really liked about this book is that it offers easy to follow story lines and ideas for incorporating images into your presentation. I liked this book so much that I picked up one of Dan Roam’s other books Back of the Napkin.
This year one of the big changes I wanted to make was moving my school’s PD to an online platform. So far all I have been able to do is create an online hub for teachers that contains tutorials, important links, important dates, and links to the materials we use for our weekly PD. During the second semester I want to try and get my teachers to interact with the site more. Several of them use it but we are not using it yet to it’s fullest.
One of my big accomplishments this semester has been getting all of my teachers on WordPress. As of last week every teacher on my campus has a WordPress site where they are posting links, sharing assignments, having students engage in conversation, and communicating with parents and staff about what’s going on in their classroom.This last semester we had over 7000+ hits on our teacher sites. Students, parents, other administrators, and most of all teachers have said how much they love using their websites. I plan on continuing to push teachers to use their websites during the second semester.
- Since becoming and administrator I have learned that Spreadsheets are my best friend. I use them for data tracking, organizing thoughts, and so much more. I’ve also become a ninja at creating formulas to help automate many of my day to day tasks.
- Spotify is my best friend when I’m checking report cards. Someone the other day asked me what my secret was for getting everything done so fast and my reply was “Death Metal”. It sounds silly but put on some metal music and I just zone out and focus on the task at hand.
- I’ve really learned about the importance of presence as an administrator. Even a quick walk through and thumbs up once a week is greatly appreciated by newer teachers.