Friday, January 21, 2011

The idea of being a Total Tech Nerd (TTN) and having Google recruit me for their Boston offices is a dream…only second to being on Oprah. However, as a Teacher Nerd (TN), the idea of technology in the classroom makes me quiver with joy even more than the idea of being locked in the cooler with a spoon at the Cheesecake Factory.

In light of the recent snow days suffered by my school district (3.5 in 2 weeks + 1 holiday) I have been pondering the idea/dream/vision/illusion that if we were totally connected than we would not be suffering the set-backs we are all contemplating while donning our snow gear to clear the driveway…again.

Stay with me here…

If the kids were all accustomed to logging in and posting comments to a chat board or blog, we could continue the learning process even when we don’t see them.

If the kids were in the habit of checking the website for new assignments or updates to class activities, then the learning could continue even on extended weekend vacations.

If the kids had an appropriate use for Facebook and Twitter (like communication for group projects) then they could continue to push forward and discover more information.

Of course in all of these examples the TN would be able to oversee the progress and communicate with her students while they were toasty at home in their pj’s.

Don’t be scared. This would NEVER take the place of being in the classroom and having that ability to personally communicate and connect with the kids BUT…being connected and using the technology that the modern business world created and uses daily might benefit our kids more than we could even imagine.

The other option is to take January and February off and go to school in July and August.

I vote for being a TNN and TN.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

And snow it goes

You know you are a total teacher nerd if you look at the blessing of a snow day as an opportunity to create more mind-blowing, earth-shattering, eye-popping lessons that will leave your students thirsting for more and begging to stay after school for extra credit work.
Forget the idea that you could take some much needed rest or catch up on the reading of trashy novels. Those projects that are piling up in the basement…that’s OK…they’ll be there tomorrow…or next week.
But the idea that a thought provoking PowerPoint or a super spectacular webquest that will urge guided discovery could be just over the horizon of my mind…now that’s exciting.
So I’ve cleared the driveway 2, 3, 4 times today…but I keep going back to my nerd quest of information and lessons. And snow it goes.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Kids are so kind.

My students never cease to amaze me. They have the ability to grasp the obvious, avoid using a social filter, and just say it like it is.

Quote of the week:

Student: "Ms. you know how we know its Friday?"

Ms.S: "No but I wish you would tell me."

Student: "Your hair is a MESS."

Moral of the careful what you wish for.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Well how did this happen...

This past summer I kept driving by this old building in the city on my way to wherever I was going and I would comment in my head, "That place looks like an abandoned building...I wonder what it is"...and now its where I work. Funny how life can pull a fast one on you.

At the eleventh hour, I became a middle school health teacher. Stop it...stop cringing. Yes...they are funny little creatures...Yes they have no social filters yet...Yes they are are stuck between little kid and teenager...I know all of this...but they sure make a day go by quickly.

This is supposed to be the toughest school in the city. The kids have Spongebob backpacks.

These kids are supposed to be tough to teach. They come into my classroom with new questions everyday.

I've even been told by some folks in the community that the kids are like wild animals. WHAT?!?!

You know that feeling you get when you find that pair of sweat pants that you want to wear everyday because they are so comfortable...and you do wear them everyday because you feel so darn good in them...Yep...that's how I feel about my job.