Throughout the course of the semester, I have been thinking and reflecting on how to be a better teacher. Students have the right to the best teachers in their schools. I believe that to be the best teachers, we (all teachers) need to work together. Collaborating with other educators around the world can help each classroom. At first I thought that I was not a good teacher if I depended on others for ideas for lessons. However, I realize now that if my students can have ideas from five different teachers instead of one, they will benefit from this.
According to Betty Achinstein, teacher collaboration has been a trend since the 1980’s. In her article, “Conflict Amid Community: Micropolitics of Teacher Collaboration”, Betty talks about the negative parts of teacher collaboration. She believes that teachers collaborating is problematic because teachers often have conflict when they join a community of teachers. The conflict is over differences in professional beliefs and practices. I completely disagree with Betty. Sure there is always the people that will come into conflict about having different beliefs and practices. However, these differences are what make us unique individuals. I think having conflict is a good thing because it shows that they teachers have thought about what they believe and feel passionate about these beliefs. I think it is passion that drives each teacher. Without any passion, a teacher cannot teach well.
Collaboration is so important. There are several different ways that teachers can collaborate. First, collaboration with the teachers in the same school as you is important. As new educators it is important for us to learn from those that have been in this profession for longer than we have. Co-teaching is one way of collaborating with other teachers and the staff in your schools. Here is a video to show how these strategies can be used.
Another way to use collaboration, is to use the internet to collaborate with others around the world. There are websites that promote teacher collaboration using technology. This website gives several ideas how teachers can collaborate. Also, using technology like blogs and twitter allow teachers to connect and bounce ideas off of each other.
The most important lesson that I learned from this class is that working with others is vital. I know that especially in my first year of teaching I am going to need others to help me along the way. I am so glad that I am aware of ways that I can reach out and collaborate with others.
WHEN YOU THOUGHT I WASN’T LOOKING
By Mary Rita Schilke Korzan
When you thought I wasn’t looking, you displayed my first report, and I wanted to do another.
When you thought I wasn’t looking, you fed a stray cat, and I thought it was good to be kind to animals.
When you thought I wasn’t looking, you gave me a sticker, and I knew that little things were special things.
When you thought I wasn’t looking, you put your arm around me, and I felt loved.
When you thought I wasn’t looking I saw tears come from your eyes, and I learned that sometimes things hurt–but that it’s all right to cry.
When you thought I wasn’t looking, you smiled, and it made me want to look that pretty too.
When you thought I wasn’t looking, you cared, and I wanted to be everything I could be.
When you thought I wasn’t looking–I looked…and wanted to say thanks for all those things you did when you thought I wasn’t looking.
I love this poem because it reminds me of the impact that teachers have on the lives of the students in their classrooms. I remember several teachers from my past, I knew they cared about each of the students in their classroom. I am thankful for these teachers because without these, I may not have ever wanted to be a teacher.
I have been thinking a lot lately about the permanence of the internet. Last year there was a video posted of one teacher giving another teacher a lap dance at a pep rally. A student at the pep rally recorded the teachers doing this. Take a look at the video.
This video last year got me thinking about how technology can ruin lives. This past week there was a new reminder of the permanance of the internet. A student at UCLA made some very racist remarks directed at Asian students in the university. I know that in both of these instances these people probably wish that they could take this back. However, the internet is forever. I think in my future classroom I will teach my student this lesson and talk about how to use technology and the internet responsibly.
6 Word Stories
In this task I used flickr and paint to create these two stories.
I think both relate to technology and education!
Here are some cute/funny anecdotes about being a teacher!
You might be a teacher if…
- You want to slap the next person who says, “Must be nice to have all your holidays and summers free.”
- You can tell it’s a full moon without ever looking outside.
- You believe “shallow gene pool” should have its own box on the report card.
- When out in public, you feel the urge to talk to strange children and correct their behavior.
- When you mention “vegetables” and you’re not talking about a food group.
- You think people should be required to get a government permit before being allowed to reproduce.
- You wonder how some parents ever managed to reproduce.
- You can’t have children of your own because there is NO name you could give a child that wouldn’t bring on high blood pressure the moment you heard it.
- Meeting a child’s parents INSTANTLY answers the question, “Why is this kid like this?”
I think that it is important that teachers always have a sense of humour! If you take everything too seriously you will miss some great experiences. I am looking forward to hearing funny stories and watching these children learn. I think that humour will turn any bad situations into good ones!
I am taking a ELNG class which is focused on EAL learners. This has been an eye-opening class because it has shown me effective ways of teaching to EAL learners. One discussion that came up was about accents around us. I only ever really thought about people around me having an accent and I spoke English the correct way. I speak one variety of English but to others I may have an accent. As a result of British colonization and imperialism, English spread around the world. Today there are many varieties of English.
Here is a video that we watched in our class. This showed me the judgments that I make about people because of their accents. In this video, Mikey talks about how he knows how to speak without an accent but why would be want to because his culture and family speak this way. I now realize that I need to accept all varieties of English that I come across because everyone is different. Everyone deserves the right to speak like their family.
In this task, I used the program Excel. I created an example of a university students expenses for the fall semester.
Check it out!