It was optional for me to come to the New Teacher Orientation because I am not a new teacher and I am not new to the district. But I am new to this school so I am so glad I came. I got to hear the vision of the Principal. He really cares a lot - about ensuring that teachers have the resources they need, about providing a clean, happy place where kids learn and about the environment. The gardens at this school ROCK!! It is truly a campus and is so beautiful!! There are many outside spaces that I will be taking my students to go OUT to read and write outside!!
I still haven't set up my room yet...
Again, I walked in and then walked out.... Again, I was distracted by teaching the last writing class and I also had to present to a group of teachers about Teacher Research, another hat I wear in the county. I am lucky to be in a county that supports professional development by encouraging you to be a teacher researcher. The county pays me hourly to be the county voice of Teacher Research! So off I went to another school to explain the process to a group of teachers who just won a grant for iPads in the classroom so they plan to spend the year reflecting on What happens when iPads are used in a science class? Half way there, I realized my phone was back in the Writing Classroom. Ugh. My phone is a phone, but also my GPS, my watch, my timers, and the only way for my family to reach me. I felt so unconnected - a bit naked! So, instead of using the few hours I had after my meetings to get busy in my room, I retrieved my phone and ordered pizza for the Friday Night dinner!
However, I awoke and started to map out a room arrangement. I am lucky to be in a room that is HUGH!! And a whole wall of bright windows with the Peace Garden outside the window!! I decided on Monday I will take the rocking chair and another chair we don't use at home anymore to my classroom. I already took 2 rugs that we don't use anymore. I think these pieces will help the room feel homey!! Monday morning I plan to arrive at 7am and get busy. Finally!! The focus has arrived!
I also awoke thinking about how to use twitter in the classroom. I have two ideas. I googled and found lots of cool things being done with twitter in classrooms. The most inspiring was a Canadian 1st grade classroom.
Mrs. Cassidy is doing amazing things. They used twitter as Shared Reading! All the kids have their own blog! I just peeked at a few and am blown away by all they are producing! They make videos and sent class tweets and they are 1st graders!! I am following her now on twitter and think I can learn lots from her.
I also think I will invite those people who have taken my writing class to my personal twitter account. I think I could daily post my writing teaching point and then an image, like the anchor chart I used or student writing or my conference notes or a video of a conference. This could be a really powerful way to improve my teaching of teachers!! I'm excited. I am so glad I am going to be a 4th grade teacher this school year!!!!