Rules For Posting To This Blog and Weekly Blog Question

1. Only use your first name (no last names, addresses, IM screen names, etc.)
2. Show respect and consideration of others when posting and commenting. This includes individuals, students, organizations, political parties, colleagues, etc.
3. Check all posts for spelling and grammar errors before posting.
4. Protect the privacy of others. Gain permission from other people before you write about them. Avoid sharing someone else's last name. Use job titles or pseudonyms when writing about experiences with your co-workers or students.
5. Watch your language. Use politically correct and non-offensive language.
6. Make sure you write about things that are factual.
7. Keep your postings education-oriented. Avoid discussing plans for the weekend, etc.

This week I would like you to use your imagination. You have just won the lottery and will leave your teaching post immediately to travel around the world. As you leave your keys you meet your replacement. You are asked to give this new teacher just ONE piece of advice. What would that be, and why? Enjoy your world expedition!

Blog Post - Week 7
This past week in my own teaching I felt a little disconnected which prompts my question to you, "What was the moment (or moments) when I felt most disconnected or disengaged as a teacher - the moment(s) I said to myself, I'm just going through the motions here?"

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 6
For the past couple of weeks you have experienced asynchronous online learning (doing modules by yourself). Previously this semester you have experienced synchronous online learning (all together in the Collaborate room). Which do you think is more effective and why do you think that? Which do you like better, and why?

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 5
This week we have what we call "open mic." You can write a post about anything related to your teaching that you would like responses from your classmates.

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 4
Here is this week's question: "What was the event that most took me surprise this week - and event that shook me up, caught me off guard, gave me a jolt, or made me unexpectedly happy?"

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 3
Please write a post about the following question, "In thinking about my past week teaching what is one thing I would do differently, and why?"

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 2
Please write a post about the following question, " In thinking about my teaching activities this past week, of what do I feel most proud? Why?"

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 1
Describe something you used in your program in the first weeks of school that you learned in the summer NTI program. How did it work? Did it get you off to a stronger start than last year?

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Not Yet huh

Checking in too, will try again tomorrow.

Checking In

ooh no new blog. Check back later

Drive By

Hello all. Just strolling by in search of a new topic.:) ~aj

Tuesday, September 29, 2009


I am looking for it too Ginger

Am I missing something?

Did we get a new topic for this week? I don't see it on the blog and thought maybe I was missing something. I have a hectic weekend with homecoming so I was trying to get ahead.


Sunday, September 27, 2009

New Baby, New Challenges

As some of you may have known, my wife has been pregnant for the last two or three years (so it seems). Well, this Wednesday, she gave birth to our second son, Mason Christopher Thomas. He is a lovely boy with a healthy set of lungs. The boy can scream.

I only had one day of leave earned but I took three. Two will have to go unpaid. My real lesson came in getting everything ready for my substitute. I found that teaching a technical education course is a bit challenging when it comes to time off. Most subs are not equipped to teach your subject so you have to have specific assignments ready for when you may be out. I put together a project that the students could work on that incorporated many of the lessons we had covered recently, however I'm sure there were still items that needed an experienced designer to address. I think that unless you leave a more generic lesson, you may be required to "revisit" the lesson you left to be accomplished. My collegues say that they will sometimes leave work that is to be turned in whether the students finish or not. I don't know how I feel about that. Another told me I shouldn't leave a quiz because the students will cheat. I am still coming to terms with that one as well.

All in all it has been a beautiful experience. I called to check my classes and they seem to have been behaving well. I noticed my wife had a form in her sub-folder for the sub to fill out letting her know how the class behaved and if there were items she could improve for the next sub. I like that and I plan to incoroporate it into my folder next time. Thanks for sitting through my ramblings. Adios.

My Week in Review

My week in review ,I have discovered that this week I have been very emotional with my students during this past week leading up to homecoming . I also finding out that was I was voted my students as one of the most likable people in the building .... and my first year students are very connected with me . I really enjoy this year more in comparison to last year. I have also found out about myself ,that I'm really that caring ,motivating teacher that is really connected to my students . I believe that the reason if feel more confident in my teaching is the smooth transition and the ongoing training with NTI .I reconnected with me more this year that last,my students are more excited about Cosmetology ,and everyday is a new challange . These past couple of weeks have been good. new principal ,new co-workers ,new ideas implemented and of course new students.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

My Stalker Dropped My Class

Well, I guess "Stalker" is a bit drastic. I had this girl in my class. Every time I turned around, she seemed to be right there. She was always willing to volunteer, usually the first person to have her hand raised. The sad part is she had dropped my class for over three days before I realized that she wasn't there. I took roll. So, on some level I knew she wasn't there, but I didn't really notice until this past Friday. The stalking started when I had tryouts to be be anchors for our morning broadcast. I let the ones that did well know. I didn't want to hurt her feelings so I never went to her to tell her she did bad. I just avoided the subject of her being an anchor. I would ask for volunteers to run the video switcher, audio mixer, and even the teleprompter. And, every time she would raise her hand and ask, "Mr. Maynard, can I be one of the anchors?". I asked one of her friends where she was. They were the one that informed me that she had dropped the class. Her friend told me that it was because she needed more time to study for the High School Graduation Test and that she had all the credits she needed to graduate. She really didn't need my class. My hope is that was the case. I hope as a young teacher I did not discourage her in a negative way by not allowing her to be an anchor. I understand that this is not the professional world of broadcasting, but I do believe that I have to set some standards when what we produce will be seen by the whole school. I sure hope I didn't run the stalker off.

To my surprise

This past week, something happened that surprised me. I have been in the topic of infection control. Every day before I would go into a new lesson, I would give a brief but detailed review of the previous lessons for this topic. I reviewed so much that I am sure that I sounded like a broken record. I do this for the sake of repetition. Students can learn and retain by repetition. This week, we started a new topic and I wanted to close out that chapter and begin or open the new chapter. To my surprise, my students were able to recall everything that we covered. They were able to list the 6 types of microorganisms, the 6 links to the chain of infection, bioterrorism etc. The exam was Thursday of last week and on Monday, to my surprise, they were still able to recall the information. That made me feel that I covered the lesson well. Last year, it was my first year teaching and I felt like I was not effective. But again to my surprise, the students stated that they recalled alot of the information that I taught last year. I think that my energy and excitement this year is rubbing off on them.

What a crazy week!

This has been one crazy week for me and my students. We were out for the first three days due to all the flooding in Carroll County. I just knew that when the students came back they wouldn't be able to focus on anything at all. I have since realized that students truly do want to have school to focus on when tragedy strikes. On Thursday when we came back, I wanted to give the students a time to discuss anything from the flooding that might be on their minds. (I knew I had several students that were directly affected.) Those students were so grateful to just to be able to talk and the rest of us actually listen. My classes seem to be pretty close knit even though I have students from every school in the county.
Once they were finished talking about their concerns and anything else that might be on their hearts, they were VERY ready to focus on school. They got right to work. We even were able to have our weekly Medical Terminology quiz. I was very surprised they all made "A's."
So, I guess that I learned that no matter what students say they want to be in school during certain times. Thursday and Friday were days that I think they wanted to be there. It helped them focus on more positive things than all the disastrous events that were going on around us. I am so grateful too that all of my kids made it "o.k." through this. They may be suffering emotionally, but they will make it through!

Great Help

Dr. M visit me this week and help me get back on track. To my surprise Dr. M pointed out I was working too hard in my classroom which was a great help for me. After his visit I was able to reflect on what he advised and implemented it immediately and It has help me tremendously. I needed the tune-up and the kids are responding. Finally OIT have my kids computers online so hopefully this will also help with me not to labor so hard. Thank you Dr. M.

2nd week post

What surprised me this week in one of my classes is how a student that many people write off as unmotivated and lazy, ended up ahead of everyone in the class. I have to admit because I listened to the buzz about this student I thought the same thing when I was placing him into a group. He came to me and said I know that my group is not going to do anything so can I work alone? I said yes you can...he tried working alone and that did not work...because it was hard for him to focus, so eventually he ended up in a group with another student who was working alone. The two of them hit it off great and they have landed an interview for their documentary with a member of Congress. This student just needed my support as he tried to find his way. I could have been rigid and said "NO" I put you in a group you work it out in that group...but because I saw that he desired to do better, and just needed that person that would help him adjust. I surprised myself because I couldn't believe how fast I almost gave up on him. I am happy that I saw what was going on before I crushed his self esteem and planted the first seed of becoming a teacher that always has to be "right". At the end of the day we are there to help studnts find their fit in the society and sometimes that means checking yourself and your thoughts about them along the way.

2nd week

I would say what has surprised me the most this week is how much my 2nd year students actually remember from last year. I came to my school in October of last year. You could say that is was quite a transition. They had had a long-term substitute for over 2 years in that class. I basically had to start over from scratch and then proceed at warp-speed! The unit we just finished was a little bit of a review from last year and the some new information that built upon what they had already learned. I find it so exciting when my kids do well on a test, or or able to respond in class. It really makes my heart smile when I can tell that they are learning. Last week I had a student, who I think typically doesn't pay attention in class, fully participate in our discussion. It made me so happy to see him answering questions correctly. I could tell that he was proud of himself as well. It makes those bad days we all have not so bad when I know that a least a little of what I am teaching is reaching them.

A pleasant surprise

Last week our school had our five year review. I was so nervous as I have never been through one before. I had told the students that we would have some very important visitors in our school and that I may have to be interviewed at some time during our class. My plan was to go along with my lesson as usual and if our class was interrupted then I would get the students started on some book work to keep them occupied while I was being interviewed. We started our lesson on cultural diversity as planned. We had a mock panel of guest (students with a script) representing several different cultures to be interviewed by the rest of the class. We had a great time with this during the first half of class but did not get to finish due to our break bell. After the students had been on break for a few minutes, the lady who was to interview me came to my room. All I could think was "I hope she finishes with me before the students come back from break because they will be so off task". Of course, she was still interviewing me as my students came back from break! As the students poured back into my class I was just about to say to my interviewer, "Please give me a few minutes to get my students started", however, I watched them in amazement as they quietly went back to their desks and continued their mock panel interview. Different students were taking turns asking their questions without having to be prodded. They were fantastic! I was so pleasantly surprised at the maturity of these first year students! After my interviewer left the room, I told the students how proud I was of them! I stated to them, "You guys did such a great job of coming back in and getting back on task! You didn't need me at all!". Then one of my sweet young ladies replied, "We might not always need you, Mrs. Walsh, but we want you!". That made my day! I am so thankful to have such amazing students!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Second post for this week!!!!

Well today I filmed myself teaching and what I notice is that I repeat to the students what I want them to do. Not because the students don't do it but by habit I repeat my directions over and over.
But it's funny how you repeat yourself and their is always someone in the class that still does not hear the directions. They can be looking at you right in the mouth and still ask what did you say. You must have patience with the students which I do I just laugh inside and keep it going. I really enjoy my job you have to enjoy what you do or it will tear you apart life is too short not to enjoy, live and laugh.

What do I Say or Do

After almost 9 week of school my student are getting to know me very well but there are some room for growth. My students know I love positive energy from saying something nice to other students or doing some nice for someone. My students and I acknowledge we deal with negative energy daily. So I require the students to leave the negative energy outside of my door. Well, this week my class was filled with so much positive high energy. After I finished the lesson for the day I had a male student to shout" I have an announcement to make" Hey everyone I would like to invite everyone to our church for family and friends day. My pastor said invite everyone I see and I see all of you." I FROZE, I didn't know what to say about mixing religion in the classroom offending others, etc. To not destroy the positive energy and crush his happiness. I said with a smile, class take it the way you want. Thank God the bell rung after that. What a surprise!


second blog

After about the six week of school now all of my students final understand my color system. One of my students in each class explained it to the students that still did not understand it. For class one day this week i explained to all my classes the new way that the state wants teachers to teach them. Some of the students looked lost as to the new way. After explaining the new system some where OK with it and others were not. The day after i explained the color system and the new way of teaching students where able to do the lesson the next much easier. As for a teacher It made my class and day allot easier, but of course you all ways have those students that struggle. But the biggest supprise of the week was when a student came to me and expressed themselve to me about family problems. I sent the student to see the counselor to see if counselor could help the family. The student saw me the next day and told me thanks for the help and it made me feel good that the student got the help that she needed. After helping the student i have decided to have one of my classes take on the role as emergency help unit to help food drives, clothing drives, and other progects this school year.

iBOT Power - The Mind of a Seventh Grader

The first nine weeks of our 2009 – 2010 year is almost over! It has been fast and furious. My seventh grade students have been learning about careers in biotechnology. One of the activities is to visit the website of an engineering company called DEKA. As we explore DEKA developments, students must determine the placement of each development into one of the following categories: fluid management, mobility, power or water. One DEKA creation is the iBOT, an all terrain wheelchair, which can convert the patient in to a standing position. When discussing the iBOT, I had one student at each table stand and look down at other students seated at their table. I asked those seated to imagine never being able to stand and the feelings associated with having no choice in the matter. I asked those standing to think about the feelings associated with standing over someone and the freedom to make a choice. Upon conclusion of this discussion, I asked students to place the iBOT into one of the four technology categories. As you can imagine, students easily placed the iBOT into the category involving mobility. Several students felt the iBOT should be included in the category of power. One student said, “I believe emotional power is as important as electrical power.” I was completely surprised by such a mature statement. I hope to incorporate more discussion into my classroom activities.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

The perfect number 7 & a square. What do these 2 share?

This has been an amazing week filled with what I have come to respect as the "standard" challenges associated education. I must admit, I thought that a lesson plan was a solid structure that would sustain time, as well as the trials and struggles associated with the work week. I am learning to respect flexibility and the durability of change. This past week in my school system consisted of four days, secondary to the flood of 2009. The various grade levels have missed portions of classes because of outdoor excursions. I have also noticed that when those students return to class, they appear exhausted and distracted. I have experienced a challenge maintaining the student focus in a classroom of 33 students. I was in the process of changing the class delivery method in my largest class when there appeared an angel at the door. She announced that she was part of the counseling staff at the high school and was here to "level" the class to the state required maximum. During her visit, she asked for volunteers. I experienced mixed emotions as the students made decisions on which way to go. I must admit that I felt a wave of relief for those students that volunteered to leave the class because the subject matter was more difficult than anticipated. I also felt a comfort as I heard several student state "this is my favorite class and I'm not leaving". So, what does the perfect number 7 have in common with a square? I can now place all of the students into 7 perfect groups of 4. We have spent a significant amount of time defining group function and I have witnessed great group activity in smaller classes. I am very excited about this renewed opportunity and I am anxious to see how this will work in this class next week.

ABBC is on the air

I guess what surprised me the most was the quality of our most recent show. It was an "A" show and these guys have been plagued with bad luck from the start. Their first show was canceled before it was even shot, which was my producers discretion, because of a lack of effort from the class as a whole. I supported the decision and we watched "B" Day pull off a great show, and that really motivated these kids to bust it for a week and turn out a show. I watched these kids really take pride in what they were doing, and while I was there to guide them, they pulled it together themselves. Here comes our studio day, "Live to Tape" as we would say, and these kids were incredible in the studio. You would've thought this was their 10th show, and not their 1st. Not only did they do a great job, better than I ever expected, the rest of the school took notice and are really boosting my students' confidence. They have set the bar pretty high, but I won't be surprised when they get over it.

I do not refuse math at the door...

Well, it's funny that we have this topic considering what a student told me only a few minutes ago. My fourth block class is in charge of producing our daily morning announcements show. The shows have gradually gotten better as the weeks go on, but this morning we had an equipment problem. The show is taped the day before then played to the whole school the following morning. This morning the player failed giving us a late start (VERY BAD in the world of TV) and then failed AGAIN, cutting off our show half way through. Equipment failures don't bother me - I'm a realist. But what surprised me was the "feedback" that filtered in over the rest of the day. Several students came to me to report that their first block teachers were very unhappy with the broadcast this morning. I did not find that surprising. Everyone is a critic. But, the specific comments they made (in front of, or to, the students) were shocking. Now, I know these stories are coming from students, and can't always be taken literally, however, some are so outrageous I can't get them out of my mind. One teacher was heard to say, "we should just do away with RNN." (RNN is the name of our network) Well I don't doubt that today wasn't our best day, but you would think that other teachers in the building would realize that I don't have much to do with the's the student's work they are bashing. All of us know that teachers, as a whole, are notorious complainers, but this seems like too much. I have vented all of this to basically say that I am most surprised at another teacher's willingness to discount what goes on in another part of the building. I do not stand at my door at the beginning of the day and say, "Sorry kids, leave your math at the door." Or, "There will be absolutely no social studies in THIS classroom!" I am sure this is an ongoing battle for many CTAE teachers. I hope that in the future critics will come to me to voice opinions instead of barraging my kids.

Way to Step Up!

I must say I have a really great group of students this year, however my beginning classes wear me out! They are constantly at my desk needing something. We are on the A/B schedule so all of my advanced students come on A days and all the beginning students come on B days. A days are a lot less stressful. However, Wednesday my Salon Services 1 class suprised me! In that particular class (4B) I have several intellectual delayed students in my class. There are so many in there, they have a parapro that comes with them. The parapro is a huge help and I love having her in there, but Wednesday she wasn't able to be in there. Special Ed being my background I agreed to let the students still come down to my room. We went into the lab and I went to unlock the dispensary. When I turned around there were several students (regular ed) assisting the students with special needs. They were helping them get their euipment and supplies together. Normally the students with special needs kind of keep to themselves and typically stay together, but not that day! They were laughing and cutting up with the other students. The regular ed students were having a blast as well. They were all working on their projects together, and teaching the students how to braid and blow dry. I was so proud of all of them! I guess I was proved wrong when I said they were less mature, because Wednesday they proved themselves to be very mature!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Reflection Time

Well, this year has been a different one to say the least. I have said to myself on several occasions how much more tolerant I have become this year. I am not as quick to anger or become frustrated in the "system" nor the students. It appears that I have a different outlook and perspective on my profession. Coming from Law Enforcement and working with hardened criminals I developed tough outer shell. One that would allow me to do my job and not get "cased up" by crooks. Coming into the school system, I began to associate some of the students to some of the offenders I supervised, arrested, transported, etc. I trusted no one and became extremely territorial with "my" classroom, "my" students, "my" stuff, and "my" opinion of others. This mindset made my job difficult and I could not understand why I was constantly butting heads with my destiny. Today and even more so last week, I realized the amount of patience I have developed since the summer as well as how much I listen now than ever. In the past I would listen to student sidebars and interject my opinion. Monday it came to me "as clear as the hair on my head" (one of my Nana's sayings;). If you would only listen and act as if you are not paying attention, you would learn more and understand your students a lot better. Not only that, I also learned one very important thing..if they want your opinion and care about what you think they will ask your for it. Soooooooooooooo all last week I listened inattentively and without saying a word students were coming up to me asking "Chief did you hear that?" "456 what do you think about this", "Mrs. Jackson, we are trying to settle something, can you help us out?" People you all do not know how good I felt inside. Aside from laughing at some of the things I heard ( I have dog/inmate hearing if you didn't know..I can hear "a rat pee on cotton"(another one of my granny's saying). I defeated one of my biggest obstacles- The art of listening attentively w/o talking, and for the rest of the day I had this victorious smile on my face. Before now I had not told a soul. Thank you Good Dr.s for this question..It turned out to be very therapeutic.

Flood Relief via Lasagna

Yesterday I watched the television as many of you did and felt such sorrow for the flood victims. I decided that I was not going to just stand by and watch but help out in some way so I decided that we would cook. I called the Red Cross and asked if I could cook a meal for the shelter set up at the Cobb Civic Center. The lady called me back and told me that I could since I was ServSafe certified but needed to make a meal for 250 people. I immediately called my food service rep and ordered all the food I needed to make my momma's lasagna. I then got on facebook and posted for all culinary students former and current to come out and help.

After all of my planning, I began to worry because I would have to use my Intro students who have only made crepes up to this point and are still learning the basics of sanitation. I could not go to sleep until about 1:30 this morning because of stress. I woke up this morning and devised a plan on how I was going to make this work.

My 2B class was my first class today and they came in having no idea what they were in store for. I announced that we would be cooking today for the Cobb Civic Center. I explained that many people have been left with nothing but the clothes that they left their house with and I felt that it was our duty to serve our community with a hot meal. I also explained that all sanitation must be perfect and we could have no flaws.

We went into the kitchen and I was only expecting for them to get a portion of the prep done and figured they would probably leave the kitchen a mess since they are still learning how to execute basic food and clean up within 90 minutes. Well to my surprise, the kids got all the prep done and left the kitchen clean as a whistle. I don't think I have ever been so proud for them to have worked so hard when they knew they were getting nothing in return. Well we all know that they did a good deed but for kids, they are usually looking for something a little more tangible like food.

I was again shocked by my 4B class (a lovely class with LOTS of character) when they came in and assembled 13 lasagnas perfectly within a very short period of time. Not only did they finish clean up but several stayed after school to help finish the process.

Sorry, I have one more shock. Several students that I had previosly but do not have again this year showed up to help after school also. I am delivering the food tomorrow and have students that will be staying once again after school to cook and deliver the lasagna and garlic bread.

I seriously love cooking like this.

Own it!

I have been trying to teach my guys(I have 99% male students) that they need to own up to their crimes when they are obviously caught. I have overheard so many conversations among students discussing how unfair it was to get 5 days ISS just for skipping one class. I would interrupt and ask "Ok, exactly what happened, play-by-play?" The answer always bowled me over. An example answer from a student who had skipped one class was:" I told him(asst principal) that that "blanking" teacher was a liar! Then he got even madder and I told him to go to h**l!" This kid was actually dumbfounded to have 5 days ISS. I played out how the conversation should have gone, i.e. "Yes Mr. Plunkett I did skip that period. I was having a bad day and just could not stand the idea of going to that particular class that day. I don't know what I was thinking. I should have known I would get caught." Well, this year has gone very differently for my second year students when caught. Firstly, they are skipping/dipping/texting/whatever less than last year. Secondly, they are "owning it" when they do screw up. One of my favorite kids came to me last week(the one whom I spoke of directly in the example above) after having been caught skipping two classes to go to McDonald's. He was giddy that when he used my approach he only received 2 days ISS. He also said that Mr. Plunkett was actually a really nice guy after all. Now, I am in no way approving skipping or anything like it. I am trying to instill some form of responsibility and at the same time fostering a more friendly relationship between student and administrator. It is working and my kids are, therefore, in class more often to receive learning.

Second week of school

Well my second week of school has been great compared to reading some of the other blogs. My students I would say the major problem I have is that the students love to wear very high heel shoes and love to wear there toes out. I told the whole class to bring a extra pair of shoes and to put them in their locker so they will have no excuse to miss the lab work. I told the students that if they did not wear closed toed shoes they will write until their fingers got tired. A couple of students found that out they had to write for a whole hour. I do not see any more toes those students just help set a example. You don't play with mother nature Ms. Taylor. LOL LOL

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

What was She Thinking!

Last week in my intro class we were studying legal & ethical responsibilities in health care. One of the worksheets was a "Moral Beliefs" questionnaire. I gave this as a homework assignment. The questions were very individual, not to be graded. More of a reflection of what and who is important in your life. Today, on our flood day I was reading the returned papers. Two of my students had the EXACT same responses. One of the students is from an MOID classroom. She has short term memory issues and some poor coping skills, but really tries hard. The other student has high B's and A"s in all academic classes. She is occasionally disruptive in class, but appears to be bright. The answers were obviously written by the MOID student. Poor sentence structure, uncompleted thoughts, and rambling. Every world was exactly the same on both papers. The kicker for me was the last question answer. Name the 3 values you admire most. You guessed it- honesty was the first one given. Cheating on an ethics paper. If you feel that it is ethical to do this, what will you do if a wrong medication is given, a mistake is made and a patient dies. What do we do to teach this to students- or can we? Now to deal with the situation when we go back to school.

Never Under Estimate

Alternative education starts out surprising you everyday then evolves to the point where nothing surprises you! Fights are very common among the students that have poor conflict resolution skills. This week we had a young man that accidentally knocked the books of another student off a desk onto the floor in our shop class. When the student started to pick up the books for the owner the owner of the books demanded that he pick up the books! Of course at this point the first student would have no part of being ordered to pick up the books. The following day the student that had knocked off the books was in the lunch room having his lunch. The second student had orchestrated a gang type response, to attack this student while he was in the lunch room. The plan was so advanced that it involved kids that did not have lunch at that time of day and they pulled it off. The plan involved a diversion to get the A/P out of the lunch room to give the other 3 a chance to execute their plan. If only they would use this effort in a positive manner. Never under estimate !!

Very suprised

Last week, I tried something that was suggested to me by both The NTI and Kevin Ward of CEFGA during my classes last summer. I assigned jobs to each student during my lab assignments. I figured, it could'nt hurt to try. I was asolutely amazed at what transpired. I assigned student to various positions based upon the test and assignment grades up to this point. Of course, the most serious students attained the higher positions early on. However, I have one student in particular, whom I believe to be very intelligent, but lacks focus academically. He was assigned a crew foreman position. I was shocked that day and have remained impressed, at not only his transformation in maturity, but the classes as a whole. First of all they stayed on task, no-one attempted to hide or walk off. They are ruthless in their competetiveness to outperform their opposing crews. Now they are attacking their classwork to compete for the more prestigious jobs such as the Job Site Superintendant. And the current holders of the aforementioned position is conducting class as a Job site meeting. They are writing others up for being late talking during class and so forth. We have since discussed the installation of a timeclock. Real genious!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Wet and Wild

Hello everyone,

I just got on despite the weather and my family. Today is my Nana's b-day so I had to prepare a delicious dinner for her. Nonetheless when I recieved the call from GSU about the canceling of class I was very disappointed. I really looked forward to learning from and with each and everyone. Dr. M. is scheduled to pay me a visit on 09/23, and I am anxious and nervous at the same time. Since my school is closed tomorrow and I left right on the money today (due to the weather) I am afraid I won't have enough time to finish setting up for my activity. At anyrate I know this visit is strictly for my benefit and will serve a higher purpose than any amount of cosmetics. See you all next time and be safe.

Flooding,power out

My power went out for 1 hour it's back on now. My car almost broke down in the high water when I went to pick up my daughter. I'm not going back out today.

I sure hope to be there tonight!

My power has been flickering all day. We are trapped in our neighborhood. Creeks on either end of our road are several feet over the road. We are on high ground but the roads are not. School was cancelled today. I am glad we keep plenty of ready-to-eat food for such occasions. If I am not logged in it means I am sitting at a blank computer screen in the dark. I only hope my strawberry burritos don't melt!!

Dr.M visit to my classroom

Dr. M paid me a visit only thing I can say is be scared very scared!!!!!!! He stayed the whole time and watch me teacher. Dr. M is very on point with his evaluation. GOOD LUCK to everyone else. Hopefully you want CRASH. LOL LOL!!!!!!!!

Gwinnett County Schools Closed

My high school closed this morning. I came to work at 6:30 and they canceled school at 9:00. I decided to stayed at school and work. I was not going to waste my gas!!!!!! I am sure we will have to make that day of work up. There was flooding everywhere from the rain and some deaths.

Working Working Day and Night

You know, when you get into teaching, the things they always talk about are the long summers and Christmas breaks. They talk about how your day ends somewhere between 2:30 or 3pm. But they never tell you about the amount of time you will put in outside of the classroom. That took some adjustment. Staying up late on the weekends to grade papers or to work out lesson plans and set inductions (that last one was for you Dr. M). Trust me, the state will surely get their money out of you. So do the kids. I have found that if I do not have a lesson fully planned, I turn into a babysitter. I was not prepared for the amount of constant behavioral correction I would have to do. I have learned over the past few weeks that students have varied paces and some can finish a lesson before you get all of the words out of your mouth while others will still be working on something at the end of the semester. It is very tricky managing the two of them. I am starting to engage the students more and more. It allows me to buy time for my slower students without piling more work on other students. I know when I was a student, if I got more work for being good, I would simply be bad. I have a lot of good kids and I don't want them to feel punished. And lastly, I have to comment on the standing. My legs hurt so much the first two weeks. Its like I never sit. But that is getting better too.

Plane delayed

Hey gang got in late from Kansas City due to weather. I was supposed to received a visit from Dr. M, but had test scheduled. But that did not go well because of a physical altercation took place not only in my classroom, but in the hallway between middle school students minutes later. This was Thursday. My week other than Thursday went well. Students this week will be voting on the best posters they invented on an assignment involving Troy Davis. Look forward to SEEING you tonight.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

NTI - is WOW

All elements presented in NTI are relevant to my everyday experience in the classroom. Teachers have no time to waste. Required NTI assignments are directly coorelated to work required by my school system. I have used every aspect of my NTI experience in the classroom. Now that's what I call WOW (Working on the Work)!
My first weeks of the 2009 - 2010 school year have been incredibly busy. I had good intentions of writing my blog last night during the Georgia game, weather however, was not cooperative. My power went out at 7:45 p.m. This is the first deadline I have missed since freshman year in college. I won't say how long ago that was!
It's amazing how much energy middle school students have. Incorporating interactive computer games and websites into my lesson plans has been my life preserver. I was showing my sixth grade students range of motion of the upper extremities and one of the students said, "I see you are extending the humerus, radius and ulnar bones. I had not formally taught anatomy of the skeleton but had assigned an Internet game involving the skeleton. This student had enjoyed the interactive game so much, she often plays it at home. She was so proud to surprise the class with her new knowledge.
At the beginning of the year, one of my sixth graders greeted me at the door with "Elllo, Gov'na". This went on for the remainder of the week. On the second week I asked him to consider greeting me with "Ello, Gov'ness". The next day our exchange at the door was "Ello, Gov'ness", "Ello, Gov'na". I think I have a friend for life. I look forward to seeing him everyday.
Eighth grade students seem to have as much energy as the sixth grade students, but when in a group, redirect their energy into being cool, appearing unimpressed by anything an adult has to say. They truly are trying to establish some independence and sense of self. Getting them to participate with enthusiasm can be challenging.
Seventh grade students, obviously fall in the middle chronologically, and their behavior falls somewhere in between the silly, talkative nature of sixth graders and the cool, detached behavior of the eighth graders. One challenging situation in my seventh grade group this year is the boyfriend, girlfriend issue. It's funny, in the sixth grade if you sit a boy with a girl, no talking or eye contact concurs, in the seventh grade if you sit a boy by a girl, you can forget about any focus on the lesson.
I enjoy the students and look forward to finishing the certification process so I can be more focused on getting to know the students as individuals. I love Elluminate Live! I will imagine seeing you all on Monday night.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Help Has Arrived !!!

This school year in comparison to last year , has been great ! Last year was my first year in the public school system. I met many obstacles and difficult challenges within one school year , at the beginning of school I was handed a book ,a set of keys and a classroom and simply was told " Go for it Ms. Fountain " from an administrator. The classroom was a virtual war zone very similar to what "Joe Clark " experienced at East Side High in New Jersey , remember the movie "Lean on Me" with veteran actor Morgan Freeman . This year I felt better prepared to meet the teaching aspects head on . I simply had plenty of ammo to work with . the summer session of NTI was a great fast track program that gave me the tools I needed for the classroom . I came away with a better understanding of rubrics, lesson plans, classroom management and even how to create and effective bulletin board . Recently I've had the opportunity to share my NTI bible with some of the core teachers ,many of them are going through TAPP to satisfy their certification. This school year so far has been exciting in the classroom , I have truly loved the how I'm learning to implement the fundamentals of teaching this year in comparison to last year . However there is still quite a bit more to learn and discover ,but I'm ready for the challenge.

Selina Hamby-Fountain



Post 1

The first six weeks of school have been a challenge. As I mentioned to some of you, I am without the aid of my team teacher. For those of you who are not familiar with team teaching, it works like this: two teachers occupy the same classroom and help one another in all aspects of instruction. In team teaching, you have two teachers with two separate rosters, which means classes can be larger. One of my classes has 42 children in it. Luckily, I have a WONDERFUL substitute. But, the substitute has no experience in broadcasting or video production, which leaves me teaching all four periods of the day. Not only am I teaching all day, I have to grade and record the grades of two teachers (my sub does some grading, but some assignments need a level of experience in the field in order to be graded fairly). Beyond the universal teacher's problem of too much to do, and not enough time to do it, my year is off to a great start. NTI has definitely helped. My goal at the beginning of NTI was to get more organized, and I have. With lesson plans done, I can focus on teaching and putting my energy into the day-to-day operation of my classroom, as opposed to worrying what I'll do next. I am making it my goal this year to improve the quality of my student's broadcasts and get more involved with my CTSO, Skills USA. Also, I'm trying to get better at paperwork which seems to be a constant struggle for "creative" types. So far, my goals for the year have not been overshadowed by the challenges at hand. Now that the groundwork has been laid, all I have to do now is keep my head down, and get the work done.

I can't wait until summer so I can sleep!!

The first six weeks of school have been exciting, tiring, and frustrating all at the same time. I learned so much this summer from NTI that I wanted to implement everything at the same time. I have not read anyone else's blog yet on purpose. I wanted to speak with a clear mind about what I have experienced first. I think maybe all of us had dreams of making our classrooms perfect from day one. Well, at least I was hoping that would be the case. But, some of my dreams of implementing have been shattered by the fast paced, never-ending days of high school life. I had my lesson plans ready. My syllabus was copied and waiting. My procedures poster was hanging on the wall. And now...I am here on Saturday afternoon wondering if I actually learned anything this summer in NTI. Not to reflect on NTI too much, but I heard someone say the analogy "I was getting so much information at one time that is was like trying to drink water out of a fire hydrant." I believe over time the incredible stuff we are learning will be so a part of my teaching style that I won't have to even think about it, but right now, it seems to have added to the stress and overwhelming feeling that a teacher gets. I guess now to address the real question. From the first day of pre-planning, I found out they moved my planning period (I don't like change much!). It moved from third block to second block. I don't know why, but it seems to have thrown off my rhythm to teaching. To make it worse, there is another teacher teaching Broadcasting during my planning period that doesn't know anything about Broadcasting. She is an awesome Business and Computer Apps teacher. So it isn't that she is a bad teacher, she just has tons of questions which tends to take up most of my planning period. My classes have been an odd mix of personalities. First block is composed of very intelligent kids, but the first couple of weeks I had a really hard time getting them to stop talking. I think sometimes creative individuals get bored easy and that is where I have to adjust as a teacher. My third block has a lot of popular kids, football players, cheerleaders, etc. They seem to believe that my class ought to be a time for them to take a video camera and try to re-create things they saw on "Saturday Night Live" (I actually have an 'I'm On A Boat' re-creation from last semester if anyone would like to see it.). My fourth block is just ready to go home. I haven't had any problems out of them, but I had three students that after three weeks, they didn't have anywhere to put them so they put them in my class. They really don't want to be there. To top it off, I do our football show for our local television station. With me being such a perfectionist, I spend about 12 hours a week on a thirty minute show. So, as my title says, I am really looking forward to this summer so I can get some sleep.

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

I just finished week 6 and put my grades in yesterday. My first few weeks have been quite hectic. I have been doing a lot of soul searching to figure out why this year is not going as well as I thought it would. Last year I walked in naïve but ready to kick some butt and take some names. I was strict and kept to due dates and such. I was also very unorganized and relied on my students to help me through to make a GREAT program. This year I came in with a bigger heart and am more understanding and I have a plan for everything. So knowing that, you would think I would be set and be shouting about how much better this year is going. Yes, this year is going better because I am organized. I now work many less hours than I did last year and my room and kitchen are organized by the students rather than me. The problem is that I seem so organized and the students are not responding as well to it. They love and understand that this process will make everything better and we will be able to get much more accomplished yet they almost rebel against it.

So there are pros and cons so far this year. I am happy that I am able to leave earlier and that my room and kitchen are so much cleaner but I do not feel the team spirit that we had last year. I did incorporate the kids in some of the decisions also so I thought they would be more on board. I am sooooooo happy to actually have lesson plans. I am still sometimes struggling to get through them on time.

OK, I am writing this in a word document so I could really think about what to put and the above was written throughout the week. The next part is written after last night’s catering.

On Friday home football games, we cater for the Touchdown Club. It is usually between 120 – 150 people but we just do simple food. Yesterday I had 8 students coming to help me out with only 4 staying after school to help finish the dinner because we had already made the marinara sauce and ranch dressing in class. I needed to put in grades so I was busy in my classroom. I went to check on them several times and the last time, I realized that the pasta was all stuck together because the student did not stir all the way at the bottom of the pot. We needed to be leaving soon so I was kind of freaking out but I just told everyone to get on gloves and start peeling the pasta strands apart and they did and that crisis was avoided. Then as we were beginning to pack everything up, I saw the 20 pounds of vegetables that I had bought to sauté and completely forgot to do that. I pulled them out and start cutting. It was amazing, all 8 students were now there and they began asking what they could do. I gave each of them something to do as we worked like a well oiled machine to get everything done. When we left, dishes were done, floor was swept, tables were cleaned, and food was cooked. We showed up just at 5:30 and began serving. You could see it on the kid’s faces how proud they were. That is what I am looking for in my class. There was no organization or plan but everything came together and they learned so much in those last 15 minutes of cooking.
I learned so many great things at NTI this summer including Lab and Classroom Management that I could never live without. I now just need to figure out how to take those last 15 minutes from Friday and put them together into a plan that works for me and my students

The new school year

This is my third year in the classroom and it has been the best start to the school year that I have had. I attended the summer session of NTI in the summer of 2007 before I had ever stepped foot into a classroom as a teacher. I worked hard and enjoyed the class very much. I believed, and still believe, that it was the most useful information that I have ever recieved out of any class I have taken. Even though I went through NTI that summer, when I started my first teaching job that fall I felt so overwhelmed. I felt like I was barely hanging on. My family suffered, my health suffered, and I thought I would never make it through the year. I do know that had I not attended NTI, I would have walked out. I am not someone who quits, but I really considered it everyday. The only thing that kept me going was the information that I had learned in NTI. It helped me have some sense of order and structure. I would have been completely lost if I had not spent so much time working on lesson plans that summer. The classroom management skills that I learned helped me keep my composure on many days that first year! Now, two years and a school change later, I finally feel that teaching really is for me. I have had a fantastic start to the school year! I still have a long way to go and so much to learn to be the kind of teacher that I want to be, but I'm on my way. I'm looking forward to learning so much more from NTI this year. I'm glad to be back!

Friday, September 18, 2009

First year, off and running

This is my first year in the classroom as a high school teacher so I don't have a reference for last year. I would like to share some of the challenges and successes that I have experience during my past 1.5 months in the classroom. I absolutely love teaching! It is proving to be the most challenging and rewarding career that I have experienced. During the past month, I am learning to respect the advice of my mentor (Ms. Chillis) that I am working to hard. My students are eager to participate in the activities associated with classroom management and the standards based classroom. I have delegated task to the students that have proven to be both motivating for them and tension releasing for me. My students have eagerly taken on the task of completing the word wall with word collages that challenge their capacity to think outside the box and analyze the meaning of the words when finding images to create the word meaning.
I am so thankful that I attended NTI this summer and I have seen success with the many strategies that were introduced to control the climate of the classroom. The "To do--To know" structure of the objective has been extremely useful as well because the students simply want to know "what am I suppose to do". I keep my notebook handy and I plan to continue to incorporate the strategies that I am learning along away.

This year verses last year

This year was so much smoother because of the lesson plans and learning about the rubric for grading. Having the rules enforced in my class is a great thing because students then know what to expect in my classroom. Asking the three questions at the end is a great thing. Then you can make sure your students understand what you went over in the lesson plan. In the lab how important it is to practice safety because major accidents can happen and put the student in danger if safety is not practiced.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Light at the end of the tunnel

Considering that this time last year, I was still opening boxes, equipment was just showing up, and I was buried in paperwork, I would say this year has been exceptional. With the help of NTI I was able to actually have excellent expectations for the year, and so far, so good. I began this year with confidence. Last year I was like a deer in headlights, and was confused that the knowledge I had was not easily absorbed by the ones I taught. NTI taught me how to take what I knew and deliver it in a manner that was more beneficial to my students. Last year I went into survival mode pretty quickly, as most first year teachers do, but now I'm just moving right along. My lessons are sharp, my time is more efficiently used, and the pace of the learning is good for me and the students. On top of all of that, my fellow teachers are extremely envious of my organizational skills. All in all, I would say NTI was much more than I expected.


Wednesday, September 16, 2009

"It Does Get Better"

As time goes on, things really do get better. After NTI this summer, I feel more confident and more secure about teaching and planning. All of the things that we learned and covered this summer have been a tremendous help. As a first year teacher, the whole year last year I felt so inadequate. I did not receive as much help as I would have liked to from my colleagues. My first year consumed so much of my time that I found my self neglecting some things because I was so overwhelmed. I needed to find a system or routine that worked for me. I needed to and still need to learn to prioritize and organize better. However, I have made great strides since last year. I trust that by completing these next 2 semesters, my third year will be even better. It can only get better.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Getting Started

After being in NTI this summer my second year of teaching Public Safety has started of better this year. I still have some students that are in my class that don't want a career in public safety. I explained it to them that if a public safety career is not for them then at least learn some personal safety. In the first week of school we spent time learning each other and looking at all the types of jobs that fall under public safety. The students were amazed at all the jobs that feel under public safety. Now my students come to me for career advice in public safety and for personal advice. Having a good relationship with your students makes a big difference in the way your get along with them. The lesson plans that we did over the summer helped tremendously. I hope the rest year is as great as the first couple of weeks.

Monday, September 14, 2009

This Year vs. Last Year

This year is off to a better start than last year. Last year I feel my expectations of the students and their attitudes were unrealistic as I look back. Most of the students are in my class by force not choice. This has a great impact on attitude toward the class as well as major conflict between value systems from adult students vs adolescents.

I have used many different strategies that I learned this summer. We have used the Gallery several times when we were having the students draft a bill on "Cell Phone Use While Driving". They took their bills placed them on flip charts and then they were graded on different areas. The new way of Lesson Plan prep has also been very helpful. All in all off to a great year.

Wish all well!!

Different Start !!

Opening boxes, assembling cabinets, looking for chairs, desks-what no books were ordered? This is how my tear started last year. A new program, which no one in the building really knew anything about. They were all very supportive, but eduation ligo to a newbe was overwhelming to me. My course was never put into the registration booklet, so most students had to be placed in my room. Just breathe in and out. At least I would not have to call a code and resusitate anyone (taught my students that fast, as I was worried about myself!) Is a lesson plan like a nursing care plan??
Well program survived, students learned and wanted more. Not many goals were met, and many new ones were identified.
This year has started on a much smoother note, thanks in great part to NTI. Rules are in place the first day, syllabus written & ready to go. Classroom management plan in place. Now, this does not mean it all goes smoothly, but I least I know the way it should go, like having a road map to follow. I know to stand next to that unruly student , to expect that I can go off track for a teachable moment, and that being dramatic can really get a lesson off to a roaring start. I know there is a lot more to learn- but it's a better start. At least I am not worrying about calling the EMT's for me.

2nd week post

Well the thing that surprised me the most in one of my classes is that one of my students, that other teachers said had no motivation...really does have motivation. This particular student was in a group and he felt like his group was not going to do the assignment with 100% effort so he decided to try alone, and then he knew that was not going to work because of his focus. Eventually he ended up with another student that was working alone and they hit it off great and will be interviewing a member of Congress for a project they are working on. I think the lesson that I learned is to not give up on a student period. I remember when I first put the groups together I thought... he probably won't do anything, and I never said it out loud but I sure did think it. They landed the interview with the Congressman because they listened to me when I told them that these people want to hear from them, and to not have any fear. So now the results are that they landed the interview to make a portion of their doc great! and I matured a little more and have taken on the attitude that I am determined to not let the people who are not that positive, get in my head. Some students have the drive but have to find their own way and need our support along the journey.

2nd week post

Well the thing that surprised me the most in one of my classes is that one of my students, that other teachers said had no motivation...really does have motivation. This particular student was in a group and he felt like his group was not going to do the assignment with 100% effort so he decided to try alone, and then he knew that was not going to work because of his focus. Eventually he ended up with another student that was working alone and they hit it off great and will be interviewing a member of Congress for a project they are working on. I think the lesson that I learned is to not give up on a student period. I remember when I first put the groups together I thought... he probably won't do anything, and I never said it out loud but I sure did think it. They landed the interview with the Congressman because they listened to me when I told them that these people want to hear from them, and to not have any fear. So now the results are that they landed the interview to make a portion of their doc great! and I matured a little more and have taken on the attitude that I am determined to not let the people who are not that positive, get in my head. Some students have the drive but have to find their own way and need our support along the journey.

2nd week post

Well the thing that surprised me the most in one of my classes is that one of my students, that other teachers said had no motivation...really does have motivation. This particular student was in a group and he felt like his group was not going to do the assignment with 100% effort so he decided to try alone, and then he knew that was not going to work because of his focus. Eventually he ended up with another student that was working alone and they hit it off great and will be interviewing a member of Congress for a project they are working on. I think the lesson that I learned is to not give up on a student period. I remember when I first put the groups together I thought... he probably won't do anything, and I never said it out loud but I sure did think it. They landed the interview with the Congressman because they listened to me when I told them that these people want to hear from them, and to not have any fear. So now the results are that they landed the interview to make a portion of their doc great! and I matured a little more and have taken on the attitude that I am determined to not let the people who are not that positive, get in my head. Some students have the drive but have to find their own way and need our support along the journey.

Week 2 Post

Well the thing that surprised me the most in one of my classes is that one of my students, that other teachers said had no motivation...really does have motivation. This particular student was in a group and he felt like his group was not going to do the assignment with 100% effort so he decided to try alone, and then he knew that was not going to work because of his focus. Eventually he ended up with another student that was working alone and they hit it off great and will be interviewing a member of Congress for a project they are working on.
I think the lesson that I learned is to not give up on a student period. I remember when I first put the groups together I thought... he probably won't do anything, and I never said it out loud but I sure did think it. They landed the interview with the Congressman because they listened to me when I told them that these people want to hear from them, and to not have any fear. So now the results are that they landed the interview to make a portion of their doc great! and I matured a little more and have taken on the attitude that I am determined to not let the people who are not that positive, get in my head. Some students have the drive but have to find their own way and need our support along the journey.

Going Well

My first few weeks went pretty well..The students seem to love structure...and I know that has improved a lot in my room. I actually have had my first observation from my AP already and it went pretty well. He is kinda tough, but he gave me lots of feedback and can you believe that he said HE SEES A DIFFERENT TEACHER THIS YEAR...I was shocked. Thanks a bunch

What an experience!

As you all know, this is my first year for teaching high school. What an eye opener! I am following in the foot steps of a teacher who did not attend NTI. (That's why there was an opening.) It has taken me the first 3 weeks of school to build relationships and begin to win the confidence of my students. Thank goodness for all those lesson plans. When I was overwhelmed and couldn't think straight, all I had to do was look in my plan book and think - "Oh , this is what I need to do." Thanks Ms. Chillis for that assignment.

Syllubus writing also came to the rescue. When asked to turn mine in, all I had to do was make some minor adjustments and send it on. One less thing to obsess over.

Implementing parts of our lab management plan is starting to make a difference in the organizaion of lab activites. As time goes on and the students get more acclimated to my methods, I'm hopeful our labs will smooth out even more.

Thanks to Dr. B., Dr. M. and Ms. C for all your instruction and advise.

Much Better this year

I would have to say that this year has been much better with regard to classroom management. Keeping the students busy by teaching bell to bell has definitely kept the kids focused. In addition, I never thought about posting my class procedures before the NTI, but It makes a huge difference in student behavioral expectations. I have also expanded on some of the take 5 activities to inject some interest in my students learning. The FAt City video has helped me slow my pace for some of my learning disabled children and they are even performing better. I'm having more fun this year and my kids are much more receptive. Furthermore, posting and stating the objectives gives the students the goal for each lesson. A huge difference this year.

It's ShowTIME!!

NTI has done wonders for my profession. I am using so many tools learned this summer and still there are others I have yet to begin using. This was the first year my syllabus was not returned to me for corrections. It appears that so much order has been bestowed upon me [and my class} until it is somewhat eerie. I am using Peer- to -Peer resources- Melissa I must say the "ask 3 then me" have saved my voice on so many occasions; the bulletin board created my Sly, Courtney and myself has established boundaries and accountability within my students and myself; and Ms. Chillis your lesson plan format is a lifesaver. I am now able to wrap-up lessons w/o feeling as if I forgot to tell the kids something. Because of NTI, student leadership has been defined and upheld in all of my classes- something that helps my day go smoothly. I have each of you to know that we (Law and Justice Level I) will be wearing uniforms this year and the students seem to be more excited about this than I am. This idea has instilled a sense of pride and leadership in them- something I would have never been able to accomplish without my summer school experience.
Past year students are constantly asking "Mrs. Jackson why didn't we do that in our class"? Those same students are asking about the next level and when can they sign up for it. While I can only speak for myself, I am extremely grateful for the teachings of Dr. Burns, Ms. Chillis and Dr. M. as well as the many suggestions of my classmates. I will close by saying it was a pleasuring seeing all of you Saturday and I look forward to learning again with you all this evening. Until 5~aj

The First Few Weeks of School

The first few weeks of school have definitely kept me on my toes! This was my first year actually teaching Cosmetology so it was all very new to me. I had been working in the self-contained special education classroom. There were four of us in there so it never felt like my actual classroom. I always had someone checking on me or backing me up. Now, I am completely alone and solely responsible for everything that goes on in my classroom. I am enjoying the teaching part of it though. NTI helped me to be prepared for that first day. Normally I would be nervous but I was calm and ready to start my day. I had a plan and a schedule for how the day was going to run. I continue to feel prepared, however sometimes incidents occur and put a kink in my plans... such as a student passing out, getting sick, or even a student flooding my classroom! Through all of this luckily I was able to remain calm and take care of the situation on hand. I am very thankful for the strategies that I have carried with me from NTI and look forward to what's in store this semester.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Getting my mind right

I found that NTI was instrumental in getting me mentally ready to teach this year. Being a first year teacher, I was very apprehensive about starting the year with no practical experience teaching children. The NTI course this summer helped me to put many things in perspective. I have not been able to work as many of the things we learned into my curriculum as I would have wished but I think with more experience, I will be able to get closer to being the kind of teacher I would like to be. This year I am trying to stay one step ahead of the kids. I can't wait until I am better at this.

First month of school

This year is already very different from last year. I began last year 6 weeks into the year. The kids were in a state of absolute rebellion. It was extremely difficult to bring them back from the abyss. I was immediately 6 weeks behind in every aspect. This year we all started out together in a good place, so to speak. I started out with the desire to stay ahead this time and I plan ahead constantly. I also had little or no support last year from the administration. This year I have a dfferent Assistant Principal leading our department and he is fantastic! I have so much support now that I feel empowered to charge headlong into teaching with the passion it deserves. I have yet to employ techniques from NTI that I was not already using last year but I am sure I will soon. Every one of my fellow teachers at my school are already counting the days left in the year while I can't believe a month has gone by already. I am loving this!!

Thank God for NTI

I was better prepared this year thanks to the NTI program. Especially with the lesson plans which were my Achilles heel. The bulletin board project helped because last year I was clueless on how to prepare one. Learning new ideas on my teaching approach from my fellow students and the set induction with the kids has helped a lot. But due to changes in the curriculum we are doing a lot of sponges to enhance the kids writing skills. Now at the alternative school a lot of our students are exceptional students therefore the fat city videotape enlighten me a lot along with sitting on SST meetings. But thanks to all my instructors and classmates for their help.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

First Week of school

I think I'm over the hard part. I better not speak to fast. I must say I had a few jitter bugs during the first few weeks but it could have been worst thanks to the NTI Summer family I made it through. Thanks for your support Guys. Having the classroom managment and emergency lesson plans ready can in handy for this week. Since NTI summer Training I feel more confident and knowledgeable about teaching and giving instructions. NTI was truly a lifesaver. I looking forwarding to a better year. I can't wait to see you all saturday.

The lesson plans and classroom management plan were great to have this fall. This year has started off well, just trying to keep up with all this middle school energy!
See everyone on Saturday.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Skills USA Leadership

Hello All! I was wandering if anyone else was attending the Skills USA Leadership Conference in Jekyll Island September 17-19? Hope to see some of you there!

Thursday, September 3, 2009


Hello All. I do hope that all is well with you. I hope that your school year is going well also. I look forward to seeing you in September. Would someone please tell me where to find our assigment. Thank you!!!


Check your email at GSU

Just got a message at my GSU email regarding the class.


See you on the 12th.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009


I thought I had (operative word) good investigative skills, but I can't find the assignment either. If anyone can assist me I would appreciate it.......Thanks!


Round 2

I hope you all are off to a good school year! I can't believe it is time to begin round 2 already. I can see you guys are crazy busy and I feel you all the way. Our team got off to a rough start (losing to North), but we are young and it is good to get a gut check early rather then later (if at all). I told our team this doesn't build character it reveals it....we will see this Friday just how much character we have. I have six classes this year (33 per class) and I am leading FCA and SADD. Thank God my wife works at school or we may never see each other. Hope you all have a great weekend and I will see you in a week!


Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Moving along!!!!!

Hello everyone can't wait to see everyone on Sept 12, 2009. Have a Happy Labor Day weekend!!!!!

Hello Everyone!

Hope everyone is doing well. I have had an interesting first couple of weeks. I had a child get sick and had to call an ambulance, and also had a student flood my room! Oh the joys of teaching lol! Anyway, can't wait to see everyone next saturday!