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, January 30, 2013

In our class last Tuesday we talked about the history of Vocational (now called Career and Technical) education. What would you like written in the history books about CTE in today's environment? Is it still needed? Is it relevant? Support your answer.

What would you like written in the history books about CTE in today's environment? 

What I would like to see written in the history books about today's CTAE  would be that our generation of  career tech teachers (us) were hybrid teachers.  Because we are all seasoned professionals first in our own trade with education and field experience first and then took on additional training in teaching, we have a unique  and distinct teaching style and perspective.  Additionally, our generation will be infusing core curriculum into career tech to create a hybrid education in high schools.  I'd like to see in the books that because of the hybrid teaching approach core courses will somehow want to learn from us and  infuse hands on techniques and employability skills into core courses. Tables turned.  

CTAE a job skill, not just a class!!

I feel the history of CTAE should be expressed imperatively in the high school setting. Some students are simply not equipped to go to college, dont have the money, or have no interest to further their career within the college setting. Whenever I talk to my students, I always let them know that education is important. I also let them know that seeking education doesn't necessarily mean going to a 4 year college. Education is whatever your skill set is and expounding on what you want to learn. In this day and age, it's all about certification. Obtaining a course within the CTAE curriculum gives you a sense of cushion after graduating high school because if some students complete all of the courses required before graduating, they ready or certified for the workforce and not to mention, making fairly decent money. Yes, I think CTAE is extremely relevant in the 21 century. Without it, where would some of our kids be. Ultimately, what we're doing now determines their future.


            I happen to have been a student that did not have any intentions to attend college.  My junior year of high school, I finally got across to my parents and counselors that I had no intention to attend college.  This was information that my parents accepted; but there was another plan put into place.  Their reply and encouragement came with do as you like, but we would like for you enroll in training for a “career.”  I know first-hand that CTAE is extremely valuable today as it was when I was getting my training.  I enrolled in order to receive training during high school; by the time high school graduation came; I only needed three additional months training to be ready for the state board exam.  I found employment immediately. This career path brought me to my present employment.
            I have friends that have a bachelor degree and cannot find employment in the field they studied, only minimal paying jobs. I agree and supports the ideas that CTAE is needed critically in our world today, so many students do not plan to enter college.  I give them the same advice given me; pursue training for a career.  I support training our students and assisting them to have marketable skills.  Who knows, it may take them numerous years, as it did me, to decide that if I was going to obtain the profession I desired, going to college was a necessity.  I attribute that my success was achievable by being involved in a CTAE program.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

My Desire for What History Should Say About CTE: Affirmative Action

From our discussion on last Tuesday, we talked a great deal about how CTE has evolved into what it is today. I would like to see more emphasis on Affirmative Action and how it correlates to certain advancements in CTE and different demographics. Based on statistical data, currently African American males are disproportianatley affected by unemployment. With this information it would be advantageous to understand what role CTE has played in addressing or not addressing this issue for this segment of America. Knowing this information from a historic perspective is beneficial so that local and national communities can use this information to curtail drop-out rates, incarceration rates and other socio-econimcal issues that affect this segment. CTE is very much needed because the skills, employment ethics and career development knowledge implemented in these programs are essential to the backbone of the American working class, which is a large part of our population. CTE is very much relevant due to fast advancements in technology and new career segements in various service industries that speak to these new technological achievements. Looking into how CTE and Affirmative Action can counter act these disparities makes what we do from an infantile perspective vastly crucial. In addition to addressing this disparity we can better groom generations who will be highly competent in their perspective careers.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Skills for self improvement not just a class....

I believe that CTAE is just as important in education as the academic classes.  For those students that do not wish to be math teachers or history majors, career tech classes give them options for great futures.  Not every student wants to go to a four year college.  Teaching a student how to perform skills learned in CTAE classes gives them a jump start to a career choice.  By taking these types of classes in high school, a student can "try out" a field before investing years of college only to find out that it may not be for them.  At the same time, if a student does go to college, they may have learned a skill that they can use to make money while in college.  I tell my students that they can learn how to cut hair, do a set of nails or even apply makeup and do those in their dorm room and earn some extra money.  Several students have told me that if it was not for my class they would have quit high school. 

Falbe: Week of 1/28/2013 History of CTAE

Based on conversation from last week, it appears that CTAE has made some note-worthy improvements that I would expect to appear in future conversations about CTAE.  As a student who struggled in school myself, I am a huge advocate of the CTAE program. While I always did well in school, it was not always interesting to me. The CTAE program is essential (particularly in a time when college graduates are not able to find jobs) in order to get students into the work place "work-ready", with the skills and aptitudes that they need to be successful. Not that these students will not attend college, but the work ready skills taught in the CTAE setting not only prepare them for success in high school, but give them the means to work while they are in college in order to support themselves while in school. Myself being a 20 something, struggling to find find a job despite my college degree, I can see how valuable the opportunities and skills taught in the CTAE program are.  I also think that the experiences the students get are valuable in that they expose them to things so that they can find an interest. Teaching (and even Engineering) are not what my Bachelor's is in. I feel that had I had more experience (like in the CTAE setting) I could have found my aptitude for Engineering much quicker and therefore pursued that path more quickly. 

Overall I would hope that the talk about CTAE would be centered on the application of real life work skills, along with the knowledge and exposure to real-world problems, and machinery. 

Now more than ever, CTAE is imperative.

Just this morning on the drive in to work I heard a statistic that confirmed the ever-growing need for CTAE. The statistic was that 50% of today's employees are over-qualified for the job that they currently hold. In the 1970's only 1% of cab drivers held a bachelor's degree, and now it is has risen to 50%. I was raised by parents who worked very hard but did not graduate from college. My parent's generation thought that a college education was the must have for future success, and therefore my generation was pressured somewhat into pursuing a college education whether it was a good fit or not.  Obviously, a college education does not mean that you have the skills needed or the opportunity available to work in the field that you have studied for and potentially gone into debt receiving. The thought of pushing my students into a college education and then having them graduate with no job prospects would be disheartening to say the least. I am so glad that I can teach my students skills that they can use presently, in jobs that are available, with a salary that pays well in today's economic unrest.  While many of my students will go on to further their education in order to fulfill their career dreams, it feels good knowing that they can work their way through school with skills I helped to teach them. 

The History of CTE.....

I would like it written that CTE matters. As a teacher in an urban high school with %99 of the students eligible for free lunch, I see first hand the need for technical and workplace skills.  While I am a personal advocate for post secondary education, I know that college is not for everyone.. With that being said, having the opportunity to graduate from high school with workplace skills and knowledge should be seen as a advantage for students entering college and/or the workforce. If I take the data from my own school, currently only 17% of the seniors are on track to graduate. Of course a lot of them are completing credit recovery this semester, and there are some whose summer school credits have not been added to their transcripts.  The data however suggests that a greater number of students will be ready to enter the workforce than to enter a four year college program.  So my focus has been and remains to prepare students for a career after graduation.  I want my students to feel ready and capable of providing quality health care to patients throughout this country whether they choose to be a CNA or go on to nursing school.  My ultimate goal is for students to be able to take the CNA exam and start work immediately with the comfort of knowing that they can support themselves financially.

History repeats itself if we allow it

 What would you like written in the history books about CTE in today's environment? Is it still needed? Is it relevant? Support your answer.

Several years ago a veteran pilot who was shot down over Vietnam wrote a story titled "Who Packed your parachute?" With CTE it should be. "Who fixes your Car? Who built your house ? etc"

After only a small amount of research into the history of CTE you can see where the founders of the CTE movement saw the need then as well as now for a strong program.It is amazing how history repeats itself when people forget that we ALL will enter the work force and that college is not for everyone.

The mission of education is to prepare students for the future . CTE programs prepare students for the future work force now. In High Schools the CTE program also supports academic subjects and have proven to lower drop-out rates. CTE programs also cater to the hands-on learner and helps keep them in school.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Get Organized!

So far this year has started off better than the last. This is mainly due to NTI, in addition to the fact that I now have a much better idea of what to expect throughout the year. Granted, things are going much smoother this year, but I feel like I could get so much more accomplished if I could get organized and stay organized. Honestly speaking, this has been a skill that I've always had to work at, but I know that once I get a handle on it, I can improve in all aspects of teaching. This part has been a slow process for me. I have my weeks where I feel like I have it together, and everything flows. Then there are times where it seems like the organizational system that I have in place just doesn't seem to work, and I don't get things done like I feel that I need to. I can be a bit of a perfectionist at times, so I will continue to work on my organizational skills until they improve by leaps and bounds!

Better Planning and SAYING NO!!!!

The one area where I  would like to grow and improve as a teacher this semester would be better planning and saying no. This semester I have 3rd block planning that last for 1 hour and 30 min this will give me time to plan for 3 different classes within my path way of law and justice. I also would have time to stay up to date on grading and finding new way to keep my students engaged. I am also going to put a new word in my vocabulary NO. Administration and staff members know that I have a 3rd block planning they always want me to watch there class, cover lunch duty, and do a favor. This will not happen this semester I am going to stop being the Mr. Nice Guy and say No to focus on better planning to be come a better teacher.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

More effective separation of lesson plans for all 3 preps

One area where I would like to grow and improve as a teacher this semester is to find a way/ways  to create engaging lesson plans for ALL 3 preps for the therapeutic services pathway for healthcare. I have been successful in separating the courses, however, I have not been able to provide as many differentiated assignments as I would like to due to time constraints, limited access to textbooks, and the copier in the main office. I find it difficult to get all of my planning done in the time that is allotted for planning at school and the added time staying late in the evenings. The way that my classes are arranged requires that I change the white board or lab area between class changes and that is virtually impossible because all teachers must be at our doorways to monitor students during transitions. I generally use my planning period as well as my lunch period to prepare for the upcoming class(es). I rarely get a chance to plan a week or two in advance just because of everything that I need to get done. I find myself trying to do lesson plans on the weekly most of the time which is difficult because of things I am required to do at home. I started NTI out of sequence, however I hear that during the summer semester we have to create a large number of lesson plans. I look forward to that time so that I may be better organized and prepared for next school year. I feel as if I am doing a better job than I did last school year after I was hired 8 weeks into the semester and taught all of my classes mostly the same concepts during the first semester. This year I have been able to completely separate the three preps but it has been very taxing. I absolutely love teaching healthcare science, I just look forward to the days I can do it more efficiently.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Moving Into 2013

As a teacher/Instructor, you are always evolving, changing and adapting. As I transition into the NTI program as a new teacher in the career tech field, surrounded by high school students, I can't help but reflect over the many years that I have spent teaching and educating others in my profession (many of which have been adults). But high school students open a whole new challenge for me that I am anxious to explore. Having just completed my 1st week of 8 as a "Student Teacher", the transition has been smooth sailing (so far). I hope that I will be able to be as effective working with the younger students as I have been in working with adult students.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013


The students at our school had to complete a survey about their teachers at the end of first semester. It had numerous questions on it with one being, "Does your teacher enjoy his or her job?" What a great question! Thankfully, my survey results came back strong in that area. One area that I showed weakness in was timely and effective feedback. At first I was confused as I thought about how quickly I grade assignments, get those grades posted and return work to my students. My "timely" feedback, I believe, has been strong.  I think my greater weakness stems from effective feedback. The benefit doesn't come with what a student has gotten wrong on a test, but WHY have they gotten it wrong. Is it poor study habits, or lack of understanding?   One of the ways that I really want to improve this semester is to spend time reviewing tests together. Helping students understand why their answer was not the best answer, I believe, will be much more effective feedback than just a numerical grade.

Academic Bridge

One area where you would like to grow and improve as a teacher this semester.

One area I wish to improve on is the relation of academic subjects and Auto Tech. A lot of my students perform very well in my program but are poor students in academic subjects. The students state that the see no reason in learning the academic subjects unless they are continuing on to college. My desire is to improve on my academic subject knowledge to help build a bridge to help the students see the importance of ALL subjects.

Areas of Improvement

Moving into this new semester, I will have my 2nd and 3rd level students. I want to be able to provide them with instruction that truly replicates the challenges that may present themselves in the professional word. I want to imerse myself in techniques that will povoke higher level thinking that students will need to develop for their careers. I also want to expose my students to scenarios and people that they can identify with, so that they can see themselves in a fulfilling career. One of the challenges I have is student apathy. The latter part of the Spring semester tends to be the most difficult, when it comes to engaging students. I do plan to incorporate a lot of the school into what they are learning in class. For example, when we are having our end of year activities like ceremonies, school talent shows, spoken word events and graduation, I am going to allow the students to spearhead any requests for design material that the school may need. Most of this consists of flyers, programs, note cards, signs, etc. This experience will force them to interface with the individuals on a professional level and will teach them about effective communication when providing a service.

Constant Engagement

I would like to keep the students constantly engaged. It seems if they are always busy with the work at hand, this cuts down on the discipline problems. It also helps class time to go by faster, especially if you're on the block schedule. I would also like to find creative ways to engage my students. When you take something and make it a real life scenario or relate it to them with something they're familiar with, it makes explaining it and the concept so much easier. When I had a long term, we use to play Jeopardy as a study guide for the test. I would give them the answer, and they would choose what question went with that particular answer. They seemed to like that, but you can't play jeopardy forever. I find, coming up with creative ways to learn new material is always a great concept.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Like many of my fellow new teachers at NTI, I have several things I would like to do better. Aside from better time management skills, I would like to be able to say the word “no” more often to those who are constantly insisting on my help which is usually on a committee. If I can say “I would love to help you but no…” I think that time management would fall into place almost on its own. I have one thing however that stands in the way of this and that is often administration does not give the teacher a choice. I fully understand that they have to get their duties accomplished too but I think that often they don’t fully realize (or forget) what it takes to run a classroom efficiently and timely. I appreciate the amount of work they are faced with but the question is are the students being served to the best of our ability?  Maybe I can make a suggestion at some point in time like at a faculty meeting at the beginning of the new school year or better yet, at the end of this year, that new teachers be given a little more time to get acquainted with their teaching duties before being inundated with all the other commitments. Saying “no” for me is a little difficult as I always strive to please others. I just thought of something – I never made a New Year’s resolution!  This could be mine – saying “no”.

Something I Would Like To Do Better.........

In a Cosmetology classroom you can have several different types of activities going on at one time.  I am usually being pulled in several different directions at the same time with each of these activities.  I would like to be more organized in how I  direct and manage the activities.  I think I am going to try to set up organization folders for each of the salon services the students would work on during class.  Each folder would have a list of directions, "how-to" information, materials or tools needed and a rubric for them to follow.  Maybe a few pictures of a each completed service would be great to add as well.  The activities or salon services would be almost like centers that elementary school teachers use.  The folders would help the students know what and how to do and I wouldn't have to run back and forth to help as much.  There are several things I would like to change and make better (easier), but organization is at the top.

Falbe Week 1: January 21

A new semester, and a new year is always a great time to reflect on things that that have and have not gone the way they were planned and find ways to improve your practice. This semester I would like to make more of a commitment to providing clear, and timely feedback to my students. Not only will this  improve my organization and create less stress at grading time, my students will have a more clear understanding of where they stand in my class and how to improve. While I really enjoy the day to day teaching, managing the grading and planning etc. is what I have found to be the hardest areas of my job.  I also am hoping to manage my time better inside and outside of the classroom. It seems that as a CTAE teacher my commitments extend far beyond the classroom. I am part of numerous committees (along with coaching), and my responsibility to my department sometimes has me stretched thin. I am often in meetings, and not in class so some classes fall further behind than others. I hope that this semester I can better plan for these times when I will be away. 

Professional Growth and Improvement as a Teacher...

As a teacher, we are constantly seeking ways to improve in our profession. With all the paperwork, administrative changes,learning new technology, meetings, student behavior issues we sometimes need a minute to reflect on all of this. Our most important goal is to teach students to become successful adults who can compete globally in the 21st century. Sometimes I find myself doing too much, without allowing myself to seek help from anyone. I assume a lot of duties and responsibilities that I know will take up a lot of my time.

This semester, one area I can improve in as a teacher is to prioritize my responsibilities and become better organized. I will continue to take on various leadership roles throughout my school building, but enlist the help of others if the task becomes overwhelming. I had to realize their is nothing wrong with seeking advice from others that have walked in my role or position which can greatly impact your stress level.

Also, I plan on having a master calendar near my desk. This will help me to organize my daily schedule of events and stay abreast to what is going on from day to day. I am going to call it "Calendar at a Glance".

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Identify one area where you would like to grow and improve as a teacher this semester

If I had to name just one area that I would like to improve upon this semester it would be my organizational skills.  I am normally a very organized and neat person, but this has waned in the  past year. I have so many things going on (preaching to the choir) that I actually prepare things for lessons and then misplace them for a day sometimes, because there is too many other things on my desk.  It is compounded by the fact that I share my classroom with another teacher. Short of getting a bigger desk, I'm going to have to focus on better organization.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Creating a great beginning....

Wecome back to our blog! Please think about, and then post, one area where you would like to grow and improve as a teacher this semester. Dr. J

In thinking about what can be improved, the hard part is choosing one area. Creating/following a system would be what I would like to get under control pretty quickly. As many of you can tell, I can get caught up with some details. So, you can imagine how it is without a system. Let me elaborate. I need a filing system for student folders and extra handouts etc. I don't feel that the way I have been keeping track of absences, parent communication, Skills USA has been the most efficient. Surely, there is a way that works, I just have not pinpointed the best way yet. Within the next 9-18 weeks, I would like to be able to walk out everyday with my business in order so that when I walk in everyday I can address that day and focus on my students and what I want to teach.

Chef Tiffany

Knowing Standards

              It seems that I could change or improve on a few things but for now I will stick with standards. In cosmetology we have the Georgia Performance Standards and State Board of Cosmetology Standard. Then there is Reading across the Curriculum, Science and Math. Teachers will talk about their standards and not have to think about it. Here I still have to look them up to talk about them.

                Another thing is, which standards do I really focus on? The Department of Education gives us the GPS but they really do not match up with Georgia State Board of Cosmetology standards. The Georgia State Board of Cosmetology is really what we need to be focused on for the students to reach their final goal, their Master Cosmetology License. But, if I do not use DOE’s then…..

What Do I Want to Improve Most........

As a relatively new teacher, I feel that I am constantly second guessing myself because I do not have the "years" of experience that other teachers have. I look at the veteran teachers and they seem to know all of the the ins and outs of the system from knowing who to call in the IT department to knowing which report to pull for a staff meeting. I am still learning how to use the Promethean board correct, so I am very behind on the "politics" or the who to know.  That being said, I would most like to improve my overall time management. I feel that the overwhelming tasks of grading, assessments, staff meetings, HOSA meetings, tutorials, and all the other "business" aspects of teaching often leave me unprepared for instruction. I would like to be prepared to give more to my students when I am in front of them instead of wondering when I am going to have time to get all the business done. I will get it right one day, but right now its hard.