Rules For Posting To This Blog and Weekly Blog Question
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.
Tuesday, October 29, 2013
For example, my second year students are covering a GPS on infection control and prevention right now. The principles and guidelines discussed are useful to healthcare providers and laypersons as it will help prevent and control the spread of infection. Hand hygiene is one of the most important skills a person can acquire. Most people do not wash their hands properly and do not know when it is appropriate to wash hands. The most obvious times are before meals and after toileting, however, we specifically cover about 12 times that you should wash your hands along with the proper technique using a step by step process. Each student does a return demonstration with the instructor in which they must repeat the process if it is not correct. They learn the rationale for performing proper handwashing and the consequences of failing to do so.
Throughout the school-year I also ask students if they have relatives or acquaintences with various issues that we discuss during the classes. This makes the information relevant for them and teaches them to respond in various situations/scenarios regarding health and wellness even if they do not want to pursue a career in healthcare. Lastly, if all else fails and they just absolutely want nothing to do with Healthcare Science (which is rare), I serve as a mediator between their parents and their guidance counselor to help get the student transferred to a CTAE course that is a better fit for them. My students are informed from day one that I am happy that they are in my class and I want all of them to remain, however, I do not take it personally if a transfer is desired or requested. I tell them this is their life and their decision and that they should choose their CTAE courses wisely to prepare themselves for a successful career in the near future
Monday, October 28, 2013
Another tactic I use to reach students that may not have a high interest in my subject area is I explain how we are going to attack this class as a group and accomplish all of the needed areas together. I do this with the hopes of building a team/family type of environment. Hopefully, this will begin to shape an attitude in every student that reflects an “all for one and one for all” approach to the content. These two approaches are generally effective in getting every student to have at least some level of interest.
Friday, October 25, 2013
Tuesday, October 22, 2013
Monday, October 21, 2013
I would love to have had a thorough orientation process as a new teacher. I think that I may have had more than most, by beginning NTI the summer before school started. Even armed with all of that wonderful information, I still felt MASSIVELY unprepared when school started! There were those well meaning folks who offered their "first year war" stories as consolation, but it felt like anything but consolation. I mean, the worst thing you can tell someone who is in the midst of the battle is "keep fighting because the war will end in 3-5 years". I was told that almost daily for the first week or so! An orientation process where you are paired with someone who has not only the experience, but the desire and the TIME to help you would be ideal. I have been paired with a mentor, since I am a new teacher, but my mentor is 5 times as busy as I am!
There just always seems to be such a chasm between what you learn in school and how things work "for real". Receiving "realistic" orientation would help to better manage expectations of new teachers. I came in ready to save the world and make a mark that couldn't be erased. The reality is, that I have been so incredibly overwhelmed my first year, that it is considered an accomplishment (for me) just to remember which class periods I see on which days (we have block scheduling). And lets not forget the acronyms! No one prepared me for the acronyms!!! I would liken my first year of teaching to being taught how to swim while standing on the pool deck fully clothed. No matter how frequently you rehearse how to swim while standing on deck, it is a TOTALLY different experience once you are actually in the water! An effective, realistic, thorough orientation process would be quite beneficial and very much appreciated. Maybe once I make it out of the war zone in 3-5 years, I will create the program that I think would help others that find themselves "on deck" like me.
Two years ago, as a brand new teacher, I was presented with the challenge of teaching a class with little to no information or lesson plans available to assist me. This was very surprising to me. I was shocked at how little guidance was available to a new teacher in respect to actual “stuff” that allowed the teacher to convey the required standards to the students. That is the one thing I would change about CTE, multiple lesson plan options for every part of each unit within a concentration area.
My background in professional training tells me an organization is only as good as its newest employee. These new associates will most certainly be your weakest link and there should be a program in place for the newest people on your team to follow; a blueprint for success if you will. This plan would allow a “newbie” to have a trainer with them at all times in the early portion of their new career.
This plan should have a vast amount of information to pull from as far as available lessons and techniques. For instance, if every Marketing teacher from around the state were to provide the lessons plans and activities they use for each class you would have literally dozens of options to present to a brand new teacher in need of direction. These lesson plans and activities could then be performed by the new teacher in order to get them acquainted and comfortable with the material. Eventually, as all teachers do, the plans could be tweaked or replaced based on the specific need of the teacher. In addition to getting the new teachers off to a good start, this type of plan would free up a tremendous amount of much needed time new teachers currently use to ……… wait for it …… lesson plan! Imagine how much easier your first year would have been if you had to spend minimal time on the actual building of lesson plans and more time in learning the material and perfecting your delivery.
Wednesday, October 16, 2013
Tuesday, October 15, 2013
When I started NTI out of sequence last January I had so much going on personally that I had to step out in faith to even start. With each day that has passed I have been graced with more strength mentally and physically and have found a new sense of accomplishment and ambition that has caused me to start the process of reaching toward some of the other goals that I have for my life. As I attend classes online, complete required assigments, and beat the clock to meet deadlines I find myself slowing down to give hugs, fix snacks, check homework, and tuck little ones into bed. I am very thankful for the gift of a deep inner peace inside that keeps me grounded. I find peace and strength in knowing that what I am doing does make a different in my students' lives and in the lives of my own children.
As I work hard to improve myself personally and professionally, I like to think that other teachers are doing the same thing in hopes that ALL (mine included) of our children will receive the best educational experience possible. In my self talk I lean on my faith and I tell myself that I can do everything that I need to do to be successful - and I go for it! When things get really hard and seem overwhelming I find my quiet place, I think of my students, and I remind myself of how fortunate I am to have the opportunities that I have. My landing gear is down and as I prepare to land at the destination of full certification, I realize that it is actually a "layover" before I take flight to the next venture - or shall I say ADventure!
Monday, October 14, 2013
I have also decided I need a class in organization, that being organized is essential to surviving in teaching. This has been a very eye-opening second year for me. I have definitely realized that teachers are underpaid and under-appreciated. This is one hard job--rewarding, but difficult.
Sunday, October 13, 2013
I decided I would use our “open mic” opportunity to challenge myself and all of you, my classmates. Over the first half of this semester I have done a poor job of timely blogging. Waiting to the last moment to brainstorm, pen and publish a post doesn’t allow me to effectively read all of the other writings on the blog site. This usually means some VERY good blog posts go lonely and unread. Poor little blog post; standing out there in the cold all alone with no one to appreciate it. They deserve better.
I spent a good portion of Sunday reading through many of the past posts and most are really, really good. These writings reflect situations and feelings which all of us can likely relate to. Going forward, I am going to push myself to get my blog posted earlier so I can read through all of the other postings and attempt to respond to more than one.
We all strive to write an exciting blog post which everyone will want to read and respond to so let’s help each other out and make the extra effort. Overall, this class is a strong group of teachers with individual areas of talent which have melded into a good team. Unfortunately, we are spread widely geographically so it is tough to really appreciate our talents outside of the blog.
Saturday, October 12, 2013
Then came test time. I formulated a study guide from the test questions. I gave them the study guide about a week and a half before the test. They completed it independently first. Then I spent an entire class period reviewing them and answering all of the questions on the study guide with them. They had an opportunity to ask me any questions on the material....guess what?! "We don't have any questions". Can you guess what happened when test day came? I heard "What test, Ms. Jones?", "You didn't give us a study guide!" Did I mention that I used remind101.com to send text reminders to their precious little cell phones about the test?!?!? I am grading the test this weekend and I am flabbergasted again at the number of F's. I just don't get it. Where is the motivation to do well? Where is the motivation to have passing grades? Where is the motivation to learn? As a teacher, I feel like I can only do so much external motivation. How do you inspire intrinsic motivation in your students?
Thursday, October 10, 2013
Tuesday, October 8, 2013
Monday, October 7, 2013
Friday, October 4, 2013
Wednesday, October 2, 2013
I unexpectedly had to have a teacher come in to relieve me for a few minutes while I excused myself to the restroom. When she came in and saw the students checking blood pressures she said "someone can check mine" and about three or four students enthusiastically exclaimed "me, I'll do it". I was so proud of them. Today was their day to dress out for uniform inspections so they were in uniform and had their medical equipment. They were looking and behaving professionally when she entered without my prompting them to. When I returned from the restroom the teacher quietly told me " I love that you're here...I just love what you do and what you are teaching them. You are doing so much for them. I believe they are really loving this" . I responded, "thank you so much, I love being here with them". Lots of times I think about how much they do for me, they keep me going what the work behind the scences becomes overwhelming...One of my students in this same class told me on Monday that last year the only reason she came to school was because she wanted to come to my class. It's times like that when you have to remember what is most important and know that you are making a real difference.
Last, but certainly not least, the time this past week that I knew this was what teaching was really all about and I REALLY felt connected was last Wednesday after school. I decided to stay at work until 6 pm instead of 5:00pm that day to catch up on some work. My usual 2-3 students came by to work on upcoming assignments which is always rewarding for me to see them take responsibility for their grade. However, three other you ladies came in around 4 pm. They all stayed until 6:00! I felt as if we were keeping each other company as we worked and talked. One young lady in particular had missed close to 20 days last year, slept most of the time she was there, rarely dressed out and hardly ever turned in any work. This year she has been attentive and alert in class and has only missed a couple of days so far. That Wednesday after school she stayed the entire time, completed her career timeline, AND presented it in class the next day! I love it! ENOUGH SAID :)
Tuesday, October 1, 2013
Hey Coach Kemp! I thought that you would like to know that because of the experience I got at Kennesaw State University in the sports marketing program I got hired to be a part of the Athletic Event staff, and I am the only freshman that got hired! I have so many doors that are open to me now and it is all because of your effort that you put towards me in your internship class. My boss is Joshua Clendenin, and he graduated from Harrison in 2004, so it's a small world over here in West Georgia. Anyways... I just wanted to take the time to thank you because I really could not be where I am without you and I don't come across nice and genuine people like you.Insert misty eyes here! I was blown away by this action. For a teenaged student to take the time to email a thank you letter to me was very impactful. This was a much needed spirit lifter at a time when the grind was becoming quite tough.