Today is my half birthday! As a child, having an early-June birthday was awful, because everyone was always leaving for summer vacation. So we started celebrating my half-birthday with friends from school. Now, though those days are long gone, I still get a text from my mom every 12.5 telling me "happy half a birthday"!
Not a real post but just an update to say Happy Thanksgiving! I hope you have a wonderful day of food, family, and friends!
One month from today, I will be in Atlanta for #GaETC17! That's the Georgia Educational Technology Conference, for those of you not in Georgia or in edtech. :)
Even before I start picking sessions to attend, here's what I have planned:
Will you be at GaETC? What are you most looking forward to learning? Who do want to see?
Tomorrow will be my first time attending the Instructional Coaching Institute offered by district. As part of my M.Ed. program at Kennesaw, we studied Jim Knight's principles of instructional coaching and it was one my favorite classes. The idea of coaching teachers, whether as an instructional coach or a technology coach, is something that I find myself to be really passionate about! As I said in a post back in June, pedagogy should always come before technology. But being a teacher today means finding out how to bring your classroom into 2017 from 1957. The tools that are available to us and our students gives us no excuse to keep technology out of their hands, as something that is only a tool for distraction.
Coaching teachers on how they can use technology to increase their own productivity or enjoyment and how they can use it to increase student engagement and achievement without giving up on rigorous content is a lofty goal. The first step is always just finding a way to make the connection, to build the relationship, and get a foot in the door. My hope is that the next two days spent with Knight's new book will re-energize me and give me some new tips and tools to use!
With back to school comes a lot of new beginnings. Last week, I had to tell my dancers in Dance Co that I had left the school for the CO. Some of them had already heard, others suspected. But I hope that they all understand and will appreciate that I'm still just as devoted to the success of the company. While I won't always be able to be there (not that I was before, but even less so now), I am still dedicated to what we've built over the years and I want to be there to see that success continue and grow. We also held auditions for new members and accepted some really amazing dancers that I believe will bring a lot to the company!
Today, I drove up to Columbia, SC and stepped foot on the campus of the University of South Carolina for the first time ever. The new cohort (#CohortWhyFi) had their orientation today and I decided to go for the second half since I had never attended my own orientation. Afterwards, there was a time for those of us in the three preceding cohorts to "share our wisdom" and experience with them, followed by a brief reception for faculty and students. Impressively, the Dean stopped by, so I got to shake his hand.
Classes start back for Fall Semester on Monday. This semester contains Classroom Assessment Methods and Advanced Principles of Action Research. I'm not super worried about Classroom Assessments, but APAR is stressful, because we'll be writing Ch. 3 of our dissertation proposal and taking qualifying exams. All of that with my new role is little stressful, but there are no hives yet, so that's a plus.
How has your new year gone? What has surprised you? What are you most pleased about so far?
Angela Burgess is all of things said above. If you want to know more, read what I think.