Sunday, September 19, 2010

The 21st Century Teacher

The September 2010 edition of the Teacher Net Gazette has a compelling article on the changing role of today’s teacher. Dr. Brad Johnson and Tammy Maxson McElroy have written a powerful piece titled “The Changing Role of the Teacher in the 21st Century”.
Here are a few statements from the article:

This means that children entering kindergarten today have been exposed to more information than their grandparents were two years after graduating high school.

This innovative educator of today utilizes authentic relationships and relevant teaching to connect education with the real world.

One major difference between the antiquated teacher role and the changing teacher role of today is the involvement of everyone in the educational community.

The effective teacher has to be the ‘thermostat’ that controls the environment of the classroom.

The changing role of the teacher means to move away from the isolation of the past and embrace the collegiality, expertise, and support of colleagues.

The changing role of the teacher includes reaching beyond the walls of the school.

With the release of the movie “Waiting for Superman” this month and recent articles in Time Magazine, the public is focusing more than ever on public education in America. I believe this article to be a must read for educators and parents with young children. Those of us in public education need to look closely at the words of Dr. Johnson and Ms. McElroy as we reflect on our relationship with our students and parents. I invite your comments on “The Changing Role of the Teacher in the 21st Century”.

Photo: flickr by my_new_wintercoat

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Teacher Web Pages

We have a great group of teachers at Longs Creek Elementary School in San Antonio Texas. The teachers know that for students to maximize their potential they must be excited and engaged about learning in and out of school. Knowing that their students love technology, the staff has gone back to the drawing board to create more engaging pages on their teacher webs. I am very proud of the efforts they are putting forth to connect with their students and parents. They are also very interested in connecting with other classes around the world by way of Skype to become 21st century global learners. If you are interested in skyping with one of our classes, log on to our web site and contact a specific teacher or contact me direct . Give the area of interest and age group you would be interested in skyping with and I’ll pass your name along to one of our teachers.
Here are a few of the teacher's web pages for you to view:
Lisa Carnazzo – Second Grade Teacher
Tami Jordan – Third Grade Teacher
Wendy Pleak – Kinder Teacher
Amanda Peet – First Grade Teacher
Jennifer Growcock – Fourth Grade Teacher
April Blackler – Fifth Grade Teacher
Mrs. Blackler has posted a video on her student blog page that I want to share with you. What video could not be more fitting than “We Are In This Together” by Ben Lee.
We look forward to a year of learning, laughing, and living. Hope you enjoy the video.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Life Long Learning Made Easier

The picture at the right is a plaque that hangs outside by office at school. Back in the 60s with the decoupage craze in full bloom, I created this plaque to remind me of one of my goals in education. Little did I know the impact this statement would have on my life! During my educational career I have experienced the following transitions: purple ditto machines to the zerox copiers, Underwood typewriters to computers, crank phone on the wall to the iphone in my pocket, USPS (snail mail) to twitter, Dick and Jane readers to My, have I seen changes in communication, technology, and education!
Now is the time for all educators to take a critical look at their own professional development. Kathleen McGeady @kathmcgeady and Edna Sackson @whatedsaid, along with technology of the day, have created the solution for making it much easier for one to be a life long learner. I read a blog today written by Mrs. Ripp at 4thGrdTeach. She challenges those who say one of their goals in teaching is to make life long learners of their students. Listen up Mrs. Ripp at 4thGrdTeach. Maybe you can’t promises to make life long learners out of your students in one year, but they may be well on their way if you introduce our students to Kathleen McGeady list of technologies: twitter, blogs, google reader, podcasts, skype, and wikis/nings.
Read Kathleen McGeady’s post “Here are my 10 tops ways to engage in Professional Development in 2010” @ Integrating Technology in the Primary Classroom.