TeachingChannel.org Go Visit ASAP!

Not only is the production value of the tools just as impressive as the content on http://www.teachingchannel.org, it has considerable brought my teaching to a new level. Kids covered The Teaching Channel during my first semester of teachers college and having my first exposure to an international teaching network is something I’m forever thankful for. Building a basic profile, and listing myself an elementary teacher with special skills was liberating and pride building. As a visual learner more likely to succeed when techniques are demonstrated, I was able to go right from my computer to the classroom with the method securely in my tool box of tricks. I was in awe of classroom management as well as inquiry learning methods that I had learned about in textbooks but had never seen in action. Download the worksheets or use the as jumping off point. I could not live without this site and although I’m not proudI have only served as a lurker of ideas, I would like to contribute to the teaching and learning community when I can.

Sensational Attitudes are the Ultimate Organizational Tip

There are evenings in which I know for sure I am not alone in my endless discoveries on the sweetest but defining Pinterest.com. Perhaps it’s an initiation to the teaching world but from what I’ve seen on the endless organizational boards, are pins tacked up there from individuals much more creative and spatially aware than I. But, something I have learn about myself and the tireless feat to organize my supplies and even thoughts is that the right attitude is essential. It’s a self fulfilling philosophy that if you feel it is impossible to organize, than it is likely you wont or feel defeated at failed attempts. 

I think accepting that you will not always be organized or there will be moments of disorganization is a reality we all need to face. Those who post can’t have everything figured out the way that we think they do. It must have been something to have triggered their need to diy themselves out of chaos. Organization is personal, just like our homes and classrooms. just because it’s pinned on your board doesn’t mean it will work for you, your family or for your students. But, having the courage and attitude to at least try knowing that if it doesn’t work, all will work out in the end can only help you. Don’t become overwhelmed! 

Happy Blog Challenge! #BC20

Thank you Kelly Hines for the invitation to participate in your twenty day blogging challenge. Like you, I also can struggle with wavering focus and have found that when I have someone else to keep me accountable, I can accomplish much more. I am excited to start blogging so I can make positive steps towards reaching my NYE Resolution goal: to become a strong, dynamic educator and contribute to the online professional learning community.

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I will definitely be reading and taking hints from other #BC20 bloggers, and trying to always Bump Up my posts for better readability, and information.

The Arrival by Shaun Tan: One of my Favourite Texts

When I was in perhaps my third year of my Drama in Education and Community undergraduate degree, my professor led us through a story drama within an overarching theme of immigration and when I came across this graphic story by the incredibly talented Shaun Tan at the 2012 Council of Ontario Drama and Dance Educators Conference in Alliston, Ont. I knew I needed to have it in my library of critical literacy texts. Yes, I spent much of my take home pay on adding to my collection that weekend but I am still proud when I can share it with another educator back home who has yet to see it. Nine times out of ten the conversation soon moves to Eve Bunting and my entire day is gone.

Our professor had shown us select images from The Arrival’s pages and we searched for symbols and uncovered story and created relationship in through the faces and body of the characters. We identified conflict in the foreground and background and connected the text to ourselves and embodied families that were coming to a new land for the first time (real life textual accounts and images were used. A sacred prop could be chosen by each player or family of players which enhances story).

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Immigration/emigration are extraordinary topics of critical discussion that Students from a wide range of ages can partake in reflective discussion. In Windsor I am lucky to be surrounded by so many students who have experienced more transition in their young lives already than I may in my life’s entirety.

However, through the many dramatic play opportunities perhaps newer layers can be peeled back and the text can be used as not only inspiration but also a vehicle or exemplar of communication. Not only is the text graphic and in sepia colour, the protagonist and the other characters themselves learn to communicate.

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(All photos found online from shauntan.net)