Where did the year go?

Well, back in August I was all gung-ho and was going to start blogging throughout the year. Unfortunately, as you can see from the dates of my posts that did not happen so this is more of a reflection of my past year.

I will first go over the lessons or ideas that went well and then the ones that didn’t. First the clothing unit including Botas Picudas ideas from Kristy Placido and Srta. Barragán and others that culminated in a group Exposición de Moda project. The students really enjoyed that unit. I also used the book Agentes Secretos which I started with a geography vocabulary unit adapted from Alison Litten and proceeded to a study of Spain geography. We used the new iPads and the students created a video of their Viaje a España.
I introduced Tech Tuesday in all of my classes and was able to find apps and other tech resources such as Duolingo and Edmodo to enhance the language acquisition process.
I teach 5th – 8th grade and implemented a new classroom pass system, thanks to Lisa Reyes. Initially it went well but I found it too cumbersome in terms of marking them off when used, going around to each student etc. I am in search of something new, any suggestions? I also found the reading of Agentes to take longer than I had expected. How long should it take? I wish there was a pacing guide included in teacher manuals. I know that would vary depending on the classes, how often they have class and class time but it might help in my planning. I had issues with iPads, wifi and of course inevitably I had to rely on Plan B.
Overall, I know the year had some bumps but luckily there were no potholes that kept us stuck in the road. I know there was lots of learning and the students had a great year. Looking forward to getting some rest, rejuvenating and then finding new ideas for next years classes.

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The First Day

Well today was our first day of school.  I was ready and excited to see all of the faces, the new shoes, the new backpacks, and the nicely pressed uniforms.  The students were eager and excited mostly to see their friends again but I do think in part to be back in school.  I find that most students like to learn and are hoping that the teacher can make learning fun.  

Unfortunately, due to scheduling I didn’t get to see the students today but I will see them bright and early tomorrow.  I am so excited.  Thanks to the previously mentioned mentors and master teachers I am ready with new ideas and a regained sense of eagerness.  

I took pictures of my classroom for you to see.  I love it.  I have pictures on the walls of my travels, lively bulletin boards and desks arranged into big groups of three.  I believe this idea came from iFLT 2010 and the fabulous Donna Tatum Johns, if I remember correctly.  The desk arrangement is great because I can call on the groups such as Peru vs Argentina.  

I have a classroom library with baskets and the books in each section are labeled.  

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Muchas gracias

As I get ready to begin a new school year, I ponder on the quickly fleeting Summer of 2013.  I can’t say it was restful but it was very educational, thought provoking and productive.  I was lucky enough to go to iFLT in San Diego.  I have many wonderful teacher trainers to thank for helping me in many ways.  They taught me new ways to reach out to other teachers, new ways to reach out to my students and new ways to enjoy teaching all over again. There are many to thank but these are just a few who were willing to share ideas several of which I have  “borrowed.”  These wonderful teachers are Bryce Hedstrom, the classroom management guru, the energizing and talented Carol Gaab, the techies, Carrie Toth and Kristy Placido, who taught me how to tweet and I am addicted, Lisa Reyes, who I have only spoken to on the phone who, but , who knows how to keep the class on task and involves music, and last but not least the fabulous Linda Li, the best TPRS teacher around.  Also a shout out to all of the wonderful teachers I came in contact with this past summer.  I can’t wait to see you all again.

Although I am not quite sure that I have any interesting ideas worthy enough to be posted or that know of anyone would want to read my posts, I decided to start this blog.  I hope to log my teaching journey here in hopes that maybe I can give someone out there a new idea.  I have been so blessed in reading other teachers blogs that I hope to be of help to someone out there.  Teaching doesn’t have to be a lonely sport.  Now with technology we can cross the classroom border and reach out to new and experienced teachers to either give ideas or as is, in my case get ideas.

I will be documenting the start of my year and hopefully I will remember to update throughout the year.  If anything seems interesting to you please feel free to contact me.  I would love to help out another teacher.