Saturday, November 21, 2015

Student Teaching Post Apocalypse

I can see the light at the end of the tunnel, but I have had a lot of starting and stopping along the way. I am waist deep in relearning how to assess and teach reading. I can read, love it, been a big fan since I was 6 and do not see myself slowing down anytime soon. I have had to have a nice long talk with my brain and ask it to free up some memory and dump a whole file cabinet of literacy that is no longer supporting our network of learning. 

I believe I have had a number of educators who loved me and taught me how to read and write that was less than stellar. I have the will, I have the desire to learn and I love to gain new information, apply, assess, and look at alternatives and adaptions of the material or higher and lower learners. I have gone through a large part of my life on a foundation that wasn't sound. I am rebuilding and I know that if I put it on the internet, it will manifest into a part of who I want to become as an educator. I have questions, I am looking for examples and explanations that allow me to relearn strategies and material that will not only benefit me but my future high risk students as well. 

This has been hard for me to admit because I love education and I am really good at it. I understand why it took me so long to find my niche in higher education. I am online and not necessarily working on this site but pop up from time to time to make sure my timeline is documented and in some written form that I haven't placed in a box where even I can't remember it.

Now for that walk down memory lane...

It was a dark and cloudy night I drove from Casper Medical Center to Wright Property with an overnight bag and a heavy heart. One of my siblings had suffered a series of seizures and diagnosis was very vague. I missed my first two days of student teaching at a new school with a small but articulate population of students and teachers. I knew my priority is where it should have been but I continued to worry about my entrance into a new classroom and my role as a student teacher. 

My first day on the job was eventful, children were curious and vocal. I was unsure of my role and expectations that I would need to meet and how much I had left in my tank to try to exceed them. As the weeks and months grew, I realized that student teaching was more about the experience and the grueling task of transitioning from student to responsible adult while maintaining a higher level of human expectation of everyone around you. I love it. I love the students and I am fortunate to have had the opportunity to return to the district as a substitute teacher as I build my foundations of reading and begin to move into another stage of life and parenthood as my own children begin their educational careers in public school. 

Friday, December 5, 2014

UW Oshkosh Clinical Semester Part I

Hello readers of this defunct free blog! Sorry for losing track of the semester but a lot has changed. My goals and ideals have shifted. I am still alive, probably more than I have ever been in a long time and didn't have the opportunity or energy to write about it. I've found it, I have taken a deep breath and I am enjoying the moment.

So I am in the final week of my placement and I have learned a gang of stuff that I  need to write about or I will lose the momentum. I need momentum and I realized after 34 years on earth that it depends on me. 

Yes, I know. Very, "After School Special," but it is true. Hard lesson for me to learn and even harder to take full responsibility for. I was lacking follow-through because my accountability of myself and my work ethic have been idle for so long that I forgot what it felt like to be challenged and work hard to get to this place. I want to tell you it's euphoric but the reality of daily life cut the feeling a little short. 

I have had so much support and love and understanding from so many people in the field that I didn't hang my head for long when things weren't as easy as they had been. I was humbled. I am still humbled and I have taken the initiative to want to learn more and want to be constructive and intentional in my career and I can't help but love the change, and embrace the challenges and i was never prepared for the change in ME as a person to happen so quickly.

I drove home the last week of my science lesson knowing that I was where I wanted to be. My first indication was that I found myself rethinking the next days lesson through and finding ways to adapt my approach to the activities to meet individual student needs. I also realized that I loved the idea of changing something minuscule to allow a student freedom or the opportunity to have that light-bulb moment. 

Following my last and final week of class I have been going back to the books and looking at approaches and pre-planning criteria and outcomes. Lots and lots of planning outcomes to meet or exceed high and lower level learners. I am in love and comfortable.

I feel confident, I know when I enter a classroom I am more confident. I know that I can share my ability to learn and to teach in ways I didn't know existed as a paraprofessional or even a program coordinator. I've bridged the support and professional divide and I am humbled to know that my twelve years of experience have been in preparation for me to teach.

I have heard people say that children are out most valuable asset to the world. I wasn't fully aware of that responsibility until now. I realize that the role of a certified teacher is asking someone to give even more of themselves by sharing their world and present the rest of the universe in the most trustworthy and transparent way so a student can feel that confident of their place within it.

I could have never imagined myself reaching this goal. The most wonderful feeling about it, and something that was shared very early in the cohort is that its totally attainable. I am looking at curriculum and instruction programming cohorts in local universities, I want this, not only for myself but for my students and my children. I want to help others find a way to reach students that are proven to work and can help build confidence in a student. 

Luckily for me I was placed with someone who knows how to do that. I have found myself with a teacher who has the knowledge, experience, and drive to want to have each student own their ability to learn. The amount of information and structure and student desire to excel is beyond amazing. I love the idea of such a seasoned teacher open to allow student teachers and clinicians to learn from her and take away everything she has to share. I believe I am where I need to be. Lucky me.

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Hey There!

     I am in my final year of study at the University of Wisconsin and I am a little overwhelmed. I love school, I enjoy learning and I believe that I can teach. My struggle is with management of time and resources to get the best possible outcome. 
     Right now I am struggling and with an inclusive scholarship opportunity that covers my expenses and a full time job, I may need to step out of one realm to make the other a priority and i struggle with my responsibility to my children and their right to adequate health care and opportunities. 
     As I reconsider my current position and doing what I can to make sure all avenues are considered I will keep WrightProp posted.