I absolutely love the schedule I have this year. Spending half my day working with teachers and students integrating technology into lessons has been what I have been doing most of my career and now I get to do it officially every day. To be honest, I spend more days than not troubleshooting problems on the fly (PowerSchool isn’t calculating properly; my computer won’t start up and is making a weird whirring noise; my projector isn’t playing sound). I had hopes that I would be in every classroom during this year, but it just didn’t happen. This was partly due to me trying to understand what this job would entail and partly because there are only so many hours in the day, some of which is taken up by having to prep/teach actual classes.
Then I get weeks like this.
Monday: Go through tutorial about interactive videos embedded in AR app. Get interrupted several times (in a good way) so that 45 minute tutorial takes nearly 3 hours.
Tuesday: Meet with Art teacher to explain AR being used in Art Show, setup her account, and start uploading content. Meet with Assistant Principal for extra-curricular evaluation. Meet with TV Production teacher about building a mobile movie theater for showcasing student work at Art Show. Teach stop-motion animation to the Tech Tutors during lunch.
Wednesday: Train Physics teacher on Vernier equipment, prep labs, and help with lesson planning. Research Raspberry Pi lighting system for use in the Media Center for a student-designed project.
Thursday: Teach a lesson on 3D printing and TinkerCAD to a Biology class for a project.
Those are my mornings. And every afternoon I teach Chemistry, attempting to squeeze in lesson planning, lab prep/clean-up, and updating grades. Oh, and I am trying to get our Makerspace (aka #CRAfTLab) up and running.
And I love it!! I am excited to come to work because I get to do what I am most passionate about every day.
The problem I am having is something I have been struggling with all year. I have all these ideas and all these people that I want to share them with, but there is only one of me. I have an endless amount of ideas and creativity, but I can’t be everywhere, doing everything, and because of that something always gets pushed to the side. About a month ago, Nick Provenzano made a similar post and I could not agree with his sentiments more. Sometimes I feel like I have failed this year. It is hard to be creative in Chemistry and Technology Integration at the same time. If I am prepping for innovative teaching in my classroom, I can’t be prepping for innovative teaching in someone else’s classroom. I met with my Principal recently to informally discuss how this new role was going this year. He expressed that he was expecting more technology integration into lessons and I shared his disappointment. I should have been able to accomplish more.
But, I look at this year much like my first year in teaching. I knew very little of what this job would entail and over estimated my abilities. Now I can take what I have learned, reflect on it over the summer, research and plan better, and come back ready to hit the ground running in September.