The year that was…

When this school year started, I had no idea that I would even have the opportunity to write what I’m writing now.  Since I’ve graduated from Shippensburg, I’ve never done the same thing two years in a row.  This was the year that I thought I was going to break that cycle.  Last year, I was the athletic director for a fantastic middle school, and I started off this year doing the same.  I felt that I was finally hitting my stride with that, increasing parent involvement, communication, and making the students feel special about participating in middle school athletics.  Then I found out that there was going to be an opening at the elementary level teaching technology.  While initially hesitant about applying, I had the support of two of the greatest administrators I know, Joe Devine and Sarah Stout.  They pushed me, put me through mock interviews, and made me evaluate who I am.  For that, I am extremely thankful.

Traveling between three elementary schools is a daunting task.  I still don’t know all of my students’ names (which I can’t stand, but can’t wait to do better next year), I still don’t have a “home for my stuff,” and I’m just too nice a guy to charge for that mile I travel between schools.  The computers in each lab have a slightly different setup, and I had to juggle the schedules of three different buildings.  I’ve managed to do that and then some.  Once I started feeling comfortable, I started to reach out to teachers as to how I can help them.  With integrating being one of my passions, I set out to see how I could incorporate iPads into lessons.  I told them that I’d do the first lesson with them and show them how to do it, but from then on, they’ll have to tools to continue it.  We did a QR code scavenger hunt with 5th graders that they loved!  I showed second grade some apps that really enhanced their classroom learning experience.  I’m sending out blogs and links to great iPad apps and articles to teachers staff-wide.

The big question is whether or not I’ll be back next year.  I’m humbled to have many teachers ask me that question and generally be concerned.  I’ve made a lot of great friends in my time in this school district and I’m lucky to have so many in my corner.  While I don’t know what the future will bring, if next year will be the year I finally get to improve on what I reflect upon from the previous year, you can be sure that you could plop me just about anywhere and I’m going to make a name for myself.  I guess that’s what happens when you start out as a bulding substitute; you kind of have a survivalist attitude.

Stay safe this summer; check in on Twitter every once in a while.  Keep the brain thirsting for more.  Reflect on this year; how can you make next year even more exciting for your students?  I’m ready for it already…

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About mrdeissler

I teach technology education to elementary students and work with teachers on integrating new technologies into their lessons at two different elementary schools. This blog serves as a place for me to reflect and share to help make me a better educator, as well as document my learning in the M.E.T. program at Boise State University Follow me on Twitter @mrdeissler
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