Thursday, January 19, 2012

1st Semester Reflections

Here at the high school, it is hard to believe that our first semester of students and teachers with iPads is about to come to an end.  This semester has proven to be one of the most challenging, yet rewarding ones I have encountered in my teaching career.  With each year that has gone bye, I have considered myself to be a little bit better teacher than the year prior. I have been teaching in Zeeland for nearly twenty years and in that time, I have built up many resources to draw upon in instructing students.  Knowing that we would have iPads this year forced me (and many other teachers too I suspect) to re-examine how I go about doing some parts of my job.  It has been quite refreshing to go through filing cabinets, binders, folders, etc. of resources and decide what still is relevant and what is no longer useful material.  Thanks to bond issue money, I now have greater ease and ability to scan articles from magazines, newspapers, and supplemental text materials and create .PDF files that I can not only save, but share with students and other teachers has been positively impacted my teaching.  Students, with their iPads, are able to access this information daily and use it to help learn, collaborate, and reinforce concepts essential to becoming a capable 21st global citizens.  Certainly, the work is not done and another semester will soon begin.  Like Mike and Frank on American Pickers, I have more treasures to uncover and give new life to so that others may benefit.  Yes, if you didn't already know, I do teach social studies and like most social studies teacher, I am a pack rat.