"A Swisstastic Journey of Me and My Students"

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Reflection on 2014-15 School Year

     As an educator and just completing my 17th year in teaching, of which thirteen years have been as a Media Specialist or what was formerly known as a Teacher Librarian, I have been conditioned to constantly reflect on my year and evaluate what worked and what needs some fine-tuning.  That is what I will write about in this post.       Teachers tend to be tough on themselves.  They constantly think about how to reach all their students so that no one gets left behind.  They tend to wonder constantly if there was a better way to teach a concept, they self-criticize their ability to reach out to and listen to all students in their class (even though most of the time this includes 25+ kids), and the list goes on and on.  I am no different.  Yes the subject I teach may be formerly "non-tested" according to the state but what I do in my Media Center impacts their success in many facets of what my students do in the classroom, from formal assessments to researching skills to technology skills.  I must be successful in instilling the needed research and tech skills in my students so that they will use these skills when they are in the depths of our information driven society.  No one else will teach them how to filter through the information, how to remain safe when online, how to be a good digital citizen, how to cite information.  These are just a few of the skills they must learn how to handle in today's world.  Many teachers and parents do not fully understand all of these concepts today but they are my speciality!  I must create citizens who feel obligated to spread the word of these things so that others will learn from them.  I can't teach the world but on any given day I can teach 125 students who can reach the world one person at a time.  
Students enjoying CENTER time in the Media Center.

Students learning KEYBOARDING SKILLS in the Media Center.

We had a great year of author visits.  We welcomed Patricia Polacco, Sarah Mlynsowki, and various others.  Pictured is Diana Perry, author and scientist.

Numerous guest speakers to discuss careers and Genius Hour project passions.

Dress like your favorite character day.

Maker-Spacer in the making.  He created a robot for his passion project.

Oh' The Places You'll Go- Right to Read Week 2015

We celebrated Right to Read Week the week of May 18-22.  I partnered with our school counselor to create a week of career related activities that were tied to reading.  We began each day with trivia questions that centered around professional careers.  There was one winner from grades K-3 and one from 4-6.  An example of the questions that we asked was "What do you call someone who checks you out at a grocery store?" we also had a Stop, Drop, and Read Day.        

We had a display of staff pictures and some of their favorite books to welcome students as they came in the front door.  These are always fun for the kids to see.



One of my favorite days was Wednesday when we encouraged grades PK-3 to dress like their favorite book character and grades 4-6 were asked to wear their favorite college attire.

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On Thursday we had the author, Diana Perry, come in and speak to the kids about weather and writing a book. She has written and published the book The Weather by Heather. The kids were very engaged with her presentation.

To kick-off the week and complete the week we had guest speakers come in and discuss their careers with various grade levels and read a book to the students.  It was very interesting for the kids to hear how different professions work and how reading is VITAL to success in the professional world.  Here are pics from the speakers who volunteered their time.  Thanks to all of them for volunteering their time.  We loved it.  
Mrs. Buelsing discusses Occupational Therapy with 1st and 3rd graders.

Mrs. Zucker discusses being a  Marketing Director with 6th graders.

Mrs. Thomas discusses being a Developmental Editor with 2nd graders.

Ms. Gardner discusses being a Child Psychologist with 5th graders.

Mrs. Hooper discusses being a Mom and a Homemaker with 4th graders.

Mrs. Wiesman discusses being a Event Planner at the Cincinnati Zoo.

Mrs. Miller discusses being a Communications and Administrative Consultant with 4th graders.  

Mr. Zugelter discusses being a Video Producer/Director with 5th graders and enjoys reading to them with his 2nd grade daughter on his knee.

Doctor Hooper discusses being a Pediatric Nephrologist with 6th graders.

Mr. Conley discusses being a Firefighter with 2nd graders.

Officer Goettke discusses being a Police Officer with 3rd graders.