Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Teacher's Weekly

February 2009

"What I Hope to Bring to the Classroom"

Jennifer Short

For as long as I can remember, I have been attracted to teaching. I enjoy
learning and I enjoy spreading information that I have learned to
others. For the past five years I have been teaching ski and
snowboarding to all ages. For the past 3 years, I have been working
intently with a ski and snowboarding program that caters to those
individuals with disabilities. I understand that teaching on the snow
is quite different than teaching in a classroom, but through my
experience I have learned a great deal, some of which I will carry into
my own classroom.

I am going into teaching because I think that everyone deserves to have a
great teacher. I remember my own grade school teachers, the good and
the bad alike. I also remember what wonderful impressions that the good
teachers left on me and how they furthered and influenced my everyday
life. I can only hope that I have that influence on a life.

In my classroom, I hope to create a warm and welcoming environment, one of
learning and one of acceptance. In today’s society, the norms are
praised and the seemingly “different” are looked down upon.
Furthermore, people are generally “afraid” or “unsure” about the
unknown. We cannot get around the fact that the disabilities are
noticed by onlookers, but as special education teachers, I believe that
it is our duty to educate the onlooker about what the disability is. With this information of the unknown we can strive towards further classroom acceptance.

Jenny Short

Life Long Dream
By Courtney Moore

When I get into a classroom, I think I will be more hands off. I will lecture a little bit but I would hope that most of my class will be a discussion. I want my students to be running the discussion with me just guiding it. By the eleventh grade students know how they learn best and what they need to do to get the important information into their minds. By this time, students are mature enough to have mature conversations inside a classroom without embarrassing other students for not knowing the answers or asking "stupid questions". Also the students are mature enough to be held accountable for the work they were assigned. I will hold my students accountable but also not assign busy work. I want them to understand the fundamentals of the class as well as the United States and I want them to be excited about it as well.

I have experienced fear of becoming a teacher but never doubt. When I was in Kindergarten, each day Mrs. Wilson would choose a student and would ask them the same questions: Your name, your birthday, if you have any pets and/or siblings, and what you want to be when you grow up. She would write all the answers down on a giant lined piece of poster board. My answer to the last question was that I wanted to be a teacher and a mom. That feeling and want has never gone away. I fear that I chose to be a teacher very young and have never changed my mind because this is all I know. School is all I know and where I am comfortable. I know many of my friends aspire to be doctors, lawyers, business men and women, but how do they know they are comfortable there when they have not been in a hospital situation, or a court room, or an office situation? I am comfortable in a classroom and I can't wait to run my own! If you would like to know more about me please visit my blog !

Contact information
Courtney Moore

"Teaching to the Less Advantaged"
Jennifer short

After I graduate, my hope is to teach mild-moderate special education
students. I have always been interested in the way that the brain works
and develops, (many times differently for different people). Growing
up, I was constantly around groups of people with special needs. My
aunt and uncle ran a "camp" that allowed these people to go out into
society and do things that they normally wouldn’t have the
opportunities to do. Events such as skiing, mountain climbing, nature
walks and body boarding were some of which were included in these
activities. In addition to this, my father taught a special education
Sunday school class and I taught an adaptive snowboarding and ski class
for individuals with special needs for several years.

I hope to bring my experience to the classroom in a positive way. It is
common knowledge that in the special education department, there is a
shortage of teachers. Many of these students need personalized and
direct attention, and many are not getting it. Many of the special
needs children are being made to sit-in on regular classrooms because
of this shortage. Although integration (to a certain extent) is a
healthy way of helping these specific children learn, some are not
ready to be put into the regular class room and some feel threatened.
If records show that they are ready to move on to a regular classroom, or if they feel comfortable and confident in doing so, than by all means, they should have the
opportunity to do so. It is my hope to provide these students that
don’t feel comfortable in a regular learning environment with the
one-on-one attention that they need and deserve.

California Special Education Laws

Califonia Department of Education: Special Education Standards

Special Education Lesson Plans

United States History in the Classroom
By Courtney Moore

My area of interest is United States History. The most interesting area of history for me is the time period of our founding fathers and the establishment of our country as well as the United States involvement in World War II and the Cold War. Currently, the Cold War is my major interest. I also enjoying learning about Presidents and each of their efforts to make America the super power and the country they want it to become. Each president has something that they hid from the public, some more than others. This makes politics as fun and interesting as it is. We never know the whole truth. I love to read and learn about the creation of our country. I also love learning about different religions. There are so many religions and versions of religions in the world that the learning never ends!
As far as teaching history, I want to teach United States History.
I cannot wait to share my passion with students. Currently, US History is taught at the eleventh grade level, please see the
California Standards for Social Sciences for additional information.
Eleventh grade US History is the last effort to establish some sort of
political knowledge and stance in students that will be voting within
the next year. As the saying always goes, we need to learn history to
learn from our mistakes and to not repeat them. The new generation of
voters needs to at least have the basic knowledge of the past so that
we don't repeat the mistakes previous generations have made.

Library of Congress
CNN Archives
Take a History Quiz!

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