My district mandated that we go to a workshop delivery model in 7th grade math for the coming school year. I'm completely on board with it because it was something I was trying to figure out how to implement in my classroom three years ago. At the time there were no resources on how to do this in a middle school classroom. This past summer I did a book study on the book Minds on Mathematics by Wendy Ward Hoffer. Click to the link to see all the wonderful posts linked by other bloggers. If you are curious about workshop for grades 4-9 that would be the place to start. I also started a weekly twitter chat #mindsonmath Tues 7-8 PM CST, where we talk about implementing math workshop into our classrooms. I am looking forward to chatting once school starts and we are actually workshopping instead of just researching the concept. Please feel free to chat with us and find out more at Minds on Mathematics Workshop.
The main focus of all our district PD this school year will be to create Standards Based assessments. I have made that my second goal because it will be a big focus of mine this year. We have been implementing many of the principles of SBG already into our classrooms like retakes and no zeroes. I think SBG will work really well in math and am looking forward to the direction we are heading.
My third goal will be to continue to grow my PLN. The people I have "met" through my PLN have made me a much better teacher. There are so many amazing ideas being shared online and it opens you up to a whole world of collaboration that was never possible before. I want to continue to participate in twitter chats that help me grow as an educator. I also want to attend TMC14 next summer. It would be the ultimate PD for sure.
Personally I need to continue to find balance between my career and my family life. My oldest son is a freshman and will only be around for four more years before heading off to college. I have always been aware of how fast my boys are growing up and try to cherish the time I have with them (even when they are driving me crazy). I want to make sure that my boys realize that being a mom is my number one job and teaching is number two. Unfortunately with everything going on in education today it's really hard to find the balance. I know my younger two like to find me home when they get off the bus, so I will try to not stay late at school more than twice a week. I tend to stay late on Fridays to get myself set for the next week and I feel less guilty doing that because I know we have the whole weekend together.
I need to have more patience and tolerance with at home. I feel that some days I use up all my patience at school. Some days I go home completely exhausted. People who don't teach just don't seem to get that. I need to find ways to recharge myself so I have something left over for my own family. They are my priority and I need to start living that way. I also want to have fun with them.
I feel that healthy eating and being active will help with my patience at the end of the day. Teaching is a very stressful career even when everything is going well. Being healthy physically will assure that I am happy mentally and not stressed out.
What are your goals for 2013-2014? Whatever they are I hope you have your best school year ever!