This image shows exactly how I am feeling in so many ways. I hope this post helps you think about things and may be possibly willing to help answer some of my questions. Here are many of the things I have been considering for almost the last year:
1. How do I find balance between enhancing my professional PLN and enhancing the life I have away from electronics? I have constantly struggled with this. Some people, I think, see the world of electronic connection to be their life. While I want to learn from people online to improve my professional life, I also know I have not spent enough time with the ones close to me offline and this has not been good. So, if you're reading this, I would really like tips on how to strike the balance. Thank you in advance.
2. Working on ways to enhance my flipped classroom experience. I am entering year five of flipping my classroom and I know there are many areas for change. One area I am going to attempt to implement this year is to, I believe, attempt to really do flipped mastery. I am going to attempt to do this in a couple of ways. The first way is I am going to attempt to make my flipped classroom more like a standards based grading classroom. What I am going to do is to continue with the google forms for formative assessments. To show mastery I am going to require students score 80% on all google formative assessments before they can take the chapter test. Also, with each assessment I am going to change how I have the students do a summary and ask questions from the video using a great piece of technology I discovered this summer: flipgrid! If you have not used it yet and are a teacher, I really encourage you to visit: http://www.flipgrid.com or search for #flipgridfever on twitter and see what this tool can do. I really want to use this more and am just scratching the surface of what it can do.
3. Flipgrid is mainly used on handheld devices and I really want to have the students use handheld devices in many ways in my classes. In my physical science classes I am going to use the camera and possibly flipgrid for data sharing. In my astronomy class I want to have them really use flipgrid and use the phone for constellation and moon trackers for some projects. In my physics classes I want my students to use as many of the features as possible to gather data. I am going to try to use the Physics Toolbox Suite in many labs to collect data and possibly use flipgrid for data analysis. I will also use google forms and a lab template one of my PLCs is working to make. I hope this will all help the students express their understanding and show the students that their electronic devices can be used for educational purposes and not just for entertainment.
4. I have often struggled with the question "what do you like to do for fun?" I have been trying to determine this for a few years. During the school year between teaching my classes and coaching my activities it seems like I don't have time for real enjoying things to do because I typically do "school stuff" from 6:30 am until 6:00 pm Monday through Saturday. Sunday has turned into a recovery day. I'm trying to find ways to decrease the time I spend on my profession, but that leads to guilt about not doing enough to help the kids. I enjoy running, but it's not a constant thing. I have spent so much time devoted to my teaching career that I've kind of lost sight of who I am and what I want to do. I have been spending more time with my wife and doing many things we enjoy, but I'm still looking for that one thing.
I'm hoping to use this blog more often this school year, but I can't promise it. I hope that if you read this you try flipgrid and may be able to offer your thoughts about my blog. Thanks for reading.