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December 29, 2012

Technology, Organization, and Professional Development

I'm linking up with a bunch of bloggers to share my resolutions for this coming year.  I'm late to the party though... so I'm catching up!  Click the below links to head to the different link up spots.


Technology hasn't always been my friend.  I still wouldn't consider myself an expert, but I do feel more comfortable about it.  I'm not the person that my parents call when they need help with their TV/Computers/VCR etc.  In the classroom though I do feel right at home.

Here is my list of favorite techy things in my classroom:
I know I've mentioned some of these things in past posts, so if you are interested in them and want to know more about them, just let me know!
Lumens DC 211 document camera 
Ladibug Document Camera - My school purchased these for all the classrooms 2 years ago.
Now!Board - My students raised money last year to purchase this for the classroom.  It gave me an instant "smart" board.
Kindle Fire - My students raised enough money last year for one of these, and I had enough Amazon gift certificates for another one.  Instant extra internet access to take AR tests and work on IXL Math skills.
<br><i>Ideal for simple activity instructions, daily reminders, word or sound practice and more!</i><br><br>
Talk Buttons - I bought my class a set of these - they are used to record short messages (like directions/reminders).
Easi-speak Recorder - I bought this for my classroom using EIA money last year.  Actually I bought 2 of them.  I use them to record my students during fluency testing (and can download it into my computer for comparisons throughout the year).  The other one gets passed around between students during silent reading for them to read into when I'm not right there to listen to them.
Mp3 players for my classroom - I have 4 of them and when using a splitter I can have 8 kids listening to a book.  I downloaded our weekly stories onto the computer and they listen to them for review. 

So what do I want to work on?  
I'm at the point that I feel I have so much technology going on, maybe it's a case of too much too soon... but this year I really need to figure out a plan on using the equipment more effectively.  There are some things that I remember on a daily basis, but others that I forget about... I want to use what I have better.

Here what's working for Organization:

I have an entire page on the blog about organizing the chaos in my classroom. I guess I need to update it though... wasn't updated since this past summer.  Maybe I need to work on organization...

Here's my resolutions:
*Update the blog to better be able to find information (for me and for you)
*Organize the files on my computer.  Since starting the TPT store and buying a bunch of stuff recently at TPT, I have so many files in random places on the desktop.
*Enable my own children with responsibility of cleaning up.  I need to accept they are growing up and are able to clean by themselves (rather than me doing it MY way only).

Professional Development:

Did you race to the top of the salary schedule too?  I did.  After student teaching 14 years ago, I took so many classes right away to climb the unit ladder.  I've been at the top for a while now, and I felt settled... then with beginning to read blogs and then starting this one, I found that maybe I was too settled.  I've learned so much this past year from the different websites, blogs, and by just looking around on Pinterest.  I know all of that has made me a better teacher.  

This next year we will finally be starting up Common Core and that alone has me on edge.  I have heard horror stories about test scores plummeting the first year with the transition, and as a planner I have wanted to be informed.  It's been hard to wait until the "professional development" catches up in my district.  I guess my resolution would be to embrace Common Core and learn as much as possible to assist my present and future students.

There are more linky parties going on about resolutions, but I'm going to wait until another day to link up... this post is already getting long!  Hope you have a good day!


  1. You will do great with common core!!! It's great once you understand how everything fits together!!! Good luck with all you'd new adventures!

  2. Found your blog through the linky! You have lots of great goals. I love all your techie stuff. I'm going to a technology conference in January and I hope to learn lots of new ideas for the classroom. I'm with you on the CCSS stuff!
    Beach Sand and Lesson Plans

  3. I have featured you in my newest blog post. Happy New Year!
    A Year of Accomplishments and Milestones


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