Boy, have I missed this face!
I spent the last 2 days (Monday and Tuesday) at a teaching conference down at Tan Tar A resort (which is located at the Lake of the Ozarks in mid-Missouri, for all my out-of-state readers). This is the longest I have ever been away from MacKenna – EVER. I missed her (and Matt too) a ton and it took everything I had to not just call my principal up and tell her I wasn’t going anymore. But, I’m happy to say I went and survived the 48 hours without my baby girl.
Not only did I survive, but I actually had a really great time. I attended the Powerful Learning Conference and came back fired up to start practicing some of the things I learned at the conference. Most of the sessions I attended were on student engagement (create engaging lessons was about all I got out of that one – they didn’t really give me the tools as to HOW I should go about doing that), standards based grading (which was super awesome and made so much more sense to me now), and data, data, data (so very boring but so very valuable).
Conferences certainly light a fire under me to be better. To make my lessons better. To make my students more interested in what I’m doing. How can I make them learn better? What will make this more interesting for them? What can I change with what I’m doing now to increase my student’s performance? I know, I know – P.E. isn’t the first thing that comes to mind with all that stuff. But, regardless, my class is still important and my students still have to LEARN.
I think I’m most excited about the standards based grading. Two of the sessions I attended Monday talked about that and it finally just clicked with me. One session even gave us examples of how they grade their tests so it is still about the students actually learning the standards and not just about the letter grade they are getting. And for them, it’s working. It really is how we should be teaching and grading students – if they actually are learning the objectives and not just getting a grade on a test. Can’t wait to start trying to implement some of those concepts, even if I’m not totally grading by standards.
Anyway, I don’t want to bore you to death with teacher stuff. Just wanting to stop in and let you know what I’ve been up to. I’m going to stay busy writing more sub plans (seriously, more work than actual lesson planning) as I am going to be gone again on Friday for MacKenna’s surgery. We’re nervous but looking forward to it. She had her 15 month check-up yesterday and we were told she is a happy, healthy baby! Can’t wait until she’s totally healthy again!
Don’t forget to enter my “No Fibber” Bib Stickers giveaway! There are also so really great ideas in the comments section on how to store and keepsake race bibs! Bib Stickers is also going to be launching a product in April to help organize your race bibs!
Do you attend professional development conferences for your job? Do you come back fired up to start changing and becoming better at what you’re doing?