What kind of teacher am I?

What-Kind-of-Teacher-Are-You-1hb4sb6-200x300 Wow. This set set of sentence starters by Laura over at PBL in the TL really has me thinking. Do I know what kind of teacher I am? Is this how others would describe me? Do I come across the way that I think I do?

Regardless, here I am, describing what kind of teacher I am.

1. I am a good teacher because I have a commitment to learning. Not just students’ learning, which is important, but I commit to my own learning. As part of my teaching philosophy that I wrote as a pre-service teacher, I have committed to never becoming “stale” and to continuously adapt and learn about the current theory and methodology in my field.

2. If I weren’t a teacher, I would be a stay-at-home (future) mom. I do not (yet) have children, but if I couldn’t teach students, I would teach my own children. I know the two are worlds away, but if it was feasible financially, I would love to spend my time training my children “in the way that they should go.”

3. My teaching style is easygoing and fun. I should probably be a little stricter about some things, but I’ve also been known to mock cry because my students didn’t say bonjour to me at the beginning of class. It keeps things interesting.

4. My classroom is functional and cute. I have my desks set up in pods, a chalkboard that I can’t stand, and adorable decorations because I spend so much time there. If I don’t like to look at it, how could students?

5. My lesson plans are old school. And by that, I mean I do them pencil and paper, in a lesson planner that I made myself. I don’t get nearly as much out of typing them; I tried Evernote for awhile, but prefer writing them out by hand.

6. One of my teaching goals is to incorporate more target language use in the classroom, especially with novices. This includes knowing without a doubt what novice learners (and all levels) can do and how to help them get there.

7. The toughest part of teaching is that it never ends. I leave school and tweak lessons. I spend my weekends planning and grading papers. New ideas pop into my head while I’m at the grocery store. My spring break will be dedicated to rewriting curriculum. When I close my eyes, I sometimes dream about teaching. I love it, don’t get me wrong, but when is the last day that you spent without thinking of teaching at all? I certainly can’t remember.

8. The thing I love most about teaching is my students. I love seeing them grow, learn, having fun with them in the classroom, and sharing my passion for everything French with them.

9. A common misconception about teaching is that it’s easy; just make a powerpoint and you’ll be fine. I don’t think people realize how much work goes into a lesson.

10. The most important thing I’ve learned since I started teaching is that students love teachers who loved them first. Your attitude is everything, and students can tell when you’re happy, sad, tired, upset, cranky, and the like. Don’t take it out on them, even if they’re the cause; you’ll damage your relationship with them, sometimes irreparably.

What about you? What kind of teacher are you? Laura’s inviting anyone and everyone to create their own post, or comment on her post. Take the challenge – it’s tougher than you think!


My first EdPuzzle!

Man, this week has been rough. But my PLN always here to bring my back up, whether it’s sharing resources, sending words of encouragement, or tweeting me flowers. I couldn’t be more thankful.

That said, I created my first EdPuzzle this week. EdPuzzle is a website that allows teachers to upload a video, clip it (if necessary), add audio commentary, and give pop up questions along the way. Then, students can watch that video, interact with your questions, play a section again if they missed it, and the teacher can see the results. This site is similar to EduCanon, but since I don’t have EduCanon premium, I enjoy EDPuzzle. Very user friendly for me, and my student could really use the listening practice – at their own pace!

What I really like is that once students have completed the video, you, as the teacher, can see individual progress, including how many times the student watched part of the clip! I think that is genius! You can also view the video as a student to make sure that your kinks are all worked out.

A screenshot of what a teacher can view on EdPuzzle - this assignment hasn't been completed.
A screenshot of what a teacher can view on EdPuzzle – this assignment hasn’t been completed. (click for full screen)

Unfortunately, EdPuzzle didn’t work on my school’s computers, and while I was prepared with EduCanon for backup, most students couldn’t change the volume or play the video via EduCanon. Man, technology is a fickle beast, and I was really discouraged by it.

Anyway, I thought that I’d share the video I made anyway. My French III students are beginning a unit on vacation, and Kirsten D. from twitter (@cardinalfrench) suggested this video. I didn’t even need to crop, I just added my questions, and voilà, complete!

Here’s the video. What do you think of EdPuzzle? Would you change any of my questions?