Google Drawings In the Classroom!

We know this is true. As adults and as educators, we are continuously taping into our creative senses every single day to bring forth the very best learning opportunities for our learners. Just look into any classroom in America. You have teachers who spend their weekend's planning, creating, and searching for the perfect week of activities and learning experiences that will help enrich their students as they learn the content. However, we are always faced with some interesting challenges that sometimes, scare us from changing our role with teacher-centered classrooms towards a more modern student-centered one. 

One of the largest factors for me was, "not every student is creative." I never considered myself to be a creative person until last year. Whenever I was asked to create something I would moan and groan with complaints. I despised being asked to create. Say what? I was an educator but I was afraid of stepping out of my comfort zone? How could I possibly ask my stu…

Observe ME!

A few weeks ago, I decided to implement the Observe Me Challenge at my school in Frankfort, KY. If you are unfamiliar with the Observe Me Challenge, it's a way for teachers to invite colleagues into their classrooms and receive feedback. Teachers sometimes struggle with getting feedback, but that's something we have to change. Feedback can be a very positive door for changing your classroom for the better.

Allow others to come in and watch you, maybe the observer will take something back with them to implement in their own classroom, maybe they can give you some ideas on how to make your lesson even better, or maybe both!

So, with that being said, I promised the #kytechchat community a blog about my new experiences with this challenge. So far, my co-teacher (Mrs. Lyndsay Hite) and I have been the only two to implement the challenge. We have had some positive buy in with other teachers, but the observations have been slow to roll in. Mostly because we have had so many meetings …

Be a Lamp

A couple of week ago, I wrote a post about a teacher who tried to break my spirit as a learner. I know he didn't "mean" to. However, my spirit cannot be broken, by anyone. It's been tried, I have had some pretty tough situations but I always prevail and overcome those. Thankfully, I have had many positive influences in my 28 years of existence.

I got to thinking recently about how it was so unfair that I gave Mr. C his very own post but neglected to praise teachers who helped me overcome that. Before my 8th Grade encounter, I had many teachers who pushed me and helped me overcome challenges. I had educators who went above and beyond and others who were mediocre.

 After 8th Grade, educators who showed me to love and believe in myself meant more. I went to a very small high school that was nestled inside of the mountains of Eastern Kentucky. I played every sport they had to offer because if you went to school there and you had just a hint of athleticism, they needed y…


I know a lot of people in the field of education that roll their eyes at me whenever I talk about smiling at my students or making education as fun as possible. I get it, I totally do. I used to be the same way, I started my career with the "don't smile until Christmas" mantra. It may have helped some with my management, but my students were completely disengaged. They weren't learning the content I was putting out there because I didn't establish a good rapport with them.

I was going in everyday, lecturing about mitosis, symbiosis, and equations (I think it's important to say these were different classes... not all rolled into one class but wouldn't that be fun?) I would give the students their worksheets and homework and then I'd be finished. My soul felt empty. Did I really spend thousands of dollars on an education degree that made me feel this exhausted? Nope.

So, I started doing my own research. How could I be different? How could I set up a lea…

Why Be Passionate?

It never fails. Year after year, I have someone ask, "Why do you work so hard?" Is it really hard work if you enjoy it? Is it really hard work if it's just your passion driving you to give it your all everyday? Maybe for some. For me, it isn't work because I go into every school day with an outlook of, "How can I change a student's life today?" Now, don't get me wrong, I know that a majority of the students I teach will not remember every single concept I teach everyday. I really wish they could. However, in my classroom, I teach more than science skills. Everyday, while teaching science skills, I am also tying
in life skills and lessons.

I want to share with you all in this post a story from a long time ago. The year was 2003, it was the year for me to graduate 8th grade (yes we had a graduation, I know that's weird for some districts but my elementary was K-8). We had a new math teacher that year, for the sake of his privacy I'm just goin…

Ditch That Textbook

I must admit,  I have acquired a new hobby in sketchnoting. I went to a session at ISTE 2017 hosted by Wanda Terral, where she demonstrated how to sketchnote. Now, I haven't ever been a super creative person when it comes to drawing. I always wanted to be creative in that way, but I just didn't have it. I used to say that I wasn't creative at all, but James Sturtevant (author of Hacking Engagement book and podcast) has changed my mind on that. We're all creative in different ways, we just have to find our way to tap into it. 
Anywho, I have recently been reading a book called, "Ditch That Textbook" by Matt Miller. If you are unfamiliar with him, I highly suggest that you check out his blog and his weekly podcast that he hosts with Kasey Bell. This book has been on my radar for quite sometime now. However, I thought the book would just be about teaching without a textbook (which I already do). I was wrong. Miller is able to tap into ways to help keep students…

Game Based Learning