Somedays I’m good, others, not so much

29 Sep

Good teachers plan ahead. So, like a good teacher, I previewed the slide deck we’d been sent for our daily 20 minute Advisory class. Wednesday’s lesson included two short videos about mindfulness. I looked at the clock and thought It’s close, but I have time to preview bits of each before class begins.

And thank goodness I did. In the second video, a cartoon character says “I’m pissed”. Now, many people might not be troubled by that phrase. I admit, I have used naughtier language than that. But there was no way in heck, I was showing that video to my sixth graders. I didn’t want the parent fallout. A quick search – following a “heads up” email to my 6th grade colleagues – found an equally effective video without questionable language.

Good teachers pivot. Quite frankly, I am tired of hearing that despite the truth of it. In the olden days we said “monitor and adjust”. So, like a good teacher, as I was presenting my lesson on Friday, I made a quick decision to model using the iPad I had not yet set up. I was feeling really good about online teacher after a successful first week and wanted to stretch myself.

In no time, I was good to go. Except that may writing was backwards. Kids offered suggestions. I went back to my chart paper. I pivoted a lot. It wasn’t comfortable. I chart papered my way through the next two classes, all the while wondering what I had done wrong. As kids worked, I sneakily Googled a solution to my problem. None was to be found.

After my last class, I realized my error, and, simply turned the iPad over. Voilà! My iPad now functioned as a document camera. Today, I will use it, but I will be sure to have a test run before my first class begins.

6 Responses to “Somedays I’m good, others, not so much”

  1. Morna S Gersho September 29, 2020 at 7:02 am #

    You’re a better teacher than I and WAY more patient. I am walking on the moon, as well. I am grateful to squeeze in a test run here and there but often teaching w/o one. Good-luck!

  2. arjeha September 29, 2020 at 8:47 am #

    After reading your post it just makes me all the more happier that I am retired. So many things going on now that none of my college classes prepared me for. I applaud your patience and sense of humor.

  3. jumpofffindwings September 29, 2020 at 3:37 pm #

    Oh my gosh, I want to use my iPad as a whiteboard and document camera. I’m sure you could give a tutorial now. How about a Zoom? (I am kidding of course. Zoom is so far from a novelty now, it’s sad.) Kids have got a winner in you, and frankly, I think they are fine with watching us pivot!

  4. Lisa Corbett September 29, 2020 at 4:26 pm #

    Did you teach with a lot of tech before? I am noticing that those who did are finding the online teaching less challenging, but still a challenge.

    • Adrienne September 29, 2020 at 4:34 pm #

      I wasn’t super techie but I did okay.

  5. haitiruth October 1, 2020 at 5:43 am #

    There are so many challenges these days. Sounds as though you’re handling them like a champ! Ruth,

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