Saturday, October 14, 2017

Get Your Teach On Conference!!

Wow!  I took a long hiatus from blogging because I was overwhelmed with all of the writing for my MAE. Now that I am FINALLY FINISHED, I have so much to write about! This week, I have to write all about Get Your Teach On.

If you haven't heard of this conference...LOOK. IT. UP! I have never been to a conference that was so engaging and inspiring. I got to go with one of my teacher besties in Chicago earlier this week and when we were walking out I was feeling so sad that it was time to leave. I literally thought to myself, Do I tell Shelby how I'm feeling or will she laugh at me? I decided to tell her and she immediately responded, "Oh my gosh! Me too!"

This conference was started by Deanna Jump and Hope King and featured such great speakers! There were great sessions on everything from math and language arts, to STEM and games in the classroom and even inspiration on why we do what we do as teachers. I obviously don't want to give much away, but just trust me when I tell you it is worth it. I'm already trying to figure out how I can go to the national conference next summer!

On our way home, Shelby and I spent our drive talking about all of the things we want to change in our classrooms. I should say, all of the things we want to improve in our classrooms. We had so many great ideas, but we really wanted to come up with something that was a little more unique to us and our students.

Finally it hit us, our kids LOVE YouTube and a bunch of them want to be YouTube stars when they grow up. So, obviously, we started a YouTube channel for them. We sat in the car the night after the conference and recorded our first video for our students. Then, we made a channel and uploaded it to show them the next day. Of course, this video wasn't the best quality, but our kids were so excited to see us on there and hear about why we missed a day of school.

We promised the kids that we would post a video every Tuesday (my classroom has YouTube Tuesday where we watch funny videos for a brain break). In order to make this achievable and less stressful on us, we made a Google Doc to share ideas that we think of for videos and we took some suggestions from students for what they want to see.

I do NOT want to lose this "teacher high" that I am on from the conference, so I am starting out everyday making sure that I have a positive thought in my mind and am focused on being there for the students and letting the students see my excitement in the classroom.

My best advice for you is to look at ideas from other teachers, but be ready to fight that comparison you will make. Instead, look at your kids in your room and find a way to incorporate things they love to increase their engagement. As they said repeatedly at the Get Your Teach On Conference, we want students to WANT to come to school, not just go because they HAVE to.


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