In 5 years, I have taught 13 entirely different classes, mainly in English and Social Science. I guess you could say I have mastered the art of creating good lessons efficiently! My favorite class to teach is AP US History due to the challenge of it, and secondly my technology class which is a blend of video production, graphic design, game design, networking, and computer science. I specialized in English during my first several years on the job.
I believe that student engagement is imperative for any lesson to be successful. If possible, I want the lessons to be collaborative, and I want students to think critically and reason effectively. My best lessons all incorporate some element of the "real-world" or gamification and simulation. I love to use technology, but I don't use it for its own sake, but rather, when it adds to the lesson in a meaningful way. In every class I strive to make the students creators and thinkers, and in each of my courses, I differentiate the levels and the activities as much as possible. For example: -In English, students participate in a fake investigation, where I give them ample documentary evidence to pour over and reconcile to solve the case and figure out who committed the crime. -In Economics, we do a venture capitalism simulation wherein we recreate the "Shark Tank" television show, and we hear pitches from students looking to expand their businesses. I train them how to negotiate and valuate a company properly and the business model they have. -In Government, I wrote a mock trial, where I teach them about the differences between civil and criminal codes, the rules of evidence, and more. -In Media and Technology, my students make videos for campus projects, they build their own websites and make digital portfolios, and they teach lessons on subjects of their choosing, such as coding, soldering, network errors, installing components, and photography. In all of the above lessons and many just like them, I start with something very engaging and interesting, I "sell" them on the utility of what they are learning, and I make them work together with others to solve complex problems and create something meaningful in the end. It is hard work and I don't really sleep anymore, but my kids regularly go above and beyond what is reasonable to expect, largely because they get excited about what we are doing.
TCACSA "Teachers Who Make a Difference" Award Winner, 2014
BA, CSU Stanislaus (2009) In Progress, MA in Educational Technology and Curriculum Design
-Former business owner -Credentialed in English, Social Science, and Business -Regularly lead Staff Development and Teacher Training involving technology and curriculum development -Created an innovative elective course that blends multimedia and computer science -Basketball coach for 10 years
English Language Arts, Balanced Literacy, Writing-Expository, Reading, Specialty, Science, Social Studies - History, Civics, Government, U.S. History, Career and Technical Education, Critical Thinking, Literature, Economics , Writing, Writing-Essays, Informational Text, Close Reading