Creating a dialogue about what it’s like to be a new teacher.

The Rookie Teacher



Teaching a Combination Class: The Lounge: Episode 12 0

Posted on May 07, 2013 by Natasha

On today’s show, Andrew and Natasha join up for the long awaited return of The Lounge Podcast.  It has been a while, but as many of you know, life as a teacher is hard work…and can be quite busy too!  This episode features conversations about life as a combination/split grade teacher.  Listen in to hear about tips, tricks, must-do activities, and more!  Read the show notes below and don’t forget to download & subscribe to the podcast on iTunes today!

Photo via: Sanya Khetani, articles.businessinsider.com

SHOW NOTES
Each episode features three segments:

  1. Topic Discussion
  2. Quick Tip for Tomorrow
  3. The Rookie Resource Bank

Topic: Teaching a Combination Class

Quick Tip for Tomorrow:
Something you could do the next day in class with little or no prep and is applicable to most grade levels.

  • Andrew: Inside/Outside Circles or Concentric Circles
  • Natasha: Food Bin

The Rookie Resource Bank:
Any electronic, print, or event resource that we found helpful in our first few years of teaching.  Of course, these are all applicable to all teachers.

  • Andrew: Ontario Curriculum Unit Planners (link)
  • Natasha: Knowing What Counts Series (Anne Davies)

Quick Shout Outs

  1. We want to take a moment and thank everyone for continuing to support our site – we have reached over 10,000 visitors. Thank you !
  2. We hope you continue to watch for Natasha who is co-moderating the #ntchat with Lisa Dabbs – on Wednesday nights at 8:00pm EST
  3. Please join us and 248 others on Facebook.com/TheRookieTeacher
  4. We are also spending time gathering some great ideas for the classroom on Pinterest (http://bit.ly/rookiepins) – we are up to 2742 followers on our collab board – let us know if you’d like to contribute.
  5. If you believe in what we’re doing & want to support our team, we have buttons available – send us a FB message, tweet, or email and we will get one out to you ASAP!
  6. Watch for our Lounge Express Series – starting soon!

Like what you’ve heard? Have more questions? Contact us:

Andrew: I blog at TheRookieTeacher.ca, or email me Andrew@TheRookieTeacher.ca, I am currently focusing on pinterest as my social media project

Natasha: I blog at TheRookieTeacher.ca, follow me on twitter @yoMsDunn, or email me Natasha@TheRookieTeacher.ca

RookieTeacher Online
We are always looking for ideas, feedback, tips and tricks of the trade.  Find us on Twitter @RookieTeacherCA, Facebook.com /TheRookieTeacher.  If you are looking to get involved with our team, please contact us!

 

Pin It

Growing & Supporting PLNs 0

Posted on April 18, 2013 by Natasha

**note: this is based on US research**

Recently, I was contacted by Erika Phyall, a member of community relations at USC, who was able to pass along some great research and fantastic #infographic called How to Save Our Educators: The Teacher Turnover Problem.  Here’s what she had to say:

We offer teachers and aspiring educators the opportunity to earn an online Master’s degree in Teaching or Education. My team and I recently launched an infographic, How To Save Our Educators, which gives an overview of the teacher attrition rate problem and possible solutions that can be explored. We understand that having great teachers in the classroom is as much about retaining them as it is about hiring and training them.

What I particularly liked about this was:

1) It was an infographic! [I really need to get the kids making these - what an informative and visually appealing way to share research!]
2) It provides teachers with *solutions* – something that is often missed in research.

Besides the obvious solution….funding…collaboration, mentoring, and professional development are all viable solutions on this list.  If you’re reading this blog, you’re already participating in all three!  The Rookie Team is always here for you.  We will try our best to answer your questions or connect you with the right folks to help.  I also encourage you to continue building your PLN.  It’s so easy to do online (Pinterest, TeachersPayTeachers, Facebook, and more!) Above all, I would recommend checking out the New Teacher Chat (#ntchat) that happens every Wednesday night between 8:00-9:00pm EST.  You can follow this chat two ways: (1) join twitter and the discussion by following the hashtag #ntchat, (2) point your browser to Twitter Chat’s #ntchat feed and read along (this option restricts you from commenting live).

If you would like to get in touch with Erika – visit her blog post and watch for her on #edchat on Twitter.

Natasha Dunn, OCT [@yoMsDunn]
The Rookie Teacher, co-founder 

Special thanks to our friend & mentor Lisa Dabbs for connecting Erika with the Rookie Team.

via: http://rossieronline.usc.edu/how-to-save-our-educators-infographic

via: http://rossieronline.usc.edu/how-to-save-our-educators-infographic

Pin It

From all of us on The Rookie Teacher Team 0

Posted on December 23, 2012 by Natasha

We Wish You A Very Happy Holidays!

Scout and Lucy by the Tree

Happy Holidays from Scout & Lucy

We would like to take this time to wish everyone a safe and happy holiday season.  For some this is known as ‘the most wonderful time of the year.’  Last week on #ntchat with Lisa Dabbs (@teachingwthsoul), we spoke about what it meant to be #grateful at this time of year (archives).  The Rookie Team would like to take this time to thank everyone for reading the blog, listening to The Lounge Podcast, joining the discussion on Twitter & Facebook, and Following our Pins on Pinterest.

Our readers have made 2012 a great year!

Thank you, we are humbled and grateful for your support.

We couldn’t leave you without some food for thought over the break…here are  3 Quick Tips for rookies and veteran teachers alike:

  1. Rest up & Rejuvenate: you don’t have to pay big money to rest & relax…have a nap, find a good book, sleep in, spend time with family and friends, have another nap, catch up over a beverage or two, sleep, nap, sleep, and nap
  2. Read a book for PD: as Rookies, it’s tough to catch a break, we are always so eager to continue learning and developing our strategies and classroom routines – if you must think about work over the break – grab an EDU, children’s, or young adult book (we recommend: Words That Start With B by Vikki VanSickle, Smile by Raina Telgemeier, Divergent Series by Veronica Roth, Teach Like Your Hair’s On Fire by Rafe Esquith, Tribes by Seth Godin, The Book Whisperer by Donalyn Miller, Guiding Readers: Making the Most of the 18-minutes Guided Reading Lesson by Lori Jamison Rog …)
  3. Recharge: this may seem a lot like #1…but it is so critical for new teachers to keep up the energy we give off at school.  Sleep, rest, and gather new energy to make 2013 the best it can be!
Pin It

Bits From Books: A Thought Experiment 0

Posted on November 25, 2012 by Sarah

“Can a stable, fair, and peaceful world be created in practice — and in time? Can people change their thinking and behavior from today’s selfish and self-centered material-gain and power-oriented wats to cooperative and sustainable ways? The answer is yes: through conscious change by a critical mass. But can conscious change be embraced by a critical mass before current trends and problems become intractable? The answer is still yes: by accelerating the spread of the consciousness that’s already emerging at society’s creative edge. The rapid spread of an evolved consciousness is a basic precondition of moving toward and effective and timely WorldShift.”

Ervin Laszlo, WorldShift 2012, p.71

“A handbook for conscious change that could transform the current world crisis into planetary renewal.”

 

Pin It

Summer Break and Pinterest: The Lounge Podcast: Episode 8 1

Posted on July 16, 2012 by Natasha

Welcome back to The Lounge – we know it’s been a while, but that is the price we pay for being rookies.  Now that the summer is here, it will be our goal to deliver more content, including blogs, podcasts, and interactions on social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

For those of you who are reading or listening for the first time…The Lounge is a biweekly podcast brought to you by TheRookieTeacher[dot]ca.

photo: Summer with no Boundaries [Explored!], by: Brandon Christopher Warren, flicrkcc.net

Welcome to our Lounge Summer Series.  On this episode, two RookieTeachers discuss Summer Break and Pinterest.com. We wanted to take a moment to recognize the benefits or summer break and talk about the variety of things teachers (new and experienced) do over the summer months.  It was clear that many teachers rest, relax, rejuvenate, plan, organize, read, spend time with loved ones, take AQ courses, collaborate, and prepare for September.

This week we were happy to hear from our readers and followers of twitter.  We asked: “What do you do with your summer break?” Thank you to all of you who answered – listen in to hear what everyone had to say.

SHOW NOTES

Each episode features three segments:

  1. Topic Discussion
  2. Quick Tip for Tomorrow
  3. The Rookie Resource Bank

Topic: Summer Break & Pinterest.com

Quick Tip for Tomorrow: Something you could do the next day in class with little or no prep and is applicable to most grade levels.  This episode we are focusing on what we do for ourselves, how we prepare for back to school (yes, even in the second week of July).

  • Andrew: Picture note frame (via Pinterest)
  • Natasha: No Name Clips: non-verbal way to get names on those no-name papers (via Pinterest)
The Rookie Resource Bank: any electronic, print, or event resource that we found helpful in our first few years of teaching.  Of course, these are all applicable to all teachers.
Quick Shout Outs
  1. We will be working this summer to develop some content – what would you like to read about?
  2. Please join our discussions on Facebook.com/TheRookieTeacher
  3. We are also spending time gathering some great ideas for the classroom on Pinterest (http://bit.ly/rookiepins)
Rookie Teacher Online

We are always looking for ideas, feedback, tips and tricks of the trade.  Find us on Twitter @RookieTeacherCAFacebook.com /TheRookieTeacher.  If you are looking to get involved with our team, please contact us!

Thanks for listening. Join us for our Summer Podcast Series. Topics included will be: More about AQs, Classroom set up, the first day of school, Long Range/Annual Plans, Applying for Jobs, Setting up your Day Book, Developing classroom routines for your first month of school.


Pin It

What is Literacy? 1

Posted on July 09, 2012 by Andrew

I am taking the AQ Reading Part 1 over the summer and have decided to blog some of my ideas and the discussion questions being addressed in the course. Our first discussion question was:  Define literacy. Comment on how literacy has changed in the 21st Century and what we as teachers need to consider to be effective literacy instructors due to that change.

Here’s what I think…

I strongly believe that in the traditional sense, literacy can be defined within the realm of reading and writing. However, I believe in the 21st Century we must adopt a more generalized sense of the term, as the mode of literacy changes. I believe in a definition that encompasses the interpretation and creation of communication. We hear of Media Literacy, Critical Literacy, and Technological Literacy. It is the ability to absorb and internalize a message someone is creating (reading) and it is then interpreting that message and creating a response in a variety of forms (writing, oral communication, texting, slogans, etc). In that sense we see Literacy as the ability to infer and interpret images as well as text. In fact Literacy in the broadest sense could be defined as the intake of information, images, signals and then the production of more or new information to be passed on to others.

When we were sitting at my staff meeting yesterday and examining our strategic goal we spent a lot of time discussing a general goal we could apply to JKs to Grade 8s and the connection between image and text as all literacy comes from an image.

clicking away! by eirikso

Clicking away! by eirikso, flickrcc.net

One change in the mode of communication in the 21st Century is the accessibility to a variety of modes of writing.  The Internet and other technology has allowed millions of ideas to be published on a second by second basis with little to supervision or accountability. Even 30 years ago if I had an idea I wanted to write down and show other people I would have to go through the publishing process with countless edits, re-writes and the potential for rejection. In 2012, I can, in less than 10 minutes, share my ideas with the world regardless of validity, quality and restraint. I am by no means criticizing the ability for people to publish their creative, genuine ideas which are truly incredible when you think of all of the things we see on YouTube, Blogs, Facebook on a daily basis. I applaud the accessibility to publish information. However, the concern can exist that we as educators need to teach our students the ability to think critically when looking for information and asking themselves questions like who wrote this, what is their message, which voices are heard or not being heard. We have to teach on the basic level the ability to distinguish fact and opinion in order to ensure our students are able to successfully navigate the massive resources at their digital fingertips. We have to teach children to read for the deeper meaning, which is a daunting task at best.

What is your definition of Literacy?  Comment below, join the discussion on Facebook, or send us a tweet @RookieTeacherCA.

Pin It

Being a Rookie means Being Busy 1

Posted on May 03, 2012 by Natasha

3 février 1975 ...  flickr: Môsieur J. [version 7.0.1]

"3 février 1975 ..." || flickr.com: Môsieur J.

I’m going to let you in on a little secret…

When you’re a Rookie with your 1st class…you’re awfully busy!

<wait for it>

..BUT…

In my opinion – it’s a good thing.

It means you’ve done at least 3 things:

  1. You worked really hard to get a Long Term Occasional or Permanent job (university, more university, AQ courses, resume building, interview prep, volunteering, networking, etc…)
  2. You’re working really hard to engage students in rich learning tasks, foster a love of lifetime learning, build community in your classroom, motivate students to be leaders and collaborate in a variety of subject areas, and reflecting on your practices as a teacher (this lesson worked, this one could have used ____, next time I’ll probably leave out _____, etc…)
  3. You’re maintaining your reputation, building new professional learning networks, and getting involved in your school community

So, if things are a little slow around TheRookieTeacher.ca … you know why… we’re busy little beavers.

We would love to hear your stories…How do you find the new workload? How are you preparing for a new job? Let us know in the comment section below.

ps. please feel free to pass this blog post along to your friends/family members who haven’t seen you in a while (maybe they’ll better understand life as a new teacher)

<See you in The Lounge>

Pin It

What’s behind the food we eat? 2

Posted on March 08, 2012 by Sarah

Here’s an update on what we’ve been discussing in my Pedagogy of Food course at OISE. First of all, we have a severely broken food system. Do you ever think about just where did your orange come from? Was it handpicked in a developing country? Was the worker paid fairly? How old are they? Are they happy? We partook in a mindful eating experience that reflected on these questions while also slowly, mindfully experiencing one raisin at a time. This blindness is called commodity fetishism. It’s an unhealthy attention to a commodity without regarding the social relationships that brought the commodity to us. It’s a product of our economic and political systems, creating a veil so we are unable to make informed decisions as consumers. We are unaware if the

The New Fred Meyer on Interstate on Lombard by lyzadanger

photo: lyzadanger, flickrcc.net

orange was picked by a child or by a woman who was sexually harassed. These types of veils are found everywhere in systems that affect us everyday, but when a small handful of corporations control the entire food distribution of the world, it becomes quite worrisome and dangerous. A phenomenal amount of money is spent selling and buying food, eating out, transporting and storing food, yet such a public necessity stays in a fairly private light, rarely being discussed. So what can we do as educators? Help foster critical thinking! Encourage, nay, praise questions! Excite students to make a difference and challenge them to form values and stand up for what they believe in. Model what active, citizen engagement is and have conversations about food. Plus, the only way you can inform others is to inform yourself.

 

An excellent resource for more information is “The No-Nonsense Guide to World Food” by Toronto author Wayne Roberts. It’s an essential read for everyone!

Pin It

Pink Shirt Day: Anti-Bullying Awareness Campaign 0

Posted on February 29, 2012 by Natasha

PINK SHIRT DAY ORIGIN

In Nova Scotia students banned together to stop bullying.  It all began when a grade 9 boy was bullied for wearing a pink shirt to school.  Bullies used homophobic slurs to taunt this boy, for wearing pink.  David Shepherd and Travis Price, two grade 12 students, were sure to stand up and speak out against the bullies.

Article from the CBC.

TODAY

In Victoria, BC, Canada over 600 students and teachers from Reynolds Secondary School, Arbutus Middle School and Cedar Hill Middle School staged an anti-bullying flash mob on the grounds of the BC Legislature. The students danced to “Born this Way” by Lady Gaga.

For more information, news, and resources visit PinkShirtDay.ca.

A great PDF about The Bully, The Bullied, & The Bystander.

Pin It

Occasional Teacher Mini Series: Planning/Prep Coverage: The Lounge Podcast: Episode 7 7

Posted on February 20, 2012 by Natasha

The Lounge is a biweekly podcast brought to you by TheRookieTeacher[dot]ca.

Welcome to our Occasional Teacher Mini Series.  On this episode, two RookieTeachers discuss Life as Rotary (Planning/Prep Coverage) Teacher: When you only have 40 Minutes.  It’s no secret that as rookies, most of us will begin our careers as a supply teacher, 0.## contracts, planning, rotary, long term occasional teacher, etc. Chances are that you will begin your permanent (or LTO) in a part-time contract with prep coverage, even .18, is better than nothing!  Listen in to hear Andrew share his experiences as a French Teacher, including: his classroom management strategies, the routines he built, and how he manages assessment and evaluation for ~200 students.

SHOW NOTES

Each episode features three segments:

  1. Topic Discussion
  2. Quick Tip for Tomorrow
  3. The Rookie Resource Bank

Topic: Life as a Rotary (Planning/Prep Coverage) Teacher: When you only have 40 Minutes

photo: creativeorganizing.typepad.com

photo: creativeorganizing.typepad.com

Quick Tip for Tomorrow: Something you could do the next day in class with little or no prep and is applicable to most grade levels.

  • Andrew: Magazine Boxes (for yourself, for students who require accommodation, and to keep your students organized). As a bonus, you can have students decorate them (according to The Arts: Visual Arts curriculum). There are many DIY magazine box projects on Pinterest.com.
  • NatashaPermanent 4-corner sheets (put them in page protectors with butterfly clips for easy transportability)
The Rookie Resource Bank: any electronic, print, or event resource that we found helpful in our first few years of teaching.  Of course, these are all applicable to all teachers.
  • AndrewIndex Cards on a Ring (assessment/evaluation strategies, observation notes, handy to pass off to someone else). Option: colour code them!
  • Natasha: CDs (or websites) that come with resource/text books – USE THEM!  Often contain lesson plans, printables, assessment/evaluation strategies
Quick Shout Outs
  1. New Teacher Chat <#ntchat> on Wednesdays at 8:00pm EST on twitter > twebevent.com/ntchat [using this website saves you from having to add the hashtag to each post]
  2. Thank you to all the guest bloggers who have submitted an article to the site – we really appreciate your support and willingness to share your stories and experiences
photo: Neon Mic by fensterbme

photo: Neon Mic by fensterbme

Rookie Teacher Online
We are always looking for ideas, feedback, tips and tricks of the trade.  Find us on Twitter @RookieTeacherCAFacebook.com /TheRookieTeacher.  If you are looking to get involved with our team, please contact us!

Thanks for listening. Join us for our next episode when we discuss So, you’re the new one, eh?

Pin It


↑ Top