Welcome to Rockin’ The Boat! This blog is not about boating, though I’m not against boating. Boating is fun. It’s not about rockin’ either, though I am partial to the rock music genre, Christian and secular. However, this blog is about changing the status quo in our classrooms and engaging and empowering students through the use of creativity and technology. Unleash your own creativity, passion for your subject, and your love of learning to inspire your students to do the same. It’s not as scary as it sounds, and don’t worry, I’m right here to guide you and hold your hand, figuratively speaking, of course. I’m not likely to actually hold your hand, since I don’t really know you. I will, however, encourage you to hang on to your hat and maybe grab a life jacket until you are ready to rock your very own boat.
The holiday season is especially tough for some students and adults, so taking time out to focus on gratitude can really have a positive impact on students and adults in your building or even district. If you’re thinking about doing it, here are some ways you can utilize it with students at every grade level or for yourself.
We celebrate Thanksgiving with my husband’s family on Thanksgiving Eve. It is a fabulous time with his mom, sister and family, and friends. We are not a family only kind of crew, and often we collect very interesting attendees, but this year it was a small intimate gathering of family and friends, food, traditions, and connections. We loaded up the counter to serve dinner buffet style. Everyone prepped the food they brought, nibbled as we set up the appetizers, carved the turkey, visited, laughed, and enjoyed the pandemonium as Grandma’s beautiful pair of half grown Great Danes rushed into the house every time a child inadvertently let them.
Social Emotional Learning (SEL), or teaching the whole child is beginning to gain a more prominent foothold in education. Starting it in your classroom may seem daunting, even though you understand the value and research behind it. It was for me, but as I begin to see benefits, sometimes immediately, then as I do with anything, I dive right in with both feet. What does SEL look like in the kindergarten classroom? In 8th grade? What about at the high school level?
Games are fun. They add excitement, engagement, and some friendly competition. Building your games around a theme takes your gamification to a whole other level. Here is a guide for getting started.