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Hi! I'm Carley, a kind-of junior kind-of senior Middle Level Education student at Millersville University near Lancaster, Pennsylvania. My life is pretty jam-paced with classes, classes, classes, clubs, work, finding time for family and friends, and some spare moments here and there to eat, sleep, and maintain my house (to some extent). Did I mention classes? Those keep me pretty busy. With everything going on all the time, I often find myself loosing focus of what the big picture is that I'm working towards. Too often life is about focusing on one big assignment just to be hit with the next, rushing through the required reading as I walk to class, and looking forward to the weekend where I can finally take a little bit of time to put down the books and close the laptop. However, despite my desire to sometimes get a break, I do love listening and learning in classes (well, not so much just listening but engaging, rather), and I really really love when I get the chance to work with kids. I hear all these awesome strategies and methods on a daily basis and get excited to someday use them in my classroom. Although, I so often get bogged down with deadlines, grades, and requirements that I tend to push my starry-eyed dreams for my future classroom to the back burner. College is passing by in a blur, and I don't want to forget to take the time to realize that all the things my amazing professors are teaching me will, before I know it, be applied to a real live class. For this reason, I wanted to create a blog where, if only for myself, I can try to find some time here and there to dream, create, explore, and showcase the teacher who I am working so hard to become.
While over 20,000 educators have joined ASCD EDge, you may be attending this year's annual conference and still asking the question, "Why should I join ASCD EDge?" I joined ASCD EDge over one year ago and I have met educators from all across the world. My third grade daughter affectionately calls it "Nerdbook." If nerds meet to discuss educational topics, educational policy, trends in K-12 education, student teaching experiences, graduate school research, recent Educational Leadership articles, or the highlights from a state or national conference, then count me in!
Five Professionals I Met Through ASCD EDge:
1. Mike Fisher
Mike posts on a regular basis on ASCD EDge and on other sites. He is an educational consultant and he develops and shares several online resources for educators at http://www.digigogy.com. Mike also posts multiple resources on http://curriculum21.ning.com (Curriculum 21) and http://livebinders.com/shelf/search_author?terms=mikefisher821(LiveBinders). He is a little bit of a LiveBinder junkie. Mike visited North Carolina this past summer and we met at a local Mexican restaraunt. Since that meeting, we have been professional friends through phone conversations, email, and ASCD EDge. I have learned a great deal from Mike!
2. Anne Shaw
Anne posts on ASCD EDge and she posts multiple blogs and resources for educators on her site at http://www.21stcenturyschools.com/Anne_Shaw.htm (21st Century Schools). 21st Century Schools specialize in professional staff development and curriculum design. The goal of the organization is to assist educators in creating schools and classrooms that are truly 21st century.
Anne is the Founder and Director of 21st Century Schools. Shaw wrote, "please visit our continually evolving essay, What is 21st Century Education?. We can help you develop an authentic paradigm of 21st century education, discover an almost infinite variety of ways to create schools and classrooms, and learn specific strategies to make your 21st century schools a reality.” I have shared ideas with Anne through phone calls, email, and ASCD EDge. We even co-posted some articles on her blog related to 21st century curriculum and instruction. I consider Anne a professional colleague and friend and she is someone I can share ideas with when I am planning curriculum development or brainstorming new ideas for supporting teachers.
3. Persida Himmele
Dr. Pérsida Himmele is a full-time faculty member at Millersville University. She is co-author of The Language-Rich Classroom, a recently published ASCD book. She has served as the ELL coordinator for curriculum and professional development for the School District of Lancaster and as a consultant to school districts and the Pennsylvania Department of Education. She has a Ph.D. in Intercultural Education and has been a teacher in bilingual and multilingual classrooms in New York and Southern California. She has served as a consultant and teacher trainer for educational projects in the United States, China, Nepal, Argentina, and Tonga. Pérsida is Puerto Rican and was raised on Bustelo coffee.
Dr. Himmele was kind enough to speak with me by phone for over one hour. I wanted to speak with her about her experiences, but I also wanted to ask her how I could become more supportive of ELL students and families. I shared some of the strategies we had attempted and I shared the goals we had for increasing student achievement and offering professional development opportunities for teachers. She has multiple experiences working with teachers, administrators and students and she shared her thoughts with me. I am confident that she charges thousands of dollars to provide this information at conferences and local staff development. Through ASCD EDge, I was able to support my own school district by asking Pérsida for advice. ASCD EDge has multiple college professors, ASCD authors, researchers, K-12 consultants, curriculum developers, teachers, principals, and people who want to support education. I highly recommend Pérsida's books, but you can learn from her blog posts through ASCD EDge.
4. Janet Hale
I actually met Janet through Mike Fisher. This is how social networking helps you network. I have enjoyed reading Janet's books on curriculum mapping and I knew about her online articles and videos, but I had never met Janet at a conference. After I met Janet, I was able to communicate with her by phone, through email, and on ASCD EDge. Speaking with someone with Janet's background is like a dream come true for a curriculum developer. She shared experiences from working with teachers and answered questions I had about the curriculum mapping process.
Janet is the author and creator of http://www.curriculummapping101.com (Curriculum Mapping 101). She is a curriculum mapping consultant and trainer who works with rural, urban, and inner-city schools, districts, dioceses, and counties. Janet assists learning organizations from the moment they are considering curriculum mapping until the mapping process is well established; aids those having trouble with their initiative by diagnosing wherein problems may lie and advising revision to their action plans; and works with those ready for more advance mapping processes. She also works with learning organizations interested in upgrading curriculum and instruction to emphasize 21st century critical thinking, problem solving, communication, and collaboration. If you join the conversation on ASCD EDge, you can meet educational consultants such as Janet Hale, Grant Wiggins, Robyn Jackson, and Heidi Hayes Jacobs. She also posts resources on http://curriculum21.ning.com (Curriculum 21).
5. Bridgette Waggoner
Bridgette spent the first eight years of her career teaching high school Language Arts at Price Laboratory School at the University of Northern Iowa. She moved into administrative positions as the school’s Outreach, Professional Development and Curriculum Coordinator and eventually the school’s Director. She currently serves the Waverly-Shell Rock Community School District as the Director of Educational Services.
The University of Northern Iowa’s Malcolm Price Laboratory School (PLS) in Cedar Falls, Iowa, was the winner of ASCD's first-ever Vision in Action: The ASCD Whole Child Award. ASCD honored Price Laboratory School today at its Annual Conference and Exhibit Show in San Antonio, Tex. The award recognizes schools that move beyond a narrow focus on academic achievement to take action for the whole child, creating learners who are knowledgeable, emotionally and physically healthy, civically active, artistically engaged, prepared for economic self-sufficiency, and ready for the world beyond formal schooling.
Read one of Bridgette's posts at PD: Instruction or Tech Integration?
ASCD EDge helps you continue professional conversations long after the conference. If you attend a session that you enjoy, share what you learn with thousands of educators by posting a blog on ASCD EDge. If you have a specialized interest, you can join an existing group (i.e., Understanding by Design or Teaching English Language Learners) or create a new group. ASCD EDge provides educators with the opportunity for teachers, administrators, curriculum coordinators and others to share ideas, discuss recent books about curriculum, share tools for supporting the work of teachers and administrators, and participate in an online professional learning community. If you are still wondering how ASCD EDge will support your career, join today! You will have access to educators who share your interests and who are waiting to learn from your experiences!