Grade(s) taught: 1st-5th Grade. Currently teaching 4th grade and Technology Coach
Subject(s) taught: Elementary subjects and Technology
School: Ballico Elementary School
Local Writing Project: UC Merced Writing Project (UCMWP)
Awards & Recognition
- UCMWP Teacher Consultant
- ELearning Teacher of the Year, 2014
- Merced County Excellence in Education, 2014-15
- Google Apps Certification
- CWP Graphite Accelerator Educator
Attending my local Writing Project’s Invitational Leadership Institute in the Teaching of Writing has given me confidence not only in my own writing, but also in my ability to give my students the skills they need. Before becoming involved with the Writing Project, I second-guessed myself constantly about how I should approach writing with my students. I also found myself only doing a couple of writing projects a year with my class. Writing felt like a chore with my students. No one was having any fun, including me. Now my students write everyday. Writing is tied across the curriculum in all aspects and is used as a source of assessment in content areas. Writing has become a fun activity in class, especially with students being allowed to use digital tools to publish their work.
The Writing Project has made me a more creative writer. I find myself enjoying the task of writing and looking forward to writing examples for my students. UCMWP has made me realize that we all have things to offer within our writing, and I shouldn’t get stuck on achieving perfect technique. I find it easier now to sit down and just let the writing flow.
I have discovered I have a lot to offer other teachers when it comes to mixing writing, technology, and content across the curriculum. The Writing Project has encouraged me as a Teacher Consultant to go out and share my knowledge and experience within the classroom. I have started presenting at different conferences across California. I enjoy sharing how I utilize what I learned in the Writing Project and how technology can be incorporated with it.
I now believe it is important to write everyday. It doesn’t always have to be tied to a specific purpose, but can be a means of reflection and relaxation. That with daily practice, the thoughts from pen to paper, or from fingers to keyboard, writing becomes easier. Each time I write I discover something new about myself. I try to stress to my students that writing is never finished. We always have room for improvement and inspiration can come from anywhere.
I would highly recommend reading Teaching in the Connected Learning Classroom. I would also suggest reading anything written by Lucy Calkins. I enjoyed her book The Art of Teaching Writing immensely. She provides inspiration and great ideas for the classroom. I feel it is important to take time to read and learn from others.