I have been a teacher since 1986, and I have been teaching in Northfield since 1988. I started out as the Gifted and Talented Teacher and a computer lab instructor with TRS-80 computers! I've taught K-8 Gifted and Talented and computer lab. I've also taught 4th grade, 5th grade Social Studies, 7th and 8th grade BSI math, 7th and 6th grade Social Studies, and 8th grade - 21st Century Life Skills. I am currently teaching 7th grade Social Studies and Science.
I feel that students learn the best by doing things. What will students remember about history 10, 20, 30 years from now? Will they remember specific details or the main idea? I believe that they will remember the main ideas and the projects they did to enhance that. I remember mainly 2 things from my own time as a student in history class. The first one was a Native American project in 3rd grade. I had the Iroqouis tribe. I created a longhouse out of salt reed from the local marshes and I dressed my Barbie (she had short black hair and talked if you pulled a string) and Ken up in Native American clothing my mom and I made. I can still see those dolls in their buckskin color clothing. The second item was most of Mr. Klepac's US History 2 class at OCHS. He was great. We had a quiz every week so those big ideas stuck in our heads. He would rewind parts in a film that he wanted to emphasize the visual effect and point. The later you had his class in the day, the more you saw the clip. We had a tally chart going and the class would tell the next class coming in what the record was. He made history fun - by stories and the way he taught. I try to follow his example by trying to make history fun and come alive for the students. Hopefully one of our projects the students will remember fondly over the next 40 years of their life.
I love to travel and see the historical places around the country and world. My family complains because I turn each vacation in to a history lesson.