Monday, July 29, 2013

A Midsummer Day's Freak-Out

So I'm sitting here in my living room, trying to re-read through Math Teacher's Survival Guide to help get me back in the swing of things after my long weekend, and I can't help but feel like one of my students. I'm so distracted today--with my overly-tired kids being cranky and crabby, and Rachael Ray in the background--I just can't seem to plan. I started off today doing really well... I got my books out; I grabbed my iPad and started taking notes; I was reviewing my notes from the year before about what my big plans had been; and things were going really well. Then I got to a point in the book that identifies types of math plans to be created and it says:

"Most math teachers are responsible for creating two types of plans: unit plans and daily lesson plans. Both are based on your curriculum. Before you can write any plans, however  you must know exactly what your students must learn by the end of the school year. Your curriculum guide will be your greatest resource." And I stopped. Dead in my tracks.

I am the creator of the curriculum guide. I am the creator of the competencies. Others are depending on me, and my abilities to create a curriculum that will support our students as they prepare for life after high-school. That is a HUGE responsibility. One that I am very happy to have, and feel that I can do well, but is still a little intimidating.

At first, it makes me question all of my plans.... do I really want to teach a blended class? Should we just go back to "pencil & paper" kind of work, instead of online practice? Do I really want to flip my classroom? Should I create my own videos? Should I rely on Kahn for most of them? Where will I store all of these? Should I create a class for this on Schoology? Should I track assessments in Schoology? How will I fit in projects and PBL? How will I design my unit plans? Did I technically already develop the curriculum? Could it be tweaked? Who can I talk to about tweaking it? Should I keep planning? What about Essential Questions? What about making a UbD? What about my day to day class--how will it be structured? Should I know all of that now?

Time to regain my composure. I am a competent person. I studied at one of the best education colleges in our NATION. I worked with some people who have developed some amazing and cutting edge mathematics curriculums. I have an awesome support network of like-minded educators who are also breaking the mold, and are more than willing to help us out. MSU had faith in me. My principal has faith in me. My head of curriculum development has faith in me. I have faith in me. Time to go kill this planning. Keep you updated!