Sunday, January 1, 2012

Getting to Know the Pomegranate Girls: Rachel

I am very new to blogging. I was there for the ubiquitous advent of the internet and spent my downtime during college studying HTML (because html is fun. no, really!) but blogging is just something I haven't tried. I've just started following blogs and learning the power of blogs--not as a social diary, which I originally thought blogs were, but as a learning tool. As I build my own list of blogs which I follow and from which I gain amazing insight and tips that I can use in my own classes, I begin to feel the wish, or need, or whatnot, to try to offer something similar to other teachers and posterity.

I have been teaching for nine years--at least, I'll be finishing my ninth year this May (unless another snowstorm this year decides differently). I love teaching, and my goal is always the most learning for the most students at the best quality I can provide. This of course means my nine years have been spent reading research and attending professional development and creating my own materials which I share online for anyone else who can find them useful. I found early in my career that there just aren't enough materials for Latin teachers. I want technology. I want pictures. I want everything the modern language teachers have. Luckily (or not, if you ask my oft-neglected family) I have grown up with the belief that if you don't like something, you should do something about it. Every year I redesign my approach based on what I've read, discussed, or trained in (only if it seems like it would really and truly improve my classes), and that almost always means I have to create my own materials. It also means that I started presenting at conferences early on, because there just wasn't enough Latin-based professional development at my disposal to make me happy.

What I'm hoping to do here is really just to offer the guidance that I so often seek. Miriam and I have similar directions in our classrooms and, I think, we are both relatively creative teachers. I always believe in sharing what I have created (I have a website here: http://www.mrsash.com/ and a youtube channel here: http://www.youtube.com/user/magistracinis?feature=mhee) but I am usually pretty overwhelmed by school and family needs, so my updates are irregular at best. Having a blog, especially one shared with another person, is an exciting way to force me to regularly look at my classes and see if I can offer insight to others.

I am excited by this new venture and feel like the New Year is the perfect time to begin a new blog.