"Life begins at the end of your comfort zone."

~Neale Donald Walsch~

Friday, 25 November 2011

The end of an era

Yet again this week has proved to be full of surprises. I had another call from TAFE and they want me to work 3 days next year. Very exciting. I bought an epad recently (a device that makes the whiteboard interactive any where in the room). The pen didn't dock properly and recharge so I asked for a replacement. After 8 weeks they finally sent one. In the meantime the faulty one fixed itself. So I asked what to do. They told me that branch of the company had been sold in the last 8 weeks and I could do with it what I want. So now I have a spare $400 epad for free. Not sure what I am going to do with it.

I have spent quite a lot of time thinking about next year and all things new and feel excited and a little apprehensive as well. I have been so focused for the last 14 years on teaching teenagers and now I am leaving that behind to teach adults. I have been enjoying my Cert IV and I have found myself thinking in a rather different frame of mind when planning lessons for adults.

There are so many things that will change next year. I think it will be nice to not get spit balls in the back of the head. I really do love teenagers and I love the way they view and discover the world. I will miss their quirky ways and our belly laugh sessions. I will miss the buzz of school and all that goes with it. I will not miss playground duty, year 8 Chinese last period on a Friday, school sport, running detentions and school politics. So I have been reflecting a little off late on the huge change that will occur next year.

If you have seen the movie Julie and Julia you will understand what I am about to tell you next. I checked my Blog stats and found I have had 116 reads on my Blog. I can't believe my wonderful family and friends are supporting me all way on my new venture. I seriously didn't think anybody would read it. Thankyou everyone for your encouraging words and support.

As for next week I have a few things I should follow up. I need to get the website really going so I hope to get started on that. I have a student course to run for Year 10 on Thursday and next Monday I am running one of my Teacher courses. Am excited about that. Another faculty member has asked for some techno tips in the hols. Really glad for the experience and feedback from my good friends at work. I do however have to finish writing all the course notes for Monday so I had better get my skates on. I want to have all the course work for my Cert IV finished by next week so the last thing I have to do is video tape a session of me teaching teachers a new skill. I am hoping to do this on the Monday course and then I will be finished. Well all of that sounds very ambitious doesn't it. I wonder if I can get some sleep in there somewhere.

Keep smiling, I know I am,

Thursday, 17 November 2011

I got a new job!!

Well there have been some exciting developments this week. I have managed to get a job at TAFE teaching English for two days a week next year. So I now have a steady income to pay for my Business. They have Smartboards and are very happy to aquire this tech savvy little teacher.

Have yet again been having some excellent conversations with people about my new Business. Had a chat to one of the Girl Guide mums Liz the other night and I was chatting to her about the Parent course I am going to run. She thinks it is an excellent idea and I was running by her what she thinks I should charge? I was thinking $50 for 1/2 a day but she thinks that is too cheap. She said if I make it too cheap people might wonder if it's any good so she suggested $100 or $80 for pensioners and do the course from 10am-3pm. I suppose it would all depend on the venur hire costs. I will have to look into that one.

Anyway I am looking for some parents who would like to do one of my courses. The course will show you what technology is being used in your child's classroom and the basics of website creation and how you can help your kids use technology to study and be organised. If you are interested just let me know. Leave a comment and I'll get back to you.

I am now 1/2 way through my Cert IV and am hoping to finish by my birthday, 9th Dec.

Each week brings with it new surprises. What will happen next week?


Saturday, 12 November 2011

A week of experiments

This week I had a week long block in Geography and Commerce. My lovely teacher friend left the bones of the lessons and she said she didn't mind if I added a little dazzle. So I tried Kick Me. The idea is based on the silly thing kids do when they put a post it on the back of someone that says 'Kick Me'. The students were given a sheet they had to read and think about. They then had to turn it over and not look at it. They were given stickers with the answers on it. Two stickers were placed on each students back. As a class they had to remove the stickers from each other's back and work together to place the correct sticker in the correct part of the table. The students enjoyed the activity and all students were engaged in working together. We then discussed the table when we were finished. All in all quite successful.

I really love the work that Presentation Media do with their artistic flare for powerpoints. http://www.presentermedia.com/
I used many of their animated power points in my lessons this week to make my presentation engaging and interesting.

My other little fabulous tool this week has been my portable scanner. It only cost me $75 on ebay and I use it heaps. I had quite a few casual Maths classes I had to take this week. Unfortunately for one class their text books were locked in a room in a cupboard where the School Certificate was being undertaken. Forunately I had a copy of the textbook and scanned in the page and put it up on the board via the data projector and the lesson went quite smoothly. I have also used the same technique in Maths when I want the whole class to work on a problem or sheet. I scan in a worksheet and project it on the board and as a class we work through the problems together. My ePad (RM Education) is a device that allows me to interact with my computer and the computer screen that is projected on the board anywhere in the room. I can write notes or the students can write in their Maths answers from where they are sitting and don't need to get up to write the answer on the board. The students love using it and you can save the work and email to the teacher or email it to students that were away that day instead of rubbing it off the board and all that work is gone.

As I type I am battling a bad case of the flu and a chest infection and am feeling it quite a struggle to come up with things to put in my blog. However I am dedicated to the cause.

I am part way through Cert IV in Training and Assessment. Finding it interesting to learn about the VET sector. Have asked one of the Art teachers at school if he could do some designs for me for my company logo. Heard from the bank about getting a credit card for the business. Got sick and haven't got any further than that. The company thing is still chugging along.

Until next week,

Thursday, 3 November 2011

Cleaning out the cobwebs

This week has been a busy one but very productive. I have officially started my Cert IV in training and assessment! Finally. I am on my way.

Has been a slow week work wise but has been productive in giving me time to sort out my thoughts. Cleaning my daughters bedroom for four hours this week gave me time to reflect on my decision to start this business. I have started writing my Business Plan but get stuck at times and need time to think. I have been thinking about times when I just gave in because things seemed too hard. Sometimes it just wasn't worth the risk. Was speaking to a friend at school the other week and she was speaking about a parent who was highly successful and seemed to be able to organise anything or get the job done. Her comment about life is, "It's all in the attitude". How very true. If I think I will fail then I probably will. I often tell my students to have a 'can do' attitute yet I give up myself sometimes.

Anyway... Met with the the people from the local Community College to see if I can book out a room to run tutorials. She also suggested that I might be able to be employed as a casual through the college and run my courses for parents and students throught the college. Another avenue I hadn't thought of.  It looks like a viable option to hire out a room.

Met with the bank to set up Credit card payments for my courses and bank transfer for my website. Hubbie bought the domain name for the website so I will soon be up and running on the web. Things are falling into place. Praise God. I don't even feel stressed and am enjoying the challenge.

Will share some great sites with you next week.

Until next week,