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Lo Más de 2010

Lo sé, este post tiene un mes y medio de retraso; pero como dice el dicho: mejor tarde que nunca. No lo pude hacer antes por todas las razones que ustedes puedan pensar, pero yo me quedo con el síndrome del escritor bloqueado.

Hace un año escribí una entrada parecida a esta la cual acabo de leer para inspirarme un poco, pensar sobre aquellas categorías pero ahora del 2010, si era necesario escribir una nueva o quitar otra. Deben de tener en mente que estas categorías y la entrada en general no necesariamente tienen que ver con mi ámbito profesional, sino también envuelve situaciones familiares o personal que hayan hecho un cambio en mi ser, pensar, sentir o idear.

De igual manera debes de tener en mente que estas categorías abarcan desde enero hasta diciembre del 2010 y que por lo tanto hay dos ciclos escolares en final de 2009 -2010 y el inicio del 2010 – 2011; ambos con alumnos diferentes y muy posiblemente con grados igualmente diferentes.

Sin más preámbulo, aquí están los momentos “más”:

1. Momento más feliz: cuando decidí que era tiempo de cerrar una puerta y una ventana se abrió. Me sentí feliz porque me di cuenta que era lo que yo quería, anhelaba y necesitaba en ese momento; simple y llanamente la vida que llevaba en ese entonces me hacía infeliz y se tenía que terminar de tajo. Desde que me inculcaron en un curso que en una vida profesional atraviesas por tres pasos, siempre he tratado de aplicarlos. El paso uno es conocer tu empresa y que ella te conozca a ti. El siguiente paso es que en tu área puedas ver si estás en acuerdo con las normas, reglas o puntos de vista; si estás en desacuerdo, ver si lo puedes cambiar o innovar. Y el último paso es entender si aquello es para ti, si lo aceptas como está o si lo puedes cambiar; o entender que es mejor irte. Yo decidí: Gracias, pero no gracias.

2. Momento más triste: aquellas personas que deje detrás, aquellas que me apoyaron incondicionalmente, me divertían, me hacían la vida más fácil día con día, se preocupaban por mí y lo más importante, me querían. Gracias por todo.

3. Momento de mayor satisfacción: ver todo lo que se hizo dentro del salón y de los grupos de secundaria. Debo admitir que hubo momentos muy difíciles (los adolescentes son algo especial) pero al final entendimos que aprendimos de ambas partes y se lo reconocimos. Fue la primera vez que aplique el blog como herramienta de publicación de trabajos, y fue la primera vez que mis alumnos se enorgullecieron por lo que sabían hacer con el inglés.

4. Momento de mayor orgullo: Los dos reconocimientos que mis alumnos de secundaria me dieron; me reconocían lo bueno y lo malo, pero por ello mismo, son los reconocimientos que más aprecio. Es cierto, dentro de la escuela es una actividad obligatoria pero no es obligatorio dárselos a todos los maestros, ni es obligatorio que te lo enmarquen.

5. Momento de mayor sorpresa: En agosto regresé a una gran escuela con grandes alumnos, la sorpresa fue ver que con aquellos no se había perdido la amistad, el cariño y familiaridad que ya habíamos construido durante dos años de clases juntos. Ellos me conocían muy bien, yo los conocía mejor, ¿cómo nos llevamos?, de maravilla.

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Would Your Students Honor You?

This month’s posts in the Publishing Corner have been of the greatest kind, students had to write a small text expressing why any of their teachers should be honored and the thoughts they have of them have been just wonderful.

This is one of those times when you know that all those small pieces have come together to form something huge; students have realized of the great effort teachers have to make every day to educate a little bit. And what makes their posts even more meaningful is that their posts do not mention a lot about the classes’ contents, but rather about the values and principles teachers are trying harder to exemplify. We are living tough times here in Mexico, and that students acknowledge values gives hope.

From here I would like to thank each of them: Thank you very much!

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Enthusiasm? Shock? Excitement? None?

Yesterday afternoon, I found out that Sue Waters had published a post where she mentioned our class blog, “Publishing Corner“. It surprised me a lot as it is the first time any of the blogs I have a participation is mentioned anywhere! – nevertheless the blog is 4 months. The major audience “The Edublogger” receives every day has helped us already by increasing the blog’s international visitors.

That afternoon I e-mailed my students so they could see by themselves what a big step they have taken, as they have reached real audiences which also was the main purpose of starting a class blog.

This morning when I was with them in class, we talked about it and I explained how important “The Edublogger” is in the Education on-line community, how this small mention in a list had given us the opportunity to get closer to the rest of the world and that it IS actually true what they say in the “Think Before You Post” security videos; if you are on-line, anyone may see you anywhere.

I could see that for these 11 and 12 year-olds it was like an eye-opening experience, to see light for the first time. Now, they are aware of what monumental responsability it is to be on-line: Facebook, Twitter, Messenger, Hi5 and this time around, blogging.

Without knowing, Sue has helped me a lot when this Friday I present to my students the new approach we’ll be working through the semester for blogging: awards!

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WoW!

Right now, I’m living something so surreal that I never thought it would be possible in junior high school.

I must say that I never thought my students would be like they are when I accepted to work there. And as any teacher would like, it is almost a dream come true. Have you ever wanted to work with teenagers aged 13-15? Being, most of the times, responsible? quiet? participative? respectful? and hard-working? Isn’t that exciting?

It is a great and different experience I want to seize to the maximum, and after getting to know each other I think the time has come to do so. The past week I started to introduce my students to the world of blogging, I was glad to see that most of them were very enthusiastic about this and are trying hard. Our class blog is designed to share the written works we do in class: essays, letters, timelines, biographies, personal experiences and so on. By the way, have I mentioned that they are EFL students? Therefore, it is very invigorating to read such coherent texts like theirs.  Obviously some texts need improvement, hence their works are edited and proofread before they are published.

Another important aspect I want to achieve is sharing among them, as any teacher knows, when students write a text they think it’s for the teacher’s eyes only; and maybe they do care for grammar and spelling because it is part of the grading process. However, they still make some basic sintaxis mistakes, or sometimes the topics they choose are trivial and well, not worthy for a good text. And now I expect they care more about their writing and about the topics they choose; they will keep in mind that their work will be checked by the teacher, and by other teachers, by their classmates, and by students of other classes and grades.

To be this an encouragement instead of the opposite, I’m thinking about giving extra credits or rewards to the most commented post, or perhaps, to the most active writer, to the most read, or to the best rated. Parameters must be done.

Finally, I really hope we can all get through this satisfactorily carrying with us great experiences.

Good writing my padawans!

Class Blogs:  Publishing Corner for first graders, On the Wall for third graders.