I can’t imagine working as anything other than an educator. I teach in a rural community in Western Canada and I’ve taught all grades from Kindergarten to Grade Twelve. I started my career teaching elementary students of all grades from 1996-2003. During my years as a high school teacher from 2003-2010, I taught visual arts, photography, textiles and information technology at the local high school. I love working with children of all ages. They constantly amaze me with their energy, insight, creativity and talent. In September 2010, I joined the Elementary Connected Classrooms Project. This is a very cool, collaborative, technology-rich teaching opportunity in which my students and I have virtual and face-to-face connections with classrooms in other communities in our district. To create this connected learning environment, each classroom is outfitted with a 1:1 netbooks, video conferencing, and shared platforms like Sharepoint and Moodle.
Currently, due to a brief medical leave last year, I’m working four days a week as a teacher teaching on call (TTOC). It’s a whole new experience for me as I haven’t worked as a TTOC for 21 years. I’m enjoying the new lens through which to view schools, students, teaching and learning.
In 2011 I completed a Masters of Education in Educational Practice at Simon Fraser Universtiy. My research evolved into three strands: visual arts in education, (digital) citizenship, and indigenous beliefs on education and learning. I created three main inquiry questions. What are the schools of thinking around visual literacy and how can I teach using arts-based methods in the context of the Elementary Connected Classrooms (ECC) project? How is my pedagogy shifting in this technologically-rich teaching and learning environment? What are the traditional Métis and Cree beliefs surrounding education and child-rearing? That third strand of inquiry was particularly powerful as my great-grandmother was a residential school survivor. I adopted the mixed methods approach of qualitative research, employing teacher inquiry, living inquiry, performative inquiry, arts-based inquiry, writing as inquiry, and indigenous inquiry at varying times throughout the research. My masters year was absolutely transformational both professionally and personally.
The most important focus in my personal life is family. I’m a mom to two amazing teenage boys. They are my everything. I’m also a big sister to four siblings and have four adorable nephews. I work very hard to live a healthy, active lifestyle and look after my whole self. I think life is too busy and complicated so I strive to keep things simple. I enjoy photography, nature and running outdoors. The visual arts are my passion and default comfort zone. I love learning, yoga, music, baking, reading and chocolate. I have strong faith. I’m a realist with an optimistic edge.
I started to blog for many reasons. I love to write, especially for professional reflection. Writing helps to clarify and solidify my thoughts. I also wanted to learn how to use Edublogs before using blogging as a tool to enhance the learning in my classroom. The final reason I started to blog was to grow and maintain my personal learning network (PLN). I am truly thankful for all the amazing people, from those in my blogroll to colleagues and special friends, that motivate me, make me think and help me learn.
Thanks for visiting and reading my blog. Please comment as I’d love to hear what you have to say!