Friday, August 7, 2009

The Once and Future Teacher

Summer, glorious summer, that Avalon of the teaching profession, that sinking out of sight of the rest of the world, doing who-knows-what until who-knows-when...

Except that we do know when. Monday.

I can already feel myself rising out of the mists, gathering my knights and sword (also known as my books and USB drive), throwing open the doors of my classroom for every lover of truth and justice.

My plans aren't finished, I haven't accustomed myself to rolling out of bed at 5:30 in the morning, and my wardrobe is in sad shape, but time marches on. This year should be exciting and wonderful, but...what kind of difficulties should I be anticipating? Will my revised homework plans be effective? Have the kids retained as much from last year as I expect?

I feel like I'm coming around the corner, walking down the hall, hearing the sounds of my classroom but unable to distinguish the "happy learning hubbub" from the chaos. Soon I'll be peeking through the window, then opening the door. What will I find?

To all the teachers, administrators, support staff, and other school-type people out there, I wish you the best of luck as we begin the 2009-2010 school year!

May you have the hindsight to know where you've been
the foresight to know where you're going
and the insight to know when you're going too far.


  1. Best wishes back to you for a great school year!

  2. Hey, I liked your blog. I wanted to drop you a note to tell you about something I created that you might find cool. I'm a technologist at a middle school in Texas. I built an online lesson planning system that will help teachers share their lessons with other teachers easily.

    I taught fifth grade and second grade for 7 years. When I was teaching, it bothered me that there were so many teachers out there creating lesson plans every week, but the only lesson plans from other teachers that I had access to were formal lesson plans on the Web or in workbooks.

    Formal lesson plans are okay in a college classroom or when you want to impress your principal, but they are really hard to use on a daily basis. I found that I was constantly having to cut out large chunks or heavily modify formal lessons to make them work in my "real world" classroom. It really bothered me that there wasn't a good and efficient way for me to see exactly what other teachers were planning. I wanted to see what other "real world" teachers were actually planning on a daily basis, not formal lessons that take way too much time to prep for.

    I finally came up with a way to do it. I spent the last three years creating an online system that can accomplish this task. I just finished it recently. The way it works is that teachers are provided with an online lesson planning book in which they create lessons. As a lesson is created, the teacher has three choices in how to share it: she can choose to share it with her name attached to it, she can share it anonymously, or she can choose to keep it private.

    All of the lessons the teacher creates, except for the ones kept private, are immediately available to other teachers. Teachers can search the database for lessons based on subject, grade level, or keywords. When a teacher finds a lesson in the database that she likes, she can quickly import it into her lesson plans with just a few clicks. Creating lesson plans for the week has never been easier. Teachers can even modify the lessons that they have imported from the database.

    The system is brand new and so the database is empty. I would like to invite you to use the system. It is called LessonBreeze and it is located at

    You can sign up and use it for FREE for life. My hope is to eventually charge new accounts a small fee to use the system, but the people who sign up and use the system now will never be asked to pay.

    I hope you take me up on this offer and I hope that it will be as useful to you as I think it will be. Feel free to share this with other teachers


  3. Students start the 20th, teachers the 17th. But I have been working on my room, getting organized i love this time of year. again. The excitement for me is building.