Thoughts on a New Year

A new school year is gearing up. In fact, I’ll be back in my classroom this Monday morning along with my colleagues making final preparations for our students return. For the last two years, we’ve had two of our pre-planning days swallowed up by furloughs, but this year we will finally get a full week. (Each day of pre-planning is pure gold to most educators.) There is so much to do and finish during this week and as I approach another school year, here are a few of my thoughts on the coming year:

1.) This will be the second year of our PBL program, and I’m curious as to how the tenth grade version of the class will evolve. It will be closer to problem-based learning rather than just straight project-based, but we’ll be blurring the lines of both a little. It should be very, very interesting.

2.) The ninth grade PBL program has changed. Not drastically, but the new program is getting a few needed tweaks that we hope will help everything stay more organized and make everything more manageable for our students. The face lift will help meet some of the issues we saw evolve last year. The question is will the changes make a real difference?

3.) I need to get ALL my students to write more. I have always challenged myself with this statement every year, but with four years of teaching under my belt, I want to really push writing with my students to another level. I have several ideas to help with this; I’ll be sure to share my thoughts as the year goes.

4.) I have one ‘regular’ tenth grade class this year and I want to do a better job of differentiation for those students. The beauty of the PBL program is it is one of the best practices of differentiation that I’ve seen, but doing so for my normal classrooms have been a challenge. That needs to change this year. Again, I have ideas, now I need to execute them.

5.) Lastly, I need to really to research my options for my doctorate. It has been a dream of mine since I was fifteen years old (I know a little weird) to get my PhD. The reality is that my degree will most likely be an EdD, but I have the next several months to really find out what is best for me and my family. Wish me luck!

**Bonus thought** I hope to blog a bit more too this year.

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