I'm currently in an essentials class. I'm thinking of dropping out because it is a lot of information to process.
this year with the budget cuts, I have to teach 6 classes on A day and 6 different classes on b day.
I now have 5 preps, 330 students.- I'm at school until 6Pm every day.
and am exhausted. On the week ends I do have to get groceries and grade the papers from school. the
only time I have for this class in on sat. -6hours. Just looking at the outlines of the planning involved for one unit, I am very discouraged
at the amount of time to plan one unit for middle school spanish. also having the students every other day, it would take one nine week period to
have enough time to finish a project, (IF we could schedule the one computer lab for that many days).
Keep the faith! I know how much you need this class, but it can be really helpful, too! Last year, I was at a school with no (I mean - almost no!) technology, especially for special education. I was told in an evaluation to use the technology in my room more: my overhead projector. Like the ones from elementary school when I was there in the 80's. Hmmm...
Yet this year, due to budget cuts, I was transferred to a school that is a school for science and technology. We have so much technology that it's coming out our ears! Creating a unit for Spanish classes can help you and so many more people, as well. It might even be possible that as a trainer next year, you would have more access in your own school as a model for what to do! If you choose to go to another school, this is a product you can take with you: it's a major selling point far into the future, whether you stay with public education or not - the skills you gain here will be so helpful for anything you may try in the future!
I have complete faith that you can do this! I will double-check my profile - I think my email's on there. Feel free to contact me or our other classmates if you need or want help.
Jo-Ann - I too was overwhelmed at first with the Unit plan - but I started thinking how can this help all my classes. At first I didn't implement my entire unit plan- but only parts of it - I wanted to see what I had planned would work with the students and for the most part it did. I made some adjustments and I got creative with scheduling and the next year I completed my entire unit plan and made adjustments for the next year.
Is there anyone in your group that is at your same school or teaches the same subject matter? Finding a buddy or a sounding board was helpful to me. In fact I still go to that teacher as I am trying to plan new content and units.
Good luck to you
JoAnn, as much as you can just build it in to what you are teaching already it might not seem so overwhelming. You can also use many of the resources that are already there and make adjustments. Afterwards most of the people that completed the course see so many connections but it is hard to see that when you are in the midst of it.
Try to hang in there the best you can but only you know what you can handle.
Several others have given you encouragement and tips. I want to say that pretty much everyone who is enrolled in an Intel class feels this at some point! Yet, many persist and get to the halfway point, then start realizing they CAN DO IT!!!
And you can, too!
Many of the online tools you learn about in an Intel class can help to make some of your work easier in the long run! For instance, if you are sharing Web 2.0 tools in addition to wikis and blogs in your class, you can learn about ways for your students to submit work online, making it easier for you to review their work and not even lug around the papers!
There are some discussions here in Engage which mention tons of new Web 2.0 tools. I won't link to them here because at this time you don't have time to look through them. But come back when your course is fished and look through the community for Web 2.0 posts. You can even use the tag groups to find them. And you will find tons of things which can make your job easier!
Julia points out how much Intel training can help all your classes. Truer words were never spoken! This can be a life changing event!
Hang in there, and let us know how you're doing!
Bonnie, you make some excellent points! When I initially started looking through all of the content in the Intel Moodle course, I began to feel a little overwhelmed because there is so much material! However, I soon realized how valuable the material was now I'm really looking forward to being able to implement all of the things I learn during the course!
I'm curious as to which Moodle course you're working in...
Did you know that in addition to the Intel Teach Essentials (along with Essentials Online) and Intel Teach Thinking with Technology there is currently a free shorter Elements course on Project Based Approaches? And soon, another Elements course on Assessment will be unveiled! These two "Elements" courses can be taken individually online, but also facilitated, for credit arranged by the facilitator.
Want to know more? Here is the page linked from the home page of the engage community. There is information here, and the link to the course itself is at the upper left.
I think Bonnie makes a great point that course tools and resources can make your tasks in your workplace easier but it is impossible to separate the course from our overall goal for K-12 educational technology...student achievement. Instead of thinking of the challenges of the moment try to focus on the future rewards. How will this change your classroom? Which students would benefit from your professional growth? Why should you re-envision your classroom across a digital, global landscape? The most logical answer...our Students. I encourage you to watch the video link and think of how your students would define a 21st century student. What a great feeling for them to reflect on your classroom as a a part of their definition! You can complete this course with baby steps and the support from your classmates, instructor and Intel Engage colleagues. I look forward to your progress update and hope to celebrate your successfully completion with you.