Florida Education, Planning, Teacher Evaluation

Week 1 – How is it going you ask?

Well…pretty good but a little wobbly! I have been ‘in transition’ for the last 6 years.

You figure, 2004, about 8 months before me moved to England we new it was a possibility and then took about 6 months to make happen.  2005 brought a new home in a new country. It was interesting to be an American overseas.  There are many stories but maybe this one sums it up….

The first year we moved…I just should not work.  But I did.  I was a supervisor at a child care center.  The move was in introduction to living within a military community and then learning what it means NOT to be military living in a military community.  It was tough to have the freedom to choose whoever you wanted to be friends with and then learning about how the military culture works.

It’s just interesting to say the least. Then…I had to learn what it meant to be an American living in England.  I am a teacher.  So after a few months of being a supervisor, I asked my boss to teach the 3 to 5 year olds.  She said “NO!”  I adored her.  She had a great heart and we made a good team.

So I get it…but I am a teacher.  I think I tried to resign 5 times before I finally said… “Really, I want to teach.”   But by that time, I wanted to teach in the English school system.  My children were going to school in it and I was very interested in what I was seeing. So…I registered at a local university and started my masters.  I wanted to learn about the educational system and volunteer.  I choose to study literacy difficulties because I am so intrigued by how language is acquired. Where is this headed?

Well… My full time MA class had people from all over the work… Tunisia, India, Greece, US (me), Oman and more.  But, they elected me the MA rep (I didn’t volunteer by the way) because I”was American and would be loud and advocate for us.”  Interesting..because if you met me you’d find I’m not  ’loud’ by American standards.   But compared to many of the people I’ve met overseas… even I came across as ‘more’ sometimes.  It took a good year to learn how to be more temprate (best word I can think of). So.. as MA rep I attended a conference on International Students’ Writing.  It was brought up that “Americans are rubbish writers.”  (It was not meant offensively by ANY MEANS.)  As someone who had taken an MA course in the states and now here…I understood.  The writing standards are very different.

Working on my MA courses and writing my papers was HARD!  I had worked extra, met with a tutor, evaluated and reflected on the writing in UK journals versus US.  And I can tell an author’s home country pretty accurately now. Is it better or worse?  It’s just culture and standards.

So how…after spending 5 years adjusting to England’s educational standards and culture.  I’m back…in Florida.  AND UGH!  I’ve changed.  I’m so thankful that my boss seeing the quality in me…at the same time, I notice an awkwardness…not just with people I work with but also with people in the community. If I write, which is pretty natural now, I can sense that my words come across quite ‘snobby’ or ‘arrogant’…not quite sure of the word to use…haughty?

I worry about losing the standard I learned but realize that Americans don’t quite write so formally. Do we write worse?  I don’t think so…but I do feel the English write more specific, tight…the word use should accurately reflect your thoughts in as little words as possible.  So the ‘bigger’ words help because they convey a specific idea in shorter time. So….I went to write up my GSP program for review.  I could feel an uneasiness as I wanted to pull in research and write.  However, I knew it would seem pompous…too much.  This was just going to the district.  But in trying to create more ease…I feel like it just creates more mess.

So…here I will work to continue my learned level of writing.  I felt it created a sense of professionalism and demonstrated true, deep synthesis of educational ideas. The level of writing challenged my level of thinking! (Does that make any sense). There are other areas that I feel flux with…but I have to get back to work. Goals: Plan K-2 science. Reviewed my school improvement plan – will we create a new one each year and will the goals change? Reviewed Florida’s EAP.

Work on my GSP site and figure out what Education City has to offer. I created a DROP BOX account…OH I cannot say enough about Drop box!   I am digitally organized! My county is now on GOOGLE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  THANK YOU! and run! This blog will also be for my PGP reflection. Hope you all are having a good summer!  school is in!


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