9/11/07

GEARING UP for new challenge


For the past two days I have been in Boise going through training for my new job.

When we arrived yesterday, the program manager started out our training telling us that there may not be funding for the program, and he had until 5 p.m. today to let the governor know if the matching funds were available.

Not a great way to get people motivated about their new positions.

But to give him credit, he was very postive and said he believed it would all work out.

Today, Gov. Otter extended the deadline because he believed that Gear Up Idaho had made enough progress and that they would be able to get the funding. See article here.

Whew!!

Yesterday we learned all about the Gear Up program, and how we would be working with the 7th and 8th grade classes this year, and follow them through graduation, picking up another class of 7th graders next year. We learned about all kinds of things to help create a program that will best serve the students in our districts.

Today, we did Dependable Strenth Training. It helped each of us define the things we are good at. Some of mine were creativity, planning and organizing, visionary, writer, effective communicator and musical.

I love doing exercises like this that help remind me what my strengths are, and now I can use that knowledge in preparing for the plan to help the students at Kellogg Middle School.

One thing I put down as an example of a "Good Experience" today was a project I did as a parent volunteer at Meridian Elementary. I went in once a week to a fourth grade classroom and did a writing workshop where I exposed the students to different forms of writing such as poetry, memoir writing and newspaper articles. At the end of the year, I picked the best piece of writing each student did, and published a book, then had a literary tea, invited the parents of the students, and each student read their piece of writing to the group.

I realized today that I could take parts of this project I did almost 10 years ago, and adapt it to my current job.

Lots of work ahead, but this training has been a great help, and I'm looking forward to jumping in and coming up with a plan to help these students!!

4 comments:

Shelby said...

Good luck with your new job.. I really like the video/song you have playing.

Silver Valley Girl said...

Thanks, Shelby. I am looking forward to this new challenge. And glad you liked the video.

Pinehurst in my Dreams said...

Sounds like a lot of work, and fun! Here, the Jr. High's started creating "teams" in the 7th grade. Our JH had 2 teams - blue and white. The kids and teacher's were divided between the teams, so one team of kids all had the same teachers - and the other team had the other teachers. When the kids moved to 8th grade, they were still on the same teams, but had names like Extreme Team/Adventure Team and had a different set of teachers. They weren't all scrambled until they reached 9th grade. Some of the kids didn't know half of their classmates until grade 9! It kept the teachers more aware of students who were exceptional and those who needed additional help, and made the school seem smaller than it really was.

They also moved the 7th graders to the front hall of the building, and the eighth graders to the second hall, and the 9th graders whereever. Originally, the 9th graders were in "A" hall and the 7th graders had to walk through them to get to their classes. My oldest daughter was terrified of having to push through the bigger kids to get to the classrooms in the back of the school, so I brought her home and homeschooled her the first year.

The other two girls had the teams when they went, and it was so much better.

Silver Valley Girl said...

What a great idea. I love it when schools change and try different ways to improve the learning environment for the students.