Skip to main content

Things Teachers Don't Learn in School - #1 Extracurriculars

As the title indicates, I am going to write a series of blog posts about the things you don't learn during your undergraduate education as an education major. Today's focus: extracurriculars. This is a topic I feel particularly passionate about and if you've read my other posts, you may have caught onto that, so here we go.

What do you mean you didn't learn that?
I mean that no one ever told me that coaching and overseeing extracurricular activities would be a huge part of my work life. No one ever told me that these experiences would change me as a teacher because they would help me to get to know my students as something other than students. No one taught me that there would be days that being a part of these things would be my favorite pat of my day. I was actually discouraged from taking on these things as a new teacher, but I have always liked to blaze my own trail. I know that taking on additional responsibilities as a new teacher can be daunting, and it is not for everyone. I currently coach our mock trial team and organize our spring break study abroad trips.

During every trip and every mock trial season, I have gotten to teach lessons that don't get taught in the classroom. In class I don't always get to model how to lose gracefully, stand up for what you believe in, and become an effective leader. During a chemistry lesson, I don't get to show students how to be respectful when entering a new culture or how to take risks when trying new foods to fully experience a new place. I did not learn in college that I would be teaching students how to balance their time and not over-commit, and that these hard life lessons would come through extra-curricular activities. No class was offered on building confidence and helping students find their passions.

So what's the point?
The point is that for every second, minute, and hour I put into planning, coaching, and traveling with students, I get so much back in return. The rapport and relationships I build with my students during these experiences help me build stronger rapport within the classroom. I am not saying that every first year teacher should dive right into coaching and moderating, however, I am saying to consider it when you think you do have the time because it is an incredibly rewarding experience. I am so thankful that my principal encouraged me to coach as a first year teacher and travel to Boston and France with students as a second year teacher. These experiences have helped me be open minded and shaped the kind of educator I strive to be every single day.

Take the risk by getting involved. It's worth it.


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Takeaways from ISTE 2019

Over the summer, I have had the privilege to attend some incredible professional learning events. ISTE has been a highlight of my summer the past two years and I can't wait to share with you what I have learned. I cannot fit all my takeaways into one post, so I'd encourage you to check out the #ISTE19 and #NotAtISTE hashtags on Twitter to see what was going on during the event.

Top 5 Takeaways - ISTE 2019

You can use Pages to create self-paced workbooks! If you didn't have the chance to visit the Apple pop-up classroom, I would encourage you to visit the Apple Teacher Learning Center to see what they were sharing. It was so cool to use the Pages workbook to walk through the stations. I can't wait to start creating more in Pages this year!
Develop a coaching cycle for your school. I listened to so many tech and instructional coaches share their best practices and while all different, at the heart they centered on the same things. Ultimately, as coaches we want to help our …

Guest Post: Modeling in Blender (CG Cookie)

Modeling a Soda Can using Blender

Blender is an incredibly powerful 3D modeling tool and it can seem intimidating initially.
This article will help you create your first project in Blender so that you can see how incredibly fun it can be as well.

We don’t have the space for a comprehensive introduction to Blender here,
so for that you can watch thefree Blender Basics course on
If you haven’t downloaded Blender yet or need to update, you can find it
This article uses version 2.80.

Let’s get started!

To begin this project, delete everything in the default scene and create a mesh cylinder using the Add menu.

To make sure that it’s the proper size, switch the Units to Imperial in the Properties Editor scene tab and
change the Length to Inches. Open up the 3D View sidebar with the hotkey “N”, and then change the
dimensions to be 2.6, 2.6, and 4.83 for the X, Y, and Z values.

Switch into Edit Mode for the Cylinder, and add a loop cut with the hotkey Ctrl+R.

3 Tech Tools for Immediate Feedback

"Do you get it?""Does that make sense?" "Do you understand?" Since I can't actually get inside my students heads, I find myself constantly asking myself and asking my students these questions. I want to ensure they understand the concept and be able to work in small groups with the students that need additional assistance. When technology was introduced into my classroom, I knew there had to be a better way.
I discovered these three tools and my classroom has never been the same!
Socrative is a great option for getting student feedback right away. Teachers can create quizzes, polls, or activities and launch them from the teacher version. Students join the "Room" and are able to answer the questions. My favorite things about Socrative are the wide variety of question types (MC, FR, TF, etc) and the "See How We Did" button. The button allows you to not only see how many got it right and how many got it wrong, but also how man…