Saturday, January 9, 2016

Connected Educator Lunch Break

At lunch yesterday, one of my colleagues asked me what I was doing on my phone.
So, I explained.

  • I reviewed my work emails to see if there were any that needed a response before the end of the day (which would be my next break).
  • I reviewed photos taken during our morning Skype with Jess Lifshitz' class in Chicago, where we discussed our Mock Caldecott winners. I had just started a PicCollage to share later.
  • I responded to a Twitter message from Matt Miller about his Monday Skype with my last two classes. He's going to help my students improve their sketch noting skills, and we were discussing how the 30 minutes would be best used.
  • I read a direct Twitter message from author Gae Polisner, responding that she would be able to read aloud to my students on World Read Aloud Day (Feb 24). So excited!
  • I was reading a group tweet among Chuck Taft, Erik Palmer and myself, regarding my June Summer Spark presentation. I found out that Erik was donating copies of his upcoming book (about teaching argument and reasoning) to give away to participants. So excited.
  • I checked in with my healthy eating/exercise Facebook group and responded to a few FB messages.
  • I listened to/read messages from members of my various Voxer groups, and left a short voice Vox in response to a specific question.
  • I sent a Remind message to parents about our upcoming field trip to the University of Minnesota.
  • I read the day's Nerdy Book Club Blog post, and then opened my Amazon app to put two of the suggested books on my expanding wish list.
  • I looked over my Twitter notifications, responding to a few.
  • I scanned my personal email messages and took care of those.

My colleague was surprised at what I did with these 20 minutes during lunch, all the while participating in conversation with our other colleagues where appropriate.

He commented about my large circle of connections outside our building.

That's what being a connected educator means.
I chat with other educators all over the country/world so that I can learn and grow.
I look for opportunities to connect my students with other students who have different experiences and surroundings.
I seek unexpected and incredible experiences for my students, like Global Read Aloud, Mock Caldecott, Global School Play Day (Feb 3), World Read Aloud Day, March Book Madness Battles, etc. These experiences help get kids excited to come to school.

I'm not content staying inside the box (the walls of my classroom/school/district). Outside the box is much more interesting.

Well, I left lunch a few minutes early to get set up for a GHO with Ms Lifshitz' afternoon class and Ms Picone's class from Long Island. Then, there would be one more Skype to wrap up our celebration of possible award-winning picture books. Before leaving for the day, I finished that PicCollage to post on our class Twitter page and Instagram account. It's how I tell our story.

Just another productive day at lunch for this connected educator.


  1. Sandy,
    I love this post! It's amazing how productive you were in such a short time. I sometimes stay in at lunch to respond to social media connections. Thanks for sharing.

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