Expanding the Classroom

I am in my 9th year of teaching and I’ve had two very different teaching experiences that greatly influence the ways that I do things in my current classroom. My first teaching job was at an online charter school. I taught my students 100% through video, text, images, and live webcasts. From a creative point of view, it was fantastic because I had several hours a day to devote to making content for my students to consume.

I worked at my online teaching job for four years until my wife got a job offer in another state and we moved. In my online teaching role I served as a teacher and for my last two years at the school, at the educational technology coordinator. I also earned my masters in ed tech during that time. It was a lot of fun and I learned a lot about ways to develop online content that is rich and engaging for students.

I’ve been teaching at a traditional school for the past five years and I’ve loved it. I get to be creative, but in very different ways, and I get to interact with my students in a live, face to face way each day. I am not willing to say that one type of instruction is better than the other, but they both have their pluses and minuses. For me, I love being able to see my students, but I miss getting the time to develop truly engaging content each and every day. That’s not to say that I don’t use/make engaging content, but I don’t have the chance to pour hours into a simple video the way that I could have before.

Over the past few years I have helped fill my creativity void by creating online classes. I’ve found it very rewarding to take my current skill set, and apply it to mainly adult learners from across the world. The image above is a map of where I currently teach students across the globe.

It’s amazing to see people engage with content and learn from all reaches of the world. My courses are almost entirely video based and teach about the tools I use each day to work with my classroom students. I can teach any subject, interest, or whim that I want and see what connects with students. One of my goals this year was to develop three new courses and I am mid-production on one of them.

I love coming home from teaching, spending time with the family, and then teaching more. It fills a creative hole that I have been looking to fill and reminds me each day that I really love what I do and I’m lucky to be able to have an impact on my local and global classrooms.





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