My Greatest Accomplishments with Students

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My greatest accomplishment as it relates to students in the school setting was to be one of six teachers selected in SY 1997-1998 to participate in a six week professional development training for designing and implementing a 21st century classroom. The training included the critical attributes of a 21st century classroom where the traditional physical design was a teaching cart that included a large screen television, a desktop computer with Microsoft office and access to the internet, speakers and a video recorder. The training also implemented instructional strategies for performance based assessments and the use of technology based activities that led to increased student achievement in the classroom. The new technology made a remarkable difference in my delivery of instruction in both my American History and World Geography classes, for I crafted my lesson plans that included hands on activities through the inquiry approach. The challenge of student engagement in the learning process and their having access to technology was accomplished by scheduling my classes in the new media library during class periods. The ultimate challenge of increasing the students' cultural knowledge and learning critical thinking skills was achieved by allowing them research time to examine documents and information, and then frame responses based on the results of their findings. Students prepared individual and group reports by framing oral presentations, written presentations and power point presentations. All students were required to present their findings to the class and were coached on how to defend their viewpoints by preparing themselves to address any counter arguments and any evidence stated by a classmate that challenged their information. I ended each class period with a mini-lecture on the value of knowledge based learning and simply forming an opinion

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