I’m getting certified to teach gifted-talented students. The beauty of being in the US is the professional development is paid for by the school. I don’t have to beg, borrow, or negotiate. The PD policy is clear and straightforward: ask and ye shall receive.
I finished my summer theory course already, and it was informative. Now I’m starting the curric and instruction section. For our first assignment we had to demonstrate basic technical know-how, including the art of uploading a document to the web. The professor gave us the prompt you’ll see below, and probably expected a couple sentences from each student. I thought the prompt was very silly so I wrote a silly answer. I posted it here because I laughed a lot while writing it and think it sums up my life pretty well right now.
Describe how you will ensure that you set aside time and a place to complete your assignments for this course. What will you do to stay on track?
I have a home office that I share with my wife. My desk looks very expensive, but in reality it is two end tables and a door that I found on a curb in Greenville one afternoon and managed to cram into a Prius. I’m crafty like that.
Also in this office is a solid 10 mbps wireless internet connection, a power supply that so far has proven reliable, and enough banana chips, almonds, and raisins to outlast this course, or the looming zombie apocalypse, whichever comes first.
Tools at my disposal include a stapler, staples, paper clips, highlighter pens, regular pens, red pens for when I’m angry or want to get a point across, and an aged but trusty MacBook Pro. The MacBook Pro I purchased in Hong Kong, the spring of 2010. I’m pretty sure I got the best possible price for it, and haggled a carrying case and USB key as part of the deal. The USB drive doesn’t work anymore, but in this modern age, those things are becoming obsolete anyway.
Which brings me to the software. The single greatest invention for an ADD-addled mind such as mine has been cloud technology. It enables me to access and edit documents from any terminal, anywhere in the world. Same goes for the cloud calendar. When a deadline approaches, reminders alert me a week ahead, a day ahead, and fifteen minutes before. This happens across four different devices, so there’s really no excuse for me any longer to miss a paper, forget my 6th grade class while I’m making coffee in the lounge, or fail to bring home flowers for my wife’s birthday. She got really ticked off that time I forgot her birthday. Who does that?
My life is a world of distraction. We have two dogs at home, and I believe one of them to be a complete and hopeless idiot. She barks at postmen, the maintenance guy, and often, nothing at all. Nothing. I also like to write and sometimes get caught up in flame wars on social media websites. I read from ten or so online newspapers as well as thick books on Russian history, and I read slowly. Sometimes I wonder how I finished high school, much less graduate school. Fortunately, there are numerous factors that will keep me on track.
I’d like to one day become a curriculum coordinator, and I see a GT certification as being part of that roadmap. I work hard at things if there’s a good reason for me to do so. My wife is an enthusiastic fan of my continuing education, because we prefer to earn more money rather than less money, so she’ll nag me if need be. I also work for a principal who will likely fire me if I blow off this class, since he’s paying the tuition. He’s a fair man.
On a final note, it’s safe to say that I will stay on track with this course because I am a grown up and that’s just what you’re supposed to do. So long as the professor clearly expresses what she would like the class to do, then I will do those things and make a concerted effort to engage with the material.