On Friday, I skipped school with a 3rd grade teacher in my building and drove to Delaware for the WBT Conference. I am SO glad that I did! Although most of the material was familiar to me, the conference helped sharpen my WBT implementation, allowed me to view WBT from the perspective of my students, and most importantly, affirmed my mission to make the education system better for the children in this country!
During the conference, we had to speak in complete sentences for EVERYTHING. After a short while, it became second nature to do it. The experience made me realize that I don’t require it in my classroom at ALL times. My students really do well with this overall, but I’m not always consistent with it during Math. Today, I whipped them into shape in only one period! Complete sentences were effortlessly flowing out of their mouths. I also worked on making mighty groans more quick and crisp!
As long as we keep our own energy levels high, and continue to motivate our students, there is no reason for us to 'lose' our students in the afternoon. Coach B. demonstrated that afternoon energy can be MANIPULATED (as all things can!) When teachers return from lunch, it seems as though student energy is impossible to revive. Through the proper use of the Scoreboard, momentum isn’t lost! After a long lunch break and a stroll in the park at the conference, I was full and lethargic. It was clear that the majority of other teachers were in the same boat. It was only a matter of time before we were transformed under the power of the Scoreboard! The energy was actually at an all day high towards the END of the conference, before we were released early for good behavior!
The most inspiring time of the day, was listening to Coach “get serious”. I have a deep passion for teaching and strive to make a difference for each of my students. I wish I were the type that could use the computer to produce page after page of curriculum genius, but then those amazing teachers on teacherspayteachers.com, wouldn’t acquire my hard earned money! My strength is connecting with my students and delivering content in an engaging way. WBT has taken me to another level in this area. I believe WBT is so addicting because it helps bring out the best in each of us. Imagine if EVERY student had teachers that LOVED what they did and used techniques that made learning exciting and enjoyable! I am working towards certification so that I can help show others that WBT is a movement that is valuable and rewarding!
If you can make it to a conference, you will see that it is worth the journey. I gained a great deal from only one day. I get jealous of the West Coast WBT family, so I will be working on getting a conference in the City of Brotherly Love. It might take some work getting Coach B. over here, but both the teachers and students will thank me in the end!