I'm a Catch!
Why should a school district hire me? It is a perfect question. What do I have that would STAND OUT and make someone want ME? Yes, me! April Wolfe?!
Ever since I was a little girl I always dreamed of being a teacher. I have never wanted to be anything else. I remember setting out my stuffed animals in a row and trying to teach them.
I must say I don't know if they learned anything, but I enjoyed trying my best to teach them.
In High School I was able to get practice and experience teaching. My parents ran the local YMCA and they would have people not be able to come into work so I would get to go in and help. I was able to teach gymnastic classes to swim classes to senior classes. It was great experience for me working with children and also adults. I helped out in the daycare too.
I was a cheerleader growing up so cheerleading helped me be a leader as well as adding to my resume in teaching. My mom and I started an All Star Cheerleading Squad and I got to teach them how to cheer. In college I cheered too and was part of the Universal Cheerleading Association. My summers were full of working with younger cheerleaders and teaching them how to be better at cheerleading.
I graduated from Bowling Green State University with a degree in Early Childhood Education. I was finally able to get my own classroom and get to do what I had always dreamed of. I was SO excited! I got to teach second grade in the school that I grew up going to. I taught second grade there (in Ohio) for two years.
2 years of Second Grade Experience
Then I moved to Florida. I got a job as a kindergarten teacher. While I was teaching kindergarten that year I also earned my Master's degree in Reading from Nova Southeastern University. I knew that at that time that I needed to get my Master's in case I ever went back to Ohio because they were going to start requiring it.
I stayed at that school and taught kindergarten for a year and then I found another school that was just opening and closer to where I lived. It made sense to switch schools.
1 decade of experience in All Day Everyday Kindergarten.
I taught kindergarten there for another 9 years. Also while teaching kindergarten I ended up working on getting certified as a National Board Certified Teacher (NBCT). I earned my National Board status in 2008.
National Board Certified Teacher
Then I decided I wanted to teach first grade. I taught first grade for two years and then moved over the summer back to Ohio due to my husband's job.
2 years First Grade Experience
14 total years of teaching experience
So there you have my background. The experience that I have had. Now I want to share somethings I do in my classroom and my classroom atmosphere.
I LOVE my students. They become part of my family. I build great rapport with my students and my classroom parents. I feel I communicate with my classroom parents very well. I feel communication on both parts is essential to having a great year. I get my parents notified on everything that has to do with our classroom. This past year I found an excellent app that allowed my communication with parents to expand. I loved using the app Seesaw to do this.
Seesaw is a digital portfolio app. My students would take pictures of completed work and share with their parents. The parents could like and comment on their work. The students loved getting a little note from their parent on their work and being able to comment on other classmates work. We could reflect on the students work with the app. I could send notes, newsletters, and videos within the app. The parents would receive a notification allowing them to check the app. Another way I communicate with parents is by sending home a weekly newsletter. This way parents have another glimpse into our classroom. I always tell my parents to call, email, come in if they have a question or a concern.
I used a lot of the Whole Brain Teaching (WBT) techniques in my classroom. I love teaching vocabulary using the Teach! Okay! method. I love the students being able to be silly, talking to one another, and moving. It helps them learn the material. I used the WBT rules and scoreboard too.
Another way I run my class or help my class run is by using Daily 5. One of my favorite times of the day is guided reading time. I love being able to teach my students how to be independent. I love pulling small groups and feeling like I make a difference in their learning. I also like incorporating guided math groups.
Guided Reading and Math
I have used different things for discipline. I have used the clip chart that has colors up and down. I have also used Classdojo. I love how Classdojo shows the parents exactly why their child is earning or losing points. I like being as specific as possible so the parents understand. I do think it is important for students to hear praise. I try to praise my students a lot!!
One of my passions is incorporating technology to my teaching. The last two years I have piloted 1:1 iPads in my classroom. The students love them and so do I.
I use the iPads as a way to enhance their learning. In today's world technology is so important so I think it is important to include it in my teaching.
Here is a video I made about what we did for the week of April 11th.
Here is another project my students did on researching a famous person (as seen above) but then they took everything they learned and used an app to create a project.
Part of teaching kids to use technology is also teaching the students to code. I have used great apps/websites to help the kiddos learn how to code.
One year I had my class make a movie. It was a great experience for the class and myself. We entered the movie in a movie awards. We ran away with a first place trophy in a comedy.
This past year at the end of the year my class made a music video. It was a fun time with the class.
I really focused on teaching writing last year. My kiddos were so motivated to write their stories. Here is one of my kiddos stories that she wrote and then made a video of it.
Here is another video newsletter. I loved being able to give parents a better picture of inside our classroom.
I think students having accountability is very important in their learning. Here is a video one of my students made showing me what she worked on during center/Daily 5.
I love teaching!! It is my passion. I love being a leader and a mentor. I have had numerous student teachers over the years as well as first year teachers that I mentored.
I love setting up my classroom at the beginning of every year. I love researching for new ideas on blogs and Pinterest.
My whole blog post today is dedicated to showing how and why I'M A CATCH for teaching. I am a hardworking, creative, and an experienced teacher! I work hard to do everything possible so my students can succeed. I like making a difference in the child's life.
Thanks so much for stopping by to see why I'm a catch!
Have a Wolfelicious day!