POST #1: Introductions and Sharing Your Past Experience

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Re: POST #1: Introductions and Sharing Your Past Experience

SKunze
My name is Sonia Kunze. I am currently a 5th grade classroom teacher in Red Oak, Iowa.  I have been teaching 5th grade for three years, before 5th grade I was a 4th grade teacher for nine years.  Before becoming a classroom teacher, I taught K-12 English as a Second Language (ESL) teacher for six years at the beginning of my career.

When I was an ESL teacher, I used the AEA website constantly, mostly the Discovery resource, which is no longer an option.  I would base my lessons around what my students were learning in their core classes and try and give them more background knowledge, information in their native languages, and support their general education classes.  I would check books out, some in English, some in Spanish, and a few in Chinese.  I was able to find books in the native language of my students, that had a lower readibility level and some of my students enjoyed those.  Other students preferred the information in their native language at their reading level.  

When I switched to a gen ed classroom setting, I relied heavily on our curriculum.  However, I have come to realized how much I need to supplement some of my curriculum to meet state standards. I knew the AEA website had so much more that I could use, if only I could access it!  I'm so grateful for this class.  Before taking this class I was checking out novel sets to support my reading groups and now I have so many resources at my fingertips!
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Re: POST #1: Introductions and Sharing Your Past Experience

ambschmitz
In reply to this post by eabbey
I work at Harlan Intermediate School in Iowa.  I am currently a 3rd-grade general education teacher.  I frequently order books and book sets for my classroom for a variety of projects and instruction.  I have also tried some of the science kits available through the AEA.  The variety of books and kits available are wonderful.  The delivery is fast and simple.

My hope was that this course would help familiarize me with all the resources available that I was unaware of and felt that I wouldn't otherwise utilize.  Also, I felt more knowledge of the resources introduced throughout this course could enhance the learning and teaching experience in my classroom.  I just knew that there were probably some great resources that I wasn't taking advantage of and needed assistance to find out about these tools.
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Re: POST #1: Introductions and Sharing Your Past Experience

schlicher
In reply to this post by eabbey
I am just starting my 6th year of teaching science at a junior high school in Iowa City. Half of my science sections are stand-alone, while the others are in a program that combines science with language arts and social studies. Prior to this course I was familiar with the AEA online resources and knew that they had a large library of useful items. However, I never really felt like I had the time and structure to go through them to see what was available. Therefore, I’d always fall back into the habit of googling to find lesson ideas and videos. Most of the time this came with moderate success, but I always felt like I had to spend a lot of time sifting through irrelevant search results and vetting the resources myself for quality and appropriateness. This experience is what led me to take this course. It has been nice to have a structured setting that discusses the main components of AEA resources and how we can easily access them.
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Re: POST #1: Introductions and Sharing Your Past Experience

elinor.kriegercoble@gmail.com
In reply to this post by eabbey
Elinor Krieger Coble

I am currently a building substitute at City High School in Iowa City, Iowa. My job is to be the chameleon of the building, filling in to any and every position in the building that my school needs me to be. Some days I am filling in for three or four different teachers in the same day, so I need to be prepared for every situation every day!
I have no experience using the Iowa AEA Online resources, besides using Britannica Online when I was in high school myself.
What interested me in taking this course was that very fact, that I had never used it before and that there were so many resources at my fingertips to be able to effectively use to help my students. I believe this will especially be useful for days when there aren't very concrete substitute plans, or when there is an emergency and a teacher has to leave without preparing plans. Knowing now how many resources I can direct my students to is extremely exciting.
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Re: POST #1: Introductions and Sharing Your Past Experience

Cstorey26
In reply to this post by eabbey
I have worked for ten years in mostly preschool as a classroom teacher. The school I have worked at has always had a partnership with AEA267 and I have always had a great relationship with them. I have taken some of my mandatory trainings through AEA online. I decided to take this course to learn more about the resources that the online databases have. I thought I would get access to them and be able to try new things in the classroom.
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Re: POST #1: Introductions and Sharing Your Past Experience

jenjeanthebean
In reply to this post by eabbey
My name is Jen Rafdal. I stepped away from my classroom a few years ago in order to help my family. Prior to that I was a fourth grade teacher in the Southeast Polk School District. I first learned about the online resources offered through Heartland AEA in a course I took at Grand View University. I finished my teaching degree as an adult. Therefore, having a plethora of free resources available to a new teacher was amazing! I took a lot of notes. It was a very long time ago, but I believe my son’s elementary school had a login and password. So, I was able to experience some of the resources and practice them with my son, who was in kindergarten at the time. I later used a few of the resources in my fourth grade social studies classes. The kids enjoyed it so much. It was relevant and engaging to all of them. It became easier and easier as the years passed as we gained more access to laptops and chromebooks. Admittedly though, I was often too crazed with the workload of teaching to investigate additional ways to use any of the reading resources.  I knew I was only scratching the surface in my fourth grade classroom. So, I decided to take this course to refresh my memory.
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Re: POST #1: Introductions and Sharing Your Past Experience

mdoyle
In reply to this post by eabbey
I have spent the last eight years teaching at Hempstead High School in Dubuque, Iowa. I am a Special Education teacher but I also coteach with the social studies department. While coteaching World Cultures, we would frequently use the Culture Grams website. We found it to be not only a great resource for our lessons but also a great site for our students to use while researching different countries throughout the world. Culture Grams is well designed and user friendly. With just a little guidance from myself and my co-teacher, our students were able to easily navigate their way through the website. The vast amount of information presented on each country is what makes Culture Grams so valuable. I have yet to find another website that gives such an accurate look of what daily life in a foreign country looks like. The reason I decided to take this course is to see what other websites I could implement into my classroom. I had such a great experience using Culture Grams, I wanted to learn as much as I could about the other websites AEA had to offer. I am truly excited to use more of these Resources (SiRs and Britannica) in the upcoming school year.
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Re: POST #1: Introductions and Sharing Your Past Experience

Yamala
In reply to this post by eabbey
I have not started working yet, but will be teaching 3rd and 4th grade special education at Meskwaki Settlement School.  I was previously employed there in 2009 and after 7 years of teaching, decided to resign and try something new.  After a few years out of the educational field, I have decided to go back.  The reason for going back is because I miss working with kids and receiving those intrinsic rewards.  It makes me feel wonderful if I can just make one difference in a child's life.  I love helping and watching them learn.  The experience I have had using AEA online resources is when I was employed at the AEA in Media Services.  I was not familiar with any of the online resources, but I was the direct contact for schools when they either needed or forgot their passwords.  But I was not required to learn about them, as I was not teaching.  After seeing this class as an option, I knew I wanted to use the AEA online resources in the future when school starts.  But I needed to learn HOW to use them myself.  There are so many resources and I can't wait to use them in my own instruction!
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Re: POST #1: Introductions and Sharing Your Past Experience

jadams225
In reply to this post by eabbey
My name is Jen Adams and I am a school psychologist in Iowa. I have worked for Heartland AEA and Great Prairie AEA. My most recent employment was with the Iowa Department of Education as an MTSS Education Program Consultant. I joined the Department to work on the implementation of the early literacy early warning system FAST. I recently left the Department and I am exploring options for employment, including my own consulting services in MTSS, the Science of Reading, the Science of Math, (really the science of instructional practices applied to content areas). I am keenly interested in embedding social-emotional practices in everything I do with educators.
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Re: POST #1: Introductions and Sharing Your Past Experience

courtneymk
In reply to this post by eabbey
I am a 5th grade teacher in North Liberty and work part time (I teach in the afternoons only). I remember getting an introduction to AEA online resources when I first started working 15 years ago, but I haven't had a refresher since. I have started to teach science and social studies over the last few years and I feel like I am always looking for additional resources for students to use to conduct research. I am also looking for resources for myself as I am learning new content all the time.
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Re: POST #1: Introductions and Sharing Your Past Experience

jhageman
In reply to this post by eabbey
I currently work at a junior high school in Iowa City. I teach 7th and 8th grade. I have previously used AEA resources for supplementing the learning of my ELL students. Book Flix and True Flix has some good resources available for these students. I have also used AEA for my own personal growth through their offered courses. I decided to take this course because I knew AEA offered more resources than just Book Flix and True Flix, but I just didn't know much about those resources. I wanted to find more ways for my students to safely navigate the internet when they do research assignments and ways for me to enrich their education. I really like how this course was offered as self-paced. It allowed for me to work on it during my own time and it allowed for me to reflect upon what I was learning by giving me sufficient time to explore the resources offered.
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Re: POST #1: Introductions and Sharing Your Past Experience

Maurerg
In reply to this post by rdw
I currently work in Northwest Iowa as an At-Risk Cordinator/any subbing needed in all areas.  I have only taken one on-line pace class it went well.  I have been in education for over 20 years.  I try to use the AEA materials as much as possible for credits and in the classroom.  The resources that the AEA has to offer since everything is on-line makes it more convenient to access resources.  The reason I took this course is to gain more knowledge and also try to teach technology in the classroom.  So I look forward to learning more as I go.
Thanks
GAM
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