School started Monday.
For the first time in nigh a decade, I didn’t welcome students into Mr. Vaudrey’s class with a handshake and a smile.
I didn’t take roll and ask each student how to pronounce their name and “Do you prefer Bernardino or Bernie?”.
I didn’t prep a beginning-of-the-year icebreaker activity.
I didn’t even hang up colorful examples of student work or revise a syllabus.
Because for this first time in eight years, I’m not starting the year in the classroom.
In May, I accepted a job as Teacher Coach of Instructional Technology for Bonita Unified.
“But Matt, didn’t you just take a new job in March?”
And I learned a lot while I was there, but it wasn’t for me. In this position, I’m in the classroom every day, I’m helping teachers with a variety of needs, and I retain the title “Teacher”, which is important to me.
Here’s what I did in my first week as EdTech Coach:
- Trained about 100 teachers on Music Cues in the classroom, which was well-received by many elementary teachers (a target market, in which I have very little experience and could use some credibility).
- Visited all but one of our district’s schools and met principals and teachers, nearly all of whom had no idea that I was even hired, but were thrilled to hear it.
- Performed bread-and-butter tasks with my new department (e.g. tag the Chromebook carts with District ID, follow up on tech needs from New Teacher Orientation, deliver keyboards) and actually enjoyed it. As 33% of my department, we’ll likely get to know each other pretty well, and Kris and Cheryl are both a hoot.
- Visited 15 (wow… that’s a lot) classrooms to help teachers with various tech needs. Most of them Elementary, most of them for Music Cues, all of them delightful and eager to learn.
Here’s the cool part: I log each visit here and get the results in a spreadsheet (below), so I can quantify just how helpful I am in a given week. My new boss liked this form so much, she had me make her one, which she then showed to her boss, who wants one, too.
And I can color-code the “Future Needs” column based on who I want to invite to a future training. For an upcoming Music Cues follow-up, all the teachers I visited who expressed interest are in green cells.
Next workshop is probably Google Classroom, so I’ll change the formatting to show me those cells and invite those teachers.
Oh! And I can use formulas to separate out the email of those teachers using the first and last name, concatenated with the district email!
Seriously, if you haven’t used Concatenate yet in a spreadsheet, you are missing out.
It’s more fun than Revenge of the Sith.
Anyway, the new job is great and I’m thrilled to have it.
What’s in my purse as I visit classes?
Matt Carries a Purse His Wife Tried to Donate to GoodWill
~Matt “Speadsheet and Star Wars Joke…this site is now complete.” Vaudrey