Unwritten .....

2018 was a year for several chapters in my life to come to an end. After ten years of being the techie teacher at the Pratt school district, I had to say goodbye. Watching my students grow up over the past ten years made it very difficult to walk away. It really was hard to leave that part of my life behind as our family was relocated to Dodge City for my husband's work. 2018 also marked the last year I would see either of my sons' faces at the school I work at. My youngest son just had to grow up and graduate from high school and then head off to college. It was a struggle knowing that I wouldn't see their faces in the hallway or them surprising me by popping into my classroom just to say hi. I also had to say goodbye to the home my sons grew up in and the only home our daughter has ever known. The hardest part of 2018 was saying goodbye to one of the most influential women I know. My grandmother who has been a huge part of my life since I was nine years old left this world to join my grandfather.

My grandmother taught me a lot of lessons that still touch me today. She taught me to always make my bed every morning. In a world of chaos having one part of your life neat, tidy, and organized gives you a sense of peace at the end of the day. Having just one piece of your life orderly will also allow you to start each day fresh and new. She also taught me that you need to look your best every day no matter if you were going out of the house or not. Whenever I saw her, she always had your make-up on. She always had her eyebrows done and her lipstick on. She would also wear a piece of jewelry and a dress every day. It was important to her to always look her best. She would tell us you never know what kind of encounter you will have each day, so it is best to always put your best foot forward and look your best. I may not be dress wearing person, but I do put on my make-up, do my hair and try to look nice every day. I have even started to make my own jewelry to wear.

As you may have noticed I had not have been very regular in sharing my techie tips and tricks this past year. With the energy, I had left from all of the changes that have occurred in 2018 I decided that I needed to narrow my focus and work on my doctoral studies. Teaching full-time, studying full-time, being a parent and a wife full-time something in my life had to take the back burner.

2019 is going to be the year of new chapters and acceptance. I had to get to a point and accept the changes in my life, accept what I can not change, and accept that my future is unwritten. I do not know where I will go from here or which path I will take. There are many paths in front of me that I would have never dreamed I would be on. Who would ever have thought the quiet small town girl would be a leader in educational technology? The girl that several people thought would never attend college or obtain a degree. A girl that was overlooked and even brushed to the side. Who lived literally on the wrong side of the tracks. Would be looking at becoming a professor, a teacher of teachers, a leader in education. My grandmother apparently knew that I would go the distance. When I was being told that it wasn't possible, I would not make it. She is in my corner encouraging me. With her, as my cheerleader, I was the first person in my family to attend college. Not only did I obtained a degree I am currently working on my third degree. Even though she will not see me finish, I know she is still cheering me on.

As we reflect on the past year, we need to realize we can not change the past, but accept that those encounters happened, move forward, and focus on what we can improve. In 2004 I presented my 1st conference. It was literally the first conference I had attended in my career. The majority of the conferences I have attended I have presented at. 2019 will be no different. I will be presenting so far at two edTech conferences that mean the world to me, MACE-KS and ISTE. I will be sharing how students can create digital Breakouts that will allow students to show their understanding for a particular topic. It is my first step in showing that in education if we continue to assess students in the same manner time in and time out via a standardized test, we do not fully grasp an individual student's understanding. Just keep in mind if a fish was judged on his ability to climb a tree we as a society will label that fish a failure. That poor fish then believes that he is indeed a failure. The field of education needs a change and what better way to make a difference than from within.  After all, education makes all professions possible.

Coming Soon... #iMake-KS

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