Everyone remembers the teacher that made a difference in their lives. Our team writes about the teachers that changed our lives in our bios on our Educator Network staff page – for some, it was the teacher who pushed us to be more than we thought we could be; for others, it was the one who turned us on to new ideas or challenged us to think of things from a new perspective. For all of us, it was the teacher who went the extra mile to make sure that we could succeed.
Yesterday, we invited a group of these teachers to attend the inaugural Discovery Educator Network Summit at the NECC Conference in Philadelphia. These are the teachers who are making a difference in the lives of kids today. They are on the front lines of the education system and we couldn’t think of any group better suited to help us set the course for the Discovery Educator Network, so we invited them to spend a few days with us talking about how we can provide the most value for teachers in today’s educational climate. Here’s what we heard:
The Discovery Educator Network should:
· Provide a forum for teachers to share materials and ideas through discussion boards and chat rooms.
· Leverage the Discovery name to develop partnership with museums, cable companies, zoos and national parks, associations and corporations that will break down the walls of the classroom and provide unique learning experiences for teachers and students
· Partner with authors, Discovery personalities and education professionals to conduct on-line events and webinars
· Provide professional development opportunities for teachers on a local and national level that focus on both technical and non-technical topics
· Give recognition to teachers who are still finding ways to keep their classroom exciting and creative even in today’s “teach to the test” atmosphere
· Create opportunities for students to participate in the network through competitions, awards and events that will be appealing to them.
The list goes on, but these were the key themes of the day, so I thought I’d throw it out for some feedback:
What do YOU think the Discovery Educator Network should be and how can we provide the most value to teachers?
I’d also like to welcome our first official members of the Discovery Educator Network. We’re honored to have you on our team:
Rachel Amstutz: Severna Park Middle School, Severna Park, MD
Carole Y. L. Gooden: St. Lucie County Schools, St. Lucie, FL
Katie Leach, Weatherly Area Schools, Weatherly, PA
Josie Levine, Flushing, NY
Chris Marshall: Branch Crossing Junior High School, The Woodlands, TX
Lori Musick, Rancho Santa Margarita Middle School, Rancho Santa Margarita, CA