Hey all you DENmazing Educators! Welcome to the DEN Blog Open House!
I am a STEM Math teacher and Tech Integration Specialist in Marshfield WI.
I first learned of all the wonders of Discovery Education while experiencing the Siemens STEM Institute in 2010. While attending the STEM Institute, I was catapulted into real 21st Century learning with the DEN Team members, experiencing professional development like no other.
As the institute came to a close, I had gained a large network of STEM Educators who continued to share and grow with each other throughout the year. I took advantage of my DE Subscription gift, becoming more familiar with DEN activities while sharing what I had gained in STEM integration with the DE resources. I had been following the DEN Blogs through Feedblitz, which helped me keep my finger on the DEN Pulse. Obtaining STAR Status though sharing with my local teachers was a fun and easy task because I loved what DE had to offer. I sought out more DEN connections, participating in DE live and virtual events.
Every DEN Star I met, (virtually and live) was just as warm and helpful as all theDEN people who were at the Siemens Fellowship. I participated in as many DEN webinars as I could fit into my weekly schedule! Sure, I was exhausted from a long day of teaching, but the webinars were so proactive and interesting! Supported by positive, helpful chat… I just could not pass that up!
Could I really be this fortunate?
Had I found a whole network of people who were as passionate and committed to improving their craft of teaching?
I valued these connections so much, that I wanted even more!
I joined the Wisconsin LC in the spring of 2011, embracing the DEN community. Paying Forward, contributing to the WI DEN Blog and helping with WI Live events. In 2011, I took on more responsibility, becoming the DEN Blog Chair, diligently writing informative blogs on DE and STEM integration as well as DE Events and iPad apps.
I was chosen to attend the 2011 DEN Summer institute in San Diego.
The professional development and amazing educators who have more patience and understanding for helping each other cannot be matched! Such an abundant number of friendly, helpful mentors excited to share and help! …. and no Attitudes???? – Nope – None!
Again, I had become so motivated to learn new, exciting web 2.0 tools and resources, I could hardly sleep. The learning was intense yet it was so fun…. we were all functioning on a whole new level of consciousness where sleep was not a factor.
The Institute grew my professional network exponentially and the networking never stopped! Blogs, Webinars, Facebook, Edmodo all kept the relationships going throughout the school year. My momentum and passion continued, isolating my professional growth from the local political strains. DEN was my life Jacket – keeping me afloat in some of the most treacherous political waters.
Because of my STAR status, I had early access to the Techbook, integrating it across my student populations reaching as young as 4th grade STEM kids to Honors Algebra 2 students!
I headed back to DENSI 2012 and my learning and sharing was just as profound as last year. In fact, I was so happy I could contribute to so many new STARs and others who were searching for iPad integration, STEM ideas and alternative assessment ideas. Finally, I felt I could pay forward all the support I had been given at the last DENSI! Again, sleepless nights offered more opportunities to learn and share, not to mention the incredible offerings of sessions that prepared me for a successful year as a tech integration coach. My school year is packed like never before, but DEN- momentum keeps me going! Now I am passing on the DEN to my teachers who are learning all the great resources of the DE Science Techbook. The Techbook is great, but the DEN connections they will embrace will create a synergy in their craft!
Because of my DEN support, I believe each member of DEN is a great educator… but together we all are DENmazing!!
My DEN is a significant, positive part of each day. I could not imagine teaching without DEN!
I only hope you can experience the positive, persistent passion that is waiting for you.