Meet Me

My family <3

My family

I have been learning for as long as I can remember, and I have been teaching maybe just as long! I first fell in love with teaching when I coached aspiring cheerleaders at a local part when I was in high school.  Teaching a group of young girls to come together as a team, perform, and support each other inspired me to become an educator.

I studied English and Secondary Education at the University of Miami and recently earned my MEd in Curriculum and Teaching.  I originally attained National Board Certification in 2002 and was recertified in 2012.

Reading under the trees! Is there any better way to enjoy a good book?  (Maybe ocean front or snuggled under the blankets on a rainy or cold day...)

Reading under the trees! Is there any better way to enjoy a good book? (Maybe ocean front or snuggled under the blankets on a rainy or cold day…)

As a classroom teacher for the past 20 years, I continue to learn while I teach. I started out teaching 6th grade, but early in my career, I learned that  “almost high school” students keep me on my toes, so  I’ve been teaching eighth graders forever.  While I do love reading and literature, teaching writing is my true passion. It’s amazing to watch beginning writers break away from their fear of words as they learn that they can write and their voices are powerful.

My students inspire me to be better. I’m constantly changing things up and trying something new to keep my classroom fresh and engaging. I love, love, love technology and anything related to social media. As such, my new obsession in learning is to become a Google tools expert and to explore E-Learning (possibly as a doctorate–always a student!).

While working on my final research paper for my MEd, I became intrigued with the idea of a “no grades classroom.” I researched, but I also experimented in my own classroom.  Through my research and experimentation, I met a great group of educators on-line, and I also published my very first blog post about my experience.  You can read it on Brilliant or Insane by clicking right here.  I’m continuing this journey in 2016, but I need to tweak it a bit to make it work within my school district’s constraints and my own classroom.

Inside a Harvard classroom on our Boston field trip.

Inside a Harvard classroom on our Boston field trip.

Besides immersing myself in books and the Internet, now that my own children are a little bit older, I decided it was time to chaperone out of state field trips.  Wow!  I have discovered how amazing it is to be able to take a group of students to experience learning outside of the classroom.  The week-long field trip from South Florida to Boston, New York, and Pennsylvania is an opportunity that cannot be surpassed.

Each year the itinerary changes just a little bit, so there is always something new to learn. The battlegrounds, historical sites, incredible eats (yum!), college tours, and local fun allow us all to engage in learning.

On the Freedom Trail with Jeremiah Poope.

On the Freedom Trail with Jeremiah Poope.

This upcoming school year, I will be co-planning the trip with another teacher. I’m excited and nervous at the same time.  — I will be blogging about this experience for sure.

I hope this blog inspires you to learn something new and teach it to someone else.

Gina

I love to collaborate with educators everywhere.  Contact me.

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