January 7, 2014

Who Am I? Sandy Wants to Know

ask a tech teacherIn December, I was tagged by efriend and fellow tech educator Sandy Kendell for the Sunshine Award. I rarely respond to these, but thoroughly enjoyed the non-ed details she posted about herself. Who knew she liked to sing? Because I focus on education and technology in my blog. I rarely share anything personal–stories about my son (who’s in the Middle East) or my daughter (who’s tech-ing it up in DC) or my absolutely wonderful husband and dog. In the spirit of the new year, I’m going to open the lens of my life to panorama.

Here are the rules:

  1. Acknowledge the nominating blogger–Kudos to Sandy Kendall, a trend-setter and opinion maker. When I want to know what the education community thinks about a particular tech topic, I wander over to see Sandy.
  2. Share 11 random facts about yourself–see below
  3. Answer the 11 questions the nominating blogger has created for you–see below
  4. List 11 9 bloggers. They should be bloggers you believe deserve a little recognition and a little blogging love!--see below
  5. Post 11 questions for the bloggers you nominate to answer and let all the bloggers know they’ve been nominated. (You cannot nominate the blogger who nominated you.)–done

11 Random Facts About Me

  1. I am not comfortable talking to groups. How can that be–I’m a teacher. I meet with parents all the time. No problem with those. It’s presenting… which is why I never present at ISTE
  2. I owned a dance studio for years. A Fred Astaire franchise where I also competed professionally. I love dancing.
  3. I used to program in DOS. I still miss it.
  4. I worked in a recycling plant for years. I found people who wanted to recycle and sold or exported their material. What an interesting job.
  5. I know corrugated is the right name for ‘cardboard’ and people often say ‘cement’ when they mean ‘concrete’.
  6. I have climbed atop a lot of skyscraper-ish buildings and water tanks while installing cell phone antennas (part of a team)
  7. I designed and built onsite child care centers for universities and cities (again, part of a team). I can tell you what a toilet seat REALLY costs
  8. Like Sandy, I love dogs. I can’t imagine life without them.
  9. Both my children are in the military. Their choice–I never was. They both love it. One’s a Naval office, the other in the Army Signal Corps. Guess which is the boy.
  10. I love my husband more than I ever thought possible.
  11. I read the entire Uniform Building Code when I was building child care centers. I also read the 1200+ page Affordable Care Act (before it exploded in size). I’ve also read the Common Core Standards. Do you see a trend here?

11 Questions for me to answer

  1. Why did you start blogging?–to promote a book I wrote on how to get into USNA. It sure has changed!
  2. What was/is your favorite lesson to teach in the classroom?–digital citizenship. Students are so amazed by what they can/can’t do online (I’m talking grades 2-5). They think it’s a free-for-all. By 5th grade, I’ve changed their minds.
  3. If education wasn’t an option in any form, what would you be instead?–a researcher. I write fiction (tech thrillers) and the most fun part is researching.
  4. What was the hardest lesson you learned?--that people often see me differently than I see myself. What an epiphany.
  5. What is your proudest moment?–two–when my daughter got into USNA and when my son joined the Army. She had worked her butt off to get there, and he was taking control of his future–something he hadn’t done before.
  6. How do you explain your job to people?--it’s complicated
  7. If you could send a message back to yourself 20 years ago, what would it say?--read the warning labels about ‘life’
  8. If you could wave a magic wand and fix one thing about the public education system, what would it be and why?–equity. Everyone deserves a chance. It’s a measure of their personal responsibility what they do with it.
  9. If you could visit any event in recorded history, what event would you pick and why?--assuming ‘recorded history’ includes records preserved in rocks, I’d love to see how man came up with God. Was it the power of Nature?
  10. What is the title and author of the last book you read for fun?–No Less Than Victory–Jeff Shaara’s WWII trilogy
  11. What is your favorite movie?– Star Trek ranks way up there.

11 9 Bloggers I Want to Know More About

  1. Carol over at OT Apps. I learn a lot from her
  2. Janet Moeller-Abercrombie at ExPat Educator–lots of ideas about international education
  3. David Kinane at Dakinane–lots of tech ed training videos
  4. Kelly Tenkele at ILearnTechnology–she always amazes me with websites and tools I’ve never heard of!
  5. Lisa Mims at Diary of a Public School Teacher–Love her take on life and learning
  6. Larry Ferlazzo–one of those I read to keep me centered. We don’t always agree, but his ideas are consistently well-thought out
  7. Grant Wiggins–As appealing as his posts are the comments from educators that argue/support him. People put a lot of effort into their responses. So far, I’m pretty much a lurker
  8. Richard Byrne–every time I read his (many) posts, I’m amazed how he is so connected to tech. This is my go-to resource on new tech tools.
  9. Silvia Rosenthal Tolisano–always has indepth, thorough analysis of tech topics. I wish she wrote more often.

11 Questions for you-all

  1. Why did you pick the ‘technology’ side of education?
  2. Name two tech things you learned the past month
  3. Where do you get your education inspiration?
  4. Who are your education mentors?
  5. What in your background makes you particularly suited to teaching and/or technology?
  6. How do you balance work and home life (really; I need help here)
  7. Do you socialize with work friends? What do you do?
  8. What book would you like to write?
  9. Who would you like to chat with, knowing they were eager to chat with you?
  10. Why do you blog?
  11. Do you find yourself talking about technology often outside of work?

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Jacqui Murray has been teaching K-8 technology for 15 years. She is the editor of a K-8 technology curriculum, K-8 keyboard curriculum, K-8 Digital Citizenship curriculum, and creator of technology training books for how to integrate technology in education. She is webmaster for six blogs, CSG Master Teacher, an Amazon Vine Voice book reviewer, Editorial Review Board member for Journal for Computing Teachers, CSTA presentation reviewer, freelance journalist on tech ed topics, a columnist for Examiner.com, and a weekly contributor to TeachHUB. Currently, she’s editing a techno-thriller that should be out to publishers next summer.

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