Friday, August 26, 2016



I hate change. I am a creature of habit and I love STRUCTURE. This job has tested my patience with how much change has come down the pipes. Schedules, leaders, courses, expectations. My head is spinning.

You know what hasn't changed? My love of students. I got into my first live class and it all came running back to me. I made a hashtag for my students to use and follow. I posted shoutouts and allowed them to follow me on social media. We are bonding, we are becoming a community.

I love the kids.

I hate change.


Friday, August 19, 2016

Rough Beginning

Just a heads up, this post might sound very dreary. It really isn't, I am very excited to have students next week, but this have been a whirlwind as we prepare to welcome the students.

Our Principal resigned on Wednesday.

Yes, that is right, 5 days until kiddos log in for class.

I am not going to dwell on the facts, rumors, or my opinions. I wish her the best and I am just going to push forward and prepare. While in limbo we have two ladies stepping up to the plate to fill in as our administrators. They have been amazing and doing everything they can to help us all stay upbeat and be prepared.

After about 5 meetings and getting access to my classes, things are falling into place! I am 100% finished with my training, I logged almost 50 hours of training. (K12 and INTASS) It really wasn't fun, but it was a necessary evil.

I now have a head set so I can speak and be heard while leading class or logging in for meetings. I feel so fancy. I am working on my courses and getting my syllabus perfect. I am also working on a "Hello, I am Mrs. Burman" video. It is going to be epic. Don't worry I will share!

I love buying school supplies, but my new supplies are kitchen rugs, hand towels, and a mug. Those are the things I need to feel calm these days. That and my essential oils. I just bought some 'Joy' to keep me super excited.

I would also like to mention a post coming about my work space. We don't have an office space so I have a desk in the dining/kitchen. My husband is currently making me a desk to work for our space and my needs. Things will be coming together for that later next week!

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Schedules and Phones

Since my last post I have got quite a few deliveries. I received my laptop, an office phone (runs through internet) and a schedule! Things are falling into place for a great year.

I am chugging along through training and I am getting excited about using BlackBoard Connect. This is how we teach live. It is very much like a live white board that we can throw PowerPoint on and take live polls, even have kids chat and raise their hand. I am giddy about the chance to start teaching.

I ran lunch to my teacher husband today and he was teaching English 10H. I was so excited since all the students were my little babies last year! It was great to see them. I walked around as they worked on their thesis assignments and offered help. Sign... I can't wait to get back to teaching.

I meant to share this earlier, I made this video during our three days training in Indianapolis. It was a quick way to build up our new school and use my time wisely. I am working on a "Hello" video and Welcome Calls this week!

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Drowning in Virtual Trainings

Here we go, my transparent teacher self. I am really struggling with the amount of virtual training expected to be completed in a timely manner. During the three days in Indianapolis we were introduced to so many new [and not so new] ideas.

Being a new teacher at a BRAND new school meant delays in email address, log in information, and a computer. There was nothing anyone could do to fix that and I think the 6 [or so] of us were still soaking up as much as possible. But now that I am on my own and ready to really 'play' with my tools, I feel like I hit a wall.

Still no computer or email, so I am trying to watch as many videos, read through curriculum and organize work aids for later use. I am getting frustrated, for the right reasons. I just want to be prepared for my students.

I am not sure how you learn to use new technology, or ANY device, but I start playing and creating. I have found this makes me a better resource for students since that is the very thing kids do. Have you ever seen a teen read the manual? NO! They play, mess up, go back try again.

I have also been a bit disturbed by the watered down information being pushed at licensed educators. I had a good 20 minute video on Modifications vs. Accommodations. I am married to an educator (we met in college class "History of the English Language - Dr. Johnston") and I had this conversation with him at my most irritated.

Me: "Remember that 9 week course on Special Education in Secondary Classrooms?
Ben: "Yes."
Me: "Yeah, me too."

He realized my frustration and did not pursue any conversation after that. He then reminded me, at some point a licensed educator probably messed that up and we are all paying for it now. Touche.

I bet you all wish you had a fellow educator to talk you off a ledge of frustration? Yeah, he makes me a better person, and teacher. He will be a great principal someday. I am learning about platforms and I can't wait to apply that knowledge. I have about 10 more hours of training. Let the count down begin.

On a positive note: The INTASS training was long, but I enjoyed watching the cartoons since the used the application "Mad Man Me" based off the show Mad Men. Good times. That training revolved around Teacher Evaluation Processes and how we can all work together to be better teachers. Nothing new on my plate there, but a good refresher.

Another positive note: I must be coming from some of the best administrators. I am well versed in much of the teacher side of things. Good job Mr. Steve Baker and Mr. Chad Yencer. I am looking forward to working with Miss Amy Weber and continue my growth as an educator!

Monday, August 8, 2016

I am going virtual.

This post is a big one for this blog. The last 5 years this blog served as a catch all for my experiences as a teacher, a hub for parent and student information, and just place for me share.

I will still be doing all of these things, but virtually. Before I get a 'duh Mrs. Burman, it is a blog, of course it is virtual' let me explain. I will be teaching from home this year! I will be working for Hoosier Academies teaching at Insight School of Indiana. This school specializes in students who need more guidance and might be a few credits behind. My focus will be juniors and seniors.

I plan to use this blog as a place to document my first year working from home, on a computer, at a charter school. This will be such a big change for me. I spent the last 6 years of my teaching life face to face with students. I laughed, I cried, I got angry, I got inspired, and all the while I loved my job. I am hoping this avenue will allow my more time with family and with strengthen my skills as an educator (AND communicator).

I had three full days of training in Indianapolis last week. It was fun to get away and be a professional adult again, since I know getting my professional development will not be as easy as walking down the hall, I tried to soak up those days. I met a ton of great people and a few that live really close to me, in Fort Wayne.

Since Insight School of Indiana (ISIN) is a brand new school, there is still so much unknown. This drives my anxiety since I love to have thins planned. Looks like this new job is already making me grow and learn. I am doing a lot of online training on my own. We use K12 curriculum and that is the place where we conduct class, they use Blackboard Connect for that, then I am also training on INTASS, which is an evaluator certification so we are all on the same page with evaluations.

I haven't seen the curriculum yet, but I have taught both of these courses before, so I am not worried. I am getting excited to receive my new computer so I can start getting things organized. I want to have all my programs ready and a pretty desktop image of course (I am still a creative teacher... just on a computer!)

It has been hard not buying supplies at the stores, I want all the pens and journals! But I am updating my 'office' to help me stay focused and driven. My husband is building my desk, I am so lucky. I will be sure to post pictures when everything is set up. I saw another blogging teacher use the term "Stay At Home Teacher" and I just love it.

I am excited about the new adventure ahead of me, follow along for more details and even lesson examples. For a view into my past as a 'brick and mortar' educator look through my old posts. I loved my time at Bluffton High School and Southern Wells Jr. - Sr. High School. I can't wait to teach students all over the state of Indiana.
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