Wednesday, May 22, 2013

End of Year Reflections from North Teachers


When I tell everything we're doing in PLCs and SLCs to my teacher friends at other schools - they often comment, "Wow. That is a LOT".  It does feels like a lot. But, a few months ago, it felt like a WHOLE lot.  A year ago, it felt impossible.  I think that means I've made it through the toughest part - and that's exciting!

Cannot believe summer is already here - and that's a great thing -  but I think I'm actually going to miss you all.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Practice What I Preach…

To begin, I consider it a privilege to be invited as a guest blogger for NHS.  You see, in my role as an “academic/lead/literacy coach,” we don’t always know where to hang our hat.  I didn’t realize how important this was as a teacher.  

From South Marshall Middle School in little Benton, KY…
to Wea Ridge Middle in lovely Lafayette, IN…
to Fairview Middle School in beloved Fairview, TN…
(with a little bit of USI in good ole’ Evansville, IN)

I have always been surrounded by colleagues that I considered friends…and even some family. 
With this role as a coach and my charge to serve 8 different schools, it has taken my relationship building to a new level.  I have had to learn to be intentional with my time, always looking for connections and similarities that can forge relationships quickly.  In seeking these bright spots, I thank so many of you who have reached out and invited me in.  Including this opportunity to blog.

And since many of you have asked, I want to take this blogging opportunity to share with you about the next step in my journey.

I’ll start with professionally…
Beginning this summer, I will be stepping into the new world of the River Bend Writing Project.(  I will be going through the Institute this summer and then move into my new role of “Summer Institute Coordinator”  the following summer.  Already, I have learned  through my work with the RBWP that I have a lot to learn about teaching writing.  And that is ok.  (If the sound of RBWP calls to you and you have a desire to connect with a network of K-12 educators in the tri-state area who are passionate about learning from each other and desire to grow as writers and get paid while doing it, you should seriously check River Bend out for next summerJ)  

Also, beginning in the fall, I will go back to teaching in the English Department at USI.  For Fall 2013 , I am slated to teach three ENG 100 classes and one ENG 101 class.
 I can honestly say that I am forever changed as an educator due to my 2.5 years coaching in EVSC and I am excited to once again practice what I preach.  To start, those lovely MAX Strategies that you all have grown to hopefully love along with me will deepen as a part of my instruction.  And this newly discovered concept that I have learned from my work with Harrison High School’s Center for Family and Community Outreach/CFCO( will overhaul the way I approach writing…bringing my students to true purpose in writing and true authenticity in their audience.  All while impacting our community.  What is there not to love about that?  

I could go on here with all of my dreaming, but I tend to have a problem in life with biting off more than I can chew, so I’ll let the accountability factor that comes with this post fall here.

And finally, on a personal note…
My husband, Mike Allen(who is transitioning into working for Evansville Christian Schools), and I are about a year and a half in the process of adopting a little girl from Ethiopia.  We are told that our little 1-2 year old will join our family in about a year and a half.  That’s still a long time.  But I take heart in knowing that though it will probably be a year and a half…it could be tomorrowJ  Until then, I am trying to focus my energy into my present 3 & 5 year old boys, Isaac & Ezra.  From broken collar bones …to lost legos…to bedtime snuggles, there is plenty to give my attention to while we pray and wait.

So, for those of you who have asked me why I am choosing to make this transition, these words above are my answer.

I look forward to crossing paths with my North High School friends in the future.  Whether it be at Granola Jar or EVSC’s eRevolution or Walmart, I hope that when those paths do cross that you will stop and say hi and even better, share a bit about your world with me.  

Nothing but blessings to you, North High School.

2012-2013 North Attendance District Lead Coach,
Kim Allen