Keeping elementary students engaged while we do all the things doesn’t have to feel overwhelming or create a lot of extra work.
If that sounds like you, I’ve got you! I am Tracy Mercier and help librarians like you increase student engagement without increasing prep time.
These free resources outline how to keep lessons short while teaching critical concepts. They keep students engaged through choice, play, and authenticity.
I used to be that teacher that went in at 6 am. I left at 5 or 6 pm. Then I came home and worked until 12, 1 or even 2 am. Before getting up at 5 to do it all over the next day.
I spent vacations reading about teaching. Reading about student engagement. And reading children’s literature.
I spent hours searching for, playing around with, and planning instruction with Educational Technology.
I developed an auto immune disorder. I gained 60 pounds. I couldn’t sleep. I was a wreck every day I walked into my classroom.
I burnt out. Quickly. And had to take a break from teaching.
When I returned to the classroom (okay … library), I made myself a bunch of promises.
I promised myself that I would simplify. I knew I had to do less and still get maximum results. Student engagement was still critical for me.
I promised myself that I would spend time with my family when I got home. I used to work like that before I had a child. I didn’t want my child to feel neglected when I came home. I didn’t want him to see unhealthy work – home boundaries and then perpetuate them when he got a career.
I promised myself I would get good sleep, eat well, and stay fit. Honestly, my health was a hot mess. It took me leaving the classroom to learn how to make better choices. I didn’t want to lose all of those great gains.
My job is tech centric. I teach library media skills. That means I teach kiddos how to use devices. I teach them how to code. I teach them how use digital resources. I teach them how to create digital artifacts.
I was a bit of an early tech adopter way back when. And I knew I wanted to continue that work.
On top of that, I remember how daunting it was when I first began teaching with technology. It took time to find tools. And figure out if they were a good fit for my kiddos. And to figure out if it was worth using them at all.
But I also knew that I couldn’t do it the way I used to.
I knew I needed a better system and work ethic that would give me the time I needed & wanted with my family & for my health.
It took a tic to figure out what worked really well when I was in the classroom. The things that were a life saver. The things that were a time saver. The things that worked. Every time I used them. That’s what I kept.
I just couldn’t let anyone else go through that.
I knew right then, that I had to share how I still teach with technology. Even new technology. And don’t add any additional stress or time to my workload.
That is when I decided to create a variety of resources that eliminated that additional workload for dedicated educators like you. That is when I decided to make it easy for committed teachers to try new technologies.
Imagine, learning about a new app and then going in to the classroom the next day ready to use it in meaningful ways with students.
Imagine being able to do that on the fly. With minimal, if any, prep work.
Imagine being excited, not scared, to use technology with your students Even social media!
Imagine talking less and your students doing more heavy lifting necessary for learning.
If you are ready to use more technology without fear or additional prep time, and keep your students engaged, then you’re in the right place.