It's so hard to believe that December 31 is here! This is a look back to some of my favorite moments of the year...
2012 started out fairly quiet as I prepared to say goodbye to my graduating AVID seniors after 3 years together. One of the highlights of early 2012 was going to the T3 conference in Chicago and chilling out with my bestie, @approx_normal, at the Statistics Symposium and both of us met up with @cannonsr for some authentic Chicago-style pizza.
Once I was home from Chicago, the school year ended well. We had a very mild winter, which meant we even got out of school with zero snow days! Then the craziness of summer started! The first trip of the summer was to Kansas City for the AP reading and I had the pleasure of meeting up with @mathheadinc and her husband. They were the ultimate KC tour guides, treating me to some traditional KC BBQ and showing me some of the MANY fountains of KC.
June was also the month that introduced me to Pinterest as a teaching tool and ultimately lead to the beginnings of #Made4Math Mondays. Thanks to @pamjwilson and her encouragement, #Made4Math became one of my most favorite events of 2012. It was simply amazing to watch the creativity being shared by math teachers over the past 6 months. It would be almost impossible to narrow down my favorite posts from the #Made4Math initiative, because every single post was amazing and sparked ideas that just kept growing!
Just a few weeks later, I was again at a workshop, but this time it was Twitter Math Camp in St Louis. I wrote about TMC12 here, but words cannot explain how amazing it was to be surrounded by 30+ of the most amazing math teachers out there. Memories such as @approx_normal running to find (and tackle) @samjshah or @jreulbach and @jamidanielle breaking out into song (on a regular basis) or @approx_normal standing on a trashcan to (almost) reach @mseiler's upraised hand or making origami stars at dinner with @rdkpickle or enjoying a quiet evening in the executive lounge with @gwaddellnvhs and @aanthonya. There are so many more memories, but I don't want to bore you! :) Needless to say, it was an awesome week with awesome friends and I can't wait to repeat it at TMC13!
During TMC12, @samjshah led a session on the math-twitter-blog-o-sphere, which resulted in a website to help math teachers new to our online math department, as well as a 4-week "New Bloggers Initiative". This program allowed new math bloggers a way to get their name out there as they answered new prompts each week. By the end, we had many new online colleagues in the blog-o-sphere.
Also during TMC12, I was introduced to Interactive Notebooks (by @mgolding) and Foldables (by @jreulbach). Both of these helped transform my classroom this fall and I am forever grateful to Megan and Julie for their guidance and encouragement. Several other people at TMC12 also helped my classroom, particularly those that shared during one of the "My Favorite..." sessions and the resultant #MyFavFriday blog posts. Thanks to all of you for having such an impact!
Honestly, after having a simply amazing summer, I was so excited for the new school year and ready to tackle the new challenges. The year has been more challenging than I expected, but even while feeling discouraged, there were still amazing things happening around me. This fall saw the introduction of #GlobalMath, an online professional development project headed up by @mgolding. Every Tuesday night, math teachers congregated to learn from their peers about a variety of topics. I wasn't able to participate as often as I would have liked, so I'm looking forward to increased participation in 2013.
As you can tell, 2012 really was an amazing year - and not just because the Mayan calendar ended! Can't wait to see what 2013 brings!!
(PS - I would have liked to share my favorite blog posts of the year, but I'm too afraid that I would leave someone out on accident! So, here's my compromise... if you want to know my favorite posts, go back and read all of the #Made4Math posts :) Those people are my teaching heroes! I appreciate that each of them took the time to share their thoughts, ideas, classroom tools and strategies. I know that *I* am a much better teacher this year because of #Made4Math participants!)