I’m a teacher-librarian and e-learning teacher at Orangeville District Secondary School, in Orangeville Ontario.
I have been a teacher since 1994, spending 3 years teaching English in Japan, and the rest in Ontario teaching drama, English, and media arts in the classroom and online. I became a teacher-librarian full-time in 2009. Currently working ⅚ a teacher-librarian in a large secondary school of 1250 students and over 100 staff. My other ⅙ has me back in the classroom (by choice!) and I’m loving it. I’ll be teaching grade 12 English online for the 3rd year in a row. I love having my own guinea pigs students and dealing with the day-to-day tasks of teaching keeps me grounded as a school leader. As well, it allows another colleague to have an additional library section and I really appreciate having someone else to collaborate with. I am also part of my school’s Directions Team and we are constantly analyzing our school’s data and trying to improve student success.
Educational research has never meant more to me than it does now in my position in the library. As a classroom teacher I used to rely on the findings of the experts. My current concerns are in transliteracy and participatory culture and how I can support staff and students to put thinking and learning first. Two years ago I was able to see huge physical results in moving my library to a library learning commons with a full reno and remodel to improve accessibility and availability to resources. We replaced our 45 desktop computer lab with 130 Google chromebooks in 5 carts and a variety of soft seating. Big big changes in learning are happening in my LLC.
As well, I am very curious about building participatory activities in my LLC that may include everything from collective intelligence to gaming to collective artworks to book clubs and special guests.
As an aside, I’m also the mom of an 11 year old, Max, who was diagnosed on the Autism spectrum in 2012. As all kids do, his strengths and challenges oscillate as he grows and develops. Along with strong interests in art, construction, and plants, I can tell that a strong interest in girls is on the horizon. Being a parent, greatly influences my perceptions as an educator.
The title of the blog Threadbare Beauty comes from a line in Adrienne Rich’s poem “Diving into the Wreck“.