Friday, September 14, 2012

A New Day in Adult Ed

A new day has come. Just as Kim Kardashian changes her social life, California has changed the face of Aduldt Education by significantly cutting back on its budget. I am still a teacher, only now I have substitute status with LAUSD. It was kind of a shock at first, but now I feel free to pursue teaching and learning without the constraints of a massive bureaucracy looking over my shoulder. During my thirteen years with the district, I worked primarily at West Valley Occupational Center. I learned a lot, made many friends, and took my teaching to another level -- specifiically into teaching with technology, using both a laptop and an iPad in the classroom. Though money is tight now in California, I have faith that the State will rally and that Adult Education will come back in full force. There are many people I would like to thank: My former principal and mentor, Richard Wormus, a man with a vision who treated his staff like gold, Susan Holtz, for being my friend and for all her beautiful catering inspiration, Barry Bakin for all his tech help and my many students who taught me what it means to have courage and a love for life, no matter the circumstances. Thank you all!

Friday, April 20, 2012

Moving Forward

Objects in motion tend to stay in motion.  Objects at rest tend to stay at rest.  Physics and education.  If you want to learn you better, get some motion going – get into action.  No teacher, instructor, professor, tutor or malamed can or will replace you own efforts, determination, studying and motivation.  Until knowledge is injectable, it’s up to you to be responsible for your education and learning.  Onward and upward!

Close to the End?

Adult Ed may or may not be ending at LAUSD. As of March 13, 2012, the division had not been funded for the next school year, 2012-2013. But the Union, UTLA, is working hard to come to some kind of agreement with the LAUSD Board for some funding for the upcoming year. More as it develops!

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Learning is Social

Man is a social animal. We like to speak with others, eat with others, play and watch sports with others, be in romantic and friendly relationships with other, and we like to learn with others.

Not only do we learn with others all the way from pre-school through graduate school, in the sense of sharing a classroom, we also learn from our peers.

It is not only the teacher who gives us information, models new skills and explains difficult concepts: Our classmates are our teachers as well.

Is you ever watch children in a classroom, they are always helping each other with tasks and skills. The same is true in the adult education classroom. One prominent example of this takes place in the ESL classroom. More advanced students help less advanced ones. Students become friends and share conversation, humor and the challenges of learning a new language, in a new country, after a day of work, dealing with mates, children, bosses, bills and a host of issues specific to immigrants who are second language learners.

Te social aspect of learning makes learning possible by creating a safe, comfortable space in which students can relax and feel good about themselves while acquiring English-language skills.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Spring is Here!

We are now in the midst of Spring Semester. We are studying Food this week and learning all about Thanksgiving. We are using Downtown 2 textbook and workbook, and the Heinle Picture Dictionary.

We had a special treat last week when we used technology in the classroom. Students called each other on their cell phones and spoke to each other across the room! Everyone had to use their listening and speaking abilities and the students had a good time while improving their communication skills.

Monday, February 7, 2011

End of Semester

We are coming to the end of the Fall 2010 semester. I would like to thank all my ESL 2 and CBET/ESL/Computer students for a fun and productive semester.

Spring 2011 will begin on Monday, February 14, 2011.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

ESL Going Strong

Despite budget cuts, ESL is going strong. We are seeing students committed to learning English, getting jobs, getting a piece of the American Dream. Many obstacles to overcome. But students live in the moment, working, having fun with their families, raising their children. Helping each other. And they will continue to grow, because their intentions have planted within them the knowledge that where they are going is better than from whence they have come. And we are going to help them.