Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Pumpkin Pie and Sara (#betterlatethannever)

This was supposed to be my November post.  But here it is, April 4th, and I still have not written a blog of thanksgiving even though my teaching life doth overflow with blessings.  Six months ago, I promised to write about the gift of Sara. So, without further ado...

Sara is talking to her mom.  Please note that I am old enough to be her mom.

For countless years, the daunting task of hardware, software, teacher assistance, and student support was handled by the gargantuan Mr. Baig. With bulging muscles and bulging intelligence, he handled everything from the simple "Help! I'm pathetic and can't figure out why my DVD won't play" to the extreme [insert techno-gobbledygook here]. Through tumultuous change and revolving administration, Faisal has been an anchor of stability and sanity to help steady this veteran teacher amidst the tsunami of technological advances in the world of learning. Amazingly, he accomplished this all as a department of one. And then, last year, our superintendent doubled his department by hiring a technology coach. It was the delightful Sara Molnar.

(If you wish to have a soundtrack to acompany this blog, click below for "Sara" by Jefferson Starship.
The video makes me laugh, although it  could be argued it shows a metaphoric change from tumbleweeds to technology.  English teachers see symbols everywhere. Our Sara of 2017 does not have 1980s feathery blonde hair as seen here.  She did, however, teach me how to insert a video into a blog. And I'm pretty sure she also has some cute hats.)

Although I have not seen Ms. Molnar's actual job description, it's clear that its subpoints must include line items such as help Mrs. Joyner feel less like an idiot when she doesn't know a GIF from a JPEG and listen to Mrs. Joyner describe the features of an unknown app she needs for an assignment...and then magically find it, learn it, and teach it to her students. Seriously, Sara is one of my geeky dreams come true.  As the sole eighth-grade LA teacher, I too feel like my "department" has doubled.  Ms. Molnar has rocked the 8th-grade world of reading and writing through her encouragement, instruction, modeling, and support.  And, not only is she a great instructor to me, she is also a a great instructor to my dear students.  She "gets" teenagers, and she treats them with respect, compassion, and humor. (And did I mention she went to the University of Michigan?)

When Thanksgiving rolls around this year, and I enjoy a slice of pumpkin pie, I will be sure to remember to give thanks for Sara and Faisal, my tech team blessing.  #inspire67

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