Thursday, June 19, 2014

Presenting at Conferences

I was invited to speak at my second conference since I was accepted as a Google Education Trainer. It really got me thinking, is the certification getting me the recognition and acceptance? Or am I just becoming more confident to apply for conferences because of the certification.

It's true that I have applied for both conferences that I will be speaking at this summer. It's also true that I wouldn't have applied without being an authorized Google Education Trainer. So perhaps it's the later. The recognition from Google has helped with my confidence compared to just my colleagues telling me to apply. For the past three years, I have been helping my colleagues with technology though the school. I have also been given the opportunity to work with teachers from other buildings as part of the Math and Science Partnership. It was the Math and Science Partnership that invited me to my first Google Summit. Here is where I first heard the terms "Google Education Trainer" and "Google Certified Teacher" along with the requirements for acceptance.

I immediately went and took the five exams required to become a Google Educator. I breezed through all five in a day and continued on with preparing to apply for both programs. My application for Google Education Trainer was simple enough. I updated my resume, completed a case study, and then made a two minute screenshot video demonstration. The application for the Google Teacher Academy included essays and a video. Unfortunately I wasn't accepted into GTA on my first try. It's alright though because some of the GCTs I've met said it took multiple application periods before they were invited. GTA only accepts 50 teachers per session, and that's internationally. It was an upsetting setback but I won't give up. As Babe Ruth, once said "you can't let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game." No one likes rejection and I just need to take the opportunity to improve and try again.

Monday, June 9, 2014

Really Official

Last night I was granted access to the Google Education Trainer community and resources. The first resource I took advantage of was the above badge. This image represents the hard work it took to become an authorized Google Education Trainer. It's also a promise to myself and others. This badge is a promise that I will work with educators to be successful when using Google in the classroom. We won't just "Google" the answer, we'll use Google to explore the problems and discover the answers.

Saturday, June 7, 2014

Official Google Education Trainer

Last week I saw on the application website that I was accepted as a Google Education Trainer. As other applicants were receiving their emails, mine never came. Finally I decided to contact someone to see what happened. They re-sent the email but I had a laugh at what was written. "Can you check your spam?" I just applied to become an authorized trainer of Google and applied with a gmail address. I would hope that someone qualified to train others to use Google would know to check the spam folder. This reminded me about when you call tech support because something isn't working and the first thing they ask is "Did you check that it's plugged in?" I think we are all guilty of assuming people forget the obvious.

As a new trainers, I need to remember this. Just because it seems obvious to me, it might not seem obvious to everyone. Part of being a trainer is to find where my students are beginning and help bring them to a higher level. This means that if I'm working with educators that don't know computers I might start with just logging into Google. If the teachers I am training are already comfortable with using Google Drive, I might show them add-ons and extensions to simplify their work and help their students grow.

Representing Google means that they have faith in my abilities to spread the strategies and technology to help students learn in and out of the classroom. I hope that I always remember this introduction to the program.

Monday, June 2, 2014


For years I have been blogging on Making Cents of It about saving money and entertainment. Recently, at an EdCamp event, someone asked me why I didn't blog about my experiences teaching. This page of my portfolio will consist of posts related to teaching.

I will not be updating this page on a daily basis. Instead, I will update as I reflect on my classroom and professional experiences.