Thanks first of all to @justybub on Twitter. You inspired me to put this out on the web so I could be held accountable to get my program running better. If I expect myself to improve, I ought to publish my progress, even if no one reads it.
I'm 51 years old and have been teaching P.E. for 24 years. But it is only within the last year of my career that I've never been more excited to teach. Why? Because of you! You, the Physical Educator who is so generous as to share your program and ideas on the web. The teacher who daily shares ideas and failures via Twitter. The P.E. teachers who graciously allow me to come visit their gym and see what your excellent program looks like (yeah, I'm talking about you Mike Graham!). Joey Feith, whose website so aptly named ThePhysicalEducator.com, was an easy find and immense resource. Justin Cahill, whose blog is chock full of videos, posts, and real-life action. Kevin Tiller, whose physedreview site never ceases to amaze and educate.
I literally could go on and on about the other teachers who generously give not just ideas, but insight, encouragement, clarity, and criticism that are helpful to the people who are genuinely ready to grow.
Now I’m not saying I never looked up content on the internet before. I’d been on PE Central’s site a ton to look up activities, but finding PEOPLE was what lit a fire inside me! Then, I began to see that these and other teachers were on Twitter. I had heard of Twitter, but that’s as far as it went. I had never used it consistently or with any solid purpose. I decided to give it a shot. I decided on a username and then set out to find those teachers mentioned earlier and others. After lurking for a while, I finally jumped in on my first #pechat. It just happened to be on the night of a school concert. I’m our school’s part time sound man, and I was running the sound board. I had my right hand scrolling my iPad screen while keeping my left hand near the faders for the choir. As soon as the band got up to play, I focused more on the chat. I got hooked that night.
After attending a few #pechats, I met more incredible educators. I would stay up through all the time zone portions of the chat, gleaning whatever I could from the amazing educators and moderators. Then I found another chat - the #espechat. I loved meeting even more wonderful people and hearing their views and shared struggles. Let me say it again…it was in connecting with PEOPLE that set me on this path.
There are so many more people that I’ve connected with this past year that have inspired and encouraged me. Too many to list here! Some are those of you who’ve shared your amazing content, thoughts, and inspiration. Others exhibit an insatiable drive that spurs me on even more. To both sets of people, I am so grateful. And though they don’t know it all the time, my students are grateful as well! They have benefitted from the new beginning of this 51 year old Physical Educator, brought about in part by YOU!