Reflecting on the 2019-2020 School Year

I’ve been on summer break for a few weeks now, so I’ve decompressed enough to start unpacking exactly what happened this spring! Needless to say, THIS. YEAR. WAS. CRAZY. While I was in the thick of remote teaching, I honestly felt a lot like I did my first year teaching…

I was learning HOW to teach again and I worked long long long days. The time saved by not having a commute was more than taken up by the extra time it took to prep new lessons and modify previous materials to be virtual-friendly. I definitely got faster at this as the weeks went on, but man what a year it was!

I like to reflect every year, but this one will be extra special. These are the main questions I consider:

What went well? Why?

  • Teaching Algebra 1 for the second time. For the first time ever I got to reuse materials I made previously. I also liked knowing how my Algebra 1 students did on certain assignments last year so I could modify them for this year. I think that made a big difference with our first semester final review.
  • The great class culture with my physics kiddos. This was probably partially due to the seniors knowing each other so well. Everyone was very engaged and we covered way more than last year.
  • Programming – oy what a rollercoaster it was in the beginning! I tried so hard to get out of teaching it, but now that the year is over I’m super glad I went through with it. I learned so much and regained my confidence with coding after taking my SINGULAR Python class pass/fail freshman year of college lol. It makes me want to teach a higher level of Python or a new language next year. I think it went so well because we had a good book to follow and I was very transparent with the students about the class.

What went badly?

  • Distance learning… well we did better than some schools, but it was a LOT of work and definitely not as fun as in-person.
  • Field trips. I didn’t do as many as I’d initially hoped to earlier this year.
  • Algebra 1 class culture. It varied a LOT from section to section. First period especially was tricky.
  • My confidence as a teacher and as a working professional varied sometimes.

Which of those things were in your control?

  • Field trips –> Next year I can plan ahead.
  • Algebra 1 class culture –> I will brainstorm this summer about how to boost morale in tired classes.
  • Confidence –> I am working on positive self-talk. I also need to give myself grace when classes don’t go exactly as planned.

These reflection questions (and MUCH MORE!) are a part of my ’20-’21 Teacher Planning Workbook which is launching on Amazon this Friday!

Sending summer vibes,


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