With me going into my first year teaching, currently I am diving into writing my curriculum maps for the upcoming year. The one I am focused on right now is Floral Design. When I started writing this particular map I was very nervous because my strong suit is Animal Science. Being able to read The Wild Card while focusing in on this map has really helped me find more excitement for the curriculum. I have been keeping the 4 E's in mind:
Expectations: While I was at FFA Camp I was able to pick some of the other ag teachers mind on what they do in their Floral Design class. By doing that I have developed an expectation for my Floral Design class that when it comes to Floral ID. Every Monday when they come in I will give them 4-5 plant that they have to create a Google Slide for that tells the scientific name, market name, two facts, and two-three pictures of that plant. Every two weeks they will have a checkpoint quiz on the plants that they have been given thus far. It might be a lot of work at first, but I feel as the expectation is instilled in my students and myself that it will be a much more efficient way of them learning the plants instead of giving them 124 plants to learn inside one unit.
Environment: I really took to heart what Mr. & Mrs. King were saying in the book about how the environment in the classroom can affect your attitude and your students. Currently I am decorating my class with very vibrant things that show my personality and my love for agriculture. I truly want to feel at home and happy to be in my classroom like they discussed in the book. Also, I love the idea of redecorating my classroom based upon units being covered. Any ideas on how you all are doing that now?
Energy: Going back to Floral Design and it not being my strong suit my plan is to have so much energy and engaging lessons inside of the curriculum that the students will never know. If I can show energy through the lessons and arrangements I am teaching, I feel like it will follow my students in their work they do inside of the classroom.
Empowerment: I want to have a relationship with my students that when I leave to go to National Convention or other events and there is a sub in the room I can trust them to go on with what is supposed to be done. Especially, inside of Floral Design that I can empower them from the start they will know how to do Floral Friday even if I'm not there. I want to be able to leave challenging curriculum that they can do with me being gone. I highly dislike sub work that is left as busy work. I only have my students for ONE school year. If I leave busy work as an ag teacher every time I have to be out for an event they are loosing a lot of valuable instruction time. This is where empowerment will play a part in my classroom.