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This portfolio reflects my student teaching and entry level skills. It outlines my personal information, and professional teaching skills as mandated in the state of Michigan, and my personal beliefs …

This portfolio reflects my student teaching and entry level skills. It outlines my personal information, and professional teaching skills as mandated in the state of Michigan, and my personal beliefs about teaching.

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  • 1. Keri A. Powell Elementary Teacher Certified K-8 w/ ZA Endorsement and Special Education Experience
  • 2. Keri A. Powell Why do I want to teach? I’ve put a lot of thought into that question. I want to teach for several reasons: it’s a childhood dream, I’ve been inspired by some wonderful teachers that have touched my life along the way - and it’s my way of returning the favor. I also have a love of learning and questioning the world around me, and I am always meeting new people that are teaching me something new and wonderful. I believe that educating our youth is a most noble profession. Teachers are extremely hard workers, that do whatever they can to educate their students and make a difference in their lives. Teachers have the power to positively change another person’s life by introducing them to new experiences, and connecting the classroom to real-world application. I look forward to the many opportunities to share my love of learning with my students – to connect, to inspire, to believe in them and watch them shine! 
  • 3. All About Me
    • My background
      • I grew up in Cadillac, Michigan
      • Attended Cadillac schools from elementary through High School
      • Graduated from Cadillac Senior High in 1999
    • My Hobbies and Interests
      • Outdoor activities: rollerblading, running, downhill skiing, going to the beach, softball
      • Reading, writing, scrap booking, photography
    • My experience
      • Graduated from Baker College in June 2008
      • Substitute Teacher since 2004 (Grades K-12)
      • 3 long term sub. Special Ed. positions
      • YMCA Preschool Teacher/Camp Leader
      • Middle school and Elementary teaching experiences
      • Taught elementary enrichment courses
      • (See resume for detailed experiences)
  • 4. My Family
    • My Fiancé
      • Chad Boolman
    • My children
      • Oldest son: Logan
      • Twins: Marielle and Griffin
      • Stepson: Tyler
    Keri & Chad Logan Marielle Griffin Tyler
  • 5. My Goals
    • To give my students the academic and social skills they need to progress in my classroom, and become responsible citizens.
    • To provide a supportive and fun classroom environment.
    • To build positive relationships with staff, students, and their families.
    • To continually grow as a professional through self-reflection, peer input, professional development, and continuing education.
  • 6. Highly Qualified
    • My Certification Allows Me to Teach:
      • Kindergarten – Grade 5
      • K-8 self-contained classrooms
      • Language Arts (Major) in Grades 6-8
      • Early Childhood Education (ZA Endorsement)
    • Strongly committed to developing and implementing lesson plans according to the Michigan Curriculum Framework standards and benchmarks.
      • I strive to meet the needs of students with all learning styles and abilities using various teaching modalities.
    • Knowledge of subject matter and pedagogy
      • I have chosen to earn certification in the language arts dept. because that is my strength as a student and professional. I have a niche for written communication, a love for reading and analyzing written works of art, and the drive to share my passion with other people – especially young learners with vibrant, eager minds.
  • 7. Why Should You Hire Me?
    • I have had ample experience in the Wexford-Missaukee School District
      • I served as a Kindergarten Teacher for Cadillac Area Public Schools.
      • Substitute teaching for the past four years has allowed me to get to know the staff and administration in several of our schools, which has given me an opportunity to develop positive professional relationships.
      • A great portion of my substitute teaching has been for the WMISD Special Education classrooms. Getting to know several of the ISD teacher consultants, speech and language therapists, occupational therapists, school psychologists, and the testing and IEP processes will be very valuable to me as a new teacher. Having already established those relationships and working knowledge of special education, I will be able to serve my students quickly and efficiently by knowing who my contacts are and the protocol for referring a student for special services.
    • I always act in the best interest of the child
    • I am of good moral character and have sound decision making abilities
    • I am entering the field of education with a great deal of professional and personal experience, and maturity.
      • I am by far a better teacher since I have become a mother.
      • I am committed to my profession, and will keep current on trends and professional development in order to offer my students the most up-to-date, and relevant teaching techniques and resources.
    • I connect with students on their level, and I am not afraid to be silly and add humor to the classroom climate. 
    • I take criticism well – I am not afraid to make mistakes and learn from them. I have an open mind when it comes to suggestions for improvement.
    • I am dedicated and hard working, creative, and am a team player.
  • 8. Michigan’s 7 Entry Level Standards
    • Standard 1
    • An understanding and appreciation of the liberal arts (the humanities, the social sciences, the mathematical and natural sciences, and the arts).
    • I have always had an appreciation for, and an eagerness to learn about, the liberal arts. I have pursued that eagerness while attaining my educational goals. I have taken several courses in geography, photography, children’s art, history, mathematics, and music. I am especially interested in local, or Michigan history.
    • As a teacher, I will make a commitment to integrate liberal arts and practice into my unit and lesson plans, utilizing cross curricular instruction whenever possible. This is especially evident in my Core Democratic Values Unit for first graders. The unit is available upon request.
  • 9. Michigan’s 7 Entry Level Standards (cont’d)
    • Standard 2
    • A commitment to student learning and achievement.
    • A great amount of reflection and thought has gone into my philosophy of education and my classroom management plan.  I have committed to teaching, and will never stop working to learn more and become a better teacher. I will consider student assessments as a reflection on the quality of the lesson/presentation. I will frequently assess my lesson/presentation quality, teaching strategies and methodology, and reflect upon each day in order to improve myself. I will continually look for fresh approaches and utilize the resources around me.
    • My progress reports and instructor reviews, as well as letters of recommendation, reflect the commitment and efforts that I routinely display both as a teacher, and as a perpetual student.
  • 10.
    • Standard 3
    • Knowledge of subject matter and pedagogy.
    •   I have chosen to earn certification in the language arts department because that is my strength as a student and professional. I have a niche for writing, and written communication, a love for reading and analyzing written works of art, and the drive to share my passion with other people – especially young learners with vibrant, eager minds. Because I consider the language arts my area of expertise, I will better serve my students as a knowledgeable teacher.
    • I have also chosen to obtain a ZA endorsement which allows me to work in the early childhood profession. I enjoy young children and their zest for life. Everyday is new and exciting, and I appreciate the opportunity to open new doors for them.
    • My grades and my certification test scores reflect that I am able to apply the knowledge that I gain in my classes, and the lessons that I teach to my own students illustrate my ability to apply that knowledge. Much of this knowledge of subject matter is displayed throughout the “College Coursework” section of this portfolio. Many of my papers, journals, and responses to questions cover a wide array of material with thoughtful, specific reflections/responses.
    Michigan’s 7 Entry Level Standards (cont’d)
  • 11. Michigan’s 7 Entry Level Standards (cont’d)
    • Standard 4
    • The ability to manage and monitor student learning
    • I have studied the role that assessment plays in learning, and have the ability, not only to differentiate between formative and summative assessments, but to use information gained by studying student performance to target my instruction to meet students’ needs. There are many ways to assess children, and it is important to assess fairly and accurately. Assessment is an ongoing process for both students and teachers. I make myself available to all students to ensure success for each child.
    • In other respects, students learning can only occur within a well maintained classroom. Classroom management is an important aspect of teaching and learning. It is only when the classroom is managed well, that higher learning can and will take place.
  • 12. Michigan’s 7 Entry Level Standards (cont’d)
    • Standard 5
    • The ability to systematically organize teaching practices and learn from experiences.
    • I observed, recorded, and reflected upon more than 150 hours inside classrooms before my student teaching experience began. My field experiences showed progression in understanding classroom environments, teaching strategies, and teacher roles as I gained experience and applied my growing knowledge of educational theory and practice.
    • During my student teaching, I completed twenty-six weeks of observing and teaching with a cooperating teacher. I am confident that I have made great strides during that time. I continually reflect upon my work to make it my very best. I am welcome to new ideas and suggestions, and understand that flexibility is crucial in this position.
    • I am an extremely observant person. I like to utilize techniques and practices from other teachers, or adapt them to fit my own classroom needs. I have made mistakes in the past, and will not be ashamed to make mistakes in the future. Those are times of opportunity and learning, and I will use those moments to improve as a professional and individual in order to best meet the needs of my students.
  • 13. Michigan’s 7 Entry Level Standards (cont’d)
    • Standard 6
    • Commitment and willingness to participate in learning communities.
    • I have attended educational seminars (while employed as a substitute teacher and as a student teacher) in effort to continually expand my abilities. I am always willing and eager to stay current on trends and issues in the educational field in order to do my job well.
    • I worked in professional learning communities within my grade level and my school while student teaching. I have also actively been involved with the Cadillac Area YMCA since 2003 – primarily working with the preschool programs.
    • I am fortunate to have met many valuable and resourceful people in the educational field. College fieldwork, substitute teaching, and taking an active role in my community have allowed me to interact with many educational professionals. I will continue to seek these people for advice and support.
  • 14. Michigan’s 7 Entry Level Standards (cont’d)
    • Standard 7
    • An ability to use information technology to enhance learning and to enhance personal and professional productivity.
    • I love technology! I am all for anything that is more efficient and productive, and yet engaging. Both students and teachers benefit from technology in the classroom, and I intend to incorporate it into my classroom as much as possible. There are numerous learning opportunities using computers, the internet, and audio/visual devices. It is important for teachers to stay current on technological trends in order to better educate students and keep up with all of the changes. I enjoy researching top-notch, quality, educational web sites for lesson plan ideas or interactive learning. I frequently use various computer programs to create unique visual aids for my students.
    • It is also important to be able to learn about assistive technology for special needs students. There are so many wonderful pieces of equipment that allow the special needs child to excel in the classroom. As a teacher, it is my duty to learn about the equipment to better meet their needs in the classroom.
  • 15. Classroom Management
    • I firmly believe that caring and effective classroom management is an essential piece of the puzzle that adds to a well rounded, and successful classroom learning environment. In order for each child to engage in the learning process, whether in a whole group or independently, I must have a plan of action each day, for each and every instance and/or lesson plan.
    • Routine is first and foremost in my management plans. Schedules are an important organization tool that allows both the teacher and students to manage time wisely throughout the day. That daily schedule will be posted so that students can read it. Depending on the age, this means the schedule might consist of words, pictures, analog/digital clocks – or all three. When students become familiar with a daily routine and expectations, they will feel more comfortable knowing when an activity begins and ends, thus making those transitions with ease.
    • From day one, students will be aware of classroom rules and expectations. We will all have to learn to live together, in harmony, each school day. In order to achieve this, students and parents will receive written rules and expectations of both the classroom and school building. This may be in the form of a student/parent handbook, a letter written by the teacher, and/or documents provided by the school building/district. These rules will be enforced daily, and consequences for not following them will be applied as deemed necessary by myself and/or school officials. I have become familiar with various behavior management techniques that work easily in elementary classrooms.
  • 16. Classroom Management Techniques
    • A color coded behavior chart with each students name written on a clothes pin. The pin can be moved accordingly down the chart depending on the consequence (5 minutes owed, 10 minutes, phone call home, etc.). There are multiple variations of this technique.
    • Jotting down students names in a responsibility book. This also has various levels of consequences.
    • Point systems – either for individuals, tables of students, or rows of students at desks. This is one of my favorites, and works well. It really puts the responsibility in the hands of the students (to earn or lose points) and can be used with other students to offer a reward to a group or team of students who work cooperatively. Not only does each child have to think about their own behavior, but they also have to consider how their actions affect those around them, This technique is enhanced when a manipulative is given for each point earned. A basket of accruing points (or lost points) is a great visual reminder of behavior and/or accomplishments.
  • 17. Classroom Community
    • My classroom is a community. In our community, we have rules to help us get along with each other.
    • Follow the 4 B’s
      • Be Respectful
      • Be Responsible
      • Be Resourceful
      • Be Safe
  • 18. Home-School Connections
    • It is my belief that there should always be an open line of communication between my classroom and the student’s homes. As a teacher and parent, it is my goal to make the home and school connection a daily priority. Even when there are a pile of papers to be graded or lessons to be prepared, it is crucial that parents are always aware of their child’s progress, homework, and classroom activities. I want to teach my students how to openly communicate with their loved ones about their school life and encourage the families to take an active role in their child’s education.
    • Email, phone, written notes
    • Weekly newsletters
    • Classroom volunteers
    • Website
    • Classroom calendar
    • School/Home folders
    • I believe that it is important for teachers to communicate with
    • parents when a child has been caught doing something good,
    • too!! 
  • 19. Homework
    • Some homework or small family projects may be sent home.
    • My philosophies regarding homework vary depending on grade level and individual need.
  • 20. Cadillac Area YMCA
    • The YMCA is an important aspect of my life. I taught preschool classes/camp at the Y from October 2003-March 2006. My family has participated in YMCA classes since 2005. I have had a major role in developing the preschool programs, which are still “under construction”. I have worked with children and their families to create a fun, and educational experience at the Y.
    • I am honored to be part of such an organization, and will continue to do so as long as my schedule allows. In the past few years at the Y, I have developed great friendships, co-workers, and partnerships with the parents of the children I worked with. My time as an instructor has helped me implement the teaching skills that I have learned, and has allowed me to practice presenting lesson plans and managing children in a group setting. It has been an excellent stepping stone for me, as I transition from this setting to a classroom environment. I has been exciting to watch the Y grow in Cadillac, and I look forward to their continual growth in our community!
  • 21. Student Teaching
    • I was very pleased with my student teaching experience. I was blessed with two wonderful teachers that opened up their classrooms to me, shared their students, and best teaching practices, and helped me learn and grow in so many ways.
    • Lincoln Elementary
      • August 2007-November 2007
      • 2 nd Grade
    • McKinley Elementary
      • November 2007-February 2008
      • Kindergarten
  • 22. Lincoln Elementary Student Teaching
    • My first cooperating teacher was Catherine Stilwell in second grade at Lincoln Elementary in Cadillac, MI. Cathy was extremely supportive during my time in her classroom. She handed me her students and classroom, and made me feel like it was equally mine. I had an abundance of opportunities to put my creative spin on lessons and activities, or try certain techniques even if I wasn’t sure how the students would respond. Through times of success, or times of learning through mistakes, Cathy always let me reflect on my teaching with her through discussion and feedback. I left this classroom with a great sense of accomplishment and confirmation in my choice of career.
  • 23. The “Geometree” I created a two-week geometry unit based on the GLCE’s for second grade during my student teaching. The ‘Geometree’ on the left dropped geometry surprises for the students to find the following school day! Students learned basic shapes, attributes, vocabulary, and experimented with pattern blocks. This unit is available upon request.
  • 24. Autumn Display
  • 25. Math Wizard
    • I created the “math wizard” during my student teaching in 2 nd grade to motivate and encourage discouraged/frustrated students. It gave them a boost of confidence, and some responsibility during math time.
    • One student was chosen each day to wear this magical hat, which gave them super math powers to conquer the task at hand.
  • 26. Birthday Graph At the beginning of the school year, the 2 nd graders and I made a birthday graph. The students decorated their own cakes, and we labeled them with their name and date of birth. The graph was displayed in our classroom.
  • 27. McKinley Elementary Student Teaching
    • My second placement was with Lisa McCumber in Kindergarten. In the middle of the year, I was welcomed into this classroom as if I had known these children prior to this experience – something I had not expected. Kindergarteners are so enthusiastic and loving. We bonded and established our relationships quickly. I’ve learned a lot from Lisa. I adore her efforts to preserve traditional kindergarten. I’ve learned creativity on a dime, and the value of flexibility. During this placement, I became very comfortable with differentiated instruction. This particular class had 4-yr. olds turning 5, students repeating the grade, and others who were very driven academically. I enjoyed adapting the lessons to meet the needs of each child so that everyone was successful and learned the material as directed by the standards and benchmarks.
  • 28. Story books come alive!
    • This is me dressed up as Lilly, a character from Kevin Henke’s book, Lilly’s Purple Plastic Purse .
  • 29. Cooperative Learning We paired high school biology students with Kindergarteners to teach mini science lessons! It was hands-on, and a great learning experience for everyone.
  • 30. Little Reindeer
  • 31. Parents in the classroom
    • A parent, who is also a dental hygienist, came to talk to my students during dental health month in February.
    • We made giant toothbrushes and a tooth brush chart to make sure we brush our teeth 2-3x’s/day!
  • 32. K is for kick!
    • My fiancé and son teach my kindergarten class about the /k/ sound, while demonstrating karate kicks!
  • 33. Kids Speak Out
    • Upon my completion of student teaching, I asked my students to write me letters of recommendation. In kid terms – “why should a school hire me as a teacher?” They wrote some really heartfelt letters, which can be found in my (paper version) portfolio. Here’s some quotes from those letters:
      • “ Miss Powell is a graet teacher, because I liked painting goreds.
      • “… the paatrn caubs are fun too. We did food graffs. It turned that veshbuls. Miss Powell is very creaduv. I think you shod pik Miss Powell”.
      • “ I love four corners and jeopardy”.
      • “ Please pick Powell for a teacher because she is varee varee good at teachering. She is nete and clene”.
      • “ Miss Powell is a rilly nice teacher. In intercession we made a scarecrow it was just rilly rilly fun. And geometry was just sow osum. I just had sow much fun. Painting gorgs everyone had a bunch of fun. O doing ghost feets sticking your feet in the paint it felt weerd but it was fun”.
      • “ I liked the math wizard program. Do it with the next class”.
      • “ Mrs. Powell is the nicest teacher. My favorite part is the math wizard. A lotte of pepple liked it. It was fun”.
      • “ Mrs. Powell is the best teacher because she is nice and kind. My favorite thing was jeopardy”.
      • “ I like reading groups when I am with Miss Powell because I am trying my best all the time when I am at Miss Powell’s group and Miss Powell said you did your best.
      • ** I hope you, the reader, were able to decipher such creative spelling! 
  • 34. Special Education Experience
    • I have recently concluded my position as a long-term substitute for the Pine River Area Schools from April 2008 – June 2008. This position was split between Pine River Middle School, and LeRoy Elementary school.
      • I modified lessons/assignments, monitor behavior, ensure understanding of material being presented, make accommodations for homework and tests/quizzes in order for successful completion.
      • Followed IEP goals, maintain home-school communication, attend IEP meetings, communicate concerns with IEP team members (Speech, OT, PT, administrators, classroom teachers, etc.)
      • Although I am not qualified to write an IEP, I have attended any initial IEP’s or IEP reviews for the students that I worked with, and observed my co-workers as they updated IEP’s and progress reports.
      • I am certain that becoming familiar with this aspect of education will give me a tremendous advantage as a new teacher in the classroom!
  • 35. Pine River Middle School
      • At the middle school, I worked cooperatively with two special ed. teachers and the general ed. teachers in order to team teach the following inclusion classes: 7 th grade Pre-Algebra, and 6 th grade Science and Language Arts.
        • I had a case-load of six students, but worked with all of the general education & special ed. students (including students receiving Title 1) in need of assistance when I was present in the classroom.
        • Openly communicated with classroom teachers to ensure that my modified lessons, grades, and progress reports were deemed fair and accurate for the individual student.
        • Assisted classroom teachers with daily business (attendance, passing out papers, teaching whole or part of a lesson – either in small group or whole group instruction, discussing grading of the students on my caseload).
  • 36.
    • At LeRoy Elementary I taught in the Resource Room. LeRoy is a K-2 building and I worked with students in each grade level. During my time at LeRoy, I:
      • Maintained curriculum and IEP goals in place prior to my arrival.
      • Learned about and implemented diagnostic techniques to determine a child’s academic ability.
        • Curriculum Based Measures
          • DIBELS (formally trained and administered in December 2008)
          • MAZE (Aimsweb) = reading comprehension
          • Writing Samples
        • Progress Monitored students
        • Was introduced to the Hawthorne Assessment Questionnaire
        • Learned that there are approximately 16 different assessments when testing for special education qualification.
      • Became familiar with the Wexford Missaukee ISD staff that is responsible for the testing & their role in the student’s academic progress.
        • School psychologists, teacher consultants, occupational therapists, special education teachers, speech and language therapists, physical therapists, etc.
    LeRoy Elementary School
  • 37. Other Special Ed. Experience
    • Health Aid (05/06 School Year)
      • Assisted 1 st grade Autistic Student in general education classroom
    • Substitute Teaching (since 2004)
      • Young MoCI Long Term
        • March-June 2005, McKinley Elementary
      • PPI, XMI, Adult, MoCI, and E.I. classrooms
    • Familiar w/ Brain Gym, and some assistive technology devices
    • Worked with various types of students: ADD, ADHD, Bipolar, Cerebral Palsy, Autistic, blind, hearing impaired, Learning Disabled, and Emotionally Impaired.
  • 38. A work in progress…
    • My digital and paper version portfolios are a work in progress, I am continually adding to them as I gain more experience in the field of education.
    • Just like my portfolios, I am also a work in progress. I will continually grow and evolve as a caring, and effective teacher.
    • If you would like to look at my paper version portfolio, please ask! It is a bit more detailed with more lesson plans, sample college coursework, transcripts, student teaching reviews/reports, and more!
  • 39. Keep Looking!
    • Please be sure to look at the other documents on this digital portfolio disc.
      • Resume & References
      • Lesson Plans
      • Educational Philosophy
      • Sample Newsletters & letters to parents
  • 40. Coming Soon…
    • New additions to my portfolios will be coming soon:
      • Copy of teaching certificate
      • Updated resume
  • 41. Let’s Have a Great Year!

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