As this school year wraps to a close, I would be remiss if I didn’t give a huge thank you to the staff I am blessed to work with everyday. I am in a wonderful position to be able to work with all staff, from immediate classroom to service providers, special areas, and beyond. What I see everyday is nothing short of amazing. Staff going above and beyond to create learning experiences for students with autism and special needs, so that they can learn, live, recreate, and work at their highest potential. From the very youngest student saying their first words on an AAC to our oldest students transitioning to employment and being successful using an iPad… and everything in between.
From the staff that frequently share things with me and regularly meet with me… to those that do it quietly but consistently, you make my job exciting, constantly new, and rewarding. You push me to always look for new and innovative practices that will in-turn alter your practice.
Not only do I see creative teaching using the technology we have at our disposal; I see innovation and different ways of thinking to meet the needs of all learners and individuals.
Frequently people will share new software, new apps, post to my Facebook or Twitter page a new practice or technology, or just stop me in the hall with “Hey did you see this?” (which I will promptly write down on my high-tech post it). It is truly a blessing to work in a place where people are progressive thinkers and always excited about finding new and different ways to accomplish goals.
I am excited to go to Miami in July to share many things we do at my school with some of the biggest names in Apple’s educational and assistive technology arenas. So many of the staff I work with asked me to share their story about how they are transforming learning through technology. I can’t wait to bring this to others and in turn get new ideas to bring back home.
I must also give a shout out to the amazing technology team that keeps all of the equipment working and running as well. Without them, I wouldn’t have a job…or at least one that I could keep up with at the pace it demands.
Steve Jobs once said “Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it.”
There is no question in my mind I work with people that love what they do. People—- some family, some friends, all innovative educators— that are not afraid to “think different” in order to change lives for the better.
To the staff I work with as well as everyone out there (especially my virtual professional learning network) that innovates and changes lives, here’s to a job well done. Keep putting dings in the universe and making a difference.
Mark Giufre (deTechtive1) 2013