Teacher Institute Q&A: David Balmer

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How has the experience at the institute changed your teaching?

It helped me see the whole picture of education technology. Having used Curriculum Pathways for over ten years, I knew a lot about the benefits it offered. But being part of the institute helped me to see what goes into making the various resources. And I was able to participate in the design, development, and refinement of resources that teachers across the world would be able to use for free.

What new skills did you acquire at the institute?

My skills and abilities increased in ways I couldn’t have imagined. I learned about the design principles that drive software development and about how a team made up of various specialists can work together to develop something none of them could have built alone. The experience has enabled me to make better connections with my own colleagues and to help students think critically, communicate with each other, collaborate, and create.

How did your experience at the institute match your expectations?

Honestly I did not know what to expect. Since I’d used Curriculum Pathways for so long, I was eager to be part of the development process. My experience was enlightening, encouraging, and challenging. I can’t fully express how positive the experience was because I’m still discovering the benefits.

Can you share a memorable moment from the summer?

Every day was an adventure. A special moment for me was being able to partner with Curriculum Pathways at the ISTE Conference in San Antonio. I participated in various presentations and poster sessions, which helped hundreds of educators gain exposure and access to the amazing library of Curriculum Pathways resources.

How did you feel on your first day? Your last?

I was nervous on the first day, but I left feeling more confident in my abilities to help students and to lead other teachers in using technology to enhance learning. I made life-long friends with the other educators at the institute and with the Curriculum Pathways team. The experience was a great opportunity for personal and professional growth. I’m glad I took advantage of it.

Why should someone apply to the Teacher Institute?

Any teacher passionate about learning and personal growth should apply. Participants become better teachers and their students reap those benefits. In addition, the experience will help teachers impart lifelong, real-world skills to students.

Sum up the Teacher Institute in one word.

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Want to join the 2019 Curriculum Pathways Teacher Institute? Applications are now open!

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About Author

Tim McBride

Supervisor, Educational Multimedia Writing

Tim McBride has degrees from Rochester Institute of Technology and NC State University, where he taught English for several years. His first book of poetry, The Manageable Cold, was published recently by TriQuarterly Press at Northwestern University. He works as a writer and an editor on Curriculum Pathways. He lives in Cary, NC, with an American pit bull terrier named Charlie McCarthy and a Catahoula hog dog named Junk.

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