Teacher Spotlight: The Passionate Ms. Stricker

Name: Rachel Stricker

Grade/Subject Currently Teaching: 1st to 8th Grade Technology                     

Current City: Philadelphia, PA, USA

Why do you think it’s important to connect your students globally on UClass?

With today’s ever increasing global, knowledge-based society and with more and more emphasis placed on students acquiring 21st century skills, I believe it very important for student to be connected globally. Global collaboration and communication is becoming the norm now partly due to the easier access to technology resources but also in the realization that in order to thrive in today’s society we need to be a part of the global and interdependent world. UClass therefore is providing an avenue in assisting educators and students in gaining valuable experience in being connected to the world and in fostering those 21st century skills such as collaboration, creativity, communication, information fluency and digital citizenship just to name a few.

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How do you use UClass in your classroom?

I am utilizing UClass as a way for my students to collaborate with each other as well as engaging them with project based assignments. I also have them comment on the latest World Thoughts questions which have been a great avenue for exposing my students to current events and empowering them to express their opinions/thoughts.  Yet, I also have been using UClass as a way to communicate with my students by posting assignments, providing feedback messages, and overall just alerting them to various things that are expected to be accomplished.  Another feature that I am encouraging and incorporating is pen pals. This is an exciting way to connect my students globally and in having them discover others with like minds or better yet diversity. As I implement this more, I believe it’s going to be a notable learning experience with the much needed “global awareness” amongst students.

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Share a great moment that your students have had while using UClass.

There have been quite a few great moments; one in particular is when my fifth graders won first place in the Holiday Project. The excitement they exhibited captured the expression “hard work pays off”. I believe that when students are involved and excited about what they are doing, it clearly motivates them more to succeed and they look forward to the next engagement with a positive attitude.

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What do you love about being a teacher?

The utmost thing that I love about being a teacher is that it provides me with an opportunity to make a positive difference in a student’s life.  Whether I am instilling an academic skill, a social skill, or a personal skill, I want my students to be able to realize that they too have all the necessary capabilities that others have to succeed in life. That it’s important to be proactive and become productive citizens by learning all they can and helping others to do the same. In essence, I desire for my students to believe in the fact that anything is possible if they “believe” in the possibility and ultimately to inspire them to always do their best.

What is your favorite book and why?

A favorite book of mine that I recently read was The Leadership Secrets of Santa Claus. I highly recommend this book for leaders in all professions, especially for educators.

Start Connecting @ UClass.org

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