About Me

These are the musings of an educator who is continually refining her idea of what it means to be a “good teacher.”  With a background in teaching high school history, I currently work in a college of education, where my primary duty is teaching social studies methods.  Prior to moving to our college of education, I spent time working with first year college students at a university that primarily serves the rural population of Oregon.  I had the opportunity to teach in a Wyoming school district that had a 1:1 high access laptop initiative and I also served as a full-time instructional coach.  I am a National Board Certified Teacher in Adolescent/Young Adult Social Studies: History.

The Great Wall at Jinshanling

University Courses Taught:

  • ED 685/686/687 & EDU 678/679 Secondary Social Studies Methods
  • EDU 633 & ED 638 Elementary Social Studies Methods
  • EDU 415 Elementary Social Science Methods
  • ED 381 Curriculum Standards: Social Studies
  • ECED 413 Social Science Methods: Early Childhood Education
  • EDU 616 Secondary Classroom Management
  • EDU 640 Secondary Integrated Methods
  • ED 660 General Secondary Methods
  • EDU 315 & 637 Technology in the Elementary Classroom
  • EDU 638 Technology in the Secondary Classroom
  • ECED 319 Technology in Early Childhood Education
  • ED 202 Linguistic & Cognitive Development
  • EDU 313, 617 & ED 383/483 Individual Differences & Issues in Primary & Elementary Education
  • ED 510 Child Development: Middle School & High School
  • EDU 311, 612 & ED 601 Teaching as a Profession
  • ED 610 Current Issues in Education – Special Topics: Professional Learning Networks and Classroom Grants & Funding
  • ED 517 Reviews in Education Research (Thesis Literature Review)
  • Practicum & Student Teacher Supervision at the Elementary & Secondary Levels

University First Year Experience Courses Taught:

CORE 101 – Part of EOU’s first year experience program, Core 101 is a 3 credit seminar intended for selected first year students who are part of the Integrated Studies Program (ISP) and is linked with a WR 115 class in which the students are concurrently enrolled. Core 101 is designed to introduce students to the culture and traditions of higher education, the resources of EOU, and to assist them in the development of intellectual, personal, and social skills that will allow them to be successful at EOU and beyond.

CORE 102 – Part of EOU’s first year experience program, Core 102 is 3 credit seminar focused on personal assessment and exploration of career and college major choices. The course is intended to introduce students to occupational research, goal setting, and the relationship between college majors and careers.

High School Courses Taught:

  • U.S. History/Modern American Studies
  • A.P. U.S. History
  • World History
  • Ancient Civilizations
  • African Studies
  • Asian Studies
  • European Studies
  • Economics
  • Learning Support Center (study skills & tutor style support)
  • ACT Prep

Tutoring Topics:  Reading, Writing, Basic Math, Algebra, Geometry, Study Skills, Various Homework Assistance & Test Prep (ACT, SAT, GRE)

Conference Presentations:

University Professional Development Presentations:

  • Summer Institute for Instructional Technology – Co-facilitated 12-day and 5-day institutes for university faculty on instructional technology.  A wide variety of topics were included, such as effective online pedagogy, using technology to facilitate collaboration, Canvas, Blackboard, Google Apps, video capture, and more. (2013-2016)
  • A Conversation About College-Level Literacy – Organized and facilitated a collaborative dialogue on how to help college students improve their reading skills. Included a mini-workshop presented by several professors on reading strategies that can be incorporated into any course.
  • New Faculty Orientation: Getting Up and Running – Co-facilitated an introduction for new faculty to the technology available at Eastern Oregon University.  Topics included Google Apps, Blackboard, Webster, and the EOU syllabus template.
  • Tech Slam: Workshop in Instructional Technologies – Co-facilitated a faculty workshop on topics including Google Apps, screencasting, and collaborative Web 2.0 technologies.
  • Slack & Video Discussions in the Classroom – Facilitated a workshop on the use of Slack in classrooms and college programs to promote collaboration, sharing of resources, and the development of Professional Learning Networks for students.  Presented on the incorporation of video discussions using Canvas and Flipgrid to create better student presence, connection, and collaboration in online and blended courses.
  • Flipgrid in the Classroom – Facilitated a brief workshop on the use of Flipgrid to create a sense of community in a primarily online cohort program.

Public School District and Building Professional Development Presentations:

  • Introduction of District Reading Essential Curriculum
  • Brain-Based Classrooms
  • Gaming Culture & the Classroom
  • Integrated Curriculum
  • HEAT/LoTi Lesson Make-overs
  • Learning Support Center Program Training
  • Skype in the Classroom
  • Asking Higher Level Questions
  • Coaching Teachers in Higher Order Thinking/Questioning Skills
  • Internet Safety: How to be Safe & Savvy in the Classroom
  • Introduction to Discovery Education
  • Unit Planning Workshops
  • Building & Integrating Class Websites Effectively in the High School Classroom

Continuing Education Courses Taught:

  • Embedded Technology – Semester course on Web 2.0 technologies in the classroom.  The course focused on Internet safety, social bookmarking, Google Docs, Twitter, Discovery Education, Creative Commons & Open Education.
  • Historical Connections: Using the Web for Professional Collaboration – A 2-day workshop in collaboration with the American History Cowboy Coalition, a Teaching American History grant, on using the web for professional collaboration (PLN Development with Twitter & Diigo).
  • Teaching Modern China – A 30-hour course in conjunction with the Teaching East Asia program at Colorado University – Boulder and the American History Cowboy Coalition.  The objectives of this class were to increase content knowledge on modern China and to help develop and integrate curriculum on this topic into the classroom.
National Board Certified Teacher – Adolescent/Young Adult Social Studies: History
2009 – Initial Certification
2019 – Renewal of Certification

National Board for Professional Teaching Standards Candidate Support Provider

My Twitter Feed

My LinkedIn Profile


4 thoughts on “About Me”

  1. Hi there. Great blog. I am following you on twitter. I run HistoryTunes. We have a new online tool for teaching/learning US History you may be interested in. We tell 400 years of American history through 50 pop/rock songs. These songs used in conjunction with our extensive on-line data base of resources provide a complete US History curriculum. We are trying to help teachers turn the technological corner by allowing students to use their iPods and the internet as lerning tools. Your program may be really condisive for this. I post free samples of songs on twitter everyday, feel free to follow me there and check out http://www.historytunes.com for all resources and samples.

  2. Dear Elizabeth, (you do not have to post this as a comment I’m just trying to contact you)

    I am the co-owner of OnlineDegree.com and we have prepared a graphic about the teaching profession found here: http://www.onlinedegree.com/infographics/teacher-salary that you are welcome to share with others and on this blog. I’d like to see your opinion on our findings.

    A more current adaptation of an adage is “a graphic is worth a thousand blog entries” and, in this case, we used some compelling data to help visually dispel some myths about the profession that teachers have been trying to set the record straight on for years.

    Thank you for choosing the path that you have as a teacher and it is our hope that sharing this infographic will contribute in some small way to communicate some hard facts about your chosen career.

    If you would like any first hand quotes from OnlineDegree.com to include in any post about this infographic, please feel free to contact me directly.


    Jim Varnon

  3. I am really impressed with your writing skills and also with
    the layout on your weblog. Is this a paid theme or did you customize it yourself?

    Either way keep up the excellent quality writing, it is
    rare to see a nice blog like this one today.

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