Social media is a fascinating place. In 2017 I was volunt-told to manage the social media for the Illinois Section of AAPT. This ended up with me launching my personal twitter account that I maintain as a (mostly) pure physics teaching space. My teaching growth exploded that year as I connected with teachers with similar values around the classroom and began to curate more ideas for my classroom and receive feedback on things I had created.
A few years later a conversation started about how toxic facebook teacher groups are. I had never considered using facebook for my professional work as I keep that space purely personal. I joined the groups out of curiousity and mostly remained uninvolved.
In early 2022 I started getting a clearer picture of what these facebook groups were about. Without a common mission or values, these groups were massive spaces with a wide range of abilities, philosophies and personalities. While the toxicity and trolling is certainly problematic, what I found most notable was the number of teachers who were there just looking for anything for help. Teachers who were thrown into physics with no training, teachers who were the onlies in their buildings, teachers offering AP having never done so before. While many of us who are connected on twitter respond to posts here and there, there are a lot of comments that come from a more novice approach (plugging and chugging and equation hunting). As a new teacher I would probably look at the majority of answers, rather than knowing how to determine quality.
So I decided to start a series that describes the way I teach each of the concepts in my classroom. I, by no means, am claiming to be an expert because I am continuously learning, but I realize that I was always saving my “best” for this space, when there is a lot to be gleaned from just my “day to day”
So welcome to the series!