Collin Varney is an English teacher at Columbine High School. He was awarded a grant for a presentation clicker and College Board’s AP Institute Training.
“The presentation clicker I received through the Academic Foundation has allowed me to take control of the classroom in a more efficient way. It may seem like a simple tool, but as a traveling teacher who must open up everything on four different computers and who must work strictly through Google Drive to post instructions, lessons, homework, etc., I was in need of something that would allow me to take more control of each space in which I teach.
The clicker has allowed me to stand in different areas of the room when instructing and remain out of the way of students’ vision, which helps to ensure student accountability, and it lessens the moments that are spent walking back to the computer every time something needs to be changed, which, in the end, keeps the flow of lessons, including transitions, alive. I am an active, energetic teacher, someone who wants to be around the entire space in which I speak, and the clicker allows me to match the energy I hope to bring to the classroom.
I was also fortunate enough to register and reserve a spot for the AP Institute at Cherry Creek High School, thanks to a grant from The Foundation. Simply put, this was, by far, the best training I’ve ever received. And although I didn’t turn around and immediately teach AP English, I came back to another year of teaching feeling rejuvenated and excited to implement pieces of what I’d learned. Honestly, it can be quite frustrating when you find that, even with a hunger to challenge yourself and sharpen your practices, you are often discouraged of the best offerings because of a lack of aid in funds put forth. Therefore, it’s been empowering to know that a foundation, with abundant resources and encouragement, works to provide us teachers with the opportunities to better ourselves as learners and professionals.”