We are proud to introduce our fourteenth Sunday Spotlight, featuring Angie Jennings who is the Math specialist at the STEM Education Center at the University of Arkansas, Fort Smith. Angie stumbled upon Edulastic when looking tools to help teachers give students online assessment preparation for the state test,PARCC. Angie’s favorite snack while using Edulastic is popcorn, her favorite question type is Drag and Drop, and she has a diagram of desk exercises as a reminder to take productive breaks throughout the day. We enjoyed learning more about Angie and know you will too!
University of Arkansas, Fort Smith
STEM Education Center
13 years working in education
“My favorite part of being in education is the difference I can make in the lives of students. To be able to reach a student who comes from a difficult background and who might not have a chance in life otherwise, to inspire them to reach for higher goals than they ever thought possible, and to see that student succeed. That is the greatest feeling.”
Get to know Angie Jennings
What do you love about working in education? What motivates you?
I’ve always wanted to be a teacher. Starting at a young age, I set up classrooms in my home and taught my “students” math, which happened to be my younger brothers. Teaching is quite simply part of who I am.
My favorite part of being in education is the difference I can make in the lives of students. To be able to reach a student who comes from a difficult background and who might not have a chance in life otherwise, to inspire them to reach for higher goals than they ever thought possible, and to see that student succeed. That is the greatest feeling.
What is your “Edulastic story”?
I work with Arkansas teachers in my region of the state by providing Professional Development and classroom support. So when Arkansas decided to start giving our students the fully online PARCC assessment, I started looking for ways our teachers could expose their students to online assessment. I stumbled upon Edulastic in my search in their early days. Throughout the last few years, I’ve learned more about it and have seen them continually improve their service. I’ve also presented trainings with a strong support from the edulastic employees. It’s been really neat to see them grow, expand, and develop. Arkansas teachers, as more of them learn about it, are excited about what Edulastic allows them to do with their students!
Describe your favorite Edulastic “aha” moment.
When I stumbled on Edulastic in a Google search and started looking around the site, comparing it to the method of delivery PARCC had, I couldn’t believe it was so similar. AND, it was FREE for teachers! The things Edulastic could improve on to make it even better, they have. It’s been really neat getting to follow them through these changes and see them take seriously the recommendations sent them.
Tips for new Edulastic users:
It seems a bit overwhelming at first. Keep in mind that this is only because Edulastic offers so many great options. Learn a few things at a time and before you know it, you will be navigating effortlessly through creating and assigning your classes well-designed, technology enhanced assessments.
Favorite Edulastic question type?
Drag and Drop
Favorite snack while using Edulastic
Coffee or tea?
Mathematical Mindsets by Jo Boaler
Best tactic for running successful PD or workshop?
Interaction and time to individually explore and create.
Tell us about something you keep on your desk or wall and why.
Diagram of chair exercises to remind me to take productive brain breaks
How do you like to spend your free time?
Watching my children play basketball, dinners around the table, and quality time with God and my family.
What was your greatest accomplishment this past year?
Had 60 teachers sign up for a workshop I offered on Growth Mindset, in the middle of the school year. I was also featured in our local newspaper on a day in which I was presenting Edulastic.
Kindest compliment you have received from a student or teacher?
“You not only helped me with math, you helped me learn how to navigate life and showed me you care.”
Funniest moment on the job?
I do things every day for others and myself to laugh at!
Where would you like to be in 20 years?
Retired, living on a farm, writing in my spare time, and spending time with friends and family. Slowing down to enjoy the best things in life.