Meet a Tech Savvy Teacher: Aaron Maurer


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Aaron Maurer is an Instructional Coach for Bettendorf Middle School. He has been in education for over a decade teaching sixth grade social studies, literature and computer as well as spending many years teaching gifted education in grades 4-8 before taking on the new role of instructional coach. Aaron is the Makerspace Summit keynote speaker and will also be presenting sessions at NCCE 2016! His sessions are listed at the end of this post. Here’s Aaron….

Name: Aaron aka Coffeechug Maurer

Location: Bettendorf, Iowa

Current job(s): Instructional Coach for Bettendorf Middle School working to develop high quality projects as we are a project based learning school.

Current computer: I am typing on my Surface Pro 3, but also have a Surface, a Macbook, a 25 inch Mac and way too many tablets to count.

Current mobile device(s): iPhone 6 which I call Coffeechug Mini-iPad

One word that best describes how you teach or work: Limitless

Show us a screenshot of your mobile device’s home screen!

Yes, all on one screen (no secondary slides) and all color coded. Check out my SpeekGeek session to learn more!

aaron_phone

What apps/software/tools can you not live without?

Twitter, My Fitness Pal, Podcast, Spotify, Xbox App on Surface Pro 3 to edit my video game videos, Starbucks

Share with us a time when you failed in your teaching or learning pursuits. How did you persevere?

I fail darn near every single day as each month I pick one new thing to learn. This has become my big goals for 2016 to not only learn, but to share it all with others. I make mistakes several times a day. However, it is not failing in the sense that people use the word. It is only failure if we don’t learn. We cannot forget that progress is only made by continually learning from our mistakes both large and small.

Other than your phone and computer, what gadget can you not live without?

Aeropress for making the best coffee in the morning while I wait for my bulldog, Frankie May, to eat breakfast.

What is your favorite organizational tip, app or advice?

Bullet Journal. Check out my site to learn more www.coffeeforthebrain.com

What browser do you use regularly?

Chrome, but am slowly using Edge more and more as I learn how it can make life more efficient.

What is your workspace/classroom like?

Coffeechug Café is a bit messy now, but this is where the magic happens on a daily basis. What you have to realize is that this room looks different almost every single day.

aaron-workspace

What is your best time-saving trick?

Create your day the night before using a Spiraldex and recording your work each day via the Bullet Journal method. Don’t wake up without a plan.

If you had $1,000 to spend on classroom tools and wanted to make the greatest impact on student learning, how would you spend it?

Ask the students. Go to the source and let them tell you. You may not like the answer, but it is what is needed.

What are your most valuable classroom/work routines?

I am not in the classroom as a regular teacher anymore, but for a decade I found that sitting at the tables and desks with kids and treating them like equals was key to learning for them and myself.

What is your favorite avenue to connect with social media?

Twitter, Facebook, and Google Plus and just started to plunge into Snapchat

When you are not living the glamorous work life, what do you like to do in your spare time for fun?

Coaching basketball and robotics as well as training for triathlons. I love playing video games and hanging out with my awesome wife who puts up with my craziness and my three super cool kids.

Any parting thoughts you would like to share with our readers?

Go make it happen. Get It Done! Life is to short treat it like a dress rehearsal. So many people are scared to act on their ideas and we need more people living life to its fullest. Go out there and make yourself happy.

Please reach out and connect so we can learn from one another. Twitter @coffeechugbooks and website is www.coffeeforthebrain.com

Connect with Aaron at the following sessions:

Speedgeeking With Coffeechug

Thursday, February 25 | 4:00 PM – 4:50 PM | Room: Tahoma 3

Description:
This will be rapid fire session of technology tips, tricks and productivity tools that I use in my classroom and school to help make life easier for both myself as a teacher and for students. I will share out things I use with classrooms as well as staff during Teaching Tinker Time and PD. These ideas will give you time to enjoy that cup of coffee and have fun at the same time! The key here is simplicity and productivity.

Making Global Connections With Skype In The Classroom

Friday, February 26 | 11:30 AM – 12:20 PM | Room: Yakima 1

Description:
Want to connect your classroom with the world and promote global citizenship? Using Skype, you can connect students across town, around the world, bring in industry experts, or take virtual field trips. Learn how you can connect with other educators, get lesson plans, start a project and more from Skype in the Classroom.

Aaron will also be leading a workshop:

Makerspace Workshop: How To Transform Your Classroom To A Makerspace

Session: HP63 | BYOD Workshop | THUR, February 25 | 1:00 – 3:00 PM | Room: 3A

Description:
This session is designed to help educators and anyone involved in the field of education understand what this makerspace movement is all about and how to find a way to make it work in the school setting. Through a variety of hands on learning, lively discussions, activities, and planning, participants will walk away with a sense of how to implement the ideas back at their school and classroom. Key ideas to be discussed will be learning spaces, PBL integration, how to manage the makerspace, easy activities to start, and how to blueprint change for your current space.

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