Meet The Teacher

Michelle Perez                          

Teacher | Blogger | Food Lover | Biology Nerd

When I was about 5 years old, my mom walked in to see rows of teddy bears and barbie dolls on the carpet while I stood in front of an easel with a stick pointed at a map. Not sure exactly what I was trying to teach them but apparently this fire has been building up in me for a while...

I am a proud Florida baby and I took my fair share of FCAT's (these crazy asthma-inducing tests), BUT I had plenty of field trips to Epcot that made up for them. I guess you can call me the wild child of my family, but I like to see myself as the "curious one" or the "think-outside-of-the-box" child because I have always been eager to learn and discover in unorthodox ways. I like to think that's why I stuck to science. I could make predictions, test things, play with icky stuff and of course, fire!

 

Despite my curious ways, I have a huge heart and I have this innate urge to help people (even if that means I lose out). When it came time to go to college, I was pretty serious about becoming a medical doctor. I knew I wanted to help people so I started volunteering at Arnold Palmer Children's Hospital as the "art cart attendant". I pretty much got to play with kids the whole time and it kind of hit me after just a few visits: I liked hanging out with the kids more than I liked hanging around the doctors.

Never ever ever ever did I imagine I would change my major from Pre-medical Studies to Science Education! Like never! But, here I am today. I teach 6th grade Life Science at a low-income middle school in Orlando, FL. I love my job and I love that I get to change lives every single day!

 


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Why TheBYODClassroom?

While I was a student, the teachers that got my attention were the ones that used technology. Why? Well, I knew my teachers had phones, I knew my friends had phones and I knew everyone was using them outside of school (aka the "real world"). I was always under the impression that school was supposed to prepare me for the real world. So why could we use our phones in the real world but not in the place that was supposed to prepare us for it? SO CONFUSING.

So it began. My quest to find ways to use phones in the classroom. Turns out my teachers that taught me how to use my phone as a tool, rather than a distraction, really gave me some practical skills that I needed in college and now at work...

Image courtesy of Operation Sports LLC

Image courtesy of Operation Sports LLC

Fun Facts:

  • I enjoy binge watching TV series on Netflix (Top 3: LOST, Scandal, Walking Dead)

  • I am a University of Central Florida (UCF) grad with a Bachelor's in Science Education - Biology and a Bachelor's in Psychology.

  • I substituted for over two years before receiving my teaching certificate and I could probably start a whole new blog on my experiences as a substitute teacher.


I have presented on technology on numerous occasions and I use student opinions to help determine what I share with you.  I hope you enjoy what TheBYODClassroom has to offer and I encourage you to become a part of the community of educators that share this passion. Check out my philosophy page by clicking the link below.


The ins and outs...

 

How has technology played a role in your life?

It was either technology or the icky stuff that kept me interested!

It was either technology or the icky stuff that kept me interested!

FOCUS! Whenever a teacher had us use technology in their class, I payed attention! It really was that simple for me.

I am much more productive with my device handy. Calculator, weather, translator; whatever I need is right there in my hands ready to be used (if charged, of course).


My favorite ed tech app is...

This is a hard one! There's so many I love but the one I find myself using most is Kahoot. Students LOVE this! They literally beg for it and I have turned it into an incentive for them. It even works for open house, parents are hilarious playing and competing with other parents.


Why did you become a teacher?

I have this motherly, nurturing side of me that just wants to help everyone, so teaching is an instrument for that. I am very passionate about the subject I teach (Biology) and sharing the wonders of the living world too. Who wouldn't want to know why we hiccup or how penguins select their mate?


I feel most alive when...

I am helping. Whether it's pulling over to help a turtle cross the road safely or offering a smile to someone, I truly enjoy helping out.


I couldn't live without...

My phone. Yes I know, how cliché, but I would be lying if I said anything else. I expect that once I have kids or I get married that I'll be changing this, but till then, the phone it is.


I'm addicted to...

FOOD...and traveling! I take full advantage of our summers off and winter breaks to travel with my loved ones. 


My guilty pleasure is...

Matilda! The movie AND the book! I'm still convinced that if I read enough books, I'll be able to do magic someday. Plus, who wouldn't want to be like Ms.Honey?!