1. Political Science/U.S. Government/Election News/Current Events
2. U.S History
3. Education (General Education and Special Education, grades Pre-K through 12th Grade)
a. Assessment and Testing (informal/formal)
b. Topics In Special Education
c. Behavior Management
d. Lesson Planning
e. Differentiated Instruction
f. Collaboration with School Staff
g. Mainstreaming and Collaboration
i. Mental Health Issues in Children and Teenagers and how these issues affect schooling
4. Mental Health Issues and the Effects on Family and Relationships (including substance abuse/addiction)
Besides teaching, Melissa loves being able to spend quality time with her family. She has 2 daughters ages 4 and 1.5. Her husband is a police officer, and works 5-6 days/nights a week. Family time, even if it's just the girls and her, is priceless!
Melissa J, always enamored politics, not surprisingly, majored in Political Science while in college. She even went so far as to enroll in additional courses her junior and senior year, as electives, so that she could earn a concentration in American Government. She wrote (and enjoyed doing so) countless essays and papers geared towards politics and government while in college. She went on to work on local and state political campaigns during the summer of 2000, in Virginia. Interestingly, she also has a family member who is a United States State Senator...Today, Melissa thoroughly enjoys teaching 8th grade Civics because of all the exciting topics she and her co-teacher get to teach. They include: Political Parties/Elections, 3 Branches of Government, and Checks and Balances. She is also excited it is an Election year, as it will most definitely continue to be a year in politics that no one has seen before!
Melissa J has been teaching for over 10 years and has worked with kids who range in age from 4 up through high school. She has taught in rural (poor and well-to-do), urban, and suburban areas. She has worked with kids who come from wonderful, supportive homes, who put food on the table each night, and she has worked with kids who have been beaten, neglected, and who have to school starving for food-and attention. She has worked with kids as young as 4th grade who have been suicidal, and as young as 1st grade who have been diagnosed with early-onset schizophrenia. She has worked with students who are bi-polar, have ADHD, have anxiety, are depressed, have eating disorders, have learning disabilities, visual impairments, cognitive disabilities, are Autistic, are non-verbal, have physical impairments, and who are oppositionally defiant and otherwise conduct disordered.
On the flip side, she has 2 children of her own, and she knows what it's like to have 2 kids under the age of 3! She does know what it's like trying to balance work and family life, especially when she's the only parent home most nights, due to her husband's work schedule.
Melissa J has been working in the field of Education for almost 16 years. She has experience working with students as young as 4 years old, up through high school. She has taught special education in both self-contained and mainstreamed (regular education) settings. Melissa has taught in rural, urban and suburban settings, providing her with wide variety of experiences. These experiences include not just working with students, but teachers, administrators, parents, other school staff, and outside resources as well (especially those who work in the mental health field). Over the years, she has taught every subject and every grade K-5), and has taught the English, Math, History/Civics, and Physical Science at the secondary level Middle School).
Melissa J has written articles for who is probably considered to be a direct competitor of WriterAccess. She has written an article/review for a reality show on television (which was going to be included on a website or a blog elsewhere). She has also written an article on a nationally known lime of hair care products and its founder. She's also written an article on a famous American actress who's launched her own affordable clothing line.
Melissa J creates data sheets every year to be used daily/weekly for students with disabilities, in order to keep track of annual, measurable goals, which are part of each student's Individual Education Program. Each data sheet is different since it has to focus specifically on individual student data. The data that is gathered typically revolves around academics, self-advocacy, organization skills, or behavioral data.
Melissa J has been using email ever since it became available for her to use, in 1996! She initially used it as fast way to communicate with friends and family in college on what is now dated PC's. As time progressed, she obviously used email much more frequently. Today, it's the primary means of communication with teachers, other school staff, and parents at school (Melissa J teaches). She frequently does need to copy co-workers and administrators on emails that she writes. This includes carbon copies (Cc) of emails and blind carbon copies (Bcc) of emails.