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March 26, 2021

Happy Birthday Teaching Channel!

Happy birthday, Tch! What a special day of celebration for an auspicious first year. Who doesn’t love a birthday? Besides all the yummy traditions of cake and delicious birthday dinners, I love the chance to reflect on the year that’s just passed and to think ahead about what I’d like to be celebrating the next time this special day comes around. So, I’m sitting here having a little birthday party of my own for Tch and you just got an invitation!

The cake

Perhaps my favorite part of any birthday is a complete indulgence for my sweet tooth. I love to make birthday cakes for my children that celebrate whoever they are right then: a Power Ranger, a castle, a butterfly. And for Tch I would imagine a Chef Duff-inspired (Charm City Cakes for all you Food Network junkies) kaleidoscope because it represents all the ways this organization has sought to make the work of the classroom visible to everyone. This was the very first thing that drew me to Teaching Channel: a determined vision to bring the complexities and celebrations of the classroom to everyone who comes in contact with the channel. Like a kaleidoscope, the  most delicious morsels of Tch are the videos that arrange themselves like beautiful shards of light into our profession.

The candles

In my infinite geekdom, I did a little research about our tradition of putting candles on birthday cakes and discovered that it goes all the way back to Greek times as homage to the gods. Because carrying a cake full of candles always makes me a bit nervous, I like to focus on blowing out the candles and a more modern tradition of making a wish. If I were to make a birthday wish on the candles of the Tch birthday cake, I would wish that every teacher have access to a personalized professional learning experience where he or she has a chance to learn from, and interact with, the videos on the site. In the same way that peering into others’ classrooms has made an impact on the way I see my own classroom, has inspired me when I needed it the most, and has given me a robust community of colleagues to learn with, I wish that for every teacher.

The hoopla

Whether it’s singing, balloons, party horns or hats, no birthday is complete without a little noisy indulgence. So, let’s make some noise for all of the passionate people working at Tch who are working tirelessly to finally cast the classroom in it’s many prisms of laughter, love, complexity and nuance.

Let’s all leave a shout-out to our favorite Tch moments in the comments below. I’ll start:

P.S.  Don’t miss the birthday blogs from my colleagues Pat Wasley (on our big milestones) and Marie White (our Top 10 videos of the year) — there’s lots more to celebrate.


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