Learning something new everyday!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

A year of learning...

Ok, this is inspired by many Karen, Niki, Michelle, and others so I strive to do it justice.

This has been one of the biggest years of learning in my life (behind becoming a wife and parenting my children). Although I have been teaching for 20 years, this has been the greatest. I returned to the classroom full-time since becoming a mom 14 yrs ago and embraced using technology with my students.  As I have mentioned before, this was way outside my comfort zone, much like what I imagine my students feel like at various times in our day.

So here it is, my year 2011/12...

  • Sept. began, after a summer of preparing by reading The Daily 5 and The Daily Cafe which brought about creating more student choice in my reading and writing program and improvements in individual conferencing (a work in progress)
  • Late fall I saw Adrienne Gear speak about her Writing Power book and several strategies to improve students writing. I'm thinking about how to help my young writers develop their own "voice".
  • Dec. saw my Smartboard finally installed. Amidst great excitement I began learning to use it with my students (who learn faster than I at times)! It quickly became a favourite teaching/learning tool for students and teacher.
  • Feb. I went to my first Ed Camp in Surrey, where I met Karen for the first time. She convinced of the power of Twitter, and blogging!
  • I set up a Twitter account and "lurked"
  • March, I began this blog.
  • I also set my grade 1 students up with their own kidblog account. I am so happy to see them continue to blog and comment through the summer.
  • I took part in Surrey's Digital Dinner series to learn more about using the iPad in my classroom and was amazed at the possibilities....
  • I helped write our school's proposal for the Innovative Learning Designs grant where we were successful in gaining funds to purchase mobile technology for next year.
  • I attended another Primary Teacher's Association mtg where I met Sarah who again encouraged me to jump-in with both feet and be more active on Twitter.
  • I tried "I Wonder..." statements with my students where they investigate their own inquiry. Powerful learning was the result.
  • I began learning from and with my students, and not fear the mistakes or problems along the way. Yes, the dongle to the Smartboard sometimes has a mind of it's own!
  • The last few months (and George Couros) have convinced me of the power of Twitter in my own Pro D. The connections are simply amazing!
  • I attended a workshop given by Robyn on blogging in Primary which further cemented my commitment to writing to learn. I am still learning.....
Here is what I am currently working on
I have another stack from last year I intend to review this summer as well. I love being challenged by so many. My effort right now is to write to make sense of what I am learning. I aim to be more purposeful in developing my own voice right here.

I am thankful to all these talented teachers (and so many more) who encourage on my journey. Thanks also to Shelley Brett for supporting and believing in Niki and I!