In response to “Watershed Moments of Learning” shared by Dean Shareski. http://ideasandthoughts.org/2016/09/01/watershed-moments-of-learning/
When that light bulb comes on and you feel a rush of excitement over something that the majority of the population would look at you and say, “Really!” Those are my “Watershed Moments of Learning, “and I love that feeling! Those are the moments when I realize I am meant to be an educator and l love what I do.
The most engaging PD that I have been involved in to date is the PLCs with the Social Science Department at a very engaging and wonderful high school, CASS. These PLCs were very interactive and have given me the opportunity to gain hands on experience planning lessons for the LD learner with a group of teachers and administrators that I aspire to be like. I have never had such an engaging and collaborative learning experience, where I came away from each session we had together as a better more competent teacher. I can only hope that I will be able to become a part of this team once again and continue my learning involvement in these PLC sessions.
The absolute most mind-blowing amazing presentation where everything made sense was when I had the honours of attending a presentation by Will Richardson in March of 2016 in Sault Ste. Marie. He is a fantastic presenter and knows his stuff! I felt so engaged in the presentation I wanted to run out in the middle of it and start incorporating everything he was saying in my science classroom. But then I realized I wanted to hear the rest of the presentation! Such a fantastic presenter, with even more fantastic ideas for us teachers to bring to our classrooms and make a real difference in learning. Since then, I have started using some of his thoughts on 21st century learning and have begun to let the students take the wheel in their own learning.
The book I think that has given me great insight into becoming a better educator is “Mindsets in the Classroom, by Mary Cay Ricci.” When I read this book I had a hard time putting it down, one of those good reads where you just want to keep going! This book has made an enormous impact on the way I look at learning for each individual student that I teach. It has made me feel that creating a growth mindset within my classroom is possible. Giving me strength to instill this thinking in all my students. I phrase things differently when talking with my students, making them see themselves as a positive learner. I had a student come up to me in my Careers class and tell me that they couldn’t do the assignment the same as everyone else because they were (students words) “stupid!” I had just finished reading this book and all the principles and concepts from the book came flooding back and this is where I began implementing this mindset within my students!
I honestly think that my new favourite tool has become my blog https://julesrobinsonblog.wordpress.com/. I started this blog while taking the E-Learning additional qualification course to post my responses for my classmates to read and to connect with educators online. I was very nervous at first about posting my responses out there for everyone to criticize and read. Boy was I wrong! Starting my blog has been a super rewarding and positive experience where I can share my thoughts and ideas with other educators. Getting feedback, or as another teacher in my other AQ class puts it “feed forward,” is such a fantastic way to engage with other educators who are on the same page. I am hoping to keep up my blogging once my course is complete and to keep connecting with educators who I can share experiences and ideas with.
The person whom I think has inspired me the most in education is a previous principal, now superintendent, “Marcy Bell.” Marcy has helped me to see my potential as an educator and given me great insight on qualities that I have that can help me grow as a teacher. I can only hope to be as good an educator and leader as Marcy. She inspires me to reach high and set my expectations of myself to a level I never thought I could reach! She is a fantastic leader and encourages others around her to go after their goals.