For my first blog entry let me start off by saying that I HATE writing. Yes it needs to be that strong of word. I would much rather do math problems, coding, or building robots all day and all night then write a three paragraph essay. I am hoping that through this blog I will come to minimize the intensity of my dislike for writing and possibly even enjoy it. I know that reflection brings insight, meta-cognition, and growth and hope that this blog will provide these benefits. My friend April had the best advice as I was “not” complaining to her about so much writing for my graduate courses. She said to stop over analyzing my writing as I am completing it and just write like I am having a conversation with another person. Leave the proof reading and corrections to the end. I think I’ll take her up on this advice, so I apologize in advance if my blog is too informal.
Last night I participated in the #iaedchat with the topic being “Why Leadership Matters.” I have participated in quite a few #iaedchat’s in the last few years, but have never truly reflected on what they mean to me for professional development. The biggest asset they are to me is that they force me to take time and be reflective. It is through being a reflective teacher that I can determine what my strengths and weaknesses are, setting a road map for my future. This, in turn, will help me to become a better teacher for my students. It also allows me to connect with teachers and administrators from other schools across the state (sometimes from other states and countries!) that I would not normally get the chance to network and communicate with. I find that the most beneficial professional development for me is to be able to collaborate and converse with other teachers and administrators. I am able to experience both fellow teachers’ viewpoints and administrators’. Additionally, it is also nice to connect, relate to other teachers, and take time to stop and participate in professional dialog.
Whenever I think leadership, I think about the dancing guy. This is a video that was shown to my school’s staff during a professional development day. When in doubt about whether I should sit back and be a follower, or stand up and be a leader, I think of the dancing guy. In addition, I am reminded how it is important to make the best of any situation and to have fun. If am enthused and having fun, so will my students. I also think about all the leaders that have supported and pushed me through my life. Without that influence, I would not have pushed myself as far as I have nor set such high goals for myself. Reflecting on this fact reminds me that I need to be a leader for my students, to give them both encouragement, support, and a push along the way.