To prepare for online learning, I will be spending the month before familiarizing myself with Zoom and Seesaw to ensure that I am prepared to instruct my students how to use these tools independently and appropriately. Given the fact that my second grade students will likely begin the year online, this will be a great opportunity to model these platforms and prepare my students to continue using them whether we are in school or required to return to online learning. One of my goals this year is to use technology to foster a blended learning environment and equip my students with the knowledge required to pursue their own independent learning.
Switching to online learning last year was challenging; however, it provided a great opportunity for my students and I to learn new ways to use technology. One area that I feel strong in is my ability to use streaming platforms to conduct live teaching sessions. While I would strongly prefer to be in the classroom with my students, I feel confident in my ability to deliver meaningful, engaging lessons in a live-streaming format. One area I feel I can improve on is my screen casting. Last year, I learned that pre-recorded screen casts must be concise in order to maintain student engagement. This year, I will be exploring ways to ensure high-quality modeling in my screencasts while keeping videos under 10 minutes.
My 5 Cs focus for the beginning of the school year will be Care and Classroom management. Throughout the school year, it is my goal to foster a classroom community in which students are happy, engaged, kind, and willing to take risks. I feel strongly that the beginning of the school year is a crucial time to establish relationships with each student and ensure that they feel safe and cared-for at school. Similarly, the beginning of the school year is crucial for setting class routines and expectations for students. In the first weeks, I will be focused on explicitly modeling expected behavior in order to provide a strong learning environment for my students.
To achieve these goals, I will be working closely with my colleagues to establish shared expectations for student wellbeing and behavior. While the future is uncertain, I believe that high quality learning can happen anywhere and any time. I look forward to the new school year!
- What was your biggest ah-ha moment during this online orientation experience?
I would say that my biggest “ah-ha” moment come during the Curriculum Flip-book module. At the beginning of my orientation, I was feeling overwhelmed by the sheer amount of information I believed I would need to learn. However, I found that the curriculum flip-book provided me with exactly what I needed to envision myself teaching at ISB. The flip-book provided a great framework that informed me of my responsibilities and expectations while allowing plenty of room to imagine how I could add in my own style and expertise.
- How might this online orientation experience impact teaching & learning in your classroom?
I feel that the online orientation has provided me with the necessary knowledge to hit the ground running and start the year strong. While working through each module, I found that the information was concise, but meaningful and substantive. Throughout the orientation, I found myself taking notes on the information presented while also writing down things I want to explore further.
- What are you most excited about for your upcoming ISB/China adventure?
I am excited to work in a highly collaborative environment. I can see from the orientation that ISB highly values collaboration and has systems put in place to provide professionals the opportunity to work together and share our strengths.
- How might your experiences & beliefs align with ISB’s?
Similar to ISB, I strongly value collaboration. My goal as an educator is to do my best to meet the needs of my students. I’m looking forward to learning from the strengths of my colleagues and contributing to own.
- How might you summarize your greatest takeaway(s)?
The Online Orientation provided me with the requisite knowledge I feel is necessary to begin teaching at ISB while also sparking my curiosity and desire to dive deeper into some of the topics presented. From the orientation, I feel that I have a stronger understanding of ISB’s mission and values as well as the day-to-day experience of being a member of the ISB community.
To begin with, I am very excited to implement the 7Cs into my teaching practice at ISB. As a primary teacher, I am constantly seeking ways to encourage my students to share their voice and advocate for themselves. I love how this framework provides students and teachers the opportunity to reflect upon their classroom environment through the lens of the 7Cs, and I look forward to issues the surveys throughout the year.
At present, I feel that my strongest areas are Care and Confer. In my role as an elementary teacher, I have found that developing strong relationships are critical towards creating a safe and joyful classroom environment. Throughout the year, I take great care to get to know each of my students as individuals as well as share bits about myself as an individual. That said, this information is difficult to quantify. I look forward to issuing surveys to find how well I am doing in these areas and where I can improve.
Two areas I have identified for growth are Consolidate and Clarify. While I regularly use various forms of formative and summative assessments, I am not sure that I am doing a good enough job of linking topics together and providing multiple explanations. These surveys will be a great way to find out how students perceive the topics we will learn throughout the year.
Reflecting on my past experience, I find it difficult to identify how my students would rank my areas of strength and growth. I suspect that the responses would vary from student to student. By using the surveys and standardized responses, I feel that I will be able to better identify trends and create a more consistent classroom environment for all learners.
ISB’s professional growth model provides a meaningful framework that helps teachers grow while simultaneously creating a more positive learning environment for students.
What professional growth models have you encountered in the past? How is ISB’s model similar to and different from these models?
Most professional growth models I have previously encountered followed the standard appraisal format. Teachers were informed of their evaluation criteria, set goals, observed, and given feedback. Personally, I found this format ineffective as it encourages “ticking boxes” rather than reflection and substantive growth. I found that fellow teachers were uncomfortable and often fearful with this process.
ISB’s model provides teachers with meaningful objectives to implement into their daily teaching practice. Rather than encourage meeting vague criteria, the 7 C’s provide meaningful objectives that can be used to constantly reflect on one’s professional practice and classroom environment. The model provides criteria that is both clear and concise as well as flexible and dynamic.
What are you most excited about our professional growth model?
I love how this model puts students front and center of one’s professional growth. I’m looking forward to sharing central message of each of the 7 C’s with my students and conducting surveys throughout the year! I’m also looking forward to further exploring the resources providing on the Tripod website.
What questions might you have?
How are these criteria evaluated? What successes have other teachers noticed with this model and what suggestions could further improve it?
Welcome to your Professional Learning Blog! This is a place for you to post your goals, and reflect on them throughout the year.
- Decide on your goal, perhaps in consultation with your colleagues or principal, and create a post to share with this online professional learning community that you are now a part of! Categorise this post in Goal Setting. Set your goal by considering:
- Self-assessment and reflection based on new teacher standards (Tripod 7Cs)
- Previous or new observation data from peers and principals
- Student surveys (online surveys developed and aligned with 7C’s)
- Identify colleagues, coaches, principals etc. that will play a supporting role in achieving your goal, and invite them to view and comment on your post. Encourage them to bookmark your blog and visit regularly.
- Throughout the year, collect and share evidence to support your progress. Categorise these posts in Reflection.
- Encourage your colleagues to share your learning journey by engaging with your blog. In return, engage with their blog (and others across the School)
- You may also like to share work that your students have created or your own professional achievements that may not be directly related to your goal setting. This is encouraged! Categorise these posts as Showcase.
If you need support using this platform, please don’t hesitate to contact Ed Tech, we are always happy to be of assistance!