Quickly Celebrating the Small Things

I feel like I have not achieved much today, in some ways, and I do not feel like I will get much done this afternoon between a staff meeting, chiropractic appointment and a meeting that I have to go to at Warners Bay this evening. I am currently typing this on my iPad as I wait for the weekly staff meeting to begin.

I have not had time today, for reasons, to type out my next article in the series on the Staff Development a day that I attended last Monday, nor will I have time tomorrow, as it is the school athletics carnival.

The small thing to celebrate is that I received an email today advising me that I had been nominated by my Honours supervisor to submit my dissertation for consideration to be presented at the Australiasian Conference of Undergraduate Researchers ( ACUR), which takes place at the end of September, in Perth, Western Australia.

It involves a four thousand word submission which is then considered, and though I intend to submit, I will be hard pushed to get it done as quickly as I would like.

Thank you for reading, as always, and I will try to get an article done for tomorrow, but given my time pressures, I do not think I will be successful.

Collaboration

“As you navigate through the rest of your life, be open to collaboration. Other people and other people’s ideas are often better than your own. Find a group of people who challenge and inspire you, spend a lot of time with them, and it will change your life.”
-Attributed to Amy Poehler

No single teacher, on their own, causes great things in the classroom or motivates students. That may sound odd, given that most classrooms are operated by a single teacher, but we do not cause great things to happen in isolation. The great moment in a lesson occurs because we have brainstormed how to deliver a particular lesson/skill/concept with a colleague, we have asked our partner or children for their feedback, we have sought feedback from our own students on how we can be better teachers for them and put that into practice, we have been to a professional development session of some description that has lit a fire under our tail and ignited a passion we were heretofore unaware of, the office staff have printed and distributed notes for any number of reasons.

In other words, we have collaborated in a variety of ways and with a variety of people. We do nothing in isolation. Ultimately, if we do not collaborate with our students, it will be irrelevant how amazing and inspiring our lesson plan is. Without their collaboration and buy-in, nothing is achieved.

I had a conversation this morning with a colleague who delivered my program to some classes on Friday, and her feedback was very useful. She pointed out that attempting to have students save a filed onto a communal USB was very time-intensive, and recommended simply using a class list as a tick and flick sheet, with a particular competency noted at the top of each column, and a tick if the competency was achieved. That was the initial idea, and somehow in the transition to using the class laptops as opposed to small groups, the method was cast aside. I used that method this morning, and it was much easier, and much simpler to put into practice in the classroom, and also when entering the data on the spreadsheet that my records are being kept on.

Collaboration with colleagues, especially around sharing what works is vital to a teachers success. How do you collaborate?

As always, thank you for reading, and I look forward to hearing from people about the collaboration that is going on.