Good afternoon SCH,
If you asked me a five years ago what I did for professional development, my answer would have sounded something like this, but in a man’s voice 🙂
Admittedly, I struggled with ways to facilitate learning opportunities. Â I figured that taking college courses at night was enough in terms of PD. Â The ambition was there, yet when I sat back to reflect on how I was achieving my goals, I struggled to find answers. Â Here is an example of how I would respond to self evaluation “Vince, what exactly are you currently doing to achieve the goals you have set for yourself?”
Fast forward 2 or 3 years and my answer may have sounded a bit different. Â In my decade or so at Springside & SCH Academy, I’ve attended my fair share of conferences & seminars, while taking a number of online courses, yet few have resonated with me that way that the flipped modelÂ of professional development has. Â The flipped model is a relatively new buzz-word methodology of PD that has been going on for years. Â Alan November provides a good framework for us to follow, but the truth is, unbeknownst to myselfÂ I had been doing exactly this for a while. Â I never realized that it was not only a great way to enhance my professional career, it simply was and remains a great way to LEARN. Â Ultimately, that’s what we’re all here to do, LEARN & TEACH.
I point to one specific opportunity provided by Springside that changed my approach to PD and ultimately led me to a new career path. Â In 2008 I attended NAIS in NYC where I had the privilege of hearing Daniel Pink and Ian Jukes speak. Â Sir Ken Robinson was also on the agenda, however, I didn’t think a discussion on jousting or knighthood was relevant to education. Â My deepest apologies to Sir Ken as my naive brain caused me to miss out on a great educator, if I only knew! Â I do currently follow Sir Ken via several outlets which I’ll speak of shortly. Â Both Pink & Jukes were amazing, each of them really sparked my interest in education. Â I had been working in an educational environment for over five years, but my focus was primarily on Smart Boards, mother boards, RAM, PCs & printers (I’m currently kicking and screaming thinking of the “fond memories.” Â Enjoy one of my all time favorite photos from “Office Space” that I’m sure you’ve seen me post before:
After leaving NAIS I immediately became a Committed Sardine, read Dan Pink’sÂ A Whole New MindÂ while regularly checking in on each of their Web Sites. Â This brings me to how I was introduced to flipped model of PD, my apologies for the long winded way of doing so. Â Regularly reading Committed Sardine emails and constantly checking my bookmarked Pink & Jukes sites were not the most efficient ways to keep up with the resources. Â Furthermore, I wanted to find additional resources as I found myself hungry for more knowledge on both education and technology. Â I heard about and dabbled intoÂ RSS feedsÂ & Google Reader (which we all have access to via SCH Google Apps) but I never actually used them to keep up with my resources. Â Enter our very own Betty Ann Fish, who was using both rather extensively. Â Following a conversation at a Daytime session with BA, I began filling up my Google Reader with feeds to sites that I had frequented. Â Thank you BA for that push!! Â A few years later my Google Reader is full of technology, education, and ed-tech resources. Â If you have any questions, or would like assistance setting up your Google Reader, please let me know or just stop by a Daytime session. Â I check in with my Google Reader several times a day to see what’s happening in the worlds that I love. Â If I get lazy (as I did over winter break), my feeds will reach over thousands of new updates. Â Thanks goodness for a few hidden corners in the school that I can relegate myself to, to catch up. Â Please don’t ask me for my hiding spots, because I’ll never reveal them!
Fast forward to the breakthrough of social media, this is where I believe we as educators can really benefit from the flipped model of PD. Â Enter Twitter! Â Have you ever considered using Twitter to become content consumers, for resource sharing, or to simply see how other educators are handling emerging trends? Â Twitter provides us with a platform where we have the ability to reach out to other educators to learn new teaching strategies and find educational resources with the goal of incorporating this new information into teaching practices.
I’m realizing that this blog post is becoming way to long! Â Rather than losing you, I’ll continue this post in a PD series continuing later this week, including a beginners twitter tutorial. Please feel free to add comments, questions, and suggestions to the comment field below. Â I’m always looking for ways to enhance the Daytime blog.
To lighten this post up a little bit, I figured I’d add a few commercials that I’ve been cracking up over recently:
This guy has moves!
I’m actually a bit disgusted by this one because if you know me even a little bit, you know that I’m a somewhat of a germaphobe. Â I cringe at at one point, then I can’t help but laugh when he says “hmmm cheese” Â LOL LOL
Unfortunately, I can’t commit to any Daytime sessions this week given yesterday’s MLK day of service and I’ll be off campus at a an ADVIS event at Malvern Prep on Thursday – Interactive Learning: – Technology in the Classroom, with Eric Mazur, Ph.D. Â However, if I see comments requesting assistance, I may be able to squeeze some time in on Friday. Â I’ll also add the Digital Tools section to the continuation post coming later this week.
In the words of the great George Costanza – Onward and Upward!