Sunday, November 8, 2015

Trying to Be a Connected Educator

Nearly eleven years ago I was a prolific Mommy blogger. I documented everything. I took a humorous approach to tell our story of playing man to man defense while adjusting to parenthood with twin boys. The blog started as a way for me to involve family members who didn't live in the area but it turned into something more. It was an outlet for me to reflect on my journey as a twin mommy but it was also a means for me to connect with other parents. I learned more from my Internet community that I ever did from a book, which I had plenty of. I got tips and tricks about everything from how to grocery shop with a double stroller to travel suggestions with infants. This connectedness with a blogging community was strong for nearly six years and then Facebook exploded. How I connected and learned from other parents changed. I could now connect with my smartphone through Facebook and Twitter. Writing a blog entry became cumbersome as finding time to write was hard. After all, my sons were no longer taking naps and I was getting back into the professional world...full force.

It was around this time I got back into reading professional journals and books. I was asked to attend a number of leadership conferences and became inspired to get connected to another community. This time it wasn't a parenting community but a professional community where I learned, reflected and found inspiration. I joke that I lost a summer to Twitter sometime around 2010.

This school year I'm on cycle, meaning I'm being evaluated for the first time using Danielson's Framework for Teaching. Unlike many of my co-workers, this process doesn't scare me or overwhelm me. It's even been suggested by another teacher that I'm not taking it seriously enough. However, having completed National Board Certification (twice, actually if you count the renewal process) I look at the evaluation experience as one I'm going to go through with someone; my evaluator. While I've always maintained that National Board Certification was the most valuable and gratifying professional development I've ever completed, it is completely void of feedback. I already have high expectations for my students but I have higher expectations for myself. I expect that I will be a better teacher after going through the process because of all the reflection and documentation that is required.

So here I am, ready to put it all out there for the world to read along with me. I'm not unrealistic about where this new blog will take me or who my audience may turn out to be. I anticipate reflecting on my leadership and classroom experiences; professional development opportunities I'm given as well as lead; and reflect on books that I'm reading. This is mostly just a place for me to grow, reflect, and share my thoughts and ideas.

And, maybe, I'll make some new connections out there. 

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