From the beginning, our principal, Michael McDonough, communicated to faculty that a laptop was a tool. Teachers were given a lot of space and time in how they began to utilize devices as well. We were never a compliance-driven campus when it came to computer usage. However, we were focused on 21st-century skills and how our classroom instruction could pivot to embrace those skills. Fast forward two years, and you can see from an excerpt from a blog post “Meeting Teachers Where They Are” just how far we had moved in our quest to create a 21st-century learning environment.
As the 2016 school year was winding down and we began to look towards the next school year, our focus had been defined by a single word….LEARN. And Learn was a verb which meant there would be action.
That word pushed me professionally that summer, and I attended two national conferences. Ipadpalooza in Austin and ISTE 2016 in Denver. At these conferences, I had the opportunity to physically meet in person many educators that had become essential members of my PLN. These two conferences inspired and motivated me to dig deeper into the work of learning as well as leadership. Attending different types of sessions like poster sessions, playgrounds, and large and small group presentations lead by people from across the country pushed my learning and was impactful. Those conferences inspired a blog post that had ideas for ways to engage your faculty when they returned refreshed after the summer. “Get Creative with Your Faculty When You Head Back to Campus.” If you are looking for a few ideas, you might check out that post.
In August, we jumped into planning a learning experience that provided a focus on being an adult learner. As our faculty returned, they were met with an inspiring opening session led by our principal, Mr. McDonough. In this opening session, we were each challenged to engage as learners ourselves. In that welcome back message, he asked our faculty to re-engage as learners themselves and to pick something that they wanted to learn about. At the end of that opening session, our faculty and staff received their Learn t-shirts. A simple t-shirt turned out to be a catalyst to continue the conversation that had been started in the 2016 welcome back message.
If you have a story to share about professional learning and how it helped move adult learning forward, please link to it in the comments below.
and I led at #TASSPSW19. It is a reflection of my learning journey around the work I have been apart of over the past few years.
**Learning for me while creating this post was how to format “block quotes” in Google Docs. If you are wondering how that is done, here is a quick tutorial.