Rules For Posting To This Blog and Weekly Blog Question

1. Only use your first name (no last names, addresses, IM screen names, etc.)
2. Show respect and consideration of others when posting and commenting. This includes individuals, students, organizations, political parties, colleagues, etc.
3. Check all posts for spelling and grammar errors before posting.
4. Protect the privacy of others. Gain permission from other people before you write about them. Avoid sharing someone else's last name. Use job titles or pseudonyms when writing about experiences with your co-workers or students.
5. Watch your language. Use politically correct and non-offensive language.
6. Make sure you write about things that are factual.
7. Keep your postings education-oriented. Avoid discussing plans for the weekend, etc.

This week I would like you to use your imagination. You have just won the lottery and will leave your teaching post immediately to travel around the world. As you leave your keys you meet your replacement. You are asked to give this new teacher just ONE piece of advice. What would that be, and why? Enjoy your world expedition!

Blog Post - Week 7
This past week in my own teaching I felt a little disconnected which prompts my question to you, "What was the moment (or moments) when I felt most disconnected or disengaged as a teacher - the moment(s) I said to myself, I'm just going through the motions here?"

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 6
For the past couple of weeks you have experienced asynchronous online learning (doing modules by yourself). Previously this semester you have experienced synchronous online learning (all together in the Collaborate room). Which do you think is more effective and why do you think that? Which do you like better, and why?

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 5
This week we have what we call "open mic." You can write a post about anything related to your teaching that you would like responses from your classmates.

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 4
Here is this week's question: "What was the event that most took me surprise this week - and event that shook me up, caught me off guard, gave me a jolt, or made me unexpectedly happy?"

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 3
Please write a post about the following question, "In thinking about my past week teaching what is one thing I would do differently, and why?"

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 2
Please write a post about the following question, " In thinking about my teaching activities this past week, of what do I feel most proud? Why?"

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 1
Describe something you used in your program in the first weeks of school that you learned in the summer NTI program. How did it work? Did it get you off to a stronger start than last year?

Friday, November 25, 2016

A bit of advice...

As I near the halfway mark of my third year of teaching, I feel (and rather hope) that I have come a million miles from where I began my journey. In retrospect, I can think of many things I wish that I had known in my those first tenacious weeks in the classroom.

Were I to try to deliver just a single, valuable bit of advice to a new teacher, it would be this: Accept this as a process of growth.

At the risk of sounding conceited, I will say that I have always considered myself an over-achiever. My goal, quietly, in my personal, academic, and professional life was perfection. Never mind that I understand that perfection is not attainable in reality. I had always hoped to be as close as possible. In every skill, and every task, I would set my sights on the highest possible level of proficiency and I would expect that of myself from day one.

In that way, teaching has been profoundly grounding and humbling. It has taken me time to realize that no amount of effort, preparation, or raw talent can produce perfection in the classroom. Even with ample effort, preparation and talent, it is experience that will truly refine and prefect the methods of the teacher.

Growth is uncomfortable. It will require that you fail. It will require that you reflect, and that you change. So, accept teaching and becoming a teacher as a process of growth. Forgive yourself failures and shortcomings ahead of time, and dedicate yourself to learn and grow in those failures. Accept that time and experience alone will give the tools necessary to reach those highest levels of performance in this profession that blurs the lines of art and science. Commit yourself to work collaboratively with peers and students to refine your own skills and to share your strengths with others. And finally, allow that love of the process to continue to grow in your heart.

Just embrace the process.

Happy growing!

1 comment:

James Holdsworth said...

Jessica I couldn't agree more. I also consider myself a perfectionist and teaching has also humbled me as well. I think patience is so critical when it comes to teaching, there is a lot that goes on in the classroom that the average person would not suspect. You definitely have to fail in order to succeed. To be honest I'm glad I started teaching before beginning the NTI program. Being thrown into the fire initially has helped the content discussed in this course to be much more meaningful and effective this year. Take it one day at a time, and continue to grow!