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Posts Tagged ‘Dr. Mary Howard’

Please use this button on your site for DigiLit Sunday posts

Saturday morning yoga, my instructor, Susan, says “You should not tell yourself that your body can’t do something. Challenge yourself to try, and your body may just surprise you.” So when she said we were going to do head stands, I stopped the “No way,” and said, “Ok. I’ll try.” I opened myself to her knowledgeable instruction. She guided me step by step. And when I was upside down, I felt powerful, giddy, invincible.

I want to take this learning into my classroom and into my teacher-self. Our school year begins on Wednesday. Scheduling is a nightmare for anyone who has to look at a master schedule and plan for all the various pull-outs and special classes. I am one of those teachers that messes up the master schedule. This year I will be servicing three schools. Three different schools with three different schedules pulling out gifted students in 5 different grade levels. I know you must be saying by now, impossible.

Teachers, isn’t that how we roll? Turning impossible into possible. Whatever it may be, a move to a new classroom, grade level, or position, a new administrator to get to know, a crazy schedule to make work, we put on our super hero capes and take off, letting the winds of self-doubt fly past us. Flexibility is in our stride.

 

If I can do a hand stand, I can go confidently into this school year. But just in case I need a guiding mantra, I made a Canva poster out of Cornelius’s charge and my friend, Dani Burtsfield’s photo from Glacier Park in Montana.

 

 

Be sure to join me in the new #TeachWrite chat on Monday, August 7th at 7:30 EST.  For more information and a list of questions, go to #TeachWrite Chat.

 

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Please use this button on your site for DigiLit Sunday posts

On Monday evening, I participated in #Wonderchat on Twitter.  The topic was led by Dr. Mary Howard: Instilling a Sense of Professional Wonder. If you are here reading this post, you are likely a person who wonders, reads, researches, and is always learning.

We are nearing the end of the school year and yet, I am still filled with professional wonderings. Three new books have arrived in the last few weeks, Dynamic Teaching for Deeper Reading by Vicki Vinton, Disrupting Thinking by Kylene Beers and Bob Probst, and Joy Write by Ralph Fletcher.

If anyone is interested in a summer book study of one of the books above, let me know in the comments. Wouldn’t it be more fun to read if you have someone to discuss it with? Google docs work well for housing a book study.

Why do I keep buying professional books? You’d think I would know what I was doing after 30 years of teaching. But I am still learning. I want to continue to question what I do and why I do it. I think that is the definition of a professional. When I stop wondering about teaching, I should stop teaching.

During the #Wonderchat, Sarah Eaton posted a padlet for teacher wonders. I remade the padlet wall to house our posts today. (A test run for using padlet for the round up.) Double click inside the padlet to add to it. In addition to voicing our professional wonders here, perhaps we can also post ideas and links to further research. Be sure to put your name and a link to your post, so we can continue the conversation.

 

Made with Padlet

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Please use this button on your site for DigiLit Sunday posts

Please use this button on your site for DigiLit Sunday posts

I consider myself a reflective person. I have participated in many professional development opportunities that are built upon self-reflection, the National Writing Project, National Boards for Professional Teaching Standards, and NCTE Donald Graves Award for teaching writing. Each of these organizations or awards requires self-reflection around the teaching of literacy.

Voxer is another way that I am a reflective teacher. I am involved in three chats at the moment, and each one encourages me to reflect on myself as a writer, a teacher, and a person.

This week Donna Donner asked a question on the Good to Great Voxer chat about self-assessment, and I began to question my ability to pass on this reflective mindset to my students.

Dr. Mary Howard (@DrMaryHoward) in her response to Donna had some great points about self-reflection of students.

  • Ask students “What did you learn about yourself as a reader, writer, listener, researcher…?”
  • Students should reflect outwardly: with a teacher in conferring or with another student in turn and talk.
  • Focus must remain on the learner.
  • Not a task, but a mindset.
  • The teacher must be self-reflective to help students be self-reflective.

I want to pay more attention to this thing I do naturally.  How did I become a reflective teacher?  What steps can I offer my students toward more active self-reflection?  I believe, like Mary, that it needs to be more than a task (a checklist).  It must become part of the fabric of being a life-long learner.  Self-reflection done well has the potential to change the way students think about themselves and about their responsibility to their own learning.

 

58429-self-reflection-quotes

Please join the conversation and leave your link below.

 

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