We must cultivate conversation in our classrooms, real dialogue between more than just one teacher and one student, but rather strive to have the students talking to each other, with us as facilitator. We can scaffold this into our everyday practice, starting with think-pair-shares, writing activities, small group assignments and then full classroom discussions where all student have something different to offer.
At the end of the day, we make our own opportunities, so we can't complain about what isn't happening, but rather focus on what can be done and take that action accordingly. The best learning experiences are the one we create for ourselves both in and out of school, so go find them.
Many of us are able to do things well and make it all look easy. Whether it is maintaining a busy and productive life or being able to write a book or sing a song, just because it looks easy doesn't mean it actually is. We all have our quirks and insecurities and easy doesn't alway mean better. Anything worth doing well is going to take practice and time and the easier it looks, it's likely that amount of mastery took a ridiculous amount of time.
As a teacher of students and of writing, building, nurturing and understanding characters is essential to doing my job well. In the 6th novel, we watch characters we have known become dimensional individuals as we watch our students grow into young adults along the way. We must offer encouragement and support as our students face challenging choices, teaching them to make good decisions without making them for them.
Twitter will always be a go-to place for resources and networking and I will continue to funnel my efforts into helping others find what I have been fortunate enough to experience on it. But it is all with a balance and I've been fortunate enough to find that too.
Much like any learner, until we want or can make sense of what is in our paths, we usually pass over it until one day we notice... because we can. And that is the day that makes the obvious impact, although there were many smaller moments prior to the big one that have happened to make it so.
With the shift in the novel, we see a shift in Harry, like we often see in our students as they begin to mature. The issues become more complicated and helping them stay on a positive path more challenging. How do you help your students make good decisions as adolescence begins to entice them in different directions?
Are you curious about giving up grades and sharing your journey on YouTube? Check out these videos and some thoughts about documenting reflection on video. Share your ideas once you try.
Although I'm sad about leaving the place I've called home for so long, I'm certain I've made the right decision. The programs I've created will go on and everyone will exist just fine without me. Eagerly I'll poke in from time to time to see how my friends, colleagues and students are doing and applaud them quietly from the side as it will no longer be my place to intervene. I'm quite proud of my time at WJPS, but it's time to move on. What advice do you have for someone starting a new journey?
Every choice I have made in my career has happened for a reason. Every person who I've encountered has influenced and better informed my educational experience pushing me to achieve more inside and outside of my classroom. It's in this way, that I could truly model the love of learning (even with its setbacks) for my students.