Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Learning never stops...

When I look back over the past 3 years of my career, I feel like I have had opportunities to learn more than in the 8 years preceding them.

Actually at times I feel bombarded by new knowledge, and have had to make some tough choices about what's important. I have had to ask myself what do I need to know about to support me in my work now?  What can wait until later?

That might be why I'm only just recently jumping on the social media bandwagon. Why Twitter is starting to feel more familiar, and blogging is a way I have found to share ideas.

Thinking back though my choices about what I've focused on in my own personal learning have been impacted on by context and time. I have worked on:

  • conflict resolution;
  • becoming a moderator for running webinars;
  • Adobe product usage through the Creative Cloud;
  • social media;
  • pedagogical frameworks;
  • a new national curriculum;
  • teacher induction;
  • how the media works in Australia;
  • typography;
  • design;
  • classroom management;
  • behaviour management....

Now that I think about it...how am I fitting it all in. The thing that most interests me as a teacher is how I have engaged with this learning. It hasn't been face to face instruction. Most of it has been self-directed learning. I have found the book, website, YouTube video that I need to help me develop my skills. I have read, searched or watched. 

More often than not now, if I don't know how to do something, I turn to Google. I'm not sure what that means about my own learning, but it does make me think carefully about how I need to work in a classroom with my students. If finding the information is as easy as typing a question into a search engine, then is my presence required.

And then I realise. To search for help I need to know how to read. I need to know what to ask. I need to be able to find the right website by skimming and analysing through the information. I need to be able to follow instructions. I need to be able to make links between the information I'm finding out and the information I already know. I need to be able to take the new information on board and act on it.

I didn't learn any of that from the Internet. I learned that from my teachers and working with my peers. I learned that from the support and time of my parents in my early years.

And I've made decisions about how I have wanted to build on this. The important thing is that I want to keep learning. I want to find out more about things. It's like finding pieces of a puzzle and putting it all together so that there is something complete...but there seem to be more puzzle pieces to find. I find something I'm interested in; that I want to know more about and go from there.

As a teacher, I need to help my students have knowledge and skills so that they can do the same. I need to keep them engaged and interested.

We never stop learning. 

This poster was created using Stampin' Up!'s MDS DSP Back to School - 3 and the font Learning to Trust.


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