Over the two week holiday, I reflected on Term 1. It gave me great pleasure to think about how my students had changed over the eight week period. I acknowledged how I had grown as a teacher and where I could have done better. I made connections between the changes in me and the changes I observed in my students.
Changes I noticed in my students:
they own more of the learning
they value reflection
they are more inclined to take risks in their learning
they are becoming more collaborative
they embrace opportunities to think
they drive the learning more
they solve problems more independently
they set relevant authentic goals
Changes I noticed in myself:
I am more mindful of letting go and am better at giving students control over their learning
I make significant time for reflection and provide scaffolds to support their reflective process
I have created a safe environment and encourage and celebrate risk taking
I have created many opportunities for explicitly and implicitly developing collaboration
I talk much less and give them much more opportunities and time to think and wonder
I listen, observe and analyse in order to follow their lead
I hand problems back to them to solve
I make time to discuss the kind of student they want to become
Yesterday I read Bruce Ferrington’s latest blog post which makes the connection between setting high expectations and supporting these with action and it occurred to me that this is what I have been doing in Term One more successfully than before. I have always set high expectations for each of my students, but what I am doing better this time round is supporting them to achieve them by taking the appropriate action.
My goals for Term 2:
For me it all boils down to our one overriding goal which is to create authentic, reflective learners who own their learning. I say “our” as my students now want this for themselves too.
How do I achieve this goal?
By continuing to notice, reflect, act.
Notice what I do. Notice what they do.
Reflect on what I have done. Reflect on what they have done.
Take action that will bring them closer to achieving our goal.
It’s not easy, but it feels so right.