As an administrator, my professional development/learning goals are driven by asking - what can I do to make our school the BEST learning environment for our students and teachers?
Practice what you preach
It has always been my philosophy as an administrator to lead by example, and not ask teachers or students to do anything I have not done, or am willing to do. One of my goals as an administrator has been to always maintain a presence in the classroom as a teacher/learner and not forget where I came from!
I have attempted to do this through having our new teachers evaluate my teaching (Supporting New Teachers), visiting classrooms (Hunger Games, What I learned from Kids Today) and becoming a student for a day (Back to School).
A great post by Adam Peck, dean of student affairs at Stephen F Austin State University in Nacogdoches, Texas.
"Students today have unprecedented access to information. According to educator Karl Fisch, in one week of reading The New York Times, an individual will encounter more information than people in the 18th century would have had access to during the entire course of their lives.
It is not surprising that in this atmosphere, students appear to be growing increasingly dogmatic and are less able to engage in civil discourse with others with whom they disagree. Perhaps this is because they cannot accurately explain what people who oppose them actually believe. In truth, they often lack consistency in their own beliefs as well.......
In summary, despite the tremendous educational potential of the information age, students seem to be less prepared to critically evaluate information or determine and defend what they believe. Colleges and universities need to find ways to leverage this resource to create the kind of learning demanded by our changing times."
We need to start envisioning our teachers as knowledge generators and creative professionals whom we trust to innovate and implement unorthodox ideas that might transform teaching and learning. The time has come to reward innovation among our best and most creative teachers. They should be given the time and resources to reflect on their practice, experiment with new ideas, and implement strategies to more effectively engage learners.
Whether you’re a teacher looking to incorporate new media into a classroom setting, a homeschooling family, or a parent hoping to supplement the day’s formal coursework, the following resources offer some particularly great examples of using digital technology to get kids exploring the universe. They’re fun. They’re free.
By Robert W. Mendenhall As president of a nonprofit, online university I am often asked about the quality of online learning. The answer is that the quality of education is largely independent of the mode of delivery. Other variables are far more important.
There is high-quality online learning, and there is high-quality classroom learning, just as there is low-quality learning in both settings.
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