Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Always Learning; Baby Steps; Is it Enough?

The brain ticks over, exhausted; another meeting, another PD, another something. I see it all the time; people so desperately want to learn new things yet at the same time, are so tired that they just don't have the energy to fully engage in new learning opportunities.

Teachers have a huge workload with so many expectations placed on them. I understand that pushing yourself to make the time to learn new things can be hard. I also know how rewarding it can be.

I have been pushing myself lately to get out more and learn new things. I have goals and know that if I don't extend myself, I won't reach them. I have been coerced into presenting new learning to others as well and I am so grateful for these opportunities.

It's so fulfilling to be surrounded by other educators that share similar interests and pedagogical beliefs. It's equally rewarding to share my knowledge with others and see that they can take something from me and be genuinely thankful. So many positive things come from these meetings and I always leave feeling uplifted, enthused and motivated.

As teachers, sharing our learning is important as it helps us to learn from best practise and avoid similar mistakes others' have made. Ultimately, we all want to do the best for our student's so, learning new ways to support them makes us better at our job.

I guess the ultimate challenge now is how to get my colleagues to engage with these new learning opportunities. Things such as local NETS meetings, TeachMeets and school based I.T sharing sessions. Is my own motivation advertising enough? I guess sometimes it can be (I can be very convincing when I'm excited about something new).

This is something that I have been mulling over recently and I run through different scenarios in my head and try to predict the outcome. When talking about it with others', I am always told "baby steps, Danny. You need to take baby steps". So far this year, baby steps have worked to a certain degree but what can I do to drive a bigger change? What should my baby steps be? There truly is a lot to consider but at the heart of why I want to trigger change is the fact that we really need to prepare our students for a digital world. Prepare them for a digital workforce; a new world that is vastly different to what we grew up with. I worry that we aren't doing enough and we are too worried about 'the ways things have always been done'. Is it wrong to think like this?