Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Big Picture Teaching and Learning in the New Year

This year more than any other, we have a terrific infrastructure for teaching well. We have an awesome team, dedicated learning community including students, families, educators, and community members, a wonderful local union, and significant support. This is very positive. The challenge is to keep up with this infrastructure and meet the promise it holds for good teaching.

As for the day-to-day, what supports our program most are the following:
  • teaching the standards and learning program--good standards and a good program
  • continuing to send a weekly newsletter as one way to strengthen our team approach to teaching all students
  • continuing to update our teaching/learning plans and shared information memo
  • planning for and executing the many special programs and events we have planned
  • reviewing student work regularly and responding with the supports and learning events students need to progress
Sticking to this daily/weekly effort is critical to teaching well, and to do that we have to make sure we continue to do the good work possible each week.

As for the big picture, my job has a lot to do with finesse now--how can I teach this good program better with a good demeanor and serious, but positive, attitude. This depends a lot on a healthy schedule that leaves time to do the good work possible--a weekly routine that includes healthy food, plenty of sleep, and the time I need to do the good work required.

I can tighten up the routine a bit more with the following structures:
  • newsletter sent out once a week - mostly Fridays or Mondays
  • teaching schedule and materials shared and prepared at least one week ahead of scheduled programming
  • professional learning events planned for and shared ahead of time typically at PLCs
  • Making more time to institute and support a positive morning routine that includes at least ten minutes of silent reading every morning--this makes time for dealing with the many small issues that typically arise at the start of the school day. 
A good routine matters. 

With regard to professional learning, I plan to do the following:
  • Complete the DESE evaluation pilot I've started with a team of teachers at school
  • Continue to read about and forward our grade-level environmental science unit
  • Continue to read about and forward our grade-level math program
  • Read the books I've set aside this summer to further develop the teaching/learning program
  • Re-organize classroom materials to update classroom to meet program changes and development.
  • Attending the METCO conference next year--a conference I've heard good things about, but have not attended. 
As far as the collegial efforts, I want to be more supportive of the creativity and new ideas that many colleagues are forwarding to uplift the teaching/learning program.

Now it's time to focus in on the program and children at this busy holiday time. Onward.