It is hard to believe that I have been in education for 15 years...that does not even seem possible. Even though I will be teaching summer workshops and my year never really ends, this is a good time to reflect upon the past year. Reflection is something that educators need to make time for but we don't always make time. Blogging is a great way to reflect and to get feedback on those thoughts. So here we go...
This year started with a new adventure...middle school. After having been a 4th grade teacher and then 6 years as an Instructional Technology Specialist at the elementary level, I made the move this year. This move was the best decision and opportunity that has come along in a while. Moving to a different level rejuvenated me and allowed me to use my skill set more effectively. Forging new relationships is never easy, but I found that I quickly became comfortable in my new buildings. Looking back, I would not change a thing.
This year was also the year of Google for me. The year started with my district rolling out Google Apps for Education. As one of co-leaders for this endeavor, I had a huge vested interest in the success of Google Apps. It has been very satisfying to see Google Apps being used by more and more teachers in my district. Seeing the difference that it is making in student learning is worth all the time and effort put into this project!
The year of Google continued by deciding to pursue Google trainer status and by applying to the Google Teacher Academy. After completing all five of my Google tests to become a qualified individual, I worked on my trainer application. Now that it is turned in, I need to wait a few more weeks to see if I made it. Then came my Google Teacher Academy application. I poured much time and thought into every piece of this application, especially my video. All of this paid off as I was selected to attend the Google Teacher Academy in Atlanta. I talk about it every day and I am so excited to learn more and work with others who are just as passionate about Google! This was definitely the year of Google.
This year was filled with so much more. We rolled out BYOD, a new assessment system, and an updated student information system. Thinking back about the beginning of the year, I realize just how busy and crazy we were with all the changes. It has been a great year and I look forward to even more next year. On top of this, I became more involved with EdcampSTL and joined the planning team. Working with this group of educators was fascinating and it was inspiring to work with a group so dedicated to teacher learning. I will be doing this again next year!
If you are reading this and it is the end of your school year, take a moment to reflect, assess, and make new goals for yourself. Enjoy some much needed time off, but spend some time growing for the next school year.