This post is week 1 of 8 in the 8 Weeks of Summer Blog Challenge for educators:

[by @pen63]

Reflecting on the past school year, what is your biggest area for professional growth going into next school year?

Summer blogging to reflect on one’s teaching is a “best practice.” I know, who knows what will work as a best practice for your students? But we know from our experiences that without reflection, there is no growth, no understanding of what worked or what would work better. So reflection by its nature is best practice.

I’m retired, in the shadows of education, yet still always learning. In my teaching time, Google forms, spreadsheets, and documents provided easy formative assessments, often through student talk discussions, so I could hear from all students, not just those who raised their hands. My reflection here on Student Talk and Assessment includes research and details on these strategies using Google Suite to engage all learners in classroom conversation.

Last week I found Richard Byrne’s short refresher on the updates to Google forms and spreadsheets. I enjoyed learning to update my knowledge so I can continue to share strategies that help teachers learn to integrate technology in ways that more fully engage all learners and allow teachers access to that learning by each student. Technology is always improving and changing, so I know that keeping current is important for me to do to help those with whom I share and learn. I’d seen posts from Google and others about recent updates, so connecting with those who can explain and share clearly really helps. I have always appreciated Richard’s work, so it was a natural choice to continue my learning. I appreciated the clear refresher on the new updates since I became Google Certified.

And that is my goal for next year: to continue my learning about technology integration through a pedagogical stance that focuses on higher order thinking, connected learning, and formative assessment and feedback. I am still connected with staff at my school and I am a teacher mentor for Jennifer Gonzalez’s JumpStart: A Technology Course for Thoughtful Educators.  I must continue my learning to stay current and helpful to those with whom I mentor, either in my community or online. I want to help them become their own teachers, just as I helped my students develop their agency as lifelong learners.

What is one way you will develop professionally for your next year?


on “Growing
6 Comments on “Growing
  1. Thanks for the thoughtful response Sheri. I love learners who go beyond the mandate; you certainly (over?) qualify as a lifelong learner.
    I checked out Jennifer’s course description and the modules do sound fun! I especially like how she leads with process over tools.
    I hope that you write a review of her course – I would love to read it!

  2. Technology is such an important component to any classroom. It doesn’t matter anymore what subject you teach; computers are woven through all classes. I am currently enrolled in a Masters program through St. Mary’s University of Minnesota. The focus of the program is the integration of technology, information, and education.

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