Have You Processed What You Have Accomplished This Year?

On the eve of the last day of school, I thought I would take this opportunity to reflect on the past year. I, just like most other educators, are ready for the break. It truly has been the most challenging year in my 18 years in education. And I know that I had it easier than administrators and teachers. We have accomplished A LOT over the past 15 months. We’ve all had stressful nights wondering how things were going to shape out. We’ve all had tough decisions that we had to make. We’ve all had to learn new skills.

Have you truly taken the opportunity to process what you have been able to accomplish? Whether you have the mental capacity to do it now or later, think about how you have grown as an educator and as a learner.

Here are some of my reflections:

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Rethinking a District PD Day

Nothing has been ‘normal’ this school year. Hosting our 5th Annual Future Ready Conference, back in March, in our district, was no different.

For the past four years, we have been hosting our own conference on one of our workshop days. We have had staff members as well as outside speakers partake in sharing out best practices sessions. We have managed to have about 100 different sessions offered throughout the day to help meet the needs of all of our staff.

Instead of following the traditional format of listening to a keynote session and then attending four different hour long sessions, the Bedford School District Tech Team wanted to come up with a way that staff could still grow professionally without having to be in the same space. We wanted to think differently. We wanted to think purposefully. We didn’t want staff to be in front of their screens necessarily the entire day. As a result, a menu idea was born.

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Sharing Your Story

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We all have a story to tell. In fact, we all have a story to tell to inspire others. When I tell others that they should tweet or blog, I get a lot of…

  • I don’t do anything innovative.
  • What I do is nothing new.
  • Nobody is interested in what I have to say.

I completely disagree with those statements. We all do great things and the world can benefit from reading or seeing those great things. Just last week, I am reminded of this again.

It was brought to my attention that Wanda Terral gave a presentation in Texas a couple of weeks ago at TCEA on Google’s Data Studio tool. In Wanda’s presentation, she shared different ways in which people used Data Studio to help give attendees an idea of what is possible. My example happened to be one of those examples.

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Slide from Wanda’s Presentation

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Empowering Students & Teachers

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Last week, I was reminded yet again why I absolutely love my job. Our district held its third annual Future Ready Conference. We had over 100 sessions that were offered to staff by our own staff, as well as some outside of the district presenters. It is a big undertaking to make a professional development day run like this, but with a great team working behind it, we were able to have a great day of learning.

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Time for a Change

Screen Shot 2018-07-11 at 8.02.44 PMWell, I finally made the jump. I have been wanting to do this now for a couple of years but I was either too nervous to do it, or I told myself ‘I didn’t have time to make this happen’. Looking back at it, those two things were both ‘excuses’ to not making a wish of mine come true. Not sure what I was really worried about. Yes, this process was completely new for me but so easy that anyone can make the shift.

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