After completing a draft staff survey which we hope to administer to our school-based colleagues sometime before the end of the month, I set out to review some volumes of the GEIM, Nelson's Leaps an Bounds Resources, and a few websites, most notably the Edu-gains site.
I am stunned, 5.5 hours later, to report that other than adding a few things to the Links section of our website, and posting one meager blog post, I have very little to show for a "day off"! Although I did read two of the GEIM volumes (most notably the one on Assessment and Home Connections), I spent considerable time mulling over some of the ideas presented in these documents, thinking about how they relate to what I am seeing in my classroom, and how I can apply the learning in concrete terms. So much time thinking, in fact, that there was very little time left for crafting something coherent and meaningful to post on this blog!
I am reminded how precious little time in general teachers have to do the things they need to do, even to address the most basic "stuff" in their daily classroom grind, let alone the deeper, more complex issues of public education. Having launched a refined literacy program this year, and having tried to introduce and begin to develop oral language skills to set students up for success in math, and having tried on the side to also include an emphasis on social justice into our weekly plans, and take the students to the computer lab several times so they can learn to type, and having tried to figure out how to use the new smart board in my room, I realise that -- oops -- my brilliant new math program is, well, not so brilliant! YET!
We are so very lucky to have these TLLP days to pause and reflect on what we are doing and where we are headed. The days allotted -- although plentiful at first -- are not nearly enough to attack (neither mentally nor practically) all the things I want to do with this project, but they are much, much more than anything my colleagues at school are privy too.
And so endeth the first self-directed learning day of this year's TLLP project.