Thursday, April 10, 2008

Professional Development

So this past Saturday (exactly one week after Ironman California) I attended a conference for "Computer Using Educators" here in Fresno. Good stuff - is the conference website. I attended three sessions and all but one were fantastic and inspiring.

Tonight I also went to a mini-conference on teacher team collaboration sponsored by a local school that has been doing it for years. They did a great job and I was again encouraged to see all the great things that local teachers are doing to make learning come alive in the classroom.

One thing I am doing is the use of webpages for my students. They are all engaged in creating a "space project" based on specific job descriptions and a common theme across the five subject areas out in Turning Points Academy, my small learning community. has more information.

So the good news is, I'm already doing a lot of the things they recommend! (such as making the students accountable to their peers on a weekly basis, and only using me as the "hammer" in the final grade decision - but if certain students pick up where others are supposed to, that will be reflected in each weekly grade/status report.)

Also good is that I'm caught up for the moment with BTSA (beginning teacher stuff) paperwork after staying up til 2am last night (and waking up at 5am! I had basically two 24 oz energy drinks today plus a 20 oz mountain dew! I will be going to bed before 9 tonight...)

Back to P.D. My main questions for the teacher-readers out there - so far I've often felt the biggest thing missing from professional development is teachers from other schools just... talking and thinking together. I appreciated at tonight's forum we did have a chance to do that and it's great - no egos, no agendas to get past, etc. Just strangers that love math talking about how to teach it best! Good stuff...

- Small Triathlon this Sunday!


Rainmaker said...

Mt. Dew. The power of late night peoples everywhere.

I'm slowly weened off the Dew habit - I used to consume many cans a day. Now I'm down to once every 1-2 months.

Good luck at the tri!

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