The National Board Certification process was one of the most effective exercises I’ve been involved in. The initial process, as well as my subsequent renewal, have proven to be invaluable to my development as an educator. The challenges presented to me have encouraged continued growth within this profession.
I found one of the most difficult aspects of the certification process to be the videotaped reflective piece. This component forced me to critically analyze virtually every aspect of my practice. Lessons learned through critical analysis of the recording have compelled me to find solutions to a wide variety of minor issues that were possibly hindering the success of my students. The videotaping has had such an impact on my classroom that I continue the practice to this day.
Teaching tips and instructional strategies flood teacher professional learning sites and blogs, responding to the continuous need to better engage students and improve instruction. There’s no doubt that teachers need many tools to take multiple approaches to get to a particular learning goal. But here’s something surprising: teachers are usually given very little time to dig deep and understand the impact of those strategies they spend so much time planning and implementing.
The core of our work at Mills Teacher Scholars is to focus teachers’ collaborative time on the question, “What is happening for students?” Teacher-led collaborative inquiry is the method that drives this question. While there are several components to inquiry work, perhaps the most overlooked is the effort to make student thinking and learning visible. Being able to “make student thinking visible” sounds easier than it is. Video is a fantastic tool for gathering this process data.
In my role as assessment coach and consultant, I have had many conversations about the differences between formative assessment as a form of testing, and formative assessment strategies that become part of instructional pedagogy. A common misconception among educators is the use of formative assessment as a noun, when in fact the research frames formative assessment as a verb. Capturing the strategies that move learning forward can be tricky, but Teaching Channel has some great examples of practical ways that teachers can implement formative assessment.
Best-selling author Daniel Pink will be hosting #APSCHATS, Arlington Public School’s county-wide Twitter chat, on March 1 at 8 pm ET.
Pink is the author of A Whole New Mind, Drive, and To Sell Is Human, and his research on motivation and the art of selling has had a significant impact on my approach to the design, implementation, and evaluation of professional learning models in public schools.
Teaching Channel is beyond excited to announce that all Teams customers can now upload their videos through our app! Our first version of the Android Tch Recorder app is now live on Google Play, and on Amazon for all of you Kindle users. We know those of you who aren’t on iOS devices are going to rock that user generated video content now that you can upload directly to your Teams sites, too!
Like many school districts around the country, Upland Unified faced staffing cutbacks in Physical Education in the past few years. We now have four teachers to cover our ten elementary schools, which has helped, but it has also required that we get creative in figuring out how to help our classroom teachers implement some of the PE requirements. That’s where Teaching Channel Teams comes in.
Did you know that Teaching Channel Teams offers webinars on product and content? Watch our most recent webinar recording for Learning with Video – Igniting District-Wide Leadership and Learning, featuring Upland Unified School District. After just one year on the Teams platform, Assistant Superintendent Ellen Lugo and crew have made incredible strides in building a system for implementing Teams from the district and teacher levels. Like what you see? Be sure to see featured teacher Jennifer Morris’ Big Tent blog on how she worked to engage teachers in her Math Tracks group. Or sign up for this week’s webinar on How Video is Being Used to Improve and Scale Instructional Coaching, featuring Michelle Rooks from the Teton County School District. Read more
I’m sure that I’m not the only teacher who has had this thought. Hesitant to videotape myself teaching because I was self conscious; afraid that my peer coach would not be able to see past what the morning rain had done to my hair. Worried that I would be judged. Judged on my physical appearance. Judged on my motives for wanting to be videotaped. Judged for reasons that have nothing to do with the quality of my teaching or the quality of my soul. At that point, I just had to slap myself a little bit and say, “Get Over It!” Watching a video of yourself teaching is one of the best ways to get an authentic view of you in your classroom. It is an opportunity for true reflection that will make you a more effective teacher, and that’s the only thing that matters! If you’re still in pause mode, here are a few words of advice to help you move forward.
Stop Procrastinating and Just Do It
Just like anything that’s uncomfortable but ultimately good for you, there will be the urge to come up with every reason why you shouldn’t do it. Find a reason TO do it. If you’re having a hard time mustering up the courage, pretend you’re a cowboy from the old West: Bite the bullet and press the record button.