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DISCUSSION POST: What does new-age professional learning look like for teachers?

CelebrateTeaching and learning is a life-long, iterative disposition and state of mind. We need to celebrate our wins (affirm our practice) as well as lengthen our stride (strengthen our practice); as individuals and as a collective. As part of our professional growth, we can mindful of growing trends in education and undertake professional learning to respond to the immediate needs of the students we teach in front of us.

Our Codes, Our Standards give us clear guidelines about how we can honour our commitment to learners, their families and whānau, our teaching profession and society as a whole. We can see how this might all tie together with culturally responsive frameworks, in a collaborative Bubbl.us mindmap.

While all schools have differing processes for appraisal, the Quality Practice Template with completion guidelines is a valuable tool to ensure clarity about what the Standards for the Teaching Profession look like and how they can be used to inform professional conversations in your context. https://teachingcouncil.nz/content/appraisal

Professional learning doesn’t have to be formal, we can make the most of timely updates arriving in email via newsletters, listserve responses and blog feeds. We can search the usual offerings in our educational networks (Education Gazette) and social media (Facebook, Twitter) or disrupt our thinking in like-minded networks. If the PLD budget allows, we can attend national and international conferences, engage in in-school PLD (some of which is centrally funded), or attend short, free workshops like, Kia Takatū ā-Matihiko around the country either face-to-face or virtually.

In our own time, we can take sneak peek into the practice of others and gain some short, micro-snippets of inspiration from educational video sites including Google for Education, or we can or engage in online courses such as Coursera, to accrue recognised micro-credentials or open, digital badges. For example, Bitdegree.org. We can also continue our learning in a more formal way and complete post-graduate studies through Universities, Te Wananga o Aoteaoa or Toi Ohomai, all of which becomes part of an organic, portfolio of evidence - celebrating our professional standards and achievement.Media Gallery

Learning opportunities are a-bound, but are often strengthened in numbers, for example inquiry practices through initiatives like the Teacher-Led Innovation Fund. Collaborative inquiry practices help us to keep growing and learning in an iterative cycle and networking in spaces, that inspire us to affirm our practice or shift our thinking by challenging the status quo.

Whether we’re pursuing learning as a teaching practitioner or a leader, broadening our lens and having an awareness of global trends in education in Aotearoa (including national PLD priorities for 2020) as well overseas, such as Sustainable Development Goals and The OECD Learning Compass 2030 concepts helps us to better understand whom we are teaching and the world they live in.

What’s on your radar for professional learning in 2020? Please feel free to share what’s near you or others to access i tērā tau (next year) below. 


For more, see Enabling e-Learning Professional Learning (TKI).

Image source: Nick Youngson CC BY-SA 3.0 Alpha Stock Images

 

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