Bold or Old?

 

This week I am preparing for a job interview and have spent a lot of time in the last few weeks reflecting on my school, my staff and the things that have been accomplished in the short time I have been in the building.  I am not saying that I have accomplished these things, because that is definitely not the case.  These things have been accomplished by a team of very dedicated and forward thinking people.  Wow am I ever lucky!

I spent part of my Easter break doing some web surfing and reading and trying to reconnect with my passion for technology in education.  There really is nothing that I like to focus on more than that.  I was reading some posts on Will Richardson’s site and I came across an older post of his about bold schools and old schools.  It got me thinking about what we are trying to create here.  When I reflect back to the progress we have made in the past few years I am certain that what we have here is a bold school.  He lists 9 qualities shared by what he is terming “a bold school”.  The qualities range from learning centered to provocative.  Check out the post for the complete list.

Looking back over the three years that I have been lucky enough to be working in this school with this staff we have made much progress on becoming a bold school.  We have slowly but surely embraced technology and different teaching methods that are more authentic to the learners we are working with today.  We have survived a lot of change and struggled to make sense of new curricular outcomes and new assessment strategies.  We have stepped up and committed to action research projects that have helped us move toward embracing technology use in our classrooms in many forms and we have tried to step back and turn more of the learning happening in our classrooms over to the students.

Our next goal is to move toward project based learning, which seems the next logical step in our progression.  We are looking at our curricular outcomes and where the commonalities might lie, but right now we have many questions…

  •   How can we timetable to accommodate project based learning?
  •   How can we support each other on our continued journey from familiar to unfamiliar territory?
  •   How can we prepare and engage our students to meet the needs of the changing world they are a huge part of?
  • How can we engage our reluctant students?

Any suggestions as to how to keep moving on our journey from old to bold? 

 We are definitely bold baby and we are not going back!

Change…

It seems like I was just dropping my daughter off at university and starting the school year, now she will be home in three weeks with a year of university completed and after Easter break we will only have 2 1/2 months of school left.  When your parents tell you that the older you get, the faster time travels, they are right-listen to them, they know what they are talking about.

  Spring is always a time filled with so many changes and renewed hope.  As the weather gets warmer, it seems like inside the walls of the school things tension can build.  There are many changes happening in educatation in general and anyone who has anything to do with a school would never deny that many of those changes have come hard and fast.  Many of the changes I really appreciate.  I love the new curriculum, project based learning, inquiry, opportunities to use technology, the team spirite within the walls of my school.  Other changes we might not appreciate as much…I will just leave those to your imagination.

  What is it with change anyway?  Why is it that some changes are fast and yet when you are anticipating a much needed or wanted change, it seems to come so slow.  I think the hardest thing for me to learn as an administrator and colleague is to pull back on my passions.  I would like everyone to jump on board and initiate change imediately.  That is not realistic or appreciated in a  lot of cases.  I mentioned in an earlier post about feeling like my staff would throw tomatoes at me if I didn’t sit down and quit talking about technology.  That was my problem, and near demise, wanting to initiate change when the time was not right.  It is a good lesson to learn and one that I have to continue to work on.

  Right now my principal has decided to take on a new position in the school division and leave our school.  I am so excited for her as she anticipates and big changes and the learning curve that it will bring to her.  She will be able to work with young children which is her passion.  Change can be exciting.  On the other hand, with her leaving the school, change is frightening.  We work as a team and even though I know we will all be all right after she leaves, it feels like a big piece of the glue that holds the team together will be leaving the door with her.

Blah, blah, blah and on and on I go.  I guess I could have just written this post in one sentence…

Change is inevitable, it moves at whatever speed it decides to move and so get over it!