The little things…

Neglected.

I believe that’s the word you’d use to describe this blog of late. Aside from the regular School’s out Friday posts (my saving grace, really), it’s been a barren wasteland for the last month or so. I shouldn’t beat myself up, because starting in a new position, even when it’s at the school you’ve taught at for years, is fraught with finding your feet and trying to establish credibility for yourself amongst your peers.

Me, I’m my own greatest critic. If I’m not moving mountains then I think I’m falling short. I’d love to say I’ve single handedly transformed peoples’ approaches to using technology in their classrooms within weeks, but you’d know I was lying. I’m trying hard not to beat myself up or place undue pressure on myself, but it’s proving difficult. What I have to do is tackle things in a systemised way, make some things a priority, and take heart from the fact that I’m doing what I can with the hours there are in a day.

A little thing I’ve done that I think might be a good start to building a learning community is to create a hashtag for our school and start curating Tweets in a Paper.li (it’s like a online newspaper). The hashtag is #tcplc (Toorak College Professional Learning Community) and the Paper.li created I send out in an email daily to staff. To help them determine if there’s anything there of import, I provide a brief summary of some of the posts/articles that have been curated. I’m very lucky to have a couple of other teachers at my school who are Twitter users, and they are helping with the curation. Hopefully we’ll start to see more teachers become aware of the wonderful professional learning opportunities available from the Twitter community and maybe, just maybe, some will sign up and become part of the curation process to benefit all of us.

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It’s a little thing, but it does take time and effort to curate those links. I’m an avid Twitter user (all my best learning happens or begins from there) ┬áso it’s a great way to make that learning transfer to others who aren’t Twitter users.

Little things go on to become big things. I’ll try and keep this Chinese proverb in mind as the year unfolds,

“It is better to take many small steps in the right direction than to make a great leap forward only to stumble backward.”

4 Comments

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4 responses to “The little things…

  1. What a great idea Jenny! You are full of the best ways to use technology to learn.

  2. I’m a big fan of little things, and although I can identify with your self-expectation and yearning for immediate change, I know that little things over a longer period of time make a big difference. Like many others who know you, Jenny, we have faith in your ability to make a real difference to learning and teaching in your school. The blog can wait; too much is happening. So, back to the little things – I believe that staying with the little things until they really take root will result in deep change. The Paper.li idea is fantastic. How are you convincing teachers about the value of Twitter. I always found it was easier to convince TLs because we focus not on the content-driven curriculum but on learning itself, and that’s where Twitter steps in. All the best, hoping to collaborate somehow still.

    • jennylu

      Thanks for the encouragement Tania. The mark of a true friend. :) I’m not pushing Twitter – I think people need to find their own way there. I’m hoping the exposure via the Paper.li will begin the process of opening some eyes to what can be found there. I hope we can find a way to collaborate this year. :)

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