What did I learn?
This course, so far, has been my greatest challenge. I was challenged to think outside of my comfort zone. The peers in my class were some of the best colleagues that I have had the pleasure to work with. At each turn, I learned how to improve on areas that were a block for me. I examined ideas that I had read in passing and really dug deep on how they could apply to me and my classroom. I looked at how my classroom had become stale and uninventive. Just today, I had two students tell me how they were excited to see the new changes I had brought to my room. Their excitement was contagious. I feel reinvigorated to teach, a hard thing to do eighteen years in! While I am still not comfortable in front of the camera, I see the need for it. I think the biggest challenge that I overcame was the sense of perfection. The weekly videos that we received from our instructor were informal and very informative. I watched as my peers adopted the same approach and it helped me to recognize the value in them. I recognized the student and the teacher that I am. I love the idea of self grading, but struggled (and still do) with its concept. As a parent, I so see the value in this kind of structure, learning for the joy of learning. Making the material your own and not attaching a grade to it. My children go to a very structured school and this course made me question its value. I was able to see myself as the indoctrinated student that I am and the struggle I had when I was given freedom. That is not an easy pill to swallow. While I can not say this was my favorite course, it was the course, I believe, in which I learned the most. I say it is not my favorite not due to any of the material, but because of my struggles, my inability to deal with imperfection. This class clhallenged me and will stay with me for many years to come.