Create a map of your current and potential professional connections:
- Choose two professional connections you have in your map. Evaluate their impact on your practice and professional community.
Parents & Caregivers:
I believe that my role as a teacher is to serve the student, which flows onto the parent or caregiver of that child. This relationship has always been an interesting one. Students do much better socially and academically when they know their parent is interested in their learning, and expect good results. I have also found from experience, that often the parents/caregivers who spend quality time teaching their child about values and morals do well at school.
I know that it is important to build strong relationships with the families of the students that I teach. They are the crucial link to the child’s success. This can be challenging if you have never met the parent! The impact of this has moved me with the support of my school to use classroom blogs for all classes. During Term 1 individual student blogs for Years 4-8 will also be up and running. It is my hope that we will be able to build stronger relationships with parents with the use of technology. We are now able to email out links to parents so they can view their child’s learning when it’s fresh. They will be free to comment on it showing their interest. It also provides another way to begin building relationships with those parents I have never met, either due to work commitments or other reasons.
Professional Peers At School:
I believe that teaching should be transparent and focused. We are role models with everything we say and do. This is the choice we make when we become a teacher. I am fortunate to work with professional peers who are open to learning technology that will support their student’s learning. I have had the privilege to work at a few schools over the years and have found it fascinating that some teachers, even though they know why they are learning a new skill, are not taking the time to embed it in their practice. Would we let the student in our class act the same way when we are trying to move them forward with their learning?
How does this impact my practice? Schools are only as good as their teachers. We are a professional body who are entrusted with the development of young minds. I do not find it easy constantly learning, but for me, in this role, there is no other option. Teaching is learning. I feel that teachers who are not up for the challenge, or find excuses for not keeping to agreed goals need to rethink their purpose. If they are unable to keep pace, will the students in their class? I have worked in both the corporate and educational sector. In the corporate world they do not accept excuses for something not being done. I believe this should be the same in the education sector. Yes, support and professional learning must be provided to up-skill teaching staff around New Zealand. But, we must make sure that those who have the skill, passion and time, are up there teaching our children.