When faced with a writing project, I always have a tough time actually getting started. I realize that this is a very common problem among people who write. I also know that once I finally get started I end up having more to say than I thought I would. Starting this blog has been difficult. I have thought and thought about this first post. I have finally decided to just start and give a little background about where I am now in my development as a teacher rather than write a typical bio piece that I might share with parents of my students.
I currently teach at Renaissance Elementary School. Renaissance is a magnet school. This means that it is a public school with a specific focus. Our focus is ELOB - Expeditionary Learning Outward Bound education. I found Renaissance several years ago when my husband and I were searching for a school for our daughter that matched our philosophy of education. After looking so closely at so many schools we knew this was the place for our daughter and I wanted to work there, too. One year after our daughter started there I got a job there as a first grade teacher.
You begin to get a feel for the philosophy of our school as you walk up the front sidewalk and into the entrance. The vision of our school is visible for all to see. Click on any photo to see a larger version of it.
As you move into the classrooms you notice our belief in the workshop model, building strong relationships through developing a community of learners and actively engaging students in creating meaning and deeper understandings.
We encourage students to move out of their comfort zone, challenge themselves, take risks and reflect on what they are learning about themselves as learners.
In all of my years of teaching (this will be my 18th year), I have never felt like my personal philosophy matched the philosophy of the school I taught at so well. Of course, there is still so much to learn and so many new things to try. That is why I have decided to start this blog. I want to have a place to reflect on my practice, to clarify my thinking and make changes that will really help my students to grow and develop.