Tuesday, 21 June 2016

Next steps

When writing report cards for students, we conclude each subject area with 'next steps.'  The Ministry of Education in Ontario has recently released Growing Success: The Kindergarten Addendum which addresses Assessment, Evaluation and Reporting and it states that  Next Steps in Learning refers to ways in which the child can move forward in developing knowledge and skills, in relation to the overall expectations, both at school and at home. Developmental stage, learning trajectory, and/or other individual processes of learning should be taken into account when determining next steps in learning.

Since we believe that as educators we need to think about next steps for learning for students, I think we also need to think about our own next steps. At different times in my career, I have had to reflect and determine my next stage and learning trajectory.  Staying at the same school in the same grade assignment doesn't fit my restless nature.  I've been fortunate to teach a range of assignments in a range of settings - from open concept school to a classroom in a portable out by the parking lot.  I've taught in urban, suburban and county schools; in small schools with barely 200 students to large schools with over 800 students.  I've had my own homeroom classroom, taught 'rotary' when I was the primary literacy teacher for 14 primary classrooms, and then moved on to work at the board level.   I worked as an instructional coach for primary math and primary literacy - travelling from school to school supporting teachers and administrators with implementing balanced literacy, small group instruction and hands on mathematics. 

Taking a group of educators to Fighting Island for Outdoor Education 
Facilitating conversations during in-school collaborative inquiry

After school math workshop - doing the math!

At the end of this month, I will be retiring and moving on to my 'next step.'  Only 7 more work days and then I will be moving forward to new learning and a new stage.  I am only one year in to my studies at UWestern on my Educational Doctorate, so there will be that new learning and I intend to continue to teach online for Queens.  I wonder what other new learning will be part of this next stage?  

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