Dead or Dying: The Need to Reflect

I have had the opportunity to participate in a lot of great learning this year and the last month has been particularly busy in terms of my professional development. At these PD events, we are encouraged to give ourselves time to reflect and process on all that we have learned. In fact it is often stated that for those provided with the opportunities of professional development, it is morally imperative that we share our learning with a broader audience.

As educators we know that carving out time for reflection is easier said than done, but as George Couros reminds us, reflection is key to moving our learning forward.

George suggested that like our prep for our classes or for our schools, we view the reflective piece as a non-negotiable part of our planning. He suggested that as educators, we employ the “dead or dying” rule and block out time for reflection.

Close your office door, and unless someone is dead or dying, use that time to reflect on your learning and experiences and use that time to determine what your “next” is.

The other suggestion George Couros had for ensuring that time for reflection can be embedded in our day, was to schedule time for reflection during class time. The added benefit to this strategy is that you are modelling the value of reflection. All learners benefit from time  to #think, #ponder, #wonder and this life skill will impact all aspects of their life. We need to demonstrate the various ways that reflection can occur and  teach students to understand the power of self-awareness.

I do most of my reflecting on my evening and weekend walks, but somehow between the quiet reflection and logging on to the computer, other pressing matters take precedence and the reflection remains with me. This is perhaps one of the biggest obstacles to blogging I face. An audience of one. A fleeting thought with no permanent record for later use. My blog posts while written in my head, rarely make it to my blog.

My main piece of advice for those getting started in the blogging process are as follows:

done

It will never be perfect, but it’s perfect for right now.

Constant editing and multiple drafts will ensure that blogging becomes a time consuming task that prevents you from posting as often as you would like and the task itself will seem more onerous.

The pressure to write the “perfect” post limits creativity and expression consumes more time than you have. Besides, who determines perfection?

Darren Kuropatwa  has circumvented the issue by posting his musings that he records on his daily walks. He posts his reflections to his YouTube channel. The #whilewalking messages are as impactful as a written blog and he is able to share his thoughts in a medium and time frame that works for him. His posts are “perfect for right now”

As busy individuals time is a commodity that we have a limited amount of. There will always be something else that will be competing for our time, but as learners we need to honour our needs by reflecting on where we have been in order to determine where we will go.

Blogging is your voice…and how you choose to get it out there is up to you-as long as you get it out there!

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New #connectedleaders #SeLNO bloggers this week to check out and encourage!

Kim Filane (@kfilane)

Lindsay Costa (@lcosta_miller)

Melanie Jewiss (@Melanie_Jewiss)

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