Margaret Heffernan

After watching Margaret Heffernan’s TED Talk, I am absolutely inspired. She spoke on some very important key points when it involves work spaces and working with others. She mentioned how everyone should take part and how not only one person should dominate the entire group. I agree with this point, because everyone has something different that they could bring to a group to make the members reach their goals and success. I also like her message about how bringing out the best in people, could help us as individuals. It is extremely important to treat others how you want to be treated. And a good reflection of yourself can easily be judged by the way you treat others. Everyone in a group holds value and should be treated with kindness and respect.

Here is the link to her awesome TED Talks speech.

Eportfolio Ownership

The ownership of an Eportfolio is something that never really dawned on me. The person who owns the Eportfolio will be the one who truly benefits from its success. I believe the creator who posts the information and content is the owner, but as I have been reading and researching I am finding different ideas. After reading Harapnuik’s article I found it interesting that he says, “In order to make meaningful connections, one has to take ownership of those ideas and concepts in order to construct meaning.’ If one of the main benefits of eportfolios is to make connections, than the owner of the the creator of the content is most likely the owner of the entire Eportfolio.

The only contradiction that I have with my statement above is that while working in a school distrit, everything belongs to the school. Our emails, electronics, files and domains. So if my students are creating Eportfolios with all the school distrcit’s equipment, the work would actually belong to the school district to an extent. However, I do feel like I own my personal Eportfolio, because I use my money to pay for my domain. Speaking of domain I thought the article, ” Do I own my own domain If You Grade It” was extremely informative. In my current Personal. Academic.Career.Readiness course, I have my students creating their a Google Slide Project using Google Slides. We have already began setting up Weebly websites in class, where they have posted a few of their peices of academic writing. I am looking forward to adding these project on their weebly website in the future once they are complete. The kids have enjoyed this project so much and I know this is something they will be able to look back on in the future. I have been enjoying being able to finally use technology a little too much. Admin has been coming to my class to get tips for other teachers. Also my students love being able to access all of their work from their laptops and phones. We have been mostly using Schoology, Zoom and the Google Drive/Classroom/Jamboard.

I want my 9th grade English I students to be able to be successful in their futures and to use technology to their advantage. They are doing that this year and enjoying it so much!

Why use an Eportfolio

Since i’ve been in the DLL program I have done an extensive amount of research on the benefits of eportfolios. They are a huge part of my campus innovation plan. I want to bring eportfolios to our campus. Students on our campus would benefit from them, because they are goal driven, focused and dedicated to their learning. I work at a very unique high school campus/ We focus on graduating, job placements and college readiness. Eportfolios will allow my student to take accountability of their learning. We will also be able to measure our individual growth in my classroom. I also love the idea of having a more convenient method of personalizing my lesson plans, based on the student outcome. 

In the Reflection4Learning article I liked John Zubizaretta’s message on eportfolios. He states their purpose, ““to improve student learning by providing a structure for students to reflect systematically over time on the learning process and to develop the aptitudes, skills and habits that come from critical reflection.” These are critical skills that our students will benfit from developing. Being able to reflect and assess their own personal growth will help them in the future.

41 Benefits of an eportfolio was extremey informative for me. Since this is a part of my innovation plan,I am always seeking beneficial reasons for eportfolios. I will definetly bookmark this article. Some of the reasons that were listed were

 1.  Students that develop an  ePortfolio will see BENEFITS . . .  from the PROCESS.

  • They will discover a valuable exercise in self assessment through the reflection process
  • Learning will take on a new depth through the reflection process
  • Their self esteem and self-confidence will be enhanced as they take control of their learning. 
  • They may develop their own goals for their learning. 
  • Assessment of their learning may become more student centered;  the learner is involved and authorized to make decisions about will be evaluated. 
  • They will receive more recognition for individual learning abilities and preferences.
  • They will learn and begin to practice  a process that will be used in life long and life wide learning pursuits

This explains why there is a need for eportfolios in the classroom and also outside the classroom. I like that the author brought out the importance of educators maintaining an eportfolio for themselves. This is what I am currently and will continue doing.

Eportfolio Links

Progressing through the Digital Leading and Learning Program has been a challenge, but each week I feel as if I am getting closer to my ultimate goal. My ultimate goal is to be able to share everything I have learned with my district. I want to share my knowledge of not only technology, but also the power in reflecting, creating a digital presence and adopting a growth mindset. Being able to appreciate and notice my growth has been one of my most valuable take away’s since I have been in the program. It is exceptionally satisfying to see my personal growth as I tackle challenges. By blogging, reflecting and collaborating in discussions with my colleagues I am able to quickly learn and share new ideas. Another one of my goals is to teach my students to obtain a growth mindset this year. I have already been planting seeds and instilling this vision in my classroom by changing my vocabulary and increasing the usage of the word “Yet”. Carol Dweck swears by using the word “Yet” in the classroom to spotlight growth amongst students.

Failing forward is a something that naturally comes with trying to succeed and accomplish goals. There are times when failure just naturally happens. When failure does happen, I believe that you should not begin feeling down and out. Use failure as a tool to see your own growth. Use the plan you failed at to create and implement a master plan that includes details, a time frame and maybe even a mock demonstration of the plan. There are also a few tips that I have used to help push through plans that have failed.

  1. Accept it
  2. Stay determined
  3. Look forward not backwards

The COVA impact has been transforming and impacting my learning. Being able to have choice, ownership, voice and authentic learning opportunities have been motivating me to take charge of my learning. I have really been wanting to grow and improve since I have been in the program. I have been crafting and measuring my own personal growth. Taking ownership of my failures and creating plans to change my approach is something that I have been actually getting better at. Choice is one of the biggest factors that has helped me to stay focused during this program. I enjoy how I get to choose how I’m going to showcase my assignments and growth. I also do this in my classroom with my students. This is actually an easy task, because I am an English Teacher. I am able to create options for student by giving them a library full of books that can choose from. The books are high interest topics that appeal to them. I also allow them to choose how they want to display their knowledge of the text . This will usually take place in the form of a blog, discussion post, project, reflection or exam. Now that I am in graduate school and my professors have given use the option of student choice, I realize the importance of it. Choice allows students to choose the best representation of their knowledge and learning. Ownership will happen naturally, because students will get to choose how they want to share the learning. They will also be more receptive for holding themselves accountable of their learning.
The COVA Model definitely appeals to me! It is something that I will continue to utilize in my classroom. The fact that we have limitless technology on our campus, makes it even easier to practice this framework. There are so many online platforms and activities that can be utilized in my lesson plans. Since we have Google chrome books I have been trying to give my students more of a choice whenever it comes to their learning in the classroom and outside of the classroom.

Voice will impact my learning in the program and in my educational journey. The past couple of months I have worked endlessly to create a digital presence and find my inner voice that I want to show the world. So far I have been learning a lot about how different apps and digital platforms work, and it’s been beneficial. It has helped me narrow down which digital platforms I want to use for myself and my students. My goal is to create ePortfolios and use the Cova elements as a foundational tool to reflect upon. Whenever we craft different areas of our ePortfolio we should ask ourselves are we using the COVA approach.

The link to my Learning Manifesto is Below:

https://digitalmillenial.org/2020/12/06/my-learning-manifesto/

The Link to my Growth Mindset Plan:

https://digitalmillenial.org/2020/11/29/anything-is-capable-with-a-growth-mindset/

https://digitalmillenial.org/2020/11/29/anything-is-capable-with-a-growth-mindset/

The Link to my Learning Newworks:

https://digitalmillenial.org/2020/12/08/the-best-professional-learning-networks-and-pd-opportunities-for-educators/

The Importance of a Growth Mindset

Staying innovative and creative is one of the most important things that we can do as Educators. This involves being able to have a Growth Mindset. In a “Growth Mindset” a person’s success and talents are cultivated through perseverance and hard work. Having natural talent and intelligence is only the starting point for people who have a “Growth Mindset”. This mindset allows people to appreciate each milestone they reach while learning new things. People with a “Growth mindset” are life-long learners who can become anything they desire with effort and drive.

Encouraging students to have more of a “Growth Mindset” is what I have been trying to instill in them this year. Carol Dweck explains the importance of educators changing their word choice and how significant the word “yet” is. The word “Yet” means that they are progressing and improving over time. It lets students know that being successful will take time and hardwork. It wont always be an overnight process or immediate results. The example Dweck uses is how employers complain about their new generation employees and how they have to constantly be rewarded. 

Dweck states, “First of all, we can praise wisely, not praising intelligence or talent. That has failed. Don’t do that anymore. But praising the process that kids engage in: their effort, their strategies, their focus, their perseverance, their improvement. This process praise creates kids who are hardy and resilient.”

By using the word “Yet”  and “Not Yet” we will begin changing their mindset. This will make the feedback process positive because students will be rewarded over a period of time for their strategies, perseverance and endeavors. Students will hopefully begin focusing on their individual growth, rather than just getting an “A”.

The Best Professional Learning Networks and PD Opportunities for Educators

The first learning network that I joined was KQED Teach. It is a Media Academy for educators. Teachers are also able to earn their PBS Literacy Educator Certification. This certificate will help showcase my media literacy teaching skills. The coursework includes 8 micro-credentials that I have  already been working through. KQED also has a Media Academy for Educators which teaches blogging, podcasting, video production and graphic and interactive media productions.The courses are designed to design and engage students through digital media.

Here is the link for the KQED Teach Learning Network if anyone is interested. They also have a Twitter you could easily join.

KQED TEACH

The second learning Network that I joined was ReadWriteThink. I use this learning network often as an ELA teacher. There are a plethora of lesson plans and English content. There are reflections, journals and fun activities to use for my students. The stories, articles and poems are engaging. ReadWriteThink also provides professional development opportunities and continuing education. I use ReadWriteThink atleast once a week for warm-up and exit tickets as well.

Here is the link if you are interested in learning more.

ReadWriteThink

Other learning networks that I frequently use on the daily basis are Twitter and Pinterest. Which are quick and convenient to connect with other educators.

Mrs. Cooper’s Twitter

I also use Schoology. Schoology is GREAT! It allows me to effectively teach my F2F students and my virtual students. The coursework is easily accessible and easy to navigate. Our entire district uses Schoology which lets us collaborate and share thoughts and ideas. The students can complete their coursework and submit it on Schoology. I also have my students annotate the different texts using Kami. Which is the BEST learning tool I have ever used. Students can annotate straight from their computer without needing papers.

Kami

Being a part of the learning networks that I am a part of allows me to continue growing. There is always something new that I can learn from my colleagues and professional developments. In order to be effective, you have to keep educating yourself. I share my lesson plans and activities that worked well in my classroom with my colleagues all the time. As a 5th year teacher, I am still learning and developing, but I believe that I have fresh and innovative ideas that are extremely engaging. Staying connected and sharing ideas is also useful, because it helps grow relationships between colleagues and staff. It is important to build connections with people who have the same goals and interests as you. At the end of the day we all want to see our Students win, and in order to do that we have to be our “best” selves. I will always have the desire to learn, because it benefits not only myself, but everyone around me.

My Learning Manifesto

    I am completely invested in creating a comfortable, respectable, loving and engaging space for my students. I also want a student centered learning environment in my classroom. I want my classroom to be a place where my students and I will grow. I want us to be fearless and take chances when it comes to our learning. Together we can achieve our personal and planned goals by having a growth mindset. A growth mindset is what I am teaching my students to obtain. A growth mindset is being able to accomplish abilities by having perseverance, dedication and the willingness to work hard. I want my students and I to all adopt this mindset while we are learning in the classroom and in their own lives. I want to create an environment that encourages academic success. My students will flourish and become independent learners. I believe that every student can learn and have success in the classroom with hard work and diligence. Students will be able to create their own futures by being innovative in the classroom. I will try my best to make sure that the innovation practices are being utilized in my classroom daily. My students will also use technology to help promote their learning. I will use the COVA framework to transform and impact our learning environment. Being able to have choice, ownership, voice and authentic learning opportunities will help students to take charge of their own academic journey. My goal is to prepare them for their future, and instill them to have a mindset that there are “endless possibilities” when it comes to their future. There is no “glass ceiling” that will prohibit them from reaching their goals.

      I am passionate and dedicated about preparing my students for the “real world”. I want them to be academically prepared and not afraid to make mistakes during their growth process. I want them to recognize all of their small and large milestones, and appreciate all of their growth. I want my students to create E-portfolios which will help them measure their growth. E-portfolios will give them the opportunity to look and reflect on their progress.This will be beneficial to 

my students as they enter higher education.

      Digital learning will keep education innovative. We as educators have to keep up with technology as it changes rapidly. Utilizing technology in our classrooms will only help students become smarter, independent thinkers, collaborative, employable and reflective. We are able to analyze a student’s growth in the classroom with technology. We are also able to create and cater specific lesson plans that will benefit each individual student. It is time for all campuses to become as innovative as they can be in order to educate our students. Technology is continuing to expand nationwide and campuses are utilizing all aspects of technology. Although each campus wants to utilize technology and digital learning, sometimes it simply is not possible because of the lack of technology on many campuses. In order to learn and lead the resources need to be available, and they are not. Technology like computers speakers,Smart Boards/Promethean boards are necessary for digital learning to be successful. In order to have technology their needs to be proper funding in school districts. 

    While education is constantly changing there are some factors that just do not seem to go away. Funding is one of the major issues in the education system. There are so many schools that do not have the proper funding needed for their students to be successful.Schools that are underfunded are teaching students using dated textbooks, insufficient technology and old buildings. This is an issue because it is impossible to use digital learning on a campus that does not have resources. It also affects and limits student growth resulting in poor education.

    I am a firm believer of the success digital learning will have on not only the students, but the teachers as well. It is important to stay relevant and connected with new ideas and concepts. Digital learning is new and we are all learning how to navigate through more and more each day. As educators we have to stay informed and continue our own education as Digital learners. I want to make a difference on my campus by taking further steps to ensure that my students are prepared for college. My goal is to incorporate E-portfolios in the classroom. This will be a beneficial resource for my 10th graders, and other high school students on my campus. Students will be able to use the E-Portfolios to monitor their growth and progress over time in all of their classes. The E-portfolios are easily accessible through computers, tablets or smartphones. E- portfolios will also help students gain a deeper understanding of learning and critical thinking skills. The E-portfolios are an innovative tool, because they help create a student-centered learning environment. It also  keeps students engaged and helps teachers meet the students needs in real time. The evidence of learning is visible and students are able to access their accomplishments and assess the areas they need to improve in. E-portfolios allow teachers to gain a holistic view of  how students are learning over time in school, they also encourage communication, track performance, and they can use them as a tool for planning. I want to be able to incorporate E-portfolios into my classroom with the students that I will teach the upcoming year.

Anything is Capable With A Growth Mindset

Teaching students to have a “Growth Mindset” will not only help them in their academic career, but it will also assist them in life. Being able to measure individual growth from experiences is something would benefit not just students. If we teach the 4 steps process and Carol Dweck’s framework we will prepare our students for the real world. This relates to me because I am a high school teacher and many of my students are already in the work force. Adopting a “Growth Mindset” will help them see their progress day by day.

When and How Often Will I Promote A Growth Mindset

I will make sure I am utilizing the proper vocabulary in my classroom to encourage growth. I will also continue to create E-portfolios with my students. As a life-long learner, I think that is important that we share our individual growth in the classroom. I am constantly learning and perfecting new concepts and ideas as an Educator and Student. I want my students to know how similar or journey is.

During this program I have been learning how to really utilize blogging, journaling, videoing and creating purposeful content. Eventually I want to be able to share this with my coworkers, as I have already been sharing my knowledge with my students.

E-portfolio’s and How They Can Promote Growth and Visible Learning

My goal is to incorporate E-portfolios in the classroom. This will be a beneficial resource for my high school students on my campus. Students will be able to use the E-Portfolios to monitor their growth and progress over time in all of their classes. The E-portfolios are easily accessible through computers, tablets or smartphones. This will hold students accountable and put them in charge of their learning. E-portfolios will help students gain a deeper understanding of learning and critical thinking skills. The E-portfolios are an innovative tool, because they help create a student-centered learning enviroment. It also  will keep students engaged and help teachers meet the students needs in real time. The evidence of learning is visible and students are able to access their accomplishments and assess the areas they need to improve in. E-portfolios allow teachers to gain a holistic view of  how students are learning over time in school, they also encourage communication, track performance, and they can use them as a tool for planning. 

I want to be able to incorporate E-portfolios into my classroom with the students that I will teach next year. With all of the new changes that are going on, having this time will allow me to analyze and perfect my vision. Although, I do plan on practicing the process with a few of my students that I keep for tutorials on certain days, with permission from parents of course.

The powerful word “Yet” will be utilized, because students will be able to track and view their growth and not just the “Grade” they recieved.

The Beauty of the Word “Yet”

The word “Yet” is very important in our growth process. It means that we are achieving growth, but our learning is not quite finished.

Earlier this week I read Mindset by Carol Dweck. This book challenged a lot of my prior thoughts and teaching methods. I have been teaching for a little over 4 years and have always researched the best practices to keep my students engaged and involved in their own academic journey. As a high school teacher this task becomes tough, because after each assignment I give I have students craving to know their results immediately. They want to stay in a certain percentile and achieve their desired GPA, which drives them to rush through assignments just for the “Grade”. They want that A or B so bad that they are not interested in the actual assignment and learning that is taking place. Dweck even says, , “First of all, we can praise wisely, not praising intelligence or talent. That has failed. Don’t do that anymore. But praising the process that kids engage in: their effort, their strategies, their focus, their perseverance, their improvement. This process praise creates kids who are hardy and resilient.”

The word “Yet” is life changing.

What is so Important about the word Yet?

By using the word “Yet”  and “Not Yet” we will begin changing their mindset. This will make the feedback process positive because students will be rewarded overtime for their strategies, preserverance and endeavors. Students will hopefully beging focusing on their individual growth, rather than just getting an “A”. 

  • The word “Yet” means that students are progressing and improving over time. It lets students know that being successful will take time and hardwork. It wont always be an over night process or immediate results.
  • Whenever a student does not get the “A” or “B’ that they are expecting the word ‘Yet” lets hem know that they are still growing and improving. “Yet” is a key tool in adopting a growth mindset.

As Educators we must change our Vocabulary in the Classroom, to achieve Growth.