I was challenged by a colleague, Jon Orr (@MrOrr_geek), to reflect on 10 Good Things that happened in 2014.  Here is his blog on the #10GoodThings.

Thanks for the challenge.  It was a good exercise on personal reflection.  So here it is, ENJOY!

  1. Continue to be a Good Human – it is important for students to understand that teachers are humans.  I also believe that teachers should treat students as humans not robots.  This means being flexible, adaptable and understanding of their needs.  This allows me to have a great rapport with students and shows students that I am in this career for the right reasons.
  2. Grant Funding – applied for and was granted $5000 from the Lambton Kent DSB to purchase @VernierST  Labquest 2’s and specialized technology to be used in our science classes at John McGregor SS.  We have been able to enhance the investigations that we perform and continue to engage students with inquiry using this equipment.
  3. Modelled Lifelong Learning – after moving into a new home, I was able to learn how to rewire it.  I was able to gain knowledge from a master electrician, tech teachers at school and YouTube videos which allowed me to successfully update my house.
  4. Student Success Initiative – had the opportunity to meet educators from across the province to discuss student success.  Through this meeting, we are able to adopt and pilot a program which through the “Demonstration of Learning” during the semester students are able to earn an exemption from the exam in Grade 9 and 10 Applied courses.
  5. Provided Learning Opportunities Outside of the Classroom – with the help of Corrine Lally (@LallyPhysics), we were able to organize and run a Senior Science Field Trip to Chicago.  This was able to expose 52 students to great science opportunities outside of the school and provided memories that will last a lifetime for the students.  We are heading to Cleveland and Cedar Point this year.
  6. Facilitated School Growth – continue to work with a dedicated group of teachers within my school to promote the great program and facilities available.  This group continues to foster a positive school environment and the benefits are definitely showing themselves this year.
  7. Expanded my use of Twitter – became active in the teacher Twitter world.  This has opened my eyes to the many great things that are happening in other classrooms around the world and to connect with many great educators.
  8. Returned to Coaching – after taking a year off to spend time with my family, I became the head coach of the Senior Football team at JMSS.  We had a great season (lost in the championship) and I look forward to next season.
  9. Evolving Assessment Strategies – through discussion with other teachers, began to look at assessment strategies in my courses.  I have placed an increased amount of focus on descriptive feedback that I give to my students in class which I think has changed the way that students are starting to learn.  This is an ever evolving area which I want to continue to be involved in.
  10. Facilitating Teacher Collaboration – with the help of Jon Orr (@MrOrr_geek), we have started a weekly “Lunch and Learn” at JMSS.  Teachers come and discuss the things that are working in their classes or bring problems for the group to help solve.  All areas of education are being touched on including technology uses and assessment.  It has been very productive so far and I hope that it continues.

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