What is reflection?
- Thinking about stuff
- Meta-cognition – thinking about thinking
- Creating associations
Slowing Down the Learning Process – Pro/Con
- Not an inch deep and a mile wide
- Get a chance to make connections – things aren’t in isolation
- An opportunity to process and retain
- More careful analysis – less “frantic”
- Teach less and learn more.
- Without DI, kids get bored.
- Let students know why we are slowing down.
- Thoughtful about what you are going to include – forces some prioritizing
- Ask STUDENTS! They are the best resource about what they need.
Characteristics of a Reflective Educator
- The reflective educator has time set aside specifically for thinking about his professional practice, growth needs, and students’ needs.
- The reflective educator takes action upon his focused thoughts about professional practice. He does not continue in a course of action that he has realized is not working.
- The reflective educator analyzes his own lessons to see what worked and what did not. He makes changes as necessary. When a lesson does not go well, which will happen to everyone, he learns from it and does not teach the lesson the same way again.
- The reflective educator recognizes the inherent differences in his classes (when he has more than one group of students) and does not treat all classes the same by teaching exactly the same lesson.
- The reflective educator takes planned time within class to determine the efficacy of the lesson and take steps to improve it, if need be.
- The reflective educator knows both his strengths and his students’ strengths. His lessons are designed around their strengths and areas of interest to maximize learning.
- The reflective educator is cognizant of his own weaknesses and takes planned steps to improve in those areas.
- There is culturally no time for rest – there are too many activities and demands for attention. Must be prioritized.
- Must have a life outside of school. Physical activity provides opportunity.
- Retreats from the normal day is helpful.
- Reflection is an active, intentional process.
- Reflection involves being challenged.
- Reflection = caring.
- Using spirituality to support educational reflection.
Reflection and Passion
- Reflection is a state of mind that needs to be developed.
- Students need to practice reflective skills on things that they care about to develop a reflective mindset.
- Promoting reflection is tied to making learning meaningful. When it is something they care about, they will naturally think about it. Reflection is a way of processing things that matter.
- Don’t force it outside of school; the risk of killing their passion is not worth it.
- Create a #GTD=Getting Things Done mentality, to support your reflective process
Public vs. Private Reflection
- There is an inherent risk of failure or rejection in a public medium.
- Learn about and make connections, such as reflecting with others on sites like Comments4kids.blogspot.com
- Reflection comes at the end of learning.
- Public information can help benefit others.
- Learn communication skills.
- Closed networks can help protect students as they learn
- Comments promote authentic dialogue
Intro to Blogging
After this, we looked at reflecting in different mediums and we experimented with several different types of blogging. Here are some of the sites that we looked at in the different ways of reflecting. There are many different ways that both we and our kids can learn and share. I think it is interesting that by far the most popular tool was Posterous. Even those without laptops were able to take out their smartphone and start a blog within minutes.
Written Blogs – Use laptops
- WordPress jasontbedell.com/tutorials
- Blogger Uses a Google Account
- EduBlogs Same as WordPress
- Posterous – email@example.com sends a private post and firstname.lastname@example.org posts normally to the blog.
Audio blogs/Podcasts – Use phones and computer microphones.
Photoblogs – Use Cell Phone Pictures.