It’s always hard for me to write about my learning after Educon. My mind has so many things swimming around it’s hard for me to nail down just one idea to focus on. So here are a few of the big take aways for me.
- Raghava K.K., during the Friday Night Panel said, “Education is what is done to you, learning is what you do for yourself.” As educators we need to be learning in spite of system. During “Rethinking the Purpose, process and Promise of Professional Learning” with David Jakes and Kristen Swanson, I had an A-ha moment. “Professional development is what is done to us, Professional Learning is what we do for ourselves.” I seek out professional learning at Educon, EdCamps, IU offerings, and PETE&C. All of these learning opportunities are not encouraged by my district or administrators, they are encouraged by a deep down innate need I have to be learning. Professional Development can lead to learned helplessness where Professional Learning is sought personally and leads to professional growth.
- We need to be working at changing the culture of learning for all stakeholders in our learning organization. This takes time and patience. Conversations need to take place in order to shift thinking and practice.
- Core Values need to be the crux for all decision making and culture shifting. I see how SLA adhere to their Core Values: Inquiry, Research, Collaboration, Presentation and Reflection. In the conversation about Distributed Leadership, Chris Lehmann addressed this idea, to always come back to the bigger picture and ask:
- Does this align with the Core Values?
- Does it serve children?
- Does it serve adults?
This whole idea of innovation and best practices in education is a journey. There are mountaintop successes and failures in the valleys. The failures teach me to go back and reframe. The successes keep me moving forward. Educon is always a retreat to refresh, rejuvenate and reconnect. The journey continues…