January 29, 2009

Teachers Who Share

This post was last updated on September 5th, 2011 at 11:04 am

While I know that like any profession, there are good teachers and bad teachers, I don’t see many bad ones. My work usually has me working with passionate, caring teachers who truly want what’s best for kids. They dislike bureaucracy and red tape (doesn’t everybody?) and will try anything if they think it will help students learn. I do know of a few teachers who do not fit this bill but honestly, not very many.

What I have come to realize is that teachers who share are the best teachers. Even better if they choose to share online. Sharing online requires, in most cases some careful thought and consideration since the implications and stakes are much higher.

I was fortunate to spend an hour with some of these outstanding teachers;teachers who have an online presence of some sort and are willing and excited to open up that space for others to join them and participate in their learning. Alec and I are teaching undergraduate courses and are matching up our students with several of these teachers.  Listening to them describe their
classrooms, you can sense their passion and it’s palpable.  They love kids and they love teaching. Many of them made statements about their work as if they are just learning to use these sharing tools and they shouldn’t be seen as leaders. In that respect, they are wrong.

Sharing and meta cognition should be inseparable.  Deep reflectors of their practice  are constantly modifying instruction to make learning more effective. This is not about them using technology, it’s about sharing. I’m not saying you have to share to be a great teacher, I’m saying if you do, you are.  I challenge anyone to prove me wrong.

This group of teachers includes a few that in their last year of teaching, some in huge high schools, in small rural schools,  some teaching in Indian reserves, some Kindergarten teachers and some senior classes. The one thing they have in common is that their classrooms are open to the world. What would our schools be like if every classroom operated this way?

Here’s a link to their spaces for you to check out yourselves.

Carey Pohanka
Chad Brannon
Chris Harbeck
Colleen Glaude
Donna Fry
Eldon Germann
George  Mayo
Jaqlyn Schmitt
Jeff Whipple
Jennifer Clark Evans
Karen Chichestor
Moira Moritz
Anne Smith
Kristen Leclaire
Kelly Hines
Kyle Stevens
Lois Smethurst
Maria Knee
Mavis Hoffman
Matt Montagne
Jessica Lipsky
Debby Cothern & Michelle Ellis
Tracey Ruark and Cathy Daniels
Nellie Duetsch
Sandi Kerney
Seth Dickens
Sheri Edwards
Sophie Rosso
Stephanie Affield
Stephanie Olson
Susan Carter Morgan
Paula White
Teryl Magee

Teachers from Chets Creek Elementary in Jacksonville talk to our students
Teachers from Chet's Creek Elementary in Jacksonville talk to our students

Thank you all for sharing.

Images: Teachers introduce themselves
http://www.flickr.com/photos/holtsman/3235968267