Thursday, January 8, 2015

Learning Resolutions For 2015

Normally with the start of a new year comes the inevitable New Year's Resolutions. That feeling of starting over can bring thoughts of loosing those pounds put on over the years, exercising more, or spending more time with your kids.

I have followed the resolution path in the past, resolving to eat better, drink less soda or take a picture a day. And usually by mid-January when asked about my resolutions, the response is the same.

What resolutions? 

Many find success with trying to change behaviors or habits. Kudos to them!

This year, I want to flip the script. Instead of the resolutions I make every year that are personal, I want to make some public, Learning Resolutions, that maybe you'll adopt along with me. 

Learning Resolution 1-Reflect More
I have written about the importance of reflection many times before and talk about it often. In this article a study from Harvard Business School is cited which showed that when participants were allowed to reflect on a test, did remarkably better the on the next assessment. A quick search will show many articles, books and papers written on the importance of reflection on the learning process. Just as it is important for students to reflect, educators should take time to reflect, daily on their practice. It's how we get better. 

So I am resolving to share more about my learning and thinking in this space over the next year. In addition to the resources and tools, I want to publicly share my thoughts on my thinking with you so we can all learn together. 

How can you reflect more with me? If you have a blog, share your reflections there. If you don't have one, start one and share your reflections. Don't want to start a blog? Ok. Resolve to talk to your colleagues about your thinking. Dedicate time and energy to not only the act of reflecting but also the act of sharing those reflections. 

Learning Resolution 2-Share More
Twitter has been my learning drug of choice for over 6 years now. I post there nearly every day and spend a great deal of time there reading tweets, gathering resources but also sharing links and posts too. You might have another space where you do your digital learning. And, even though it sounds cliché I have learned a great deal from the time I've spent there. And I am grateful everyday for the learning I get to do these digital spaces.

And while I work with educators nearly everyday on the benefits of being a Relevant Educator who utilizes digital tools, I can always do more. So I am going to seek out new ways sharing the benefits of being connected and engage with more people to share my learning. That might mean sharing all my notes from the conferences I am lucky to attend in Evernote, to mentoring new teachers who are using social media to connect. There are lots of ways I can share more everyday!

How can you share more along with me? Starting and/or posting on your blog is a great start. Engaging with colleagues is another. Perhaps you'll attend a conference or Edcamp this year. Make a point set aside time to come back and share your learning with another teacher, your team or your building. Or maybe you collect and curate digital resources? Make them available publicly so others can learn from your resources too. 

Learning Resolution 3-Change The World and Be Awesome, Everyday
Back at ISTE in 2013, my friend Adam Bellow, invited us to change the world. (If you haven't seen his keynote there, do yourself a favor and sit for a hour and watch it. You will not be disappointed.) Adam challenges us to think about how we, through what we say and our actions, can make the world a better place each day. 

Each day I start out with my "Be Awesome Today!" on Twitter. In my only little way I am trying to take what Adam has charged us to do and do it the best I can. But by the end of everyday this year, through my reflections and my sharing, I will ask myself, I did change the world today? And if I didn't, I will think about how I can work harder tomorrow to do it. 

How can you change the world and be awesome everyday? Start with reflecting and sharing. And remember to do what you do, each day with conviction, and ensure its best for your learning but especially the learning for kids. 

So I hope you'll join me in these Learning Resolutions for 2015. What are your Learning Resolutions? What do you want to do better or differently? Leave a comment below. 

Happy New Year!

Photo credit: vanhookc via photopin cc
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