There are really at least 20 reasons why I am not looking forward to Wednesday, June 8th at 12:10pm when the final bell rings for the 2015-16 school year at Woodson. But tonight I can narrow it down to four.
1. My new found PLN. It is crazy to think that I started the Voxer journey and built an amazing PLN in just under 8 months! I still remember listening to the Principal PLN and Jay Posick talk about the importance of connecting and sharing the resource of Adam Welcome and the #PrincipalsinAction Voxer group. From that I have learned so much and gained so many friends it is really hard to take a brief break over the summer-but I am looking forward to seeing so many of my PLN at ISTE 2016 and NAESP.
2. Finding Balance…occasionally. So this year I continued my commitment of removing email from my phone and took some guidance from Curt Rees and work hard each week to get to ‘In Box Zero’. This has led to being more productive when I have to, and not having looming dark clouds of unanswered emails waiting for me when I log in. My balance Voxer group has initiated many balance challenges this year and we worked through an excellent Mindful Leader book that I still use with students and myself-daily.
But probably the best takeaway from this was signing up to be the “Assistant to the Assistant” soccer coach for my son’s team. I know NOTHING about soccer and committing to 3 nights a week in May was a little insane at first-but the connections we are building and the time I get to spend with him-uninterrupted …well I wish I would have done this years ago.
3. New Learning. This year our staff jumped in feet first into the PLC journey and we haven’t looked back. It really takes some amazing teacher leaders to drive this initiative as far as it has gone in 9 months-so far that I don’t want to stop for three months! Learning about coding and application in the early years has also been eye-opening and risk-taking for me. Had you told me in September that I would be teaching a coding class to 30 kindergartners…and liking it…I wouldn’t have believed you! However with much encouragement from the Technology Integrationists in our district it is up and running and can only grow from here.
4. I Learned to Have Fun.
This year in all my new learning I also developed an appreciation for having fun along the way. Meeting my PLN in person to run a half marathon was quite the inspiration to keep setting personal and professional goals and having friends alongside to hold me accountable.
Today at our final staff meeting of the year we took a 30 minute ‘pause’ from our flipped PD, building business and end of year tasks to do something…quite out of the box. We played Hungry Hungry Hippo and well-it was AWESOME. The amount of laughter was an energy I haven’t yet experienced in my career!
This year above all I learned that even adults need to have fun while learning, and the importance of having fun together. So when the bus leaves next week I will be sad to see our students go and the year coming to an end-but so so grateful for all the opportunities it gave me.
Keep Dreaming BIG for our LITTLEST Learners,