Maintaining professional responsibilities is a vital part of the teaching profession. When beginning my time at the Homser School, I made it my goal to not just be a teacher in a classroom in a school, but to become a dynamic part of the school and community as a whole. When beginning my time at the Hosmer, I sent letters to my colleagues introducing myself and inviting them to ask questions of me or offer any advice or collaborative effort they may be willing to give, as you can see above. This letter, I feel, provided me the opportunity to get to know my colleagues better. It is from the opportunities to collaborate with them on unit plans and lesson plans, observe their classrooms, and discuss current theory that I most grew as a teaching professional. These teachers and administrators invited me to join in professional development meetings, including the data teem meetings (the agenda from one of these meetings can be seen above). They reminded me of the importance of reflecting critically upon my teaching experiences and helped me to better identify my areas for professional development. They offered great suggestions for improvement in my teaching and were a great support system throughout my time at the Hosmer.
I also sent letters home to parents introducing myself and opening the lines of communication between us, also seen above. I received many emails from parents following this email returning with their introductions. Parents kept in communication with me through email or through brief conversations at “pick-up” at the end of the day. I worked to involve the parents in the learning that was taking place in our classroom. During parent meetings and conferences, I was able to clearly communicate their child’s successes and areas for improvement. Parents felt comfortable speaking to me about their children and I, in turn, felt comfortable speaking with them about my students.
My students knew exactly how happy teaching made me, as I often spoke with them about my own education experience, my successes, my areas of difficulty, and the fact that “learning is a life-long process.” Reminding them of how important teaching was to me engaged my students in my lessons and reminded them that their learning is meaningful and important to me. Students knew about me as a person, and saw me also as a person who learned and put for effort to learn. They were comfortable coming to me to talk and telling me when they were having trouble with something.
These lines of communication demonstrate best practice. I became a true part of the Hosmer community and Watertown community. I reflected on my practice and collaborated with colleagues to become a better teacher. This same process of self-reflection and collaboration will continue throughout my teaching experience as I continue to hone and develop my teaching skills.
Standard E - Meets Professional Responsibilities
1. Understands his or her legal and moral responsibilities.
2. Conveys knowledge of and enthusiasm for his/her academic discipline to students.
3. Maintains interest in current theory, research, and developments in the academic discipline and exercises judgment in accepting implications or findings as valid for application in classroom practice.
4. Collaborates with colleagues to improve instruction, assessment, and student achievement.
5. Works actively to involve parents in their child’s academic activities and performance, and communicates clearly with them.
6. Reflects critically upon his or her teaching experience, identifies areas for further professional development as part of a professional development plan that is linked to grade level, school, and district goals, and is receptive to suggestions for growth.
7. Understands legal and ethical issues as they apply to responsible and acceptable use of the Internet and other resources.
1. Worked with school social workers to provide support for students in need.
2. Spoke with students about my education process and my experience in Elementary school through college. Expressed my enthusiasm for being a teacher and completing my student teaching and degree at Northeastern. Explained that learning is something I love and something I plan on doing forever! "Learning is a life-long process"
3. Uses current theory to guide instruction to better classroom practices. For example, actively encourages peer-to-peer tutoring based on Vygotsky’s educational theory.
4. Observed colleagues teaching in their classroom, including a pre-lesson discussion and post-lesson discussion, and took note of ideas to improve my instruction, assessment, and practice in the classroom.
5. Attended parent conferences and discussed students great gains and areas of improvement. Gave suggestions on learning activities to continue through the summer to allow for continued success next year.
6. Video recoded lessons and self-reflected on practice. Asks for advice from colleagues. Attended professional development meetings. For example, attended data analysis professional development meeting.
7. Reviewed Watertown Public Schools internet policy before entering the classroom and discussed professional guidelines for internet use with cooperating teacher. Internet use in the classroom is to supplement learning.