Monday, April 11, 2011

Goal Setting

A recent twitter conversation with my sister-in-law (@mrspow) prompted me to start thinking about goal-setting. I use to work hard at setting goals, though I don't really feel like I understood the purpose of them. In fact, goal-setting was more of a to-do list that anything meaningful for me. In my personal sphere I have stopped setting goals - partially due to disappointment of being unable to meet them (or control the ability to meet them) and partially due to the frustration of not being able to see into the future (both ridiculous, I know). This is obviously something I'm going to have to work through (ah yes - the burden of seeking personal growth).

But for today, i started thinking of setting goals for my professional life - that is, my teaching goals. And so I've created a list. I don't know if it's realistic, or if I will obtain them, but I wanted to put them out there publicly, if only for the sake of my own personal accountability. And I encourage you to do the same. Take all those ideas and beliefs and wishes and wants and desires and start to formulate real tangible goals. Succeeding or failing isn't the conversation. Goals are both powerful and meaningful with or without success. (For more info on goal setting, see here).

Without further ado...


Within One Year
  • Obtain a permanent position in my school district
  • Find 3 extra-curricular needs in the school community (one to meet the need of the students, one to meet the need of the staff, and one to meet my own personal passions)
  • Begin my Masters in Education or (if necessary) Apply to a Masters of Education program to begin the following year
  • Formally or informally mentor a student teacher in my school community
  • Teach all my students how to use twitter for classroom learning
  • Try 3-4 new pieces of technology in the classroom (including Pasco products)
  • Help 3 teachers develop a PLN
  • Get a class website up and running in a way that students will access
Within Five Years
  • Complete my Masters in Education
  • Take on a role of mentoring and responsibility within my department
  • Watch first class of students (from grade 8, 2008) graduate high school
  • Have students responsible for developing assignments (and accompanying grading criteria)
  • Have grade book sorted per PLO
  • Have resources available online for sharing with teaching community at large
  • Blog weekly
  • Have a student teacher
Within Ten Years
  • Remove formal grading from the classroom
  • Take a group of Biology students to Costa Rica
  • Take a group of students on a humanitarian trip in a developing nation

Sunday, April 10, 2011

My 10 Picture Tour

It's been a busy year - prepping lots of new courses and adjusting to 10 months at a different school. Every day I am still, piece by piece, learning about the school culture. Wandering through the building late last week with my camera allowed me to combine something I love (interpreting the world through my viewfinder) with something I'm just beginning to understand. Here's what I came up with: Welcome to Semiahmoo Secondary.

1. Math Hallway. Semi has a large group of students who are very strong in Mathematics - hence the numerous awards from every competition you can imagine (just getting them up). Also helps that Semi is an IB school and has students learning Math at that level.
2. Front Entryway and student art. I've been told these have been here for years.
3. After school fun - cafeteria? or pingpong tournament?
4. Home of the totems (hard to make out, but also home to a lot of banners)
5. Senior Boys Volleyball were Provincial Champions this year

6. Marketing Class runs SemiCo... "Australian for Fun" as their slogan says (not sure if that's true)

7. There is a sports theme: Cross Country and Track & Field are also strong in the school. As is Rugby (though I didn't get out to the fields to get a picture of the tournament going on).
8. Outdoor Ed is also a popular course.
9. The Courtyard - spring is in session
10. my room. I don't fee like i get out of here often enough, so truthfully i could have shot 10 pictures of my room to emphasize "a day in the life..." but i didn't think that was the point. Maybe that will have to be the next assignment.