This morning, while preparing my tax report on expenses, I got a good look at my 2017 personal, professional development efforts. As with many others with a passion for learning and a deep interest in education, I participated in a fair number of conferences and read several books. While putting a dollar figure on the knowledge gained was not the point, it did give me pause to reflect on the past year.
What results were gained by this investment? There was undoubtedly great personal satisfaction from my love of learning for its own sake.
The volume of quality resources available is virtually unlimited. You find resources from education conferences, workshops, articles, blogs, books, Twitter chats, Facebook groups, podcasts, and other forms of professional or personal learning networks. Educators are a tremendously giving and supportive group of professionals!
Potentially transformative personal, professional learning requires careful, deliberate planning and action. How are we consciously, willfully and consistently nurturing our learning process as adults? What my programming missed was creating an action plan with three to five concrete steps for using the information, setting a planned meeting with a person from my learning network to share what was learned, and to actively participate in a follow up to extend the learning.
My Next Steps as a result of this reflection are to:
1. Read "What Connected Educators Do Differently" by Todd Whitaker, Jeffrey Zoul, Jimmy Casas. An excellent resource for creating personal and professional learning networks that will help us "to share resources and ideas, gain support, and make an impact on others."
2. Create my 2018 action plan.
3. Actively participate in Twitter chats for the most impactful four books I've read recently and for "What Connected Educators Do Differently."
Twitter Chat Hashtags:
- "Culturize: Every Student. Every Day. Whatever It Takes." at #Culturize
- "Education Write Now" at #EdWriteNow
- "Start. Right. Now." at #StartRightNow
- "Learning Transformed: 8 Keys to Designing Tomorrow's School's Today" at #LT8Keys
- "What Connected Educators Do Differently" at #WCEDD
Recommended Reading: For more about developing meaningful personal professional learning networks read Jimmy Casas' blog post "What Connected Educators Do Differently".