You have just been to an amazing workshop or presentation. You are so excited to share with friends and colleagues. But how can this time be created? I hear principals and teachers all the time talk about the power of connecting and building a PLN. I am wondering if the “powers that be” could organize professional learning to provide time for just that: connection, reflection and conversation.
In order to promote connection I challenge my staff to earn professional learning badges in this area. I ask that they specifically build a PLN and join chats. For example, teachers in my building can earn a Twitter badge, the ultimate in PLN’s. In order to do this they must make five new connections, gain five new followers and get someone famous to follow them. We define famous as, when you get excited when they follow you! So not a Kardashian, but a Kasey Bell or George Couros.
My hope in writing this is you see value in connection and reflection for teachers and provide incentives such as time and badges to help this happen . And as I have shared many times, if we don’t model this for adult learners it will never happen in the classroom. I think we are misusing time if teachers and thereby students don’t have this kind of time. What if we gave kids time to network and reflect ?
Some of the best learning that can take place in a day, although deliberate, can be unplanned. We cannot expect people to “reflect and connect” if we don’t give them the time to do so. So put aside “the Agenda” and give TIME.