They say that hindsight is 20/20 and I feel that is definitely true in my school. I assumed so much about teacher beliefs and foundations at the start of this implementation. I assumed that teachers had an accurate understanding about formative assessment and its use in the classroom. I assumed that teachers had moved past a 40 question multiple-choice test. I assumed that teachers understood the power of blended learning and were all on board. I was wrong in some cases. And I would say most of the blame should fall on me. It’s easy to forget, when you’re immersed in the research and “living” all things blended, that other teachers will understand it like you do. So…where to go from here? I’ve failed…how do I move forward?
I need to up my game! I need to get into all of my classrooms and observe, find common weaknesses, and put together multiple hands-on, collaborative professional developments. I need to fight for my teachers. One professional development on formative assessment is not enough. They need time to develop and grow. They need the opportunity to work collaboratively on lessons and get peer feedback. They need more support from all of us on the leadership team. If we want our teachers to grow, we have to give them time and support to do so.
This means I also need to work on getting them leadership team on board. I want to share my research from my literature review to start shifting their mindset about quality, in-depth professional developments. One of the hardest things for me in my role as a Digital Learning Coach is that I am now trying to support the entire staff instead of twelve teachers. My administration does not understand how much support needs to go into integrating technology in a meaningful way. My goal is to start getting him to understand that a few teachers who fully understand how to use the blended learning model is better than an entire staff who do not understand the pedagogy behind blended. While I know it won’t happen quickly, if I don’t make sure that the foundations are there in regards to formative assessment and differentiation, then it’s going to be very difficult to build capacity among my teachers.