Yesterday, I presented ‘Language Experience’ to a group of teachers completing a Literacy Leader’s course for my region. What did I learn? Heaps! Even though these teachers may not have seen holes in my practice, after this day, I did. I left with many questions ‘reeling’ in my head. Things like: Should I have said this or that? Do I do ‘this or that’ properly and even should I have been standing up there at all? So… where do I take these questions I now have?
It became obvious to me, that even though I know a lot, there is still so much to know because ‘you don’t know what you don’t know’. As I’m nearing the end of my career (the last 10 years), do I decide to keep going on as I do, or do I decide to go back and review, relearn and share?
Obviously, the latter! You’re never too experienced or too knowledgeable that you can’t learn from others. So why am I sharing this? Yesterday, I was sharing my practice, but as part of this process I got to listen and learn from others… and when I was defining my practice for my presentation, I realised I was ‘unconsciously skilled’. I’ve thought about applying to be a ‘coach’ and now all I can see is why I still need to teach.
My practice needs more development and refining. I need to have a better understanding of the pedagogy behind the teaching of literacy, as my ‘thinking and understanding’ and ability to express the pedagogy behind or beneath ‘best practice’ just isn’t there yet.
It was a privilege to have the opportunity to work with and listen to Helen, an experienced and knowledgeable coach/educator speak. I know she shared more with me than I did with her, but that’s why she is a coach. I also realised after spending a day with her that although gaps were probably ‘jumping out’ at her, she didn’t voice this. And then… when I listened to Anita clarify practice throughout the day, I realised that I should be part of this group of learners, as a learner.
To blog or not to blog? Yes, I’ll continue to write because I have good practice to share. However, I am rewriting a couple of posts with deeper pedagogy in mind. I’m going to ‘up’ my professional reading and go back and review basic practice. When I introduce Guided Reading soon, I’m going to go back to what I learnt ten years ago, pull out the old ‘hard copy’ Early Years manuals that I can find in the school and reread. If you read this post I hope it encourages you to keep reflecting on and improving your own practice.