Skip to main content

Innovation Through Reflection

Last week whilst catching up with a close friend of mine the question was posed “How have you become such an innovative educator?” This question took me by surprise, he is a well-known lawyer known for his ability in court to be incredibly pioneering and he was asking me for advice!

After taking the time to think about this I believe I found my answer. For me I feel that the key driver behind the innovative practices in my classroom was reflection. Looking at what I had previously done, analyzing this, making some minor adjustments and then trying it again.

This is something that in my previous career as a Gymnastic Coach I would always do with my athletes but until that moment I hadn’t made the connection to innovation.

An example form of my reflective processes was in the past I would write down how I felt a lesson went, what went well, areas that needed to change and how students interacted. For many years this worked; however, it didn’t give me much traction. So at the beginning of 2014 in one of our staff PD sessions I was introduced by Bill Gates to the concept of “Video Analysis in Education”. Again this was something that as a coach I would use almost every training session; however, I had never considered bringing it into the classroom.

Now once a month I place a small camera at the back of my room and record about 30 minutes of a lesson. Each time I do this I choose a different KLA and focus area e.g. student behavior and engagement, lesson introduction, lesson conclusion, lesson individualization and differentiation and group work. I then upload a small snapshot of this to youtube so both my teaching mentors and I can give me feedback. Making that small minor adjustment to improve my teaching practice. It is simple, easy and effective as you can see you as a practitioner and you students interact with the content you are delivering.

Popular posts from this blog

What does a post-industrial class look like? Part 2

This post is the second part of a series that I have been working on to identify what does a post-industrial class look like? In my previous post, I looked at using video, collaborative discussion, grouping and student-centred learning.

Why a large display and one to one? The large electronic display is used as it offers many benefits to a given lesson; these include demonstration and modelling as the teacher could showcase the application or video from the board (Moss, et al, 2007). It is easy to show the important features of particular web-based activities and have students interact with the material on their own devices. The board can accommodate different learning styles (Herrington & Harrington, 2006). Interactive boards can help tactile learners by touching and marking the board. Audio learners can have the class discussion and auditory multimedia, visual learners can see what is taking place as it develops at the board and it offers multimodal learning which can be tailored …

What is instructional leadership and why is it important for educational leaders?

School leaders matter for schools success (Hattie, 2012). It is universally acknowledged that effective leadership is an essential element in achieving school improvement (Leithwood & Jantzi, 1998; Hopkins, 2001). “At the heart of school capacity are principals focused on the development of teachers' knowledge and skills, professional community, program coherence, and technical resources” (Fullan, 2002, p16).

“The old model of formal, one-person leadership leaves the substantial talents of teachers largely untapped” (Lambert, 2002, p.37). This one-person theory of instructional leadership that was promerate in the years previous to 2000 (Hallinger & Heck, 1998). It was an archetype where the principal would lead from the front being across all levels of leadership (Spillane, Halverson & Diamond, 2001). However, with the increasing complexities of schools, the development of other philosophies of instructional leadership, which can be defined as the guidance or managemen…

How can Change Management be Enhanced by Reflective Practices?