During my course of study at Seattle Pacific University in the Teacher Leadership program, ultimately I hope to challenge myself personally and in my profession. I hope I will discover ways in which I can be a leader among teachers.
Over the next two years, I want to refine my teaching practice. I hope to gain a heightened awareness and confidence in implementing technology creatively in my classroom. Reflecting on and analyzing my own teaching and that of my colleagues, I hope to grow my repertoire of effective instructional strategies.
I hope that this program will help guide me in taking on more leadership roles in my school community and eventually prepare me to pursue a position as a teacher mentor or teaching coach. I also want to learn about ways to engage a wider community in supporting the success of students. I hope to gain skills needed to be a highly effective communicator and collaborator with both families and my professional colleagues.
The road map to achieving the above goals lies in the program standards, to which each course I will take aligns to in some way. Below I’ll describe my initial understanding of each standard.
- TL 1: Model ethical and moral behavior. Teachers are role models to youth. We serve an important role in modeling behavior we want our future citizens to exhibit in terms of civility and problem solving.
- TL 2: Analyze learning to promote student growth. Everything I do as a teacher should aim to promote student growth ultimately. Reflecting and analyzing my own learning and the learning I am expecting from students helps to focus instruction, promoting student growth.
- TL 3: Improve teaching and learning through the use of educational research at the classroom and school levels. Teachers gather data about their own effectiveness in the classroom. Teacher leaders are aware of school programs and can collect data to assess their effectiveness and suggest improvements.
- TL 4: Engage in analysis of teaching and collaborative practices. Teachers are flexible and willing to analyze their teaching practices with colleagues. Analyze what collaboration means and what it looks like in the school setting.
- TL 5: Establish a culturally inclusive learning climate that facilitates academic engagement and success for all students. Respond to diverse students by providing each student accessible curricula and instructional practices. Show that each student’s voice is equally important and give opportunities for students to learn from each other’s cultures.
- TL 6: Communicate and collaborate with a variety of stakeholders. “It takes a village.” Involve the community, reach out to resources outside of the schoolhouse, and engage all students, staff, and families in the pursuit of student success.
- TL 7: Utilize instructional frames to improve teaching. Implement current best practices.
- TL 8: Present professional practice for the review of colleagues. Share learning to enhance the teaching of those around us. Be a leader by exposing others to practices and receiving feedback.
- TL 9: Evaluate and use effective curriculum design. Use research based curriculum and be able to discern what curricula is effective, what is not. Be able to long-term plan and design effective material for teaching.
- TL 10: Understand effective use of research based instructional practices. Teachers know that instructional strategies are only effective if properly implemented. Teachers must follow best practices based on research to increase the potential of student learning.
- TL 11: Utilize formative and summative assessment in a standards based environment. Know where the students are and what skills they need to acquire before being able to demonstrate proficiency of each Common Core State Standard. Teach content that students don’t already know. Adjust teaching throughout the learning process to meet the unique needs of the students. Assess content that, in fact, was taught.
- TL 12: Evaluate and use technology for teaching and learning. Incorporate technology tools regularly in the classroom. Use technology tools to plan and implement instruction, collaborate with colleagues and families. Allow students to interact with technology in meaningful ways by creating or presenting learning using technology.
I expect my understanding of each standard to deepen as I move through the Teacher Leadership program.