In February, a colleague and I went to Toronto to the Teacher Learning and Leadership Program 2016 Summit supported through the Ministry of Education. It is here that we were able to celebrate the end of a learning journey that began in October of 2013 . As it turns out, we realized that it was just the beginning.
Our project, Technology in Kindergarten: Empowering Young Learners through Purposeful Play, was one project among 240 Ontario Educator exhibitors who, like us, had a passion for directing their own learning. The Summit allowed us to learn from colleagues around the province, share our own journey, make connections and network with other #onted learning leaders.
The creativity, dedication and knowledge demonstrated in these ‘Projects of Passion’ from our Ontario colleagues at this event, left me feeling proud, humbled and ignited all at the same time. Hearing and seeing evidence of stories of success in student learning, success in teacher capacity building and growth in a shift in Mindsets towards a more innovative approach to learning in schools made me realize that this journey was not over. In fact, it had just begun! There is still so much to learn, to create, to challenge ourselves with and I look forward to the opportunity to extend the learning my group has started through the Provincial Knowledge Exchange.
The moral of this anecdote is that if you have an idea and you believe in it, cultivate it, share it and stick with it! As Julia Child said, “Find something you are passionate about and stay tremendously interested in it.” This project of ours started out as a vision of empowering our littlest learners; the path morphed, the platform altered, the team evolved, but the vision remained constant. Applying for a Teacher Learning and Leadership Program grant gave my team the means to get results through action research, personal learning, collaborative innovation, and knowledge sharing for staff. This, in turn, means better opportunities for kids.
I used SWAY , one of my favourite Microsoft tools, to capture some of the moments from the TLLP Summit day. Check it out HERE. Thank you #TLLP2016 and to the staff and students at Lancaster Drive Public School – you are amazing!