Thursday, September 30, 2010

Final Reflections EDLD 5301

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Final Reflection

Truly, I have acquired a vast amount of knowledge from this course in research. 
The information that I have acquired has been useful in order to complete this course and I feel positive that I will continue to use this knowledge in my current position, as well as, in future positions as an administrator.  The two most significant tasks during the past five weeks have been learning to create a blog and completing a blue print for the action research plan.  The overall affect of learning both of these processes have been enjoyable and I feel that I will continue to use them throughout my career.  Leaving a course with things that you can continue to use is an accomplishment.   

Every week I have learned so much from my colleagues.  Reading posts, commenting on posts, and reading other peoples responses creates a phenomenal opportunity to share knowledge.  Educators are great about sharing knowledge so that we do not have to reinvent the wheel.  Throughout the course so many colleagues offered useful advice and suggestions that I enjoyed reading. The discussion comment that sticks out the most in my mind came from Mike Nunez during week 3 discussion.  Mike gave me the thumbs up on my action research plan and he concurred that college readiness is very dependent on middle level students having future goals.    Sharing our knowledge on the weekly discussion board has been very powerful, equipping me with tools that I can use presently in my classroom.

Having that visual presentation from our professors every week was very useful for me; especially in the beginning of the course.  When professors Arterbury, Ph.D. and Jenkins, Ed.D.  introduced us to action research and gave us tips and pointers, one thing sticks out in my mind from week one video, stay on topic.  This is so important and I have so much I would like to share I have to make sure I stay on topic.  Throughout the course I thought about this on every discussion and every blog.  Also, I have taken other online where there was not video available and I enjoyed having different modes of delivery for my information.   

 I really enjoyed reading about Pinellas County Florida schools, and I applaud their efforts to break the status quo by: saving the district money, saving time, and giving the teachers more time to spend with students.  Their plan seems very simple but the impact has been enormous.  I began to ponder, why more of us using these great tools aren’t.  Pinellas County is really thinking outside the box and it seems to be paying off for the district and the students. Examining what we do to Improve our Schools: 8 Steps from Analysis to Action was a great selection and provided information that I could use today and I really appreciated this selection. 

I gained a great deal of insight from the Dana text, Leading with Passion and Knowledge: The Principal as action researcher.  The different examples of inquiry in which schools shared effective techniques were very interesting: Friday school option, Saturday school option, and my favorite, does a student need to be in the classroom to learn (Dana, 146-147).  At some point I think many campuses will ask themselves these questions rhetorically.  Now that we understand action research we can really find data driven answers to many questions that if we have answers can build stronger campuses.
I look forward to completing my action research and expanding my blogs.     

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