Reflecting on the New Year, and the old one

Does Winter break get you in a reflective mood? For me, even more than New Year's day, this pause in the year is time for reviewing and thinking about how to do things differently. I love the cycle of a reflective practice of teaching (trying something, critical reflection, trying again to see if you can make it better). As a way of working, it keeps you thinking and wondering. However it is easy to get discouraged with yourself since you can always find something you can do better in any teaching situation. All of that self criticism can bring you down if you aren't careful. 




Yesterday I realized that in all of my planning for making the second part of the school year so much better than the first part, I was forgetting to think back on all of the things that my colleagues and I accomplished this calendar year. 











I do that a lot- forgetting the forest for the trees. 

So before we jump back in to working harder and doing better, let's all take a minute to remember the good, or fun, or really hard things we accomplished last year. 

The story group making their movie

I've taken a little time to think about what I'm proud of from the past year, both in and out of school- from the work on friendly signs to writing in the book Nature Education with Young Children, to the invitation to lead professional development in a new context, to the installation at InLight Richmond. This was especially exciting because it allowed me to bring 3 things I'm passionate about- art, children's ideas, and the city together in a new way. I want to find more opportunities to bring the thinking of the children out into the city! 
InLight 2013

Also, our school hosted it's first big conference last spring, which was tons of fun and an opportunity to learn a lot. I also made some new friends and learned about tons of innovative schools through the Institute. I'm also happy about the million cucumbers I grew in my garden, the time I spent with friends, the cool people my children are, and all art I looked at and the music I got to see (and hear).

Happy New Year!

Kindergarten Children 'Heroes of Love" 2013

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