Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Collaboration In My Future Classroom

The word "collaboration" is apparently getting a lot of press today, and the Journal Sentinel reports that teachers are going to be partially assessed on their collaboration with one another. I consider this to be a worthy attribute, but it is important to remember that teacher collaboration goes beyond the immediate walls of the school and draws upon interactions with educators in other facilities. It goes beyond the water cooler and into the ocean of ideas which transpose education. I like the expression 'Knowledge Garden' as it relates to the concept of collaboration...walking amidst a range of topics and conversation...sometimes engaging, sometimes interacting, and sometimes just observing. My knowledge garden is grounded in my community. Mike McMaster said it well when he noted our sense of fit, of competence, of belonging comes from being "of community." Those individuals who understand this concept see themselves as having an identity grounded in their community, having the ability to expand into other communities with little difficulty. So often this is the result of collaboration with others. We live in a time of unlimited sources of electronic and social technologies, and the level of our intelligence and wisdom could be magnified many times over if we would only let go of some of mundane routines which have become traditional 'habits' of themselves. Collaboration allows us to learn from others in ways which are truly special. Stay tuned for more....

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