Yesterday I had the privilege of attending a course called Making Learning Visible. By the end of the day my head was feeling incredibly full. Do you know what I mean by having the feeling that you simply cannot take in any more information, let alone keep up with taking in all of the wonderfully inspiring things you are seeing and hearing?
This course resonated with the aspects of Early Years Education that I am passionate about, but that can get lost in the weight & wealth of planning & assessing. It gave me a day of invaluable breathing space to step back and remember why I do this job, and what I hope to develop in my children through the learning opportunities I provide. (I know I haven't been teaching for long, but I am incredibly aware of how easy it is to lose perspective.)
There is a close and necessary relationship between what we choose to assess and what we value most in the education of our children. - Prof. Martin Shipman
I found this quote helpful in that it can often feel like what I am required to assess detracts from me engaging with the children I teach, but if I take heed of what I value in the education of children, what I assess should be able to flow out of that.
I am so aware of all that there is for me to learn about teaching, and am constantly finding inspirational books written by people with a depth of experience that I do not yet have. Yet, in spite of the desire to learn being there, I am not very good at allowing myself the time to read & take note of the wisdom of others. Being a Nursery Class teacher can feel a little like being in a whirlwind that doesn't stop. When we do slow down, it's only for a moment, and even then, there is so much learning going on to take heed of. I need to remember that the learning I allow myself to do outside of the classroom will only serve to grow me as a teacher, which is a good thing to desire.
Hearing words like this provides a helpful reminder of the importance of me giving space to my own learning, so that I might be able to teach.