Well, maybe not always easy, but a good time to reflect, nonetheless. Summer is a very reflective time for me. I always think back to what happened last year. What went well and should be repeated? What didn’t work out so well and should be tweaked or changed altogether for next year? And, I always have something new that I want to incorporate into the classroom. I can’t imagine going back to the same lessons done the same way as the year before.
This morning, I was looking through my students’ blogs (click on their names on the right) from the last school year. Their blogs are a portfolio of what they have learned over the past year (or two years in the case of my grade twos). What a treat to look back at their posts and see the difference that our time together actually made. Because I know the back-story of every child and every post I know that many of the posts were huge victories for the children in themselves. The fact that they were part of a larger portfolio of work was just an added bonus.
While sitting on my patio today, I was able to re-watch a student’s writing begin his grade one year with an editor’s note so that a reader could understand his intent as an author…
To watch another student’s recording of regrouping and remember the way he redid the video several tries to get it just right… (app used – Camera)
To watch all the students begin to confidently choose a tool that worked best for each of them as a learner to show what they had learned, such as these posts about bike safety… (apps used – Popplet and Book Creator)
These were all delightful moments. Moments that we celebrated in the classroom. The best thing about digital portfolios though, is that not only can I derive pleasure from them after the fact, but their parents can as well. The students themselves can also watch this grade one progress over and over since their blog will stay online. I would love to go back and see my own grade one year of learning. I can’t do that. But because of the technology that is now available, my students will be able to watch that learning whenever they choose.
And that is something to celebrate.