My best learning experience

c21_logo_mediumWelcome to you Cohort 21 Blog. This journal is an integral part of your Cohort 21 experience. Here you will reflect, share , collaborate  and converse as you move through the C21 Action Plan process. 

This is your first post and an opportunity to share a little bit about yourself as a learner and leader. Please respond the to the following prompts below:

1) Reflect on your own personal learning journey and K-12 education. Identify one learning experience that you can point to as having made a significant impact on some element of your own growth and development. It could be that teacher and subject that really sparked significant growth or a trip that opened your eyes to a whole new world or way of thinking or a non-catastrophic failure that you learned so much from.  Briefly describe the learning experience and identify the various supports, structures, mindsets and relational ingredients that were put in place by the teacher or facilitator that directly contributed to your growth and success. 

After disciplining a student during class, I received an email from the student shortly after the student left my class.  This student was very upset with me saying that I was rude and embarrassed her in front of the whole class.  This student did not think that I liked  her and she believed that she was treated differently than anyone else in the class.  I was distraught by the tone of the email and reached out to my Administrator.  My teaching philosophy is to be fair to all students and I try my best to be the best role model to all of my students.  I then received an email from her father.  We spoke and he addressed his daughter's concerns. To make a long story short, the Administrator, student and I had a group meeting to discuss. We all had a moment to speak and listen to each other. I learned that the student was going through a very rough time because 2 years ago she lost her mother and has been resentful since then.  We tried to solve this and I tried to reach out to this student on many occasions.  To this day although I would say hi  to her when I see her in the hallway, she refuses to open up and accept my apologies for making her feel the way I made her feel. 

2) What is the one Learning skill (MOE) or Approach to Learning (IB ATL) that you feel is MOST important in this day and age? How do you intentionally build it into your curriculum and develop it in your students throughout the year?

I believe that responsibility is the MOST important learning skill. Students should be responsible and take ownership by committing themselves to do their best in any given situation.  This includes completing all assigned homework, group work and assignments in the proper timelines. It is also important for student's to be able to manage his/her behavior during and out of class. By encouraging a Positive mindset in the classroom, I post all assigned work for my students to be aware and visually see what is needed of them to complete a task on time so that they can develop positive learning skills.  

3) Insert an image below that best captures the essence of that Learning Skill or ATL.




6 thoughts on “My best learning experience

  1. Dear Tonia,

    Thanks for joining us. Looking forward to seeing you on Saturday. In the meantime, jump in here and let us know a little more about you.

    See you soon,

    1. Post author

      Hi Garth, sorry for the late response. I am nervous but very excited about starting this journey with cohort21. I have heard and seen a lot about cohort21 from past colleagues of mine (Sally Mastromonaco, Lisa Picerno, Elissa Gellany, Anthony Forti, Jason Bornstein all from Villanova). I really do not know what to expect, and funny I teach BTT but still learning everyday from my colleagues and of course my students. I don't believe that I am utilizing Technology the best in my class and I really would like to try new things and I guess this is a start to get me on the right track.

      I have been teaching at Villanova for the past 16 years and loving it. I also coach Cross Country and Track and Field. I am a former National Track and Field Athlete and currently getting back in shape so that I can compete at the Masters Level. We will see how this goes. I have 3 children of my own, two (my son Jamar and daughter Tianna) who have now graduated from Villanova and I have a daughter Jaydeen in grade 7 French Immersion Program.

      I am looking forward to meeting you and the Cohort21 team. Especially looking forward to getting out of my box and learning new experience from everyone to help enhance my teaching.

      See you on Saturday.

    1. Post author

      Hi Allison,
      Sorry for the late response, I am still trying to navigate through everything. There is a lot of information and a lot of different area's to navigate and I am trying to familiarize myself with it before the next Face to Face.

  2. Hi Tonia,
    Great to meet you at the first F2F & thanks for filling in some more of your background here ... I will be keen to talk to you about your track and field career, I competed at the varsity level!
    I appreciate the vulnerability of your first post, and I see a very viable connection between the situation you describe as one that marked significant growth for you and the learning skill you feel is a top priority. I have had similar experiences (longer stories for another time) in which I came away reminding myself that 'everyone is fighting a battle you know nothing about ... be kind...' and keeping this front of mind when encountering a challenging student has often served me well. I'd love to know more about what you took away from that situation, despite the fact that it sounds like the student had a difficult time coming out the other side...
    On the topic of responsibility, I see a real synergy to the idea that regardless of circumstances, we all have a responsibility to show up and do our best... how can we model and teach this to our students?
    On the idea of positive mindsets, have you read Carol Dweck ' Mindset' ? Its a must read on this topic!

Comments are closed.