A good place to start when reflecting on how I have pursued professional learning for myself in order to increase my knowledge of the ISTE Standards is when I enrolled in the Digital Education Leadership master’s program at Seattle Pacific University. Through this program I have had the opportunity to dive deeply into not only the ISTE Standards for Coaches but also the ISTE Standards for Educators and the ISTE Standards for Students. During the first year of my master’s program we were able to focus on the educator and student standards specifically. I have used my learning around these standards to look for ways to support educators in utilizing these standards with their students. One such example is I was able to partner with a couple educators in my district in order to work together to empower students to provide feedback to the district. The students submitted feedback around what supports they needed and wanted in order to be successful during remote instruction. This was a great opportunity for me to model the collaborator ISTE Educator standard and for educators and students to have a voice in what would make remote instruction better. All of the feedback from students was shared with appropriate stakeholders so that they could use it when making decisions around what instruction would look like for the 2020-2021 year. Below is an example of one of the ways that a student chose to share their feedback to the district.
Other ways that I have been able to continue my learning on the ISTE Standards was by attending the ISTE Summer Learning Academy. This professional learning opportunity gave me time to attend various learning sessions all centered around the ISTE standards. Through the micro courses that were a part of the academy, I was able to focus some of my learning around ideas that I could then apply in my work with teachers and in preparing for teaching remotely. One of the micro courses that stands out was on designing an online learning experience. In this course the presenter talked about building student agency, how to incorporate choice boards into the learning and the use of a single point rubric for assessment. All of these ideas from the ISTE course allowed me to have conversations with other facilitators and educators around ideas for engaging students in their own learning. I have since shared the idea of a single point rubric with some of the educators I work with in order to think about how we might have students assess their own understanding and set goals for themselves.
I have also been able to attend an EdCamp for additional professional learning. What has been unique about this approach to learning is that all of the topics are driven by the participants. This was great because then I was able to focus on areas where I had questions, wanted to learn more, or needed ideas to take back to educators in my district. Some of the themes that were talked about during the EdCamp have continued to resonate and come up in conversations with others in my district. For example, in the last session that I attended on Social Justice Equity in Schools we talked a lot about implicit bias and the language we use with others when we communicate. This continues to be something that I think about and have conversations with others around. It has led me to join various book studies in my district around this topic including a book study on Coaching for Equity by Elena Aguilar, Culturally Responsive Education in the Classroom by Adeyemi Stembridge and Science in the City by Bryan A Brown just to name a few.
Continuing my own professional learning is very important to me. As I think about the next steps I want to take in order to expand my understanding of the ISTE Standards I want to make sure I am able to apply what I learn to my work. I would like to be able to attend the ISTE Conference in person sometime in the future. I’ve attended before and felt like I learned a lot but it was overwhelming at the time. Now that I’ve had time on my own to learn about and explore the ISTE Standards I feel like I would be able to make different decisions around what sessions to attend and how to focus my time at the conference. I am also interested in attending more webinars and online courses both through ISTE and other organizations such as PBLWorks in order to take back strategies and resources to those I work with.
Aguilar, E. (2020). Coaching for Equity: Conversations That Change Practice. Wiley & Sons, Incorporated, John.
Brown, B. A. (2019). Science in the City: Culturally Relevant Stem Education. Harvard Education Publishing Group (HEPG).
ISTE Standards for Coaches (2019). Retrieved from: https://www.iste.org/standards/for-coaches
ISTE Standards for Educators (2018). Retrieved from: https://www.iste.org/standards/for-educators
ISTE Standards for Students (2016). Retrieved from: https://www.iste.org/standards/for-students
Stembridge, A. (2020). Culturally responsive education in the classroom an equity framework for pedagogy. Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group.