Learning Statements (3-5)

I am learning to continuously use IE in my teaching practice, by just jumping in and planning my units as well as gathering data in my field study. I am practicing using some of the understandings (Mythic, and Romantic) and the cognitive tools. I am also trying to use my passions to help add more emotion to my narrative and to my teaching practices overall.

I am learning about how to collect data in my field study. I am finding, however, this process is changing with every article I read. I find I always want to tweak things to make them better. I am a bit scattered in this and am trying different ways that I hope will lead to a natural style. Different methods I have used is reflection in a teacher journal, pictures and video documentation. I have also had students do double entry journals that I can later look at to see how they are doing. Lastly, I tried a survey and that still needs some work.

I am learning to incorporate and build my lessons from an imaginative education perspective. I have been changing some of my lessons using different graphic organizers that assist me to remember the different understandings and the cognitive tools associated to them. I am playing with my lessons and reflecting on what I have done and how I would change them next time. I usually reflect by writing or drawing, but I would like to explore doing a recording (podcast) or a video blog. I am still learning so I know I will make mistakes and I have given myself permission to do so.

Other things I am thinking about
  • I am using narrative more in my teaching.
  • I feel I am thinking more about the cognitive tools and how to use them in my teaching.
  • When I am talking to other teachers, explaining my lessons, I am using more of the language that is in IE.
  • I am challenging myself to think deeper about a topic.
  • I am trying new things that I am learning about in class in my teaching and in my classroom.

I learned what it was like when an IE lesson does not work, or when you put too much into it. Sometimes editing a lesson is important.

Elaboration (For each learning statement)

This is very important to me as this gives a lot of my lessons a purpose. I have had good ideas for lessons but they were a bit unfocused. Going through the planning process and working my way through the different IE understandings has helped me with the new curriculum. I strongly believe these methods have improved not only how I teach, but also what I am teaching.

I have always been interested in how the inquiry process works, but again, I’ve realized this gives my teaching purpose, and allows me to explain what I am teaching and my method in a new way.

My field study seems to be concentrating on my ‘Friday Problems’ I find I am doing tinkering with my teaching practice there, and my students, in turn, are tinkering with their learning, too. It seems to be a safe place to make mistakes and then reflect on the learning for everyone. I have gone from having most of the control – making up the problem myself – to having students come up with the problem, with just some guidance and context. I am finding the more I challenge them, the more engaged they get and I’m seeing fewer signs of anxiety showing up in certain students. However, I am seeing new anxieties with other students that did not show them before.

Connection To Educational Theory (At least 2 per learning statement)

I am learning to…

  • Use the planning worksheet Data collection 3,2,1 analysis.
  • Use the ‘Circular Planning’ sheet to help IE my lessons and my units.
  • Use readings like ‘Brookfield’s Four Lenses: Becoming a Critically Reflective Teacher’ to help my teaching practice.

I am learning about…

  • my classes on Monday nights over and over again while i fine tune my ‘Sketch Notes’.
  • Different ways and theories from readings like ‘The evidence base for Improving School Outcomes by Addressing the whole Child and by addressing skills and attitudes, not just content by Adele Diamond’ to help me approach my field study from different ways.

I am learning to…

  • Apply readings like ‘Mindful Awareness, Mindsight and neural Integration by Daniel J. Siegel’ to parts of my classroom strategies that again help with finding new understandings in my field study.
  • Compare readings and grounded ideas  like ‘Can Self-Regulation Create Successful School Communities by Dr. Sonia Mastrangelo’ with other readings to contrast and find what works for me in my practice.

Evidence (Triangulate your findings)

Reading – Artist’s Toolbox – Strategies for Data collection

Student – Video for catapult planes

YouTube – Mr.Reynolds

Teacher – Pictures of students working on ‘Friday Problem’



Reading – Identifying and Responding to needs in education

Link: Reflections

Students – reflections examples (double entry) and Fresh Grade feedback

Teacher – reflections Teacher on blog on lessons (Friday Problem)

Link: Field Study Journal


Reading – First Flight into Performative Inquiry – Lynn Fels & George Belliveau

Link: Reflections

Student – pictures Student (marble Run)

Teacher – Class Sketch notes

Link: Sketch Notes

Self-Assessment in Capacities (Overall)

What is my current level of development in the capacities?

Foster a rich understanding of how emotional and imaginative engagement supports learning and teaching and contributes to meaning making.

As I read more and more around IE, it is allowing me to try new ways to use emotion in my teaching. I have been telling more stories to my students about me, my thoughts and my life experiences, and linking them to what we as a class are learning.

Develop a disposition of inquiry and critical reflection to understand and develop your practice.

I am developing new ideas as I again try new methods of teaching. An example of this is after we had our guest speakers in, I tried my version of an idea I got from Jim Davis about drawing adaptations and shapes. I had the students give me reasons why they thought this was an adaptation and why they chose to make that change to their drawing. This worked great and the students were fully engaged.

Explore, develop, and implement curriculum, instruction and assessment practices and frameworks that support the learning of all students.

I spent a professional development day with two other classmates, looking at how the new curriculum and IE fit together. This day we worked collaboratively to work on lesson plans and discussed how well the two worked.

Investigate educational theories and philosophies to inform your practice.

This is probably my weakest area and one I need to work on. I was discussing it with a colleague and she pointed out that I know the theories and I am open to learning about them, but I have a hard time putting labels on what I am doing. I enjoy learning about new ideas such as self-regulation and zones of regulation. I am able to reflect on them and create questions. I like to take parts of all of them and adapt as I can, test them in the classroom and see what works. I did look at zones of regulation and how that can be used in my class and started to develop a chart that might be used for our Friday problem. I am still investigating and will look at implementing something next term.

 Extend and integrate imaginative pedagogical practices into classrooms to maximize student learning.

I have used ideas that I have learned from IE in my classroom. Some have not been successful, like the first time I tried to use a made-up narrative to teach. This was a failure as I did not develop the story well enough and there were gaps. This ended up as just a discussion and the students missed the point of the story. Since then I have tried it again and developed the narrative better and have used this many times. I have also used the understandings (mythic and Romantic) and the cognitive tools to do lessons. However, I have noticed I need to plan more and be able to adapt to the students questions that I have not planned for. Since using these in my classroom I have seen students have more connections and are more engaged in my lessons.

Promote a learning environment that fosters respect for and awareness of imagination’s role in learning for all students.

This has been very evident in the ‘Friday Problems’. Students are thinking more about it and how they can better the experience. We had a bit of a revolt last week in class. Students have been missing PE, and have wanted to do more gym and daily physical activity, so they came up with doing a “Friday Problem’ that has a PE focus. I had not thought of that and I was excited that it came from them. They are very aware of what happens when we are in this mindset, and have often ask why we do use this way of learning all the time. I know that IE has helped me develop the idea of the ‘Friday Problem’, and I think they are going hand in hand.

What might come next for me?

I have looked at a lot of great theories and strategies of other people working with IE and I really need time to digest it all. I also need to work on balance. I am trying to do too much and I am not being a good model of how to balance life and learning. As I try to answer my Field Study question I am getting more and more anxious and stressed. I need to look at how and  what I am doing and find a way to streamline what is making me stressed. In my classroom I talk to students about working smarter not harder, and show them ways to ‘hack’ the way they approach their stress. I will look at what I can do to ‘hack’ my  teacher practice, so I do not work as hard and over-extend myself and  burn out. I will look at what is a healthy mixture of work , school and life. This, in the end, will also help me with my teaching practice, and help me model it to my class and family.

Vision or Goals (Overall)

I want to continue to practice planning using the methods we used this term. I am also curious  how assessment will be done. I keep trying to explore it but am told we will look at it later. I understand that, as I still need to practice using the understandings and the cognitive tools. I am excited and overwhelmed by my field study and how it is developing. I have been collecting lots of data and am very reflective about it this term. However, I really do need to let the data ‘cook’, but am worried if I do that for too long, I will not remember parts of it or maybe forget a crucial part in my reflection. I keep second guessing how I am collecting my data, and reassessing if it is the right method for me.

I have also noticed how my field study question keeps morphing and changing slightly. Then I will read an article and I will re-establish what my original inquiry was about. For example, I was going to work with one student, then decided to work with all my students, and then, after discussing it with my Mentor and my critical friend, decided to use 3-6 students. This will also allow me to manage my time better when collecting data. I’m hoping it will also assist me in other parts of my field study with time and to complete more readings and research. After reading ‘Explore the Curriculum – first flight into Performative Inquiry – Lynn Fels & George Belliveau, I compared it to how I teach and thought about my underlying question: how do students learn? However, that seems to be a question on a lot of teachers’ minds, but I am thinking it is backwards a bit. I think the real question I am thinking about is: how do I teach? If I completely accept the I.E. way of teaching, which I do, then I do not necessarily need to be concerned about how the students learn, but how I teach so they can learn. Most of the theories are looking at students not the teacher. I am thinking I should find more readings about the teacher and approaches to change how they approach time in their practice.

I was also exploring how IE and the new curriculum fit together with colleagues. I would like to continue to explore this next term, as well as look at working collaboratively to plan new lessons.