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Developing as a Professional Educator

1.Revisiting my overarching, long-term goal; What are my areas of strength? Where are my opportunities for continuous improvement? In what ways have I surprised myself? 

My original longterm goal was; 
I would like to teach all 4th and 5th grade students all CAPA standards through 5th grade, overcoming behavioral and communicative deficits associated with ASD. Each student should be able to show evidence that they have learned the concepts by assessments which utilize multiple modalities and are individualized to them. Students should also be able to learn and follow the procedures for my class, including completing “do nows,” and following the daily class schedule. 

As far as my goal, we didn't get through ALL of the standards. However, we did get well into Plants, herbivores/omnivores/carnivores, and habitats. I was surprised how many ways I needed to reteach each concept. I also didn't allow for the fact that some of the students would progress more with increased adaptive "classroom behavior," than with the actual content. Next time, I could do better by trying to implement expectations of behavior well before content. They are all able to show some signs of obtaining the subject matter, and were able to build respective habitats for their respective animals during our final project. 

My Original CSTP was; 2.4 Creating a rigorous learning environment with high expectations and appropriate support for all students

I ended with: CSTP 3.5 Using and adapting resources, technologies, and standards-aligned instructional materials, including adopted materials, to make subject matter accessible to all students.

I think the 2nd one is a natural extension of the first. I assessed that I was able to use diverse modalities, but technology was the outlier. It was hard to challenge the students to learn with technology vs. just expecting it to be a reinforcement. 

2. Describe a professional goal you have for yourself beyond induction.Why have you identified this as a need or interest? What actions will you take? How will you assess goal attainment?

Speaking as a Behavior Specialist and not just a teacher, my longterm goal is to get better at convincing teachers that behavioral strategies such as visual schedules and data collection DO WORK, and to continue modeling how to teach academics to populations of students who seem to have less readiness for those concepts. 

3. What actions can you take to remain a connected educator throughout your career?

Continue to jump in and get my hands dirty. IE: before I give advice on a challenge, I want to work with the student. I want to know that student and all of the particulars about the challenge. I want to model rigor and high expectations, and can do that best by working in the classroom directly. 

4. What can you do personally and professionally, to sustain the energy it takes to be passionate about students, teaching, and learning? 

I tend to worry about every little nuance and sometimes miss the big picture. Based on reflections throughout the induction period, I was harder on myself than my coach - and failed to point out my own strengths at times. So, more positive self-talk is definitely in order!

4. Include one quote from your reflective coach or administrator about your talents or strengths. My evaluation states "Michelle's broad background and knowledge make her an asset to the district."

5. What advice do you have for new teachers entering the profession? Every year will be a little easier. Be prepared to make mistakes; lots of them. Also be prepared to reflect and learn from those mistakes.

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