– Peter Santoro –
Happy New Year, everyone! With the dawning of a new year, I always find myself full of hope and optimism for the future. A colleague here at FLGI, Kathy Swanger, tossed a challenge out to some of us: 20 in 2020. The object was to choose 20 things you wanted to focus on in 2020. Some items were professional and some were personal. There was also a checkbox next to each item on the list so that you can keep track of your accomplishments throughout the year. What was unique about Kathy’s challenge was that she shared her list and asked for help in accomplishing all the items on her list. I created my own list (although I did “borrow” some items on her list that pertained to me as well) and I shared it with Kathy.
When I saw this month’s theme about looking at the year ahead with Flipped Learning, I was so glad I took the time to put together my “list of 20.” The more personal items on my list include typical items such as eat healthier, exercise more, and something I used to do and received a lot of pleasure from (but stopped due to lack of time): start playing music again. I haven’t played the piano in years, so I had it tuned and I’ve started playing a little every day. I just have to have the discipline to be consistent throughout the year.
I have several professional goals that I am excited to share:
In my own small corner of the Flipped Learning world in 2020, I see exciting times ahead.
Several weeks ago, I had the opportunity to work remotely with some math teachers in Houston. Jon Bergmann asked me to spend some time with these teachers. They had flipped their classes, and they were looking for some group space activities to reinforce the flipped lessons. These teachers were so open to my suggestions. They really wanted what was best for their students and their learning. I look forward to working with teachers everywhere.
In September, my own school district implemented a new approach to Professional Development, FlexPD. This new approach allows teachers to choose the Professional Development sessions they want to attend and which are relevant to them and their needs. In addition, most of the PD is given by the faculty. Another teacher and I have given two one-hour sessions, one specifically for high school teachers and another geared to elementary and middle school teachers, entitled: Why you should flip your class? Three weeks after each of these meetings, we conducted a more hands-on, two-hour session, on exactly how to start flipping your class. My colleague and I flipped all of these sessions, and they were a great success. I see interest in Flipped Learning grow much more this school year than at any point in the past. Parents are now starting to send emails in praise of Flipped Learning to my principal and the superintendent of schools. The momentum is starting to shift as more teachers express interest. Colleagues stop me in the halls to ask questions about my students’ progress. Students talk, parents talk, my school administration is talking, and things are starting to move forward with Flipped Learning. I see a great deal of progress for 2020.
If anyone wants to follow me on Twitter: @peter_santoro