Thursday, May 8, 2008

VPD - One virus for which I hope there is no cure!

After my last blog post, the thought of "viral" professional development has been at the forefront of my mind. Have I been approaching things all wrong? I think the answer to that is - maybe. Slowly, but surely I'm working to incorporate non-traditional method of professional development into my arsenal. Yes, arsenal. I am at war after all and plan to win it one small battle at a time. But what I have been doing thus far has seemed haphazard at best. My opportunity for some one-on-on time with a teacher last week just "happened". I have been flying so long without a sense of structure that I know I'm losing focus, and for me that can be dangerous.

I was on twitter when
@techchick94 tweeted about a blog post from @injenuity . So, I followed the link and found the following post:

In her post, Jennifer focuses on her strategy for Viral Professional Development or VPD - love the acronym! She succinctly outlines a bulleted list of characteristics of VPD and how to get started. I smiled to see a few that I have already begun to use.

But beyond those wonderful bullet points, two things really struck me. One was this quote I pulled from her post:
"...but I have found a strategy that is working well and keeping pace with my goals, expectations and work load"
This has been my main struggle. Trying to find that balance has been so difficult. I think I am my own worst enemy about biting off more than I can chew in my effort to try and do it all. However, the more balance I am able to find, the more effective I'll become. I know that. Now, I need to follow through on it.

After I read this, however, I honestly felt like I could breathe a bit better:
"You cannot spend time worrying about the instructors who refuse to adopt instructional technology. Just let it go."
Just let it go. Four simple words, but they meant a lot to me. Between letting go, creating a better structure for my professional development, and finding that much needed balance, I'm more hopeful about what I can accomplish! Here's to spreading viruses all over the place and watching them fester. Let's hope it's like the common cold - easily spreadable and without a cure!

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injenuity said...

Well said! The most exciting thing to me, is when I discover everyone's already doing this! It just isn't in the professional repertoire we learned in school, so we have a hard time accepting that it's alright. I can't wait to hear more about how this is working for you.odmbnsgq

Kim Cofino said...

Thanks so much for pointing me to @injenuity's post! It was exactly what I was looking for, but didn't know I needed!

The part of her post I really connected with was the need for both f2f and online avenues for pd.

We've been concentrating solely on f2f for the past few months, but I really think we need to bring in an online element for those teachers that are especially engaged or ready for the next step - it may seem intimidating for those who aren't ready, but those who are will be appreciative, I'm sure. Thanks again for sharing!