It’s easier now than ever to experience, at least digitally, what’s happening in classrooms outside your own. Between Twitter, facebook, Pinterest, blogs, etc. etc., we can get a glimpse of school life at the click of a mouse or the swipe of a smartphone. But, just like there’s no substitute for hands-on learning in our classroom, there’s nothing like actually visiting a school other than your own.
This week, a small group of colleagues and I were invited to several schools in a nearby district to observe their writing program in action. The curriculum director could not have been more welcoming, organized and available, and the five teachers whose classrooms we visited were just as open and professional. Not only did we have an opportunity to observe the writing workshop in action, but because a floating substitute traveled with us, each teacher was permitted to spend a few minutes with us after the lesson to share her thoughts on the program.
We teachers can’t always leave our classrooms – in fact, it’s a rare, rare thing. But when you can, you get to see a whole new world – in the flesh. And even though Twitter, facebook, Pinterest and more are outstanding resources, nothing beats the real thing. Thank you to our district superintendent and literacy coach for allowing and arranging this opportunity.