guest post #1 – Rachel Jones @rlj1981

Sharing is Caring – but why should we share ideas as professionals. I mean – surly everyone is capable of writing a scheme of learning, or knocking up a worksheet? Well yes, and I spend many years making lovely resources for the learners in my classes. But think about it – why spend hours of your time making resources when you can adapt someone else’s – and you can spend that extra time doing some 1:1 work with a child that really needs or, or organising a horizons expanding trip.

rlj

Please don’t spend your time reinventing the wheel. Equally true – please don’t be the person that is happy to take ideas or resources but never offered anything in return. Here is my other main reason for wanting to share. As teachers, we are teachers of all children. Not just the ones in your classroom. It is morally dubious to hoard resources just for the children you teach, when those in classrooms down the hall, or in another school could really benefit. I know the school system has been geared to be competitive – but as professionals we are capable of taking a step back and showing real concern for the progress made by all – not the ones who we are accountable for come results day.

So – you want to share, but are not sure where to start, here are 5 steps to being a sharing teacher.

1 – Do you already share resources and ideas in your department? Yes? Excellent – cup of tea for you. No? Why not? It’s great for developing your own practice and helps the learners get a consistent experience across teachers. Go on – start a Grive folder, or use your VLE to start sharing resources.

2- Blog. I know this is scary stuff, but you need to come to terms with the idea that what you do has value and is worth sharing. I have been blown away by the positive response to my blog, but even more importantly my ideas have been made better by other teachers.

3 – Do you have subject specialism meetings in your local area? Go to them – we have a responsibility to develop our subject knowledge beyond what you learnt during your degree.

4 – Write something for the Pedagoo blog or UKEdChat magazine. You need not write a blog post – you could just share some resources you have made that you think might be of use to other people.

5 – Try out social media for teachers beyond Twitter. There are thriving teaching communities on Google+ and staff.rm – check them out – the tone is different from twitter but equally useful for sharing and learning.

So. Adopt a smart small or go-big-or-go-home attitude – but know that sharing is a way to develop your own practice, and potentially have positive impact in classrooms other than your own.

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