I recently discovered a website named Teachmeet New Jersey: Fresh Ideas for Education. The site introduces educators to its readers by conducting short interviews. I really like that idea so I asked a few people from my PLN to answer a few questions about education. Enjoy.
Steven W. Anderson
How long have you been teaching?
I have been in education for 9 years. I began as a Middle School Math/Science Teacher. After 5 years I left the classroom and was head of Instructional Technology for a local district. Recently I returned to the district I started my teaching to be a District Instructional Technologist where I take care of our Superintendent, Asst. Superintendent, Senior Leadership and all School-Based Administrators on their technology integration needs.
Has your educational philosophy changed since you began teaching?
I would say it has. I have always believed that if educators are not coming to school each for the purpose of doing everything possible for kids then they are in the wrong business. I have shifted my belief in leadership. At one time I thought that the only ones who could lead in a school were the administration or teachers who had been around for a while. What I have found is that there is leadership potential in everyone (including students). The key is to have those around us who are willing to take risks and put people in leadership positions where they can flourish.
If so, what led to this change? Was it a gradual process or a specific event?
When I started teaching I had no desire to have anything to do with leadership. I wanted to stay in my classroom and teach my kids. I had an administrator that saw things differently and felt that I had the potential to be better than I was. She put me in positions where I had to lead and worked with me over time to develop the leadership skills I was lacking. I credit my current position and success all back to her because without that person in my career to help me along my leadership journey I will still be stuck in my old ways of thinking.
Has Twitter played a role in your evolution as a teacher? If so, how?
Twitter definitely has had an impact on my evolution. When I started, I was looking for a simple way to share resources with my teachers who were spread across a very rural district. From there it grew to where I am today but through this sharing I have meet and worked with from all over the world. Sure, if I had not been exposed to Twitter I could do some of the same things I have done. However, social media has made it easier to connect and work with people. I have also gotten to do lots of traveling and talking to people that might have never been possible had I not used Twitter. But I think the most important thing is that through listening to and following lots of different people and keeping my blog I have been able to refine some of my ideas and work through many of my thoughts about education and teaching that might not have been possible. Twitter is the amazing medium through which I have the chance to meet and work with some of the most amazing minds and educators on the planet.