Given previous assignments my reflections on my own practice have grown over the period of working with Mindlab. Wenger (2009) states "communities of practice grow out of a convergent interplay of competence and experience that involves mutual engagement". On a previous assignment I reflected that my role as eLearning director took a mostly 'fix it', 'sort it' role rather than a supportive and guiding role. Therefore over the last term as we have focused on filming and photography in school I have directed two of my ICT blocks a week to support in the classroom. This has then afforded me time to support and guide teachers in their learning using ICT's in the classroom. I have felt like I am supporting and guiding teachers, I have had a sense of belonging to other parts of the school where once I was I felt disconnected from [most specifically the juniors], I have also felt that I am valued and needed within the school not just as a 'fix it' lady. It has been enlightening for myself as well as the other teachers in the school whom I am supporting with my skill base. This is what the role SHOULD have been all along. Even when the filming project for school as finished it is my intention to keep the two blocks weekly for support in classes or modelling – whatever colleagues require. The excitement I have seen generated by staff who once thought it was ‘too hard’ to integrate ICT’s in the classroom with all the other demands on our class time has been so very rewarding for them and me.
New connections have been forged with the teacher enquiry into including growth mindset and mindfulness into my daily/weekly programmes. I now have a new community of practice where we will implement the programme I set out to do, I seem to have energised a few staff into practicing mindfulness after our professional development over a year ago, just through my ideas of how I would monitor and implement it in the classroom. This has extended through to other year groups of teachers and has been quite energising and future focused for our school community of learners as well as parents, colleagues and students. Wenger (2000) stated that communities of practice “can evolve naturally because of the members' common interest in a particular domain or area”
The community of practice continues to grow and evolve…
Finlay, B. L. (2008). Reflecting on “ Reflective practice .” PBPL Paper 52, (January), 1–27. http://doi.org/10.1016/0260-4779(91)90031-R
Pennington, F. (2011). Communities of Practice - A Framework for Learning and Improvement. Retrieved from https://convcme.wordpress.com/tag/communities-of-practice/
Wenger, E.(2000). Communities of practice and social learning systems. Organization,7 (2), 225-246 (Available in Unitec Library).