Your best learning comes from outside of school.

Bring your outside interests into your classroom.

Photo of Matt O'Donnell
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The most successful things I did in my classroom did not come from what I learned at staff PD days nor from conferences; they came from hobbies I had outside of school.  Most of the tech skills I used in my classroom I learned on my own through trial and error in creating a sports blog for my favorite baseball team.  We learn best when it does not feel like work and it feeds our interests.  I had a need to talk baseball with fellow Red Sox fans but found it to be very difficult living thousands of miles away and surrounded by Giants and A's fans.  I created a blog in 2007 without really knowing what I was doing and quickly learned about different web platforms, image and video editing, and a plethora of tech related skills that I then brought into my classroom.  I took what I learned and changed my teaching so that my students were producing work they could share through their own blogs and films.   This would not have happened if I waited for the PD day on blogging or video editing that may never have come.


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Photo of Jessica Lura

I think that this is really important, and schools should make a space for educators to bring those passions into the classrooms. It keeps the teacher engaged, exposes students to new interests, and when a person is passionate about a topic, it's contagious and leads to learning for everyone involved.

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