As I sit here reflecting on this entire journey, I am glad to see the end in sight. I realize how difficult, yet rewarding it has been to be a part of Cohort 14 and complete my Master’s work through the Innovative Program at Touro University. As I think of Touro’s values and my own, I can see the connection, particularly with the values of intellectual inquiry, discovery, and passion for life-long learning. I truly believe that as educators we are given the task of instilling in our students a passion for learning because things are easier when you love and have a passion for what you do. In order to be able to effectively complete the task we must have a passion for education and have the desire to be life-long learners ourselves.
I can also see a particular connection with student-centered education, collaboration and sense of community. I am a strong believer of the idea that students learn more and better through student-centered activities and collaboration with peers. Not only do I find this to be true in my own classroom, but also in my personal experience as a Graduate student. There is plenty to learn and teach each other.
I also see a strong connection in the values of acceptance and appreciation of diversity. Not only in my classroom, but also in my every-day life, I am an advocate for acceptance and appreciate diversity. I strongly believe that every individual carries an important piece of the puzzle of life. We each bring our own unique experiences to the table and as a result can help others group.
Now what? Now that I have accumulated a wealth of knowledge from my research, professors and cohort members, I plan to use it in my classroom. There are so many tools I would like to continue working with to assist my students. I also plan to share my research findings with my administrators and the RTI coordinator at our site. They are the ones who can make decisions about new curriculum and continued use of guided reading curriculum. My capstone project will also be shared with them, as well as with colleagues at my school site that will be implementing the Guided Reading curriculum. I think my capstone will assist them in navigating through the new curriculum.
I feel like over the course of the last three trimesters, one of my goals has been to learn new skills, especially in relation to technology and its use in the classroom. I strive to become a better teacher and to provide my students with the tools needed to become better learners and acquire 21st century skills.