In the final weeks of this course, we were asked to reflect on work we have done in pursuit of our inquiry projects. While no means complete (both the reflection and the project), here are my thoughts to date.
What is going well for you?
After an initial set of searches, I was worried that I would not be able to locate sufficient useful and specific resources to inform a reasoned and rich final project. But, through face to face and virtual (twitter) communications, I was directed to a number of valuable resources. While the articles do not directly address my inquiry question, I have been able to piece together enough understanding so as to direct my own future research and analysis.
Where are areas where you are struggling?
I have found that the demands on my time, and the timeframe of this course, have been quite demanding. I am devoting 10-15 hours per week to research and analysis. My first priority is still to my students, so to take more time would be to deny them opportunities in lieu of my own academics – and I cannot do this. That said, I have many more questions and areas of interest to explore on my own time once this course concludes.
What supports would assist you?
I wish that I had taken advantage of the learning community of this course earlier in the process. I have found that speaking about my inquiry with Dr. Patteson, Crystal, and Peter helped identify the strengths and weaknesses of my process which my own reflections and collegial “echo chambers” missed. This is on me. As I continue to learn and develop on my own, outside the formal walls of a graduate program, I need to secure professional collaborative groups – from twitter to associations with which I associate.
How are your SRL skills increasing?
I had previously believed myself to be a highly reflective learner. But I had some serious gaps in my own reflective processes. I was not setting enough proximal goals as a means of measuring my own progress. I was not holding my work up to a previously established standard… I did not put enough effort into the front-end pieces for an authentic reflection experience. In my journal (even in the digital age, I prefer to write in Moleskine journals), I have had to re-arrange my journal entries to force myself to think of the past, present, and future of my work in all entries. I have also introduced this new journalling process as an option for my students in their own inquiry projects. And, for that, my conferences with the students are all the more richer.