Monday, April 30, 2012

Week 5 of CED 565

This week we wrapped up the simulation game that we played and continued to look at change. We discussed changes that we have experienced and how we have responded to change. After reflecting on my experiences, I realized that I am generally open to change if it is presented to me in the correct fashion.   If I an not informed about the change or the cause for change, I usually resist it. If I am aware of the benefits and consequences of change, I can usually accept it. If I find value in the change, I become invested in it and advocate for the change. This can be a good and bad reaction. It is good because I can help make change occur. It can be bad because I can occasionally resist or commit to change without fully understanding all of the benefits and consequences.

This information is beneficial because I now am able to realize the impact that communication has on change. This lesson also resonated through out our simulation we had in class. We really needed to talk with various people numerous times before we were able to initiate change. As an educator that is trying to initiate change, I will need to make sure to communicate with all of the investors involved in the process. This will help people realize the cause of the change and the possible benefits. This will hopefully increase the rate at which change can occur. 

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Week 4 of CED 565

This week focused on the implementation of change. We participated in a simulation game during class. The object of the game was to change the school district into a continuously improving learning community. It was our job to create intrest in this change and gain support. There were certain actions that we could take to try and initiate change. Each action had a result. We either influenced a person or not. We needed to continue trying different actions and steps until we got each person to shift. We completed one of three steps of the game. My team started out slowly, but then started to make progress. The key was to analyze the result and determine the order of who we should work with. I found the game interesting thus far. It certainly replicates some of the issues that occur when a person is trying to initiate change. It can be frustrating but if you believe the change is worthwhile, you must continue to fight. This was something that I learned as I worked on the implementation of my flipped classroom for next year.

I was not aware of the progression that was required to initiate this change. I realize the point of this progression is to make sure that one evaluates the change that he/she is trying to make. This is a safe guard that can prevent unnecessary change. This progression process requires a person to reflect and analyze their course of action. I found that this process helped strengthen my idea.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Week 3 of CED 565

This week's class focused on systems thinking, change, and generational influences.

Systems Thinking

The main point that I took away from this video is that if a business wants to succeed or improve, they need to focus on the entire system and not just specific departments or individuals. Even though the system is comprised of individuals, we need to recognize each individual's role in the system. It is important to understand how the individual interacts with others within his/her environment and how these interactions affect the success to the entire system. If there is an issue or weakness, we should not place the blame on one individual, we should embrace the issue as the system's problem and determine how we can change the interactions within the system to correct it.

I found this video interesting. It really changes the accountability within a work environment and completely contrasts the typical cut-throat mentality. This system concept is far more collective and therefore collaborative and I can see how this can lead to the advancement of the entire system. My only concern is the impact that the "weakest" individual can have on the system. This relates to the concept that you are only as strong as your weakest link. How would this collaborative model deal with a weak individual? Would they change the individual's role and responsibilities therefore changing his/her interactions within the system? We do not want one person to prevent the success of the group.

Overall, I realize that it is important to know when to focus on an individual's actions/results and when to focus on the systems goals. If a student is struggling to master a topic, I need to determine if the issue is derived from the student's actions or abilities or it is from the format that it was taught. I need to understand how the system affects the individual and how I can improve the interactions within the system to help the individual improve

Change - "Who Moved my Cheese?"

This was an interesting video that illustrates the necessity for change when we are in the pursuit of our goals. It addresses the issue of complacency that many of us reach when we obtain a particular comfort level with the way things are in our life. It demonstrates the need to change and adapt in order to remain successful.

I was definitely able to relate to this video as I reflected on all the last couple of years. I realize that I have had a lot of great ideas about how I can utilize all of the skills that I have obtained from this program, but I have yet to actually implement any major changes. I know that this will definitely change as I prepare to begin my flipped classroom model for next year.

This was an interesting article that highlights what the new generation of teachers can do and what they need to succeed. As a member of the millennial generation, I identified with this article. I think that this generations upbringing, will assist them with making drastic changes in the world of education. This is a generation that is comfortable with collaboration, technology, accountability, multitasking, and change. This means that they are willing to work with others and take on new challenges that will incorporate 21st century skills.