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Gone are the days of one size fits all professional development. It’s a little ironic because even today, many schools and districts still follow that approach.
But, with the rise of online learning, the landscape of professional development has transformed.
In this blog post, we’ll explore the benefits and opportunities of online professional development. Share recommendations for reputable resources. And provide tips for maximizing your online learning experience.
If you’re a secondary multiple prep teacher, this is for you!
Benefits and Opportunities of Online Professional Development
Flexibility: Learn at Your Own Pace
Learning at your own pace is of the biggest advantages of online professional development. You can learn at your own pace and on your own schedule.
Accessibility: Learn Anywhere
Whether you’re at home, on vacation, in a library, or even at school, online PD allows you to access resources and courses wherever you have an internet connection.
Customization: Tailor Your Learning Journey
Online PD offers the opportunity to customize your learning experience. Unlike traditional one-size-fits-all approaches, you can choose courses and resources that align with your interests, goals, and teaching style. Mold your professional development journey to your own preferences and needs.
Collaboration: Connect with Like-Minded Educators
One of the joys of online learning is the ability to connect and collaborate with educators who share your passion for learning and improving teaching practices.
Make sure you engage in virtual communities, discussions, and forums to broaden your horizons beyond your school or district goals.
Where to Start: Resources for Online Professional Development
Podcasts: Simple, Free, and Educational
Podcasts are an excellent starting point for online learning. They are accessible, often free, and cover a wide range of educational topics.
Search for educational podcasts in your podcast app to find shows that align with your interests and professional development goals.
PopPD: Teacher-Created Professional Development
PopPD is an exciting new resource for online professional development. It offers teacher-created courses and classes designed to meet the needs of educators.
Explore their diverse range of courses, from classroom management to lesson planning, and discover fresh ideas for your classes.
Use School and District Resources
Check if your school or district utilizes any specific software that offers training. (Your learning management system (LMS) can be a good place to start.)
These companies often provide training resources to help teachers effectively use their products. Take advantage of the free training opportunities available to you.
Online Summits: Learning from Experts
Online summits are like conferences you can attend from the comfort of your own home. They bring together a variety of presenters who share their expertise through presentations and workshops.
Look for education-specific online summits, some of which are free, to gain insights from a diverse range of educators.
Maximizing Your Online Learning Experience
Set Goals and Create a Plan
To ensure you make the most of your online professional development, set clear goals and create a plan.
Establish a timeline, and set aside a specific time each day. Integrate your learning goals into your existing schedule.
Check out our previous blog post on creating a summer plan for tips on maximizing your time effectively.
Active Participation: Engage and Connect
Engaging actively in online courses or workshops is crucial for a meaningful learning experience.
Take part in forums, ask questions, and connect with fellow learners. Take advantage of any support, Q&A sessions, or personalized feedback offered by course creators to enhance your understanding.
Reflect and Apply: From Theory to Practice
After completing a course or workshop, take time to reflect on what you’ve learned. Consider how the new knowledge and strategies can be applied in your teaching practice. Give yourself a fair chance to put in place and adapt new approaches before dismissing them. Consistency and reflection will lead to fruitful.
- Summer Planning: How to Create a Schedule That Maximizes Your Time Off
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