PD days as a student were one of the best days of the year. Besides snow days and summer vacation, a PD day was the best reason to not have to go to school on a weekday. It wasn’t until I was out of public school that I realized what PD days were actually for. The PD stands for “professional development”, and that’s exactly what the teachers use it for. I always thought a PD day was a day off from school for everyone – but now I know that it’s not!
This past Friday, I had the chance to run an Earth Walks workshop in Woodbridge for teachers in the York Region District School Board (YRDSB). I went down to the city with a colleague from my camp, and we taught the teachers some activities they could use to get their class outside. As you may know, I love teaching outdoors (it’s what I’ll be doing for the next few months!) and I think outdoor education should be the foundation of our kid’s schools. Getting to share my favorite outdoor activities was so much fun! I had the unique opportunity to teach teachers how to teach.
These teachers had chosen to spend their day with us to learn some new activities for their classroom. A lot of the discussion was how to improve and adapt the programs so that students of all ages and abilities were able to participate and learn. A lot of teachers were even able to find ties to the curriculum! Listening in and contributing to this type of discussion is so inspiring, and it reminds me of why I want to be a teacher. It also reminded me to remember to learn, even when I’m teaching. It’s something that I find a lot of teachers forget, but it’s vital to creating an inspiring environment. Even when I was leading the activities, I still took the opportunity to learn from the teachers, and use this new knowledge to improve my program. For these teachers (turned students) this PD day really wasn’t a day off!
Emma — The Suburban Aggie