It’s suddenly May, and the trajectory of the school year is angling more sharply toward its conclusion.
It’s also time for yet another installment of what is turning into an ongoing series on bloggers from the independent school community whose comments, observations, and voices might be of interest to a wider audience.
I thank my friend and colleague Jonathan Martin (who blogs at 21K12) for a pointing me toward a number of these. Just as I consider Jonathan a part of my personal learning network, I urge readers to build into their own PLNs any of these bloggers whose words resonate on a personal or professional level and to reach out via comments or email--it’s a great way to find new friends as well as new perspectives an all aspects of our practice.
As an added bonus, experience a satisfying ripple effect by checking these bloggers’ blogrolls.
Anthony McGrann at Seconds
You’ll find your way into the heart and head of this Pacific Northwest educator, whose reflections on everything--from the ways students respond to different learning experiences to abstract questions on the nature of great schools--are worth a regular look.
Brett Jacobsen at DesignMovement
Brett’s Atlanta-area school is notable for smart, future-oriented thinking. He’s a genuine leader in the pack of educators working on ways of hitching the creative power of design thinking to intentional, standards driven learning, and his blog is a fountain of worthwhile observations on the process.
Jen Carey at Indiana Jen
An archaeologist turned school technologist, Jen brings a historian’s analytical perspective to a blog whose content ranges from tech tips to teacher resources to reflections on trends in the industry to professional development opportunities.
John Burk at Quantum Progress
Another wide-ranging blog, from classroom techniques to reflections on his own school (boarding, Middle Atlantic) to matters both mathematical and physical (as in the science). Posts at Quantum Progress aren’t as frequent as some, but well worth the wait.
Mark Crotty at Keeping Things Whole
Deeply reflective and often refreshingly personal, this is a school head’s blog about life, learning, and just keeping things, well, whole. Mark isn’t afraid to tell us how he is learning; a recent post on experiencing his first Twitter chat (the #isedchat) was refreshingly honest and very relatable.
Michael Ebeling at Peak Experiences
A head’s occasional blog that takes the long view of a school’s practices and purposes in the broader context both of its progressive roots and contemporary programs, Peak Experiences offers a window into the mind of a leader working hard to help a school fulfill its aspirations.
Neal Brown at the Green Acres School Head’s Blog
A head of school blog that goes directly at controversial questions. Is the Day of Silence too passive? Is progressive education a “Leftist Movement”? A seasoned progressive educator, Neal Brown means business--you’ll never not know where he stands.
A teacher with experience in several kinds of school, Philip blogs with great precision and in detail about his own explorations of topics ranging from classroom practice to commentaries on reading he enjoys. Currently find a useful compendium of commentary on project-based learning in the classroom.
Steve Goldberg at What I Learned Today
As he plans for the opening of a brand-new middle school (scheduled for fall 2013), Steve Goldberg thinks out loud about how learning will happen there; as student blogging will be an important program feature, I look forward to reading what the kids themselves will be saying in a year.
Tom Little at Park Day Tom
Tom Little leads a school that has been up to its ears in its public purpose through community partnerships for years. Right now he’s on walkabout, exploring the state of progressive education wherever he can find it, coast to coast; follow him on the blog and learn lots about a host of schools.
Troy Roddy at The Art of Education
The Art of Education is a fountain of good advice on classroom practice, student learning, and an educator’s life. At the center of it all are Dr. Roddy’s well articulated thoughts on what habits of mind and behavior are required for students to thrive.
Voices at Powerful Learning Practice
Many but not all of the bloggers here are teachers from independent school in the Powerful Learning Practice community, an outgrowth of the work of Will Richardson and Sheryl Nussbaum-Beach. The blog is for writers to “tell their stories about connected and shifted learning.”
No doubt there will be at least another round on this topic before the year comes to a full stop.
Engage with Peter on Twitter: @pgow
The opinions expressed in Independent Schools, Common Perspectives are strictly those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Editorial Projects in Education, or any of its publications.