Sunday, November 25, 2012

Lose a weekend, gain renewed passion

I just spent my whole weekend at a workshop. Friday night arrived and I was tired. Construction work in Taksim had added a few hours to my usual long hours of weekly commutes. I was holding off a cold. I had a week of extra school meetings. The days are getting shorter and.... well I think you get the picture. So the prospect of spending my whole weekend in a seminar room in a hotel was not very appealing. Then Saturday morning I was challenged to rethink my entire professional practice.

Kath Murdoch is a leading light in the area of learning by inquiry. Right from the start she invited us to think of ourselves as inquirers. I started to wonder how to be an inquiry teacher and then more than that how can I be an inquiry librarian? I would love to have inquiry at the heart of everything I do. How can I invite more student voice? How can I change what I do in the library to invite more student discovery? What thinking routines should I include to enable my students to grow as thinkers and inquirers? 

Slide showing some great questions
Two kiwi librarians learning together
 I have had the rare opportunity to think carefully about my professional practice and the invitation to redesign it, refresh it, renew it to be more inquiry focussed. Not only that I was able to do this with a fellow librarian and Kiwi - Kelly Blackwell, who works in Sofia, Bulgaria. 

I am not tired any more. I am excited to try as many strategies and ideas as I can. I have challenged myself to try out one new idea a week. Take one step no matter how small towards being an inquiry librarian. Get ready to share this journey, the successes and the mistakes that will lead to more learning. I can't wait to get started. I can't wait to chat with my colleagues who will be at a one day workshop Kath is running at our school tomorrow. I am curious to see how I can change, learn and grow. 

Thanks so much to Kath and Kelly  for helping me get started on this learning journey.