RP1 Mission Statement

Before I try to share my RP Mission Statement, I want to share my view on why one might take the time to reflect. Because it is only natural to wonder whether I am a good teacher, or what kind of relationship I create with my learners, and if they actually like me and my way of teaching. Positives statements like “I had fun today.” or “My teacher is cool.” can make me feel great about myself, but does not give me the whole picture of what as an English teacher I am really achieving. I mean afterall what is my objective?
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And what about their needs/objectives? And if affectively speaking here, they can’t meet the language objectives because they have needs/objectives other than the ones in my own agenda? Do actually teens have any clue about what they need or want, other than what adults tell them? Most of them when asked why they are taking the course, they will parrot their parents or what school says. At least this is the case here.
But wait, few actually do have goals/dreams set for themselves. Some will even be using English already outside the class. So my main goal is to help them learn a second language, right? That is my job. Sometimes it seems mission impossible when you are faced with teens that are not that interested in speaking a second language. But, but that is what I am suppose to be doing/achieving. Right?

Where does this leave me?

If my main objective is to provide good learning experiences to my learners in order for them to learn English, my RP Mission Statement will be about finding out whether I am achieving that goal or not. As Freire once have said, “The experience teaches us that not everything that seems obvious is so obvious as it seems.” So if things are not as obvious although it seems obvious, the need to reflect is imperative.

I like Anna Loseva’s concept of RP,

“as an idea to develop for a teacher after actually going through some mental process of analysis and further action based on it + some research”

“RP interests me because it seems to be about thinking, taking this thinking to deeper levels, digging for something that lies below the surface.”

I feel the same as Anna about RP.

So,

My RP Mission Statement is…

recite-12851-581677640-1lvq7zf________________________________

John Pfordresher had this idea of starting RP online. You can read more about this here. Check out the comments. The whole thing starts there. 🙂

Reflective Practice Challenge 1 Mission Statements by…

John Pfordresher

Anna Loseva

Anne Hendler

Hana Tichá

David Harbinson

Josette LeBlanc

Kevin Stein

My special thanks to John for the effort of creating RP sessions online. I really appreciate it. And thanks for everyone’s posts. My next mission is to read all of them and leave a comment.

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21 thoughts on “RP1 Mission Statement

  1. Pingback: rpc2–statements and responses | Observing the Class

  2. Hi Rose, firstly thanks for linking to my post. I really like how, in your mission statement, you mention your learners first and talk about how you try to negotiate your goals with your learners. Like you said in your post, teens sometimes don’t appear interested in speaking English, but I think when you can give your learners the opportunity to be part of the decision-making process, and your development, they will appreciate it, even if they don’t show it. It’s been 10 years since I left school, but I still think back to some of my school teachers and how they tried to engage us in the lessons. I’m not sure whether I ever showed my appreciation then, but I certainly felt it.

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    • Hi David,

      A year ago I reflected on the differences from students I have now, or had back then and the students years before that. I was challenged to question my beliefs about a number of things. The mission statement is part of that change and I’m so glad I can finally look at my students as co-constructors of the process. But with that change, it also came the pressure to know more (hence the need to reflect more), to pay more attention to my students (to really hear what they were saying about their learning and wishes/beliefs/expectations, and make sure I am attending their real needs in order to develop their language skills and knowledge.
      Here is the link to my reflection from feb/2013:
      https://rosebardeltdiary.wordpress.com/2013/02/06/what-has-changed-are-my-learners-the-same/
      Thanks for connecting via the RP online started by John and inspired by Anna.

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  3. Hi Rose,

    I loved every part of this post. The “why” reflect is particularly pertinent and is usually one of the bundle of firsts I ask people who come to a meeting for the first time. (others being what does reflection mean to you?…how do you reflect?…what do you think of when you here the word reflection?) The first blog challenge’s main thrust was to get people to put out answers to those kind of questions. So thank you!

    So glad you are able to join us on our reflective quest. The more voices we can get into the conversation all the more enriching it will be.

    Looking forward to your post RE challenge 2 😀 #gentlepeerpressure

    John

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  4. Pingback: Reflective Practice Mission Statement: Self and Community | Throwing Back Tokens

  5. Hi Rose.
    I’m glad to have my old virtual friend ‘around’ again 🙂 We have met several times while participating in the amazing #30GoalsEdu project, sharing ideas and supporting each other, and here we go again! The world is so small …
    I really like your RP mission statement – it is rational and pragmatic – to help your students learn the second language – but I can feel a lot of affection in it – you think of your students while formulating the statement, and that reveals you are a truly compassionate person (and teacher).
    Well, I hope to read more posts on your blog related to this challenge. Keep it up!

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    • Hi Hana, so happy to participate in this project with you. #30 Goals Edu project was awesome and I’ve seen that cycle 5 has already started. 😀 Reflective Practice is near to my heart and I couldn’t miss this opportunity. I’m so glad John has started the RP Online. For those who doesn’t have a RPSig around, this should be prove itself to be useful and productive for us all. Once again, great to have you onboard.

      Big hug! Thanks for the kind words. I’m so excited to get back to class in couple of weeks. Couple of my groups have their own FB group and we are already in touch. Plus, few other students who has contacted me already. I love how Social Media allows us to keep the connection even when they had to move on or had to change teachers. 🙂

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  6. Pingback: Reflective Practice Mission Statement (a narrative) | The Other Things Matter

  7. Dear Rose,
    I’ve sat down to write a comment 3 times and each time something came up. I’m grateful to read your mission statement once again and tell you how much it connected. When I first read it, my first instinct was, “this needs to be posted up at all RP meetings and any teacher’s meeting would benefit from reading this before they start.” What struck me, and I think David or John mentioned this in their comments (for some reason they aren’t showing up on my iPad at the moment), is how you strive to make your learners active participants in your reflection. This is something I sometimes take for granted when I think about reflective practice. You remind me that is upfront and centre. Thank you again for deepening my reflection, and for being part of my RP community.

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    • Josette, thank you all for being there for each other and of course for me. RP community rocks. 😉 Last year was quite a year for me and I thank you all who were part of it and helped me reflect. Most of my students are teens from 12 to 17 and young adults around 18-25. I used to tell students that the result of the work was 50/50. But most of the other 50 was if they followed my rules. The learner centered was beautiful in written form, then I started questioning if I was really doing it or allowing my students to be truly part of the process. I don’t think I did it last year. I mean let them fully be part of the process. I think I was able to leave that bossy me (teacher centered) out of the door at some points of the year and really listen to my learners. I’m still learning. It is a journey. I thought a lot about this Mission STatement and that is really what I want to become true for me this year. you can still see Me there when I say “Goals set by myself…” Shared responsability. I know they still expect it. It’s cultural, especially for older learners. In my context, they expect you to tell them what to do. It is also a process for them to be aware they can be part of the process and add their voice is really important. I hope I can achieve it. I hope my school see this as positive and sees also that I have student’s best interest at heart. I hope with all my heart.

      Thanks again for reading and commenting and for all of you for participating in this RP online community. For me it is very important.

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  8. Rose,

    I’m finally here with my comment. It feels more than good to know my lines struck a cord for you. Most importantly, to see your clearly formulated mission statement centerpiece of this page is empowering and reassuring. I’m happy to be going along the same path with you, on several missions. Including that of the final line of your post)))

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    • Great to have you riding along with me Anna. It feels good to have you around. I met my first group of the year today. A group of 13/14 year old students (11 of them :D) I didn’t manage to even start the mission on the last line of my post yet. :/ Thanks for reading and commenting.

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  9. Dear Rose,

    I fell almost speechless with your words, such wise words. Your care about your practice is quite singular. I feel that, in some way, we are in the same path. Your clear objectives will certainly make you be an even more successful teacher. As you friend and colleague, but mainly as a learner, I have learned a lot from, you. Great post, great RP which is makes me think even more about my own practice. Thank you very much for sharing !

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  10. Pingback: My Reflective Practice Mission Statement | Wednesday Seminars

  11. Hi Rose

    First of all, thank you for the follow and for reading my RP mission statement attempt. I really liked (and wrote down) the Freire’s quote about the obvious, it really resonated with my understanding of why reflection is important. Actually, I think the more things seem to be the obvious and going without saying, the more ‘urgently’ a reflective practice needs to start so that the teacher could be saved from burning out. Also, as David and Josette have already mentioned in their comments above, I like that your students (teenagers!) are a part of your RP statement. This simple reminds about the ‘bigger picture’ of why we reflect, or teach. Really enjoyed reading, and looking forward to more!

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    • It is so nice to meet (virtually) and connect to you. I hope to read again your post and comment soon. I’m happy to hear that the quote was useful to you. 🙂 Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

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  12. Pingback: RP Challenge 3: ELC Description | David Harbinson

  13. Pingback: It’s ok to ask questions | ROSE BARD – Teaching Journal

  14. Pingback: rpc 6- action plan. one road ends, then next begins | Observing the Class

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