In this post, I’d like to share how online professional development can improve your teaching skills. It is possible to connect to the world easily today through internet, where you can find what you need just by clicking. I have been doing some great courses and also attending a few e-conferences in many countries. I reckon we can learn even more.
Actually, I would never have enough money to travel or attend all these great courses and webinars that I have experienced during these years. One of theses experiences, I have met many good people that nowadays are good friends of mine. Being inspired by wonderful educators are the top of the list and, courses offered by well-known universities increase the opportunity to improve my curriculum and boost my career as well.
My first online experience was in 2013, since then I have never stopped. I did not have an idea what it was an webinar. Back then, I still have good memories of this marvelous webinar deliveried by Vicky Loras. She gave us an idea of what it is Professional Development. I still have some notes from that day and put some of them into practice.
Then, I decided to participate in a group of teachers in Brazil called BrELT . On BrELT, I have met some awesome teachers across Brazil to discuss about ELT, EFL, Brazilian Educational System, Conferences and so on. Today we are more than 7650 teachers all over the world. At first it was only on Twitter, today we are on twitter, wordpress, youtube and facebook. We share every single day articles about education, ideas, interviews and our own webinars. So, with these fantastic experiences online, I started looking for some online courses.
One day, chatting with a good friend of mine Rose Bard, she told me about iTDi a group of educators where their motto is “iTDi for teachers by teachers”. I did three fabulous courses in which I have engaged more effectively my students and colleagues as well. It is not expensive and you can help another teacher who can not afford for it! Actually, it was also there where I met some of my PLNs friends (Personal Learning Network) whether you may not know what is it, I suggest you take a look on this post by Barbara Sakamoto. When we have a great group of PLN, we can feel the power of togetherness (we learn together without prejudice and full of gratitude).
Nevertheless to say that some great Universities open their courses to us in some platforms. Two of these platforms are at Future Learn or at Cousera where you can enroll for free courses from famous Universities. Free development for everyone and everywhere else without any cost. Well, I have to say that nowadays we can improve ourselves at home or anywhere else!
Moreover, webinars and web-conferences are available almost every month, for example Moodle Mooc 7 hosted by Dr. Nellie Deutsch with 40 webinars by educators worldwide this month. (If you can not watch it live, you can catch up with the recording).
And, why not start blogging. Writing a blog can bring to you some insights about your own journey through Professional Development. When I decided to blog, I started sharing my ideas, thoughts and reflections as a teacher and also as a learner. One of the blogs that I have read recently about PD, it was by Sandy Millin where she explores the ELT point of view of PD.
So now every time, when someone asks you “what do you do on Facebook or Twitter all the time?” you can say “I am learning with many friends around the globe and of course having fun!”
I hope you can develop yourself with these suggestions.
Itdi – http://itdi.pro/itdihome/index.php
Vicky Loras – http://www.lorasnetwork.com/
BrELT – https://breltchat.wordpress.com
Rose Bard – https://rosebardeltdiary.wordpress.com/
Barbara Sakamoto – http://www.teachingvillage.org/2012/01/03/what-is-a-pln-anyway/
Future Learn – https://www.futurelearn.com/
Coursera – https://pt.coursera.org/about/partners
Moodle Mooc 7 – http://www.wiziq.com/online-class/3187724-mm7-moodle-resources-for-active-learning
Sandy Millin – https://sandymillin.wordpress.com/2011/01/09/the-online-professional-development-survey-longer-answers/
Photo credit: https://lizfotheringham.files.wordpress.com/2010/04/wordle-languages-importance-statement22.jpg