P132: My professional journey
When I graduated with my bachelors of science and teaching certificate both Grand Valley State University (GVSU) and the State of Michigan agreed I was ready to teach professionally. My first year was so full of re-organizing the stock room, re-arranging the laboratory, re-writing my curriculum, I had no idea how I was ever going to have time to improve and develop. I had set goals, but few ideas of how to implement them. Target Inquiry at GVSU appeared to be a challenging way for me to grow, learn, and meet my objectives. With the other participating teachers we spent three years working together. The first year we studied specific areas of chemistry and I learned (again) what it is like to be a student. The second year we looked at chemical education research and I learned what it was like to analyze and conduct research. The third year we looked at curriculum and how to integrate all of this knowledge into our classrooms to improve our student’s learning. Today I am still applying these skills, communicating and learning from those I met in this unique professional development environment, and sharing my experience with others. This presentation will focus on my experiences and give specific resources, tools, and networks for teachers to use throughout their journey.