Changing Booths by Ian Junor (Flickr Creative Commons)

2011 was a rewarding year for me professionally. It involved many unique learning opportunities and chances to grow as an educator.

I am still shocked and honored that I was selected to be an Apple Distinguished Educator. The week I spent at the ADE Summer Institute with like-minded colleagues from all of the country was inspiring, challenging and extremely rewarding. (My team’s work on global collaboration will be appearing in iTunes U soon!) I learned about augmented reality from Johnny Kissko at the dinner table. I learned audio/video tips and tricks from pros. Most of all I was reminded of the power and beauty of storytelling. What’s your story? (Check out Bill Frakes and his films.)

Another challenging, yet fun, activity I participated in was an Ignite speech. I’d been to Ignite Fort Collins a couple of times and had pondered giving my own Ignite there. But, Scott and Sandy put together an Ignite event for our district and asked me to play. I had a blast putting the images together for my topic on decisions, decision-making techniques and decision fatigue. I was reminded that I love public speaking even though it is extremely nerve-racking.

I have a new job this year. Well, technically, half of a new job. I continued as IB Coordinator and am also an assistant principal, which entails new learning every single day. Mostly I am learning that I have a lot left to learn about education, working with people and helping kids thrive in and out of school.

I suspect that 2012 will also involve much transition and growth–at work as well as at home. On the home front it will be fun to see what my son decides to do after he graduates from high school in May. At work, the challenges will keep me on my toes, no doubt.