But the best example of shared learning in my life is my working partnership with Ellie Gilbert, a fellow teacher at SMA. We were lucky enough to begin our working relationship four years ago by teaching English 9 together while sharing a classroom—and did so at the same time our school implemented a 1:1 mobile technology program. We not only planned together, but we watched each other teach on a daily basis and marveled at the way each of us found new ways to learn with our students.
For both of us, this experience blossomed into a deep friendship and partnership that not only made teaching incredibly fun and rewarding, but catalyzed us both to become ten times better than either of us would have been alone.
This year things changed. I moved into our technology department, allowing me to spend more time on instructional tech coaching, but taking me out of English 9 and the shared classroom space. Ellie and I worried about how this would change our partnership—turns out, our worries were unfounded.
Is it different? Certainly. But the foundation we built over three years in English 9 has blossomed into a partnership of a different sort—one between an instructional tech coach and a master teacher who continue to catalyze each other’s growth.
We are better together. So why not take that into the digital world?
So I am thrilled to announce that Ellie and I have joined forces on LearnersTogether—it will continue to be a forum to reflect on learning and share the stories of others, but as usual with the pair of us, it will end up being ten times better than either of us could make happen alone.
"Finding the Right Balance in Tech Use" (Tormala), Edutopia, April 10, 2018.
"Keynote is just a slide creator...isn't it?" (Tormala) EdTechTeam, Jan 2018.
"Getting Girls into STEM: The Power of Blended (and All-Female) Instruction". (Tormala) EdSurge, March 21, 2017.
"Confronting the Abominable Snow Day". (Gilbert & Tormala) Edutopia, Feb. 2017.
"Video Interviews with iPads: The Power of Mobile Technology". (Tormala) EdTechTeam, Jan 2017.
"Discomfort, Growth, and Innovation." (Tormala) Edutopia, Oct. 2016.
"5 Epiphanies on Learning in a 1:1 iPad Classroom." (Tormala) Edutopia, July 2014.