In the Fall of 2014, I hit a fork in the road. No longer a new teacher, with 4 years of teaching under my belt, I wanted to take the first step in becoming a lifelong learner. I looked into two options: working towards a Masters degree or obtaining National Board Certification. Both would allow me to obtain additional knowledge that would benefit me in my classroom, provide a pay increase, and require time, effort and hard work to be successful. But after attending an informational meeting held by our district and the Arizona K12 Center, I realized only one would allow me to reflect on my current practices, identify the strengths I already used on a daily basis in my classroom, and most importantly, truly grow as an educator. And with that, I began my journey to becoming an accomplished teacher by obtaining National Board Certification.
These standards outline what accomplished teaching looks like in all areas including literacy, mathematics, science, language, etc. in terms of Early Childhood Education, or ages 0-8. At first, that sounds scary but I quickly realized this was a valuable tool. Reading through them, I identified many things that I was already doing in my classroom. Incorporating play into instructional time? Check. Providing hands-on experiences with math concepts to solidify the learning? Check. Front loading target vocabulary for our English Language Learners? Check! Of course there were some things that I wasn’t yet doing, but it was nice to have clear, specific examples of what I could do to become better and more effective within my classroom. An instant guide to growing as an educator!
No better feeling than clicking submit after spending the year analyzing your practices and finding evidence to support your accomplished teaching!
Beyond the benefit of growth as an educator, pursuing NB has also opened up avenues for teacher leadership and networking. Through the AZ K12 Center NB candidate events such as Coaching Saturdays, National Board Workshops and Institutes, I have had the distinct pleasure of meeting many other amazing educators who are doing outstanding things around the state of Arizona. Another common thread amongst these teachers aside from NB Candidacy? Positivity! All of these educators love their jobs and their students. There are several policies, regulations, mandates, etc. that we would love to change and may not necessarily like but at the end of the day, we love what we do and are seeking NB distinction to help build up the profession and show that Arizona has an artillery of teachers, hard at work behind the scenes, working to improve the lives of our students.
Reflecting on my practices at one of AZ K12 Center’s many NB support events, NB Workshop in Tubac, AZ!
My colleagues and NB partners in crime!
- RT @Ebrowndavis: My @LockhartMagnet NB candidates are ready to learn more about @NBPTS rubrics ! Thank you @DrLaTonyaBarnes for the reminde…National BoardAug 10
- Most Teachers Concerned About In-Person School; 2 In 3 Want To Start The Year Online https://t.co/sE3cufwtTG by @NPRNational BoardAug 10
- Many kids struggle with reading – and children of color are far less likely to get the help they need. https://t.co/t1WZchOXgWNational BoardAug 10
- There's still time to join #NBCTstrong @neary_ann for her Zoom panel Black@: A Conversation About Race, Culture & C… https://t.co/P9EQlYr0LiNational BoardAug 10
- RT @CollinsNBCT: Join this amazing team. Help teach a Black curriculum created by black educators for black students! #nbctstrong #ProudCur…National BoardAug 10