Not a lot has happened in 2018 regarding my teaching or any other topics I am interested in. I continue to teach Spanish at the High School level while trying to always find ways to improve the use of technology. One of the most exciting events of 2018 in my professional development was that I was finally able to pass the Google Certified Educator Exam Level 1 in April of 2018.
I was very excited about this accomplishment as a way to motivate myself to keep growing professionally in order to better serve my students. In my situation, I tried a few things in order to be able to pass this test.
Using the Google Training Modules
I decided that I wanted to become a Google Certified Educator in the summer of 2017 when I attended a Technology Boot Camp. There was a session to help participants become certified but the presenter only showed us how to sign on to the training modules and after we practiced we signed up for the test. Even though this presentation ignited my desire to start the process it did not help to become certified. I studied at home and did all the activities in the G Suite Training Modules for Level 1 on my spare time.
Using G Suite In The Classroom
One of the best training opportunities for this test was to use all of the G Suite Google Apps in the Classroom as much as possible. I tried to use simple activities with my students using Google and when something I did not know how to do came up, we tried to figure it out in the classroom or by asking questions on Google.
Taking the Test
After taking all the practice modules and using the G Suite Apps in the classroom I was very excited about passing my test. I took the test in the summer of 2017 and my disappointment was unbelievable. After sitting down for 3 hours, getting a failing result was a blow to my ego. Maybe it was just time to move on and do nothing about it. Nevertheless, goal setting has to be an important part of becoming a life-long learner and I am proud to say that learning has never stopped for me. I decided that I was going to pass this test somehow.
Albert Einstein is broadly credited with exclaiming “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results”.It was important for me to identify which areas needed to improve in my training. I decided not to re-read all the materials in the G Suite Training Website. Nevertheless, I knew I needed to retake all the quizzes and pass them with more than 80%.
Before retaking all the quizzes I enlisted the help of one of my favorite Google Apps: You Tube. I researched training modules and sat with pen and paper to watch and take notes on the materials I found helpful. I have to give out kudos to Mr. Brett Petrillo for his Google Certified Educator Preparation Videos
I watched every single one of these videos and took notes. Every video lasted an average of 40 minutes but I committed to watch them all. I wrote 11 pages of notes and once the test was successfully completed I wrote a nice note to my self in the same notebook where all my notes were.
Committing to Professional Development
As educators, I consider it to be extremely important that we set goals to continue growing as professionals regardless of how many steps we need to climb in the pay scale. We need to set goals for our development regardless of what the system tells us we ought to be doing. I sadly come across many teachers who do not like attending conferences or presenting to others. Too many of them are too tired and too overwhelmed. Many believe there is not much further learning in their content areas because they have seen it all and taught it all. I hope this post encourages you to pursue learning beyond what is required of teachers.