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Blended Bites Blog

Reflections on the Year: Here's to you, 2015!

Jessica Anderson

Where do I begin? The year 2015 was full of opportunities. These opportunities have pushed me to grow as a professional and allowed me to overcome fears I've held onto personally and professionally. 

Breaking Down Barriers

I am most proud of my achievements through the BetterLesson Blended Master Teacher Project. I challenged my discomfort with cameras and tackled verbal communication while on film. In my attempts, I was able to work with the BetterLesson coaches and crew to share the strategies that make my blended classroom tick. Here's an example of one of the videos created at the end of the project; no nerves present! I am continually proud of myself for pushing past my fears to verbally communicate my craft to a global audience. Being able to describe my practice is a great skill to have and will continue to help me in my career. 

Challenges and Opportunities

My involvement in the Blended Master Teacher Project gave me the confidence to continue to share my voice. My network offered opportunities to talk with individuals from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, to attend the ECET2 conference in Seattle, and to begin writing for the online and blended learning section of Teachability.  The project also gave me the confidence to apply for the PBS Digitial Innovators Program, where I am a lead digital innovator. This opportunity granted me a free trip to ISTE, as well as the chance to do some work with Nova this upcoming year. In addition to the above, I have been invited to attend and present at the 5th annual blended learning conference in Rhode Island. I'm looking forward to sharing and owning my blended voice. 

Representing the Profession

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Finally, I feel incredibly blessed to have been named the 2016 Montana Teacher of the Year. The application process allowed me to reflect on my practice, as well as showcase my passion for education and my students. The finalist interview pushed me to display confidence, passion, and my drive for empowering my profession in what normally would have been a stressful moment (interviews make me nervous). And now, as the 2016 Montana Teacher of the Year, I have an opportunity to elevate and empower education in my state and country. I'm ecstatic to represent my state and profession! If you're interested in following my journey check out the Follow the Bitterroot tab, as well as Enroute Bitterroot.