Why did you want to become National Board Certified?
I'm a bit "gold star" obsessed, so when I heard that board certification was one of the most rigorous and prestigious accomplishment in the education field, I knew I wanted to try to earn the title. I'm very happy to be able to add those four prestigious letters after my name now!
What was the most difficult aspect of going through the process?
The NBCT standards can be difficult to "unpack" and truly understand. And all of the components require you to provide evidence of these standards in your classroom and teaching. This is where being able to meet with Pam, our facilitator, and my fellow candidates was really helpful. We helped each other decipher the standards and look for evidence of them in our teaching and in our classrooms.
What was the most rewarding part of going through the process?
The most rewarding part was ceremoniously hitting the "send" button with my fellow candidates when we were finally done and ready to turn our final submissions in! We worked so hard to finish, and it really felt like we went on a journey together! Seeing each other to the end was great!
What advice would you give others that are thinking about starting the process?
Take advantage of the opportunity while we have a cohort "on campus!" I don't think I could have done this if I had done it online or with a group that met less intimately than we did. Having the help right here the whole time was the key to my success in the program.
How has this made you a better educator?
The more years that you teach, I think it is easy to get set in your ways or to kind of just go with the flow of the things you do every year. The NBCT program really got me into the habit of stopping and analyzing the "why" of everything that happens in my classroom before just looking at last year's plans and going off of that "just because" it's what I've done in years past. Your students change every year, and so should the things you do in the classroom!