Mirror Mirror on the wall (Thing 5 – CPD23)

I’ve spent the past year thinking and writing reflectively for my PGcert in adult learning so this post should be a breeze right?

Well unfortunately wrong, I,  like many other CPD23 participants,  find reflective practice quite hard. Reflective practice to me is going beyond navel gazing and going beyond the “that training session I just delivered was awful, I will go and cry into a bowl of chocolate ice cream”. It is looking at my practice in a critical and analytical way to make sure I am doing the best job I can. It is important to note positives as well as negatives, which is the part of reflective practice I find the hardest.

I did start this blog as a place to reflect on training sessions and meetings I attended. Admittedly not all the posts are up, but I do have drafts sitting, waiting to be published, so I still have a central record of them and I do hope to be able to post soon. Reflecting on training helps not only to recall the event but also confirm how and where I will use that training in my daily job.

I am trying to incorporate reflective practice into my daily job more and more. This doesn’t mean that I reflect every day, as that really would be naval gazing, but I will take time at the end of projects or over the summer to evaluate how I am doing. I find it relatively easy to do for teaching sessions as that already has a certain amount of evaluation incorporated into them.  The challenge will be looking at other areas of my work. A small example of looking at other areas of my work was when I recently looked at my time management. I don’t necessarily think my time management is that bad, but there is always room for improvement. I am busy Mum who works  part-time. Every day has a deadline e.g. home for school pick-up, music lessons, dance lessons, governor meetings and none of that includes work yet! My days are quite structured and making sure I make all those calls on my time did require enormous to do lists and multiple diaries. I took time to reflect on this and how I used the various diaries and lists, working out what worked well and what wasn’t working. This lead to having one centralized to do list and diary for home and work. Both are online and I can access anywhere. I am hoping this has improved my time management, which time will tell when I reflect again to make sure the changes are an improvement (Although the lateness of this post is probably evidence that it might not be!).

Using reflective practice gives me structured “time out” to look at what I do and how I do it.  Sometimes it is only by taking a step away from the daily grind and looking at it from different viewpoints that effective solutions can be found.

I would say now more than ever reflective practice is important for librarians. In the same way that you build a portfolio of evidence for Chartership you can also build up a pool of evidence of why you are needed and how you add value.

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About Lynne Meehan
Librarian interested in teaching, infolit, ux and open access. Also Mum, knitter, baker, walker and very amateur photographer. I may also like cows.

2 Responses to Mirror Mirror on the wall (Thing 5 – CPD23)

  1. Hi Lynne,
    Hope you don’t mind, I was impressed with your reflective practice post and will be referring to it in mine.

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