We shall not cease from exploration. And the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.
T. S. Eliot, “Little Gidding”
Almost a year has gone by since I spent most of August and September researching and writing about online teaching. When I started TOOL last year, I was figuring out my next steps in education after six years in the classroom. That school year ended in May, and by the end of August, I was already thinking about teaching again. Now, even though I’ve completed TOOL, I’m tempted to revisit some topics, and perhaps address every topic a second time.
Well, clearly there seems to be a masochistic side to me, but more importantly, the TOOL topics and categories are a stable standard, which I can use to evaluate my growth and understanding as an online teacher. As parents use a door jamb to mark a child’s growth, I’ll use the framework of topics, questions, and tasks in TOOL to measure how I – and the nature of online teaching – have changed.