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Carolyn P. Henly - learner profile

Carolyn P. Henly - learner profile

Carolyn P. Henly - learner profile

Find out more about Carolyn P. Henly , her life, her hobbies and passions!

Carrie  is the author of Theory of Knowledge for the IB Diploma, English Literature for the IB Diploma, series editor of English Language and Literature, Literary and Textual analysis for the IB Diploma
Inquirer
This is one of my strongest learner profile traits: I have loved learning new things all my life. I read extensively—more than 100 books a year, in addition to reading news stories and magazine and journal articles. I also listen to a variety of podcasts from book reviews to philosophy discussions to variety podcasts such as RadioLab.
Throughout my teaching career I made sure to keep developing my craft by attending workshops and conferences on my own initiative, and I kept revising my curricula every year in order to improve the experience for my students.
 
Now that I have retired, I have continued to learn new things about teaching Literature and Theory of Knowledge, and I have taken up some new projects, including learning the violin, learning to paint, and learning to crochet. I participate in three book groups each month. My husband and I travel together; we have visited 49 of the 50 United States, and in 2020, we will visit #50 (North Dakota). Lifelong learning is what keeps life interesting!
Knowledgeable
Having the opportunity to teach Theory of Knowledge for 20 years meant that I necessarily had to expand my knowledge well beyond what I had when I first started teaching. I had university degrees in Linguistics and Secondary Education, along with the equivalent of a degree in literature, but for TOK I had to start learning an enormous amount about mathematics, science, human science, history, and the other arts.
I have been a life-long baseball fan, so I know a great deal about that sport, and a few years ago I started following Canadian curling and am developing my knowledge of that one.
 
My husband and I run a butterfly census and participate in a Citizen Science project through Cornell University tracking bird populations in our area, so I continue to develop my knowledge of both birds and butterflies. I figure there is no such thing as too much knowledge!
Thinker
Most people who know me would probably say that one of my defining traits is the way that I approach the world from a highly rational thinking perspective, much more than from an emotional or intuitive one.
You can convince me to agree to something much faster by appealing to my thinking brain than you can by appealing to my feelings.
Communicator
I spent my adult life in a career dedicated to helping people improve their communication skills: the teaching of English, including literature, writing, and speaking.
I had the very good fortune, while in high school, to have been taught how to write very well, and, when I went to university, I discovered that that skill was much less rare than I had previously believed. I learned very fast the great value to me of the skill my high school teachers had given me. It doesn’t matter how smart you are or how much you know: if you can’t communicate it, no one can appreciate it. I deliberately chose teaching as a way of paying that gift forward.
Principled
I am principled, I would say, in a sort of old-fashioned way, which says that one must do what is right because it is right, regardless of whether anyone else is watching or will ever know. I try, though I do not always succeed, to live my life by asking myself, before I decide to do something: ‘Would I be embarrassed if others knew I was doing this?’
I also do my best to live up to agreements—meeting deadlines, fulfilling promises, and arriving places on time. I always think that rules do, indeed, apply to me, just as much as they apply to anyone else.
 
I also try to take definite actions in order to help to solve problems which I believe are important for everyone, such as ensuring fair access to elections for all citizens, improving the environment and doing something to stop global warming.
Open-minded
I was born in a part of the world in which open-mindedness was, and is, highly valued: the San Francisco bay area.
My parents always made it clear that other people—no matter how different from me—were to be considered my equal in every way and that I was not to make judgements based on appearance or traditions or beliefs which differed from mine. Probably this early experience is part of what drew me to the IB programme with its expressly stated value for open-mindedness and the belief, stated in the IB mission statement, that ‘…others with their differences can also be right.’
Caring
I care about fairness, integrity, and striving for excellence
I love books, music, and cats, and I have been married for 31 years to a man I dated for 7 years before that.
Risk-taker
I have taken on several new risks in the last year since I retired from classroom teaching: I have undertaking co-writing and editing several books for Hodder Education and I have undertaken the job of writing two new workshops for the upcoming Theory of Knowledge curriculum.
I have also taken up learning how to play the violin and how to crochet, though I cannot say that great progress has been made in those endeavors just yet!
Balanced
For most IB teachers, balance is one of the most difficult of the learner profile traits to achieve, because we put so much time and energy into our commitment to delivering the IB curriculum for our students as it ought to be delivered.
Even now that I have retired, I have been involved in many projects related to the IB programme—including writing and editing books, giving teacher training workshops, and designing new workshops that will be delivered by others—and I have not had a lot of time to balance out my life with many other activities. Still: I make an effort with reading, running a butterfly census, visiting national park sites to learn about the history of the United States, watching baseball and curling, geocaching, and trying to keep our household in some semblance of order!