“Supporting teachers begins with knowing that we should meet their individual needs in their own learning and growth. We no longer can be ok with the status quo, or a one size fits all mentality when it comes to PD. As the leader, it is up to you ensure that each educator has what they need in order to be the very best that they can be in their classroom.”
If you really want teachers to take professional development seriously, you have to let them set their own agenda.
This seems to be difficult for many leaders to accept. I think it is the most basic of questions – what do you want to learn – and with that – how can I best support you.
If we teach social skills to a target group then will we see an increase in self-regulation and positive social interactions outside of the classroom, within the target group (s).
resource teacher triad
I have written about this before and I welcome the opportunity to do it again for the #SAVMP blog. It is more by accident than design that we started using a model that allows teachers to set their own agenda for professional learning. Three years ago the principals in our group (triad) decided to do our school improvement planning together.
It was hard to figure out at first – none of us had ever done this before, there was no model or guide to follow. I think one of the most important elements was, and continues to be the support we received from the school board. This was new to them too, but they were willing to let us try this new model out.
Over the past three years the teams have changed and we have learned a great deal. We still plan together and we have gotten a lot better at recording our learning. We have a great respect for the inquiry approach and have followed the learning stance of our board that encourages teachers to ask questions about how students learn.
If we continue to solidify their ability to communicate about math through the use of math journals in support with conferencing, then they should be able to demonstrate their learning.
grade 4,5,6 math inquiry
Teachers now keep a running record of their inquiries in a Google Drive document called Evidence of Learning. I am drawing inquiry statements from this document for today’s blog. This document allows the principals in our group to have a good understanding of what teachers are working on. With an app called Kaizena, we can actually leave audio comments for each group in their evidence of learning section.
There nothing cooler than being able to talk about the learning plans of teachers in three schools! As principals, we are active participants in the learning, but the teachers are in control of the process.
Having said that, I really feel an obligation to keep a careful record of what they are learning this term. I was able to do some of this last term and I have blogged about some of the really interesting work the math and French teachers were doing. Now I really need to get the rest of the groups!
Through the month of April, I should be able to meet with most of the groups and add the results of their inquiries to the blog!
Through this process, we feel we are giving the teachers the opportunity to set their own agenda. We will continue to do this and teachers will continue to learn and grow. I think this is the very best that we can do for the teachers we work with.