A dozen years ago I took on the role of an Instructional Coach in the school of my tiny town I grew up in. I was filled with blind optimism. Imagine Dorothy, post Emerald City, exclaiming “Oh, there’s no place like home!” I showed up
School has begun and Summer is finally at our backs. If you’re a leader, however you spent the Summer months—at conferences, attending workshops, reading, relaxing, and so on—we have no doubt that you spent a good deal of time planning for the new school year
As districts face challenges with a revolving door of excellent teachers, it’s time to find ways to offer sustainable, relevant, and engaging PD in and across schools.
EFFECTIVE PD displays three primary characteristics:
It’s when these three characteristics are combined that real results are achieved
No one is more enthusiastic to hit the classroom running than a new graduate of a teacher-prep program. They’ve done their course work, studied educators in action, and worked alongside experienced teachers for months to get into the rhythm of the profession and they can’t
“Tell me and I forget, Teach me and I remember, Involve me and I learn.” This quote by Benjamin Franklin is often used to highlight how we, as teachers, might consider our roles with students. However, what if we change the audience and consider this
When I consider my 30 plus years in education, there is no single professional development program or strategy that addresses my professional training needs. For example, Jim Knight’s text on Mentoring, Coaching, and Collaboration edited by Corwin Press provides ample examples on how mentors and
Most educators really don’t care about what we call PD. They care about their students and want practical solutions to the challenges they encounter in their classrooms. They care about relationships and coherent PD that actually makes change manageable (Gustafson, 2016). Renaming PD will not
Whenever I’m facilitating professional development, I have a secret goal: that I will incite someone to approach me before lunch and say, “So, what are you doing? I mean, usually by this point in a workshop, I’m ready to slit my wrists or something rather
The beginning of the new school year starts another cycle of learning and growth for students. Just as importantly, this time marks a new cycle of professional growth and development for classroom teachers; but will the growth that educators realize by June match beginning-of-the-year expectations?
One of the most popular PD models, particularly when schools close for the summer, is the large-scale conference with guest presenters and experts in a variety of areas. Hundreds, if not thousands, of participants attend these events.
Why is it that we continue to organize conferences,