Action plan and next steps…

3458534773_bb4edd9c01Moving forward with my action plan of address time as it pertains to learning and shifting cultures of learning in the school has been… well… slow. I have spent a lot of time in the ideation phase as there are a number of viable solutions. I recently sent out a survey to find out when staff would prefer to do PD – during a prep, before/after school, during our weekly faculty PD blocks, or even SATURDAYS (after classes!!). Lo and behold, this was a popular option based on a conversation at the lunch table. Chief complaint was that people wanted more time to explore certain edtech tools! Great information!! So this made me realize that I haven’t really empathized and need to collect more information. So here I am cycling through the design thinking protocols and loving its fluidity!

In a recent conversation with another language teacher, students seem to prioritize languages near or dead last since it’s not viewed as something they need for university and time is their chief complaint. I will be sending a survey to my students in the next week!

imagesIn terms of making connections, my twitter PLN is growing consistently and I am enjoying the benefits of sharing online. I will be reading all the blogs, because true to form, I never walk away empty handed. We have suchrich and valuable resources in our C21 group, that there’s always something to apply to my courses and professional learning. I am going to work with @jsmith, @mwallace, @jmott, @lmcbeth, and of course @gnichols & @jmedved. I believe that bouncing ideas off each other is the key to moving good ideas into great initiatives!

I will commit to blogging twice a month, complete with how my action plan is going, in addition to what the results of the survey are. I look forward to sharing my experience and learning and experimenting with how best to facilitate learning in our school as whole.

A recent email from a student of mine speaks to our ever shifting culture of learning. This is from a different student who said that marks were getting in the way of her learning. He writes, “…the more i stress about these university marks the more i am coming to realise how amazing your “learning for the love of learning and not marks” thing is because all of the grads are so tense right now and just for some stupid number on a sheet that is supposed to determine the next four years of your life! I fully support your no marks thing and i hope that when my kids go to LCS all the teachers will have implemented that.

So I pose this to anyone reading … When do you learn best? What drives you to learn more? What do you wish PD could be?

Looking forward to reading your comments!

3 Replies to “Action plan and next steps…”

  1. I love that quote from your student! It’s a powerful one.
    I am definitely driven to learn more when it directly aligns with what I am working on with my students or when I come across an inspirational idea that is working well in another classroom. I find I get the most of out PD when I am surrounded by like-minded individuals. The ideas grow to places that I would not think imaginable!

  2. When to do PD is a challenge as there always seem to be so many calls upon our time. Recently at HSC, our HR department has introduced “Breakfast Surface Sharing” . (All staff have a Surface tablet/laptop.) Staff take turns sharing what they are doing in their class rooms and showing how it works. The school provides the breakfast, coffee/tea and even the child care. So far, it seems to be working great. It’s not too long (45 min); everyone is fresh and the PD is immediately applicable to what teachers want to know and can use with their students in the classroom. Personally, I like PD to offer me a new skill or knowledge that I can use immediately and that will make my classroom practice more effective. Having staff in-service each other is awesome because if you run into a glitch, help is only a few steps down the hall. Our school grown significantly, and I also appreciate the opportunity to interact with colleagues I usually only see in the hallway or parking lot. Another perk is that beyond the cost of muffins and coffee, the Breakfast Sharing PD is relatively inexpensive. If you’d like more details on the topics we’ve shared, let me know . Until then, Bonne Chance with your action plan.

    PS. I have discovered a new language “hook”. I am connecting our high school rugby coaches with rugby clubs, coaches and players in France and Spain. My students are emailing and texting other players to ask about the sport in France. Our coaches are in the initial stages of communicating to set up ways to watch and discuss practice and game strategies. They’d even like to have sports exchanges. I certainly has some of our athletes more interested in French.

  3. Hey Derek,
    So many great thoughts from this post! I love that you are cycling through the Design Thinking process and that you’re getting to know your users with surveys and also using this blog post as a way to collect data on what teachers want to get out of PD. I’d be interested to hear more about what your teachers have prioritized.
    As for myself, I find that I learn best when surrounded by people who challenge me. The Klingenstein Institute was great for this – there was a open atmosphere where people felt free to share their ideas with each other openly and not afraid to be critical. In this way, tuning protocols, like the one we did on hangouts the other night are great framework for starting these discussions. I also find that PD is best when I am given time to reflect. The C21 blogs are great for me in this way – I’m able to hear about what others are doing and “think out loud” on my own ideas.
    If you’re looking for inspiration, check out some of the articles that NAIS has posted on how to develop effective PD: http://www.nais.org/Articles/Pages/Faculty-Professional-Development-A-Primer-for-School-Leaders.aspx
    Keep us posted!
    Les

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