Saturday, January 31, 2015

Professional Development Updates (Part 2 of 3) 
For All Those Data-Lovin’ Hearts...

Sarah Lorenz

Click here to read Part 1

Sample Theory of Action Strand:

Sample Problem of Practice:
An affluent suburban elementary school has many positive features, but the principal and teachers have identified writing as an area needing improvement. While there are many talented teachers using a wide variety of excellent resources, as well as a general commitment to a writing workshop format, the program lacks cohesion and test results in writing are just so-so. No one is quite sure if students are receiving a comprehensive, progressive course of study in writing.

With many high-achieving students and some English language learners from professional families, teachers are challenged to meet a wide variety of needs. Some teachers are concerned about their lack of training to teach writing, and others worry about a loss of autonomy when moving to a common curriculum. Everyone agrees, however, that it is time to work together to collectively raise the professional knowledge about writing, map out a defined plan both vertically and horizontally, and create true synergy in the teaching of writing.

As part of this planning framework, we can then collect survey data after every PD session—did the work today hit the target? Is this the right target? What worked, and what didn’t? I’m still experimenting with the best method for collecting this data—I’d like a digital format as opposed to the old paper sheet. I’ve tried Poll Everywhere, which is quick, but I don’t really want all the responses up on the screen. SurveyMonkey isn’t as easy to do on a phone, so some people don’t participate. Suggestions are welcome if you have other solutions.

To be concluded in the next edition...

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