EdNews Signup
A+ Education Partnership
 

RSSABPC Blog

Building Time for Learning, Planning and Collaborating
July 30, 2014 | Comments
Bookmark and Share
 
by Cathy Gassenheimer
 
Another school year begins in August. Anxious and excited five-year olds begin their school experience, as rising seniors are getting ready for their last year of high school. Most teachers have been working during the summer to get ready for the school year, focused on Alabama’s standards and working together to craft lessons that challenge, engage, and improve the learning of their students.
 
Recently I came across an interesting chart developed by Learning Forward’s Executive Director Stephanie Hirsh that describes the type of professional learning that schools and districts should embrace.
 
As a preamble to the chart, Hirsh stresses that effective professional learning causes two important results:  (1) it improves teacher practice; and (2) it improves student learning. To ensure this type of effective professional learning, Hirsh points to some big shifts needed: moving away from the more traditional “workshop” approach to the type of ongoing powerful learning that improves practice and learning.
 
Take a few minutes to review this chart and think about your school’s current professional learning offerings. Which of these shifts are either already in place or planned? Which shifts require greater attention?
 


Use the following measurement system to gauge the current status of your school’s professional learning:
 
5 = The “MORE” category defines how we work all the time
4 = The “MORE” category defines how we work most of the time
3 = We operate sometimes in the “LESS” and other times in the “MORE” category.
2 = The “LESS” category defines how we work most of the time.
1 = The “LESS” category is most characteristic of how we work.
 
Use the scoring rubric below to see where your school currently stands. Consider asking your faculty to do the same. Use the results to engage your faculty in a discussion about strategies to strengthen the professional learning. Dream a bit. One of my favorite reflection tools is to imagine that I have a “magic wand.” If your school had a “magic wand” and could do anything you wanted to related to professional learning, what would you do?
 
Once you identify that vision, then begin to develop a plan that will help you reach that goal. Of course, the plan should be accomplishable, over time. But, too often, we limit ourselves before we dream. By describing the ideal professional learning, you can begin to prioritize and chart a course to achieve it over time!

 This post was adapted from “The Shifting Landscape of Adult Learning: Less of This, More of That,” by Stephanie Hirsh. JSD: The Learning Forward Journal, April 2014

Download this post in MS Word format
  [permalink for this post]
 
 
Principal Aimee Rainey Reflects on "The True Measure of Leadership"
July 16, 2014 | Comments
Bookmark and Share
 
I first met Aimee Rainey when she was assistant principal and then principal at Calcedeaver Elementary, a wonderful and often-recognized rural school in northwestern Mobile County. A few years ago, Aimee and her family moved from "Lower Alabama (aka LA)" to North Alabama and the city of Florence, situated on the beautiful Tennessee River, to assume the principalship of another award-winning school, Florence Middle. In both schools, Aimee has worked passionately and diligently to hone her leaders... [continue reading]
 
 
Why Do Organizations Undermine Their Own Success?
July 9, 2014 | Comments
Bookmark and Share
 
by Cathy Gassenheimer Why do organizations and individuals often work at cross-purposes that undermine progress and success? That is the guiding question of Chris Argyris 2010 book, Organizational Traps: Leadership, Culture, Organizational Design (Oxford University Press).  In this book, Argyris, who developed the Ladder of Inferences that explains how we often make decisions based on filtered data that may skew our judgment, describes two theories of action: Model 1, Defensive Reasoning; and Mo... [continue reading]
 
 
My New Favorite Book – Closing the Teaching Gap: Coaching for Instructional Leaders
July 2, 2014 | Categories: Welcome Slideshow | Comments
Bookmark and Share
 
by Cathy Gassenheimer This has been a summer of discoveries for me. For the second time in the past few weeks, I've found a book on my bookshelf that I hadnt read and forgot that I had.  Thanks to our North Alabama Instructional Partners Network, Closing the Teaching Gap: Coaching for Instructional Leaders by Donald Bartalo, was brought to my attention. When I went online to order the book, the cover looked familiar. And, sure enough, it was on my bookshelf, just waiting to be explored.   Those... [continue reading]
 
 
My New Favorite Book – Closing the Teaching Gap: Coaching for Instructional Leaders
July 2, 2014 | Comments
Bookmark and Share
 
by Cathy Gassenheimer This has been a summer of discoveries for me. For the second time in the past few weeks, I've found a book on my bookshelf that I hadnt read and forgot that I had.  Thanks to our North Alabama Instructional Partners Network, Closing the Teaching Gap: Coaching for Instructional Leaders by Donald Bartalo, was brought to my attention. When I went online to order the book, the cover looked familiar. And, sure enough, it was on my bookshelf, just waiting to be explored.   Those... [continue reading]
 
 
< Older Posts
 
 
 
 
A+ Alabama Best Practices Center A+ College Ready