Are you diffusing Professional Learning? You should be. – Medium. For a while now I have been a devotee to the Diffusion of Innovations Theory of Everett Rodgers.
A robust theory first shared in the 1960s. Way back before the air plane sized IBM’s rolled onto our shores. This theory talks about the different styles of change adopters, and the importance of the Late Majority in ensuring a change sticks. If you look at the graph above, you can see that without a change moving through the Innovators, Early Adopters, Early Majority and into the Late Majority, it will never stick. Each of these change adopter types need a different type of professional learning. If this is the case then, think about the integration of technology among members of your school staff. The Innovators Who are your innovators? The Early Adopters Our teach leaders in schools. The Early Majority Our early majority are happy chaps. Learning to love teach meets. There is a growing momentum in education driven by a desire to share our practice and learn from our colleagues.
Increasingly teachers are finding ways to break free of their classrooms and share their ideas. Collaborations in the interests of unlocking the collective potential of the profession are spreading within and importantly between schools. For many these collaborative endeavours and desires are satisfied by online communities but for many the possibility for a face to face conversation is more alluring. This is where 'Teach Meets’ come into the picture.
Originating in the mind of Ewan McIntosh the first teach meet as it came to be called occurred in Scotland a little over ten years ago. By Nigel Coutts. Google for Education: Training Center. Cultures of Perpetual Learning – Modern Learning – Medium. Over the years, we’ve heard a lot of predictions about what the future of work holds for all of us, not just our kids.
It’s interesting now to see some of those predictions actually playing out. Case in point is this post in the Harvard Business Review that summarizes the Herculean change initiative now underway at AT&T. It’s a fascinating read on it’s own, but it’s even more interesting when you start to align some of the findings to the work of schools. Or maybe more daunting. The biggest takeaway for me? From the outset, AT&T was clear that employees interested in new roles would be required to use their own time for—and in some cases invest their own money in—their reeducation. And: Once employees have identified skill gaps through the self-service platform and in conversations with their managers, they take it upon themselves to fill them through online courses, certifications, and degree programs developed through a partnership between AT&T, Udacity, and Georgia Tech.
The best professional development for teachers. It’s always good practice to offer professional development for K-12 teachers as part of any new program or initiative.
“Making” in the classroom is no different. Hundreds of research studies offer guidelines and tips, yet it seems that many programs, even if they follow guidelines, do not adequately prepare teachers to change their actual practice in the classroom. Some of these recommendations are daunting for providers of professional development. Good professional development should be: The most frustrating part of outreach to K-12 teachers is not that the teachers are unwilling or unable to learn new things; it’s just the opposite. In our book, Invent To Learn: Making, Tinkering, and Engineering in the Classroom, and in thousands of hands-on workshops with K-12 educators, Gary Stager and I work with one primary stance directed at classroom change. Projects from CMK 2015 Can you tell who the expert is? Making fashion that lights up.
Teacher professional learning pedagogy needs to change too. Teacher professional learning pedagogy needs to change too For too long now education conferences and professional learning events have prolonged a traditional “sage on the stage” approach.
It is lazy and it needs to change. Back in Nottingham, when I was starting out as a teacher, I remember some of the first professional development events I attended. However these memories are bereft of fondness, just uncomfortable ones. Even then, with barely four years of teacher training, I squirmed at the 96th slide of 157 being shown (read out). It’s not them, it’s me. – Why I can’t do big conferences anymore. It’s not them, it’s me. – Why I can’t do big conferences anymore.
Tonight my Twitter and Facebook feeds are reminding me that this week signals the biggest education conference in Australia. I won’t be there. I’m giving my seat to someone who will enjoy it and respect the opportunities it gives them. For a little while now I’ve had a love-hate relationship with these huge affairs. These evangelistic affairs that bring educators from all corners of our country, or city in which they are held. And then it ends… I take my seat to listen to the keynotes, pull out my Twitter and search for a hashtag, and wait… and watch… and sit silently… and then it all falls apart. You know why else I don’t want to go? Please don’t get me wrong, there’s a place for these events, but it’s for those who are either sharing their journey (with how-to steps) or those new to the wonders of a future focussed, technology enhanced learning space.
Teacher Faculty Meeting Bingo - Simplek12. Why Professional Development Should Be More Like 'MasterChef' 7 Characteristics of Great Professional Development - 7 Characteristics of Great Professional Development by Drew Perkins, Director of TeachThought Professional Development As the end of the school year draws to a close, administrators start pulling together their PD plans for the summer in preparation for the next year.
Meanwhile, teachers sit anxiously by with the dread that can only come with the anticipation of the dreaded PD days that their contract says they must attend. It’s not that teachers don’t want to grow and improve their craft. They do, and they find it refreshingly professionalizing when they get to. 1. Seems like a no-brainer right? 2.