Thursday, July 19, 2012

#Educoach(7/18)/Visible Learning Reflections

As expected the Visible Learning #educoach chat was wonderful.  My takeaway is that it's essential that schools employ a collaborative effort, such as PLCs and RTI, to teach children well. The conversations, plans and follow-up discussions that take place at PLCs, and implemented through RTI, can serve to make learning visible. Breaking schools into learning teams of students, teachers, coaches and specialists is a positive way to begin serving all students well.  Coaches that work with teachers and students who demonstrate investment and effort in students' learning will serve as integral guides and participants in these learning teams.   

An educator can only reflect and evaluate his/her effect on students to a degree.  It's also important that the critique include a collaborative component where educators work together to set goals, evaluate strategies, share strengths and assess student learning. The PLC and RTI are wonderful vehicles for this.  

Questions I will bring to my classroom efforts, PLC and RTI after last night's #educoach chat are the following:

1. How do we determine the priority areas of learning?  How will we focus our efforts so that we are responding to students in meaningful, responsive, child-centered ways?
Priority ares of learning will be determined via assessments, student-teacher conversations, observations, standards and more. 
2. What are the priority areas of teaching--what is it that we want students to learn?  How will we teach so that we know our students' well?
3. How will we actively coach students so that they reach meaningful learning goals?
As Hattie suggests, learning goals and paths will be explicit.  The process will include regular monitoring, assessment, redirection, independent/collaborative work, and next steps.
4. How will we assess the learning?  How will we make sure that students' goals are challenging, and not just "do your best?"  What will we do when students are not making progress?
5. What protocols will we set for PLCs so that we embrace failure/error as a way of learning; keep students' learning as the focus of our work, and work collaboratively as a team for best effect? 

Last night's #educoach chat gave us a wonderful premise with which to start the collaborative student-teaching efforts in the new year.  I look forward to next week's discussion on 7/25 at 10 EST related to chapter 4 and 5 of Visible Learning for Teachers, Maximizing Impact on Learning by John Hattie.  Thanks Shira and Kathy!

7/18 Prechat Prep and Quotes