I think we all know them. You see they have done a wonderful lesson or project with their students, and you excitedly ask for the details? Alas, the details are never forthcoming.READ MORE…
I have to say, this PLC thing (Professional Learning Community)has really been working. I went to Arizona in February to a PLC Summit, thought it was just a free trip to Phoenix. But it wasn’t, it was so much more. Very productive seminars, and I learned so much!
Fast forward to May, and I have to admit, I enjoy using what I’ve learned from it. Now, as a school, we’re not quite there yet, but we are a lot farther than where we were when we started. More people have ” got on the bus”, and it has really helped our students improve. Personally, I love what it has done for my team, we are collaborating and making decisions that are good for our kids.
For example, we looked at our student scores on a common math assessment, and decided to have Math workshops that focused on the skills they were weak in. Each teacher chose the focus skill he or she was strong in, and taught based on the level of the group we saw. Can you say “differentiated instruction”? Of course, I was the “tech” component of our workshop. 🙂 We each created an “Exit ticket” that the students completed at the end of class, and we reviewed the results of the ticket at our next PLC meeting.
The students LOVED it! They traveled with their friends outside their class, they got away from us for about an hour, they spent time with another teacher, and the skills were either reinforced, or enriched. The results were amazing, and the students learned a lot, which was our objective.
When the new school year begins, our district is having all the participants in the summit meet once a month to share ideas. We already had one meeting last month, and one of the teachers shared things that were so simple, yet so helpful. I now get a chance to take that back, and share it with my colleagues. I am part of a number of communities, Twitter, Edmodo, Technology Integration in Education, and so many more, so I understand the importance of collaboration.
You don’t hear too much grumbling about “PLC” anymore, it’s just something that we do now, and I’m loving it! Please Let’s Collaborate!
I knew this time would come. It’s presentation time, the punishment for attending the 2011 PLC Summit in Phoenix, Arizona. 🙂 Well, it was worth it. I have continued to use what I have learned and it’s paying off. Step by step, little by little. Sooooo, this week we have to do an overview of what PLC is. We took a lot of our information from Solution Tree’s HUGE book they gave us at the summit. We COLLABORATED and came up with this Powerpoint. I also created an animated video using GoAnimate using ideas we got from Dr.Anthony Muhammad. Check it out! And if you like, let me know what you think!
What is a PLC? – told in Powerpoint
(Check out the characters listed in Dr.Muhammad’s “The Quandary” in my animated video, “The PLC Bus” http://goanimate4schools.com//api/animation/player
Like it? Create your own at GoAnimate4Schools. It’s free and fun!
The word that comes to mind, after today’s conference is “rethink.” I have used that word so many times between today and yesterday, it’s unbelievable. But trust me when I say I am not using the word in vain! It is the only way I can describe what PLC is making me do. It is making me RETHINK the way I have been teaching. Now mind you, I consider myself a pretty good teacher, not perfect, but good. I keep my students engaged, I maintain discipline, I teach using a variety of methods, and hey, we’ve even begun incorporating PLC in my school . However, this PLC summit has brought me to the realization that I have not done the best that I can for my students!
I know, you’re thinking, isn’t this the same person who was trashing professional development about two posts ago? Yes, that was me. 🙂 But this summit, this is what I want! I don’t know how many people were in that room, but each presenter, and I mean, each presenter, had us engaged practically every minute. If teachers were talking , they were talking about PLC, not about where to go for lunch. We met so many teachers from so many places, and we learned, not only from the presenters, wait for it, but from EACH OTHER! Wow!
I have to share what I learned, so over the next couple of posts, I am going to share some key concepts that were presented. Hopefully, this will twinge your curiosity and you will find out what PLC is, and what it can do for your school. Tonight, I am going to the top of the Hyatt and eat at the revolving restaurant. I’ll be ok, my head is still spinning from all I’ve learned in the last two days. 🙂