Non-Traditional PD Opportunities


Knowing teachers are tired and have a lot on their plate, I am looking for non-traditional ways you have been successful in engaging teachers in professional development opportunities.

Tagged in: Professional Learning (PL), Apple Learning Academy

Posted on January 28, 2023 in response to Maghan_LCS

I have had success aiming for timely, intentional, and small bites of professional learning. Sharing three thoughts to hopefully inspire you:

  • Recently, we offered after school sessions on how to utilize materials the educators already have, but may have forgotten about or not realized they have, to support students in need of intervention or enrichment. I shared specific examples of activities with which their students can engage that could be implemented immediately. The ideas I provided could be replicated over the course of the unit/topic. The educators appreciated that I brought them a solution to a problem they were experiencing - how to support the variety of students' academic needs in the classroom. The timeliness was important here. They also have a relationship with me, professionally, so they trusted that if they invested their time in these sessions, they would get something out of it.
  • I attend team planning meetings when they reach out and have a need they are struggling to fulfill. I present ideas in graduated complexity - I start with a simple thought that may be easiest to implement, then go to strategies that may really shake up their classroom. I have had many educators experience willingness to try something I share based on my relationship with them (they trust me) and their needs in the classroom. I have also modeled activities or lessons on the fly when they ask. When my educators are vulnerable enough to ask me to show them how to do something, I always do with patience and kindness because I know what it takes to admit they don't understand.
  • I love to amplify the voices of other educators to influence others. I have interviewed educators and shared on a podcast. I was pleasantly surprised how many educators listened and reached out about what they learned from their peers. I have also used panel discussions during professional learning sessions. The educators have been willing to share their struggles and successes and those in the audience have listened and taken notes on the edge of their seats.

Question: Non-Traditional PD Opportunities

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