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1 Professional Learning Communities Dean Gilbert, Science Coordinator Orange County Department of Education (714) 966-4291

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Presentation on theme: "1 Professional Learning Communities Dean Gilbert, Science Coordinator Orange County Department of Education (714) 966-4291"— Presentation transcript:

1 1 Professional Learning Communities Dean Gilbert, Science Coordinator Orange County Department of Education (714)

2 What is a Professional Learning Community? “A Professional Learning Community is a group of educators committed to working collaboratively in ongoing processes of collective inquiry and action research in order to achieve better results for the students they serve. PLCs operate under the assumption that the key to improved learning for students is continuous, job-embedded learning for educators.” -DuFour, et. al,

3 3 Characteristics of a PLC Shared Mission, Vision, Values and Goals Collective Inquiry Collaborative Teams Action Orientation and Experimentation Continuous Improvement Results Orientation

4 Agenda for Today Engage/Practice Norms of Collaboration Developing a Mission and Vision Statement Defining Values and Goals 4

5 Creating Norms Each team should create its own norms. Norms should be stated as commitments to act or behave in certain ways rather than as beliefs. Norms should be reviewed at the beginning and end of each meeting. Teams should formally evaluate their effectiveness at least twice a year. Teams should focus on a few essential norms rather than creating an extensive laundry list. Violations of team norms must be addressed. 5

6 Goals and Objectives Learning: Ensure that all students learn. Collaboration: Develop a school/department culture for continuous job-embedded learning for educators. Results: Create systems to monitor progress and improve learning for all students. Understand and embrace the Professional Learning Community philosophy in school/district to focus on: 6

7 LEARNING FOR ALL COLLABORATIVE CULTURE RESULTS ORIENTATION HARD WORK & COMMITMENT BIG IDEAS 7

8 Advantages of Teachers Working in Collaborative Teams Gains in student achievement. Higher quality solutions to problems. Increased confidence among all staff. Teachers able to support one another’s strengths and accommodate weaknesses. Ability to test new ideas. Move support for new teachers. Expanded pool of ideas, materials, methods. - Judith Warren Little 8

9 Five Dysfunctions of a Team Fear of vulnerability Avoidance of productive conflict Lack of commitment Avoidance of accountability Inattentiveness to results - Lencioni

10 Vocabulary Changes “These kids” “This school” “These parents” “They can’t” “Why do I have to?” “Our kids” “Our school” “Our parents” “They will” “If I don’t, who will? 10

11 PLC Fundamental Questions About Learning- TABLE TALK What do we want students to learn? How do we know if students have learned it? What do we do when students don’t learn it? Do we believe that they can learn it? Answer these four questions based upon the current reality in your school. 11

12 12 The Seven Norms of Collaboration 1. Paraphrasing- Using a paraphrase starter that is comfortable for you: “So…” or “As you are..” or “You’re thinking…” and following the started with a paraphrase assists members of the group to hear and understand each other as they formulate decisions. 2. Pausing- Pausing before responding or asking a question allows time for thinking and enhances dialogue, discussion and decision-making. 3. Probing- Using gentle open-ended probes or inquires such as “Please say more…” or “Can you tell me more about…” or “Then, are you saying…?” increases clarity and precision of the group’s thinking.

13 13 The Seven Norms of Collaboration 4. Putting ideas on the table- Ideas are the heart of meaningful dialogue. Label the intention of your comments. For example, you might say, “Here is one idea…” or “One thought I have is…” or “Here is a possible approach”…or “I’m just thinking out loud…” 5. Paying attention to self and others- Meaningful dialogue is facilitated when each group member is conscious of self and others and is aware of not only what he/she is saying, but also how it is said and how others are responding. This includes paying attention to learning style when planning for, facilitating and participating in group meetings. Responding to others in their own language forms is one manifestation of this norm.

14 14 The Seven Norms of Collaboration 6. Presuming positive intentions- Assuming that other’s intentions are positive promotes and facilitates meaningful dialogue and eliminates unintentional put-downs. Using positive intentions in your speech is one manifestation of this norm. 7. Pursuing a balance between advocacy and inquiry- Pursuing and maintaining a balance between advocating for a position and inquiring about one’s own and others’ positions assists the group to become a learning organization.

15 Practice Working with a partner, select one of the Seven Norms of Collaboration to discuss the following proposal: Parents should be actively involved in a school’s Professional Learning Community. Why or why not? Seven Norms of Collaboration 1. Paraphrasing 2. Pausing 3. Probing 4. Putting ideas on the table 5. Paying attention to self and others 6. Presuming positive intentions 7. Pursuing a balance between advocacy and inquiry 15

16 16 BREAK

17 17 What is your fundamental mission as a STEM teacher?

18 Mission WHY? Why do we exist? What is our fundamental purpose? The mission must expect “learning for all” MISSIONVISIONVALUESGOALS 18

19 19 Fundamental Assumptions You believe all students can learn at high levels You take responsibility to ensure that all students learn

20 20 Traditional Mission Statement Fundamental purpose of our school is to provide students with the opportunity to learn. We fulfill our responsibilities when we provide our students with clear lessons and opportunities to demonstrate their learning. If students fail to take advantage of the opportunities they are provided, they must suffer the consequences of their decisions.

21 21 Truth in Advertising Mission We accept high levels of learning for all students as a fundamental purpose of our district (but ultimately it is up to each child’s efforts if they succeed or not).

22 22 Truth in Advertising Mission We accept high levels of learning for all students as the fundamental purpose of our district…… If………

23 23 Truth in Advertising Mission The mission of our district is to take credit for all the kids who succeed, and assign blame for the students who don’t.

24 Mission WHY? Why do we exist? What is our fundamental purpose as a STEM school/district? MISSIONVISIONVALUESGOALS Steps: 1.Clarify the mission of your school based on data. 2.Create your own through consensus process. 24

25 Define your Mission and Vision 25

26 26 Steps in Developing A Mission Statement 1. List the school’s core competencies; its unique strengths and weaknesses. 2. List the school’s primary clients, internal or external, by type, not by name. 3. Review how each “client” relates to each of the school’s strengths (ask them if possible). 4. Write a one-sentence description of each client/strength pairing. 5. Combine any that are essentially the same. 6. List the sentences in order of importance to the school’s vision (if one exists). 7. Combine the top three to five sentences into a paragraph.

27 27 Steps in Developing A Mission Statement 8. Ask parents if they would want to send their child to a school with that mission. 9. Does the entire staff understand, support and can act on it? 10. Ask support groups (e.g., PTA, corporate/business partners, etc.) if it makes sense to them. 11. Incorporate the feedback from “clients”, staff and support groups and repeat the process. 12. When you have refined the paragraph into statements that clearly articulate the way the school wants to relate to those it affects, publish it, i.e. post it on the wall, it to everyone, etc.

28 Vision WHAT? What must we become to accomplish our purpose? MISSIONVISIONVALUESGOALS 28

29 Vision WHAT? What must we become to accomplish our purpose? MISSIONVISIONVALUESGOALS Steps: 1.Clarify the vision of your school based on data. 2.Create your own through consensus process. 29

30 Define your Mission and Vision 30

31 Values HOW? How must we behave to achieve our vision? MISSIONVISIONVALUESGOALS 31

32 MISSIONVISIONVALUESGOALS Values HOW? How must we behave to achieve our vision? Steps: 1.List the personal values each staff member must contribute to move your school towards its vision. 2.Create your own through consensus process. 32

33 Goals How will we measure our progress? MISSIONVISIONVALUESGOALS 33

34 34 Next Steps Creating SMART Goals to Accomplish your “Next Steps”

35 35 Group Discussion INQUIRY QUESTIONS: What do we need to know?

36 36 Southwest/Tri-Community PAUs


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