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Using Data as a Catalyst for Collegial Conversations Changing Instruction and Reflecting on Practice through Peer Observation CCSSO Educational Leaders.

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Presentation on theme: "Using Data as a Catalyst for Collegial Conversations Changing Instruction and Reflecting on Practice through Peer Observation CCSSO Educational Leaders."— Presentation transcript:

1 Using Data as a Catalyst for Collegial Conversations Changing Instruction and Reflecting on Practice through Peer Observation CCSSO Educational Leaders Conference Milwaukee September 2008

2 The quality of the teacher is one of the most important determinants of educational outcomes for students, if not the most. Students taught by teachers in the bottom decile of effectiveness learn in one year what a teacher in the top decile could achieve in less than six months with the same students. Hanushek et al (2005)The Market for Teacher Quality National Bureau of Economic Research Data on Teacher Effectiveness

3 Guiding Questions What constitutes effective teaching? How is effective teaching demonstrated in the classroom? How can evidence of effective teaching be measured or captured as data?

4 Connecting Data to Improving Practice How can the data be used as part of a formative process to support the development and improvement of teachers’ skills? If teacher’s professional growth and development were assessed more formatively would the process serve as a model for teachers to use with their students?

5 "Effective teaching is not a set of generic practices, but instead is a set of context-driven decisions about teaching. Effective teachers do not use the same set of practices for every lesson... Instead, what effective teachers do is constantly reflect about their work, observe whether students are learning or not, and, then adjust their practice accordingly. Glickman 1991

6 Components of Professional Practice 1.Planning and Preparation Content knowledge and pedagogy 2. Classroom Environment Culture, management, behavior, physical space 3. Professional Responsibilities Record keeping, communication, professional growth 4. Instruction Student engagement, questioning, communicating with students, assessment Danielson’s Framework for Teaching

7 Formative Peer Observation P rovides teachers with information that they can use to improve their teaching. The information is intended for their personal use, rather than public inspection. As a result, formative observations are frequently less formal, focuses on specific aspects of teaching, is ongoing, and includes a wide range of activities. It is a basis for the development of effective teaching throughout a career. From North Carolina State University’s “Peer Review of Teaching”

8 Peer Observation with Formative Feedback Encourages and supports continuous improvement in teaching in a safe, collegial, and meaningful manner Learning can occur for the observer as well as the teacher being observed

9 What’s the point? Peer classroom observation (a.k.a. peer review of teaching) puts an end to pedagogical solitude Shulman (1993)

10 The most important bottom-line benefit to peer review of teaching is the improvement of student learning.

11 Observations as part of Evaluation Typically, a summative evaluation is a judgment about teaching that is used to make a decision—a decision about level of performance, tenure, promotion or teaching awards. A summative evaluation of teaching attempts to summarize the complex phenomena of teaching. Weimer (1987)

12 Formative Observation and Feedback Information gathered for the purpose of improving and developing teaching. This information is meant to inform change. Rando and Lenze (1994)

13 Steps (stages) of Change Precontemplation Contemplation Preparation Action Maintenance Termination

14 The Goals of Peer Observation and Coaching To de-privatize teaching Provide opportunities for obtaining helpful feedback Form collegial relationships that are mutually supportive and respectful.

15 Factors of Effective Professional Development Incorporates both process and content elements Relates to local circumstances in which the teachers operate Takes place over time Involves teachers in active, collective participation Focuses on deepening teachers’ knowledge of content and strategies Translates into everyday practice

16 Based on a Common Understanding Teaching is a highly individualized activity. Teaching techniques that work for one faculty member many not be effective for another faculty member in a different discipline or even in the same discipline. Indeed, there is no one way to be an effective teacher. austincc.edu

17 Step One: Establish Norms and Responsibilities Peer observations and coaching conversations should be voluntary and mutually directed. All aspects of peer observations are kept confidential between the two teachers involved. All notes and materials from the observation are given to the teacher being observed. It is encouraged that the teacher being observed keep the materials in order to look at patterns over time.

18 Step 2: Before the Observation The teacher being observed is in control of the observation. He/she will determine what is to be observed and what type of feedback he/she would like to receive. A pre-conference will determine the focus of the observation, which observation protocol/lens will be used and what data will be collected.

19 Step 3: The Observation During the observation… Record only the agreed upon data that the teacher requested. Additional student or teacher behaviors that are observed should not be commented on even if it is tempting to unless it is requested by the observed teacher. Use the protocol to record what you see not what you think. Leave out personal biases and preferences

20 Step 4: After the Observation Set up a post-conference to discuss the observation Focus the conversation on the data not the observed teacher Feedback should be non-judgmental and non- evaluative. Feedback should be specific and evidence-based Use reflective and collaborative language stems to begin the conversation Talk about the teaching and the learning

21 Characteristics of Formative Feedback Positive Non judgmental and non-evaluative Specific and evidence based Focused on the data not the person Involves sharing information Prompts mutual reflection Requires a supportive, confidential relationship built on trust, honesty, and genuine concern

22 What else can be added to the conversation? Combine classroom observation with other sources of information to enrich the conversation: student interviews classroom materials examination of student work/products curriculum maps, standards assessment data

23 Integrating the Process into Practice Suggestions: Put yourself in the role of a learner Study excellent teaching to practice excellent teaching Bring your scholarship/creative tools to the process Keep an open mind about different teaching styles and methods Practice active listening If necessary, remind yourself to be receptive and supportive

24 Student achievement significantly increases as a teacher’s skill in classroom assessment increases. (Marzano, Black and Wiliam)

25 It’s All About Student Learning. Period. Deb Farrington Professional Development Specialist Measured Progress 100 Education Way Dover, NH ext g


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