TEACHING & PROFESSIONAL LEARNING

USING THE ROADMAP
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Today’s digital society, global economy and the way work is accomplished demand changes to the ways schools operate. If learning that accommodates 21st century skills and knowledge is the centerpiece of the roadmap framework, it is fundamentally affected by teaching and educators’ own professional learning. Successful learning that produces college and career ready graduates results from great teaching, enhanced by a host of inter-related components, including the leadership, assessment tools and technology infrastructure. Explore current thinking on instructional strategies and over-arching approaches to teaching, along with the ongoing development of teaching professionals.

CONNECTIONS

  • As you explore this topic you will notice that teaching and professional learning are connected to everything else. Changes to teaching practices need the support of leadership and a sympathetic, encouraging culture, along with the necessary infrastructure and tools, and a range of assessments that are aligned to our goals and practices.

  • As you build your own roadmap, you will encounter many of these connections, some unique to your own circumstances and goals. Incorporating these connections creates a web of interconnected supports that can strengthen all aspects of your plan.

STAGES

PLANNING

Teachers at this stage may be early adopters, new to the profession, content, grade level or school.

BUILDING

Teachers at this stage are implementing some digital learning opportunities; however, digital learning is not seamlessly incorporated into the curriculum.

TRANSFORMING

Teachers at this stage typically are able to lead others, provide professional development and are risk takers who can measure results.

PRINCIPLES

STUDENT-FOCUSED

Teaching is student-focused—it recognizes that the student is at the center of any learning experience, and frames the content and pedagogy accordingly.

FACILITATED

Teaching is facilitated—it requires teachers to move away from the familiar content-delivery role and orchestrate learning experiences and provide individualized support for students’ learning.

FLEXIBLE

Teaching is flexible—it knows that any given approach to instruction may not be effective for every student, and uses multiple ways to reach mastery of any given learning outcome.

EQUITABLE

Teaching is equitable—it seeks to provide effective learning experiences and learning outcomes for all students, regardless of the point at which they entered the learning experience.

COLLABORATIVE

Teaching is collaborative— regular peer collaboration, discussion and development encourage teachers to assemble the best methods for teaching.

CONTINUOUS LEARNING

Teaching is fueled by continuous professional learning—it provides teachers with opportunities to learn, practice and reflect in ways that meet their individual needs, and align with student learning goals.

KEY QUESTIONS

Questions about Teaching:

  • Do teachers use a variety of instructional strategies?

  • How do educators create positive and engaging learning environments for all students?

  • Do the educators seamlessly integrate digital learning tools as appropriate?

  • Are teachers prepared to help students become good digital citizens, by using digital tools safely, effectively and ethically?

  • How do students engage with the teacher? How does the teacher engage with the students?

Questions about Professional Learning:

  • Does the school/district have a comprehensive plan for professional development that is informed by data and addresses the needs of all staff members?

  • Has the school/district created a collaborative environment for planning and implementing professional learning opportunities?

  • Are the educators adequately prepared and trained to launch and maintain digital learning environments?

  • Are professional learning opportunities on-going?

  • Are educators recognized for implementing content provided during professional learning opportunities?

ACTION STEPS

Provide adequate funding and time for educators to participate in professional learning opportunities.

Focus on high quality, sustainable professional learning opportunities for all educators.

Ensure that new teachers have participated in digital learning opportunities and that they have the pedagogy needed to integrate technology tools and resources.

Communicate to all stakeholders the critical need for on-going sustainable professional learning.

Dedicate administrative and instructional staff to provide coaching and mentoring for educators.

POLICY CONSIDERATIONS

  • Student data safety and security—when data is increasingly relied upon to individualize instruction

  • Accountability and teacher evaluation policies

  • Pre-service minimum requirements for teachers

  • Minimum in-service (professional development) requirements for teachers

EXEMPLARS