Happy spring break, all! I had been meaning to post here for a while, and SB provided some time for me to get around to it.

I came across this the other day:

http://collegeready.gatesfoundation.org/sites/default/files/Gates-PDMarketResearch-Dec5.pdf

The Gates Foundation and the BCG worked together to do a study on teachers’ professional development and search for ways in which this can be improved. A few points struck me.

1.

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1. Choice matters. I think teachers really like autonomy. I know I do. I have heard from many teachers at Choate that they appreciate when we are given more freedom in our approach to our own PD, and this study echoes that. I think it would be cool to see Choate move towards a PD program in the future wherein teachers were presented with a multitude of opportunities (on campus, off campus, online) and asked to complete a set number of hours. Maybe, with the help of a supervisor / mentor, Choate would help teachers seek out PD that interested them but that also was seen as most likely to improve said teacher’s work. Related to this point, see below.

2.

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2. We need to continue to develop. At Choate, this RE group has been a great opportunity for us to do this. Too often, at Choate and seemingly elsewhere, I think, the struggling and young teachers get help, while everyone assumes the other teachers are fine on their own. I think Choate needs to continue to devote whatever resources it can to helping all of its teachers improve. To do this, though, requires time. Where will we find it?  It’d be great to hear your responses to this question in the comments!

Hope you all are enjoying the longer days and coming warmth, wherever you are!

So far, I have most appreciated the idea of DropitTome as a document submission tool. In addition, the thought of using open source texts that we discussed is quite appealing. CRH is moving to a 1-1 iPad program next year, and such freeware would really make this program more appealing to our students and their parents. 

 

Lastly, I was intrigued by the NYC School of One. I’d be interested to visit this school in the future and see what sort of best practices would be taken away and put to use at Choate. 

This week is a great opportunity to learn from others. I really appreciate the time spent interacting with my peers here and exchanging ideas on their best practices at their schools.

Also, given a brief overview of all these exciting tools helps. I feel as though I have a decent level of familiarity with these resources, so I appreciate being given freedom to use and explore on our own.

As the week goes on, I hope to continue to share ideas with everyone here. In addition, I hope to have allotted time to work on my own courses and really think about how I will be able to practically apply these resources to the classes that I teach.

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