Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Learning from our Peers! The tradition continues.

by Linda Ashida

There are so many ways we collaborate and learn from our peers. Our October 2016 Institute Day is one great example. But Professional Learning at Elk Grove High School isn't just a one-day-and-it's-over kind of experience. Professional Learning here is ongoing and responsive to the needs and interests of staff.

One example is our tradition of Peer Observation Groups, first started at in 2011. Since the original groups started, we have developed such a culture of ongoing and collaborative professional learning that on any given day staff has the opportunity to visit classrooms of their peers.

Some Peer Observations happen spontaneously, when a teacher drops by the Collab Lab and invites us to stop by her class to see a strategy in action or ask for feedback. Other times a teacher will contact the Collab Lab to ask if we might help arrange a class visit. This happened recently.  A colleague expressed interest in visiting classes to see varied learning strategies, so we arranged the first in a series of class visits. Our first was to Mark Heintz' Human Geography class. Several teachers joined in. As a follow-up we will meet with Mark later in the week to discuss some of the strategies we observed related to classroom management, workflow with Schoology, student collaboration, and more.

Other Peer Observation experiences are planned in advance by the Collab Lab, like our Teaming on Tuesdays, in response to feedback from staff related to their needs, interests and learning goals for their students. You can read about some of our Teaming on Tuesdays in previous blog posts.  Stay tuned for upcoming Teaming on Tuesday's we will be announcing soon.

In the meantime . . .
  • Do you have successful strategies we might see in your classroom? 
  • Would you like to visit a colleague's classroom to be inspired by student learning in action?
  • Do you have feedback related to your own peer observation experiences?  
We'd love to hear from you!  Leave us a comment or stop by the Collab Lab!

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