Wednesday, October 21, 2015

The Process Has To Start Somewhere

Post by Clint Heitz:  Clint has been teaching English for 10 years and is currently in his 2nd year at Bettendorf High School.  You can follow Clint on Twitter at @CRHeitz

This year I have been a part of something called a Professional Learning Community (PLC). According to Richard DuFour, PLCs are based on three big ideas:
  1. Ensuring that students learn
  2. A culture of collaboration
  3. A focus on results
My particular PLC group is made up of the three 9th grade English teachers, a special education teacher, an academic interventionist, an administrator, three representatives from a state organization called an Area Education Agency, and the frequent participation of our building principal. This group of highly dedicated educators is tackling the idea of a standards-based curriculum, which involves identifying priority standards, "unwrapping" those standards, developing quality common formative assessments, and re-evaluating/remodeling our curriculum. Of course, this was going to affect my practice in the classroom, and it already has, so I have decided to delve into my blogging world again to provide a place for reflection and sharing of ideas / observations.

This process we are engaging in, as teachers and in PLCs, allows us to implement principles of instructional design that I've repeatedly found myself going back to time and again. On the most basic level, ADDIE is the foundation of such practices, but really the process is much more fluid and will require steps to be repeated, enhanced, reworked, and recycled. Perhaps this reflective practice of blogging will help me navigate that. Perhaps, if I'm lucky, readers will pitch in to help me navigate through with ideas, directions, observations, and such.

So, here's to the first step!

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