As we approach the end of our school’s first PLC cycle, we will be looking at where we were, what we did, and what comes next. But first, a reflection:
We headed out of the blocks with gusto this year- Literacy themed learning with a focus on critical (Higher Order) thinking and imbedded technology-
we identified four marker students (ideally a Level 1,2,3 and 4)-
and not only created a divisional professional learning community, but met regularly, discussed and revised, and patiently tackled the learning curve of becoming a “technology school” within our board. So, in honour of this achievement…. CHEERS!
So what comes next?
With examples of student work on the table, we will be encouraged to ask the tough assessment-based questions- what learning occurred? Is there growth? Which strategies were effective? What comes next?
The following exerpt is from EDUTOPIA, on a series I have been following on “Becoming a 21st Century School”. Ken Kay states that once the work is one the table, we have some important questions to ask:
“Does the project display adequate mastery of core content?
• Does this student work illustrate mastery of at least one of the 4Cs? (Critical thinking, Communication, Collaboration, Creativity) Why or why not?
• What instructional strategy do you suspect supported this outcome?
• What additional instructional strategies might have enhanced this student work? Why?
Ask teachers to bring at least one example of student work that he/she believes illustrates some aspect of 4Cs mastery. Then facilitate small and large-group discussions focused on the four questions above.”
We certainly have the ability to adapt this to our PLC framework, with Critical Thinking being one of our target focus areas.
It’s easy to get overwhelmed with the framework and expectations to report back on the success of our work. What is key, is remembering that we are learning together, growing together, and keeping the focus on our student work.
The best practices we are developing today will continue to determine not only WHAT our students learn, but HOW they learn it.
We’re on our way!!