Professional Development: Teachers train Teachers
School principals today are very different from principals that were a generation ago. They recognize that every classroom teacher can be an expert, and they are working hard to build "professional learning communities" where teachers take on leadership responsibilities. These teachers share their experience in other professional development sessions, share their ideas and challenge their peers to think in new ways.
"Teachers teaching teachers" is an area that many principals have been working on intensely for a few years. You can also call it 'building leadership capacity'. We can say that teachers are the best professional developers. Teacher-led professional development fosters accountability, collegiality, professionalism, and pride. Teachers feel appreciated and respected for their contributions and knowledge, and they become confident and more competent in their own teaching practice.
Professional Development once a month
Once each month, students of the school can be given an early holiday so that teachers can have time for their own sessions, workshops by colleagues. The school can send a few teachers for outside training programs. Then those teachers can come back and hold workshops in school for other teachers, so that learnings are distributed among all the staff.
Experts in the Staff
Teachers can come together and form groups. Each group can choose an area in which to build their knowledge base and improve their teaching. After studying for these areas, each group should implement those learnings in their classrooms. When the group meets next, each member can share how they applied their learnings and what are the results they achieved. In this manner, all students and staff members are benefitted.
Observe Teachers in Action
Teacher Rounds are an effective way for hands-on professional development. Because everyone is focused on student learning and lesson presentation; and, most of all, because the learning is facilitated by our own credible staff members.
When a community comes together in such a way that teachers respect and trust each other enough to see themselves as teachers of teachers and as learners at the hands of other teachers, they are able to create an atmosphere where anything is possible.
This article contains excerpts from Education World website. Read the original here.