- The duration of professional development must be significant and ongoing. Giving them time to struggles through implementation.
- There must be support for the teacher during the implementation stage that addresses the specific challenges of changing classroom practice.
- Teachers must be actively engaged and participating in order to make sense of the new practice.
- Modeling is highly effective in helping teachers understand the new practice.
- The content presented must be specific to the discipline and/or grade level they teach (Gulamhussein, 2013).
It is my goal that the professional learning course that I am creating will accomplish each of these principles. Our district, is moving to a blended learning instructional model and the #FtBendBlends professional learning experience will help teachers shift to that model.
As we begin to equip our teachers for blended learning. We will have teachers that will need to know why they should begin using the blended learning instructional model. They will also want to know how will they learn about it in a way that's meaningful to them. My goal is that this video and the other one that I created in 5305 will be a strong case for blended professional learning. Our district mission/vision is to inspire and equip students for futures beyond what they can imagine. I think #FtBendBlends is one way to inspire and equip educators to reach their students in ways beyond what they can imagine. I started out building this script so that I could apply the story structure that Nancy Duarte mentions in her TED Talk and books. It was a challenge going back and forth while trying to keep the video short and to the point, relevant to my innovation plan, and address the five principles of effective professional development.
Through all the readings and the videos, I realized that there is definitely a need to change professional development as we have known it. It is clearly ineffective and not working for teachers. When implementing any change in an organization it is important to have the right systems and support at work that will increase a teacher's motivation and ability to apply that change so that it makes a positive impact on student learning in the classroom. I talk about the ways the #FtBendBlends blended professional learning experience is unique and how it will still meet the characteristics of effective professional development in the video.
Sometimes when it comes to creating a message or presentation, I must start with the words. What do I want to say? I put together a short script and then dropped it in the Student Lounge for feedback. Most of my peers thought the script was a good start, but it didn't give them enough information and was redundant in places. So, I went back to the drawing board to add more details and take out repetitive phrases.
Since I had a script already, I knew there was only one tool that would make the next step in the process simple. One of the easiest tools to use for crafting digital stories is Adobe Spark Video. It's available on the web and on iOS devices (not sure about Android). I used the app on my iPhone because I use my phone to take a lot of pictures when I'm facilitating professional learning, I know I can pull some photos to include in the video right from my device. With this app, I searched for images that fit my script, recorded my voiceover using the script, chose a music soundtrack that matched my message, and selected a theme. I was able to do it all from start to finish in about an hour. It cites the sources of the images for you and gives you a good selection of music tracks to add to make your message stick.
Gulamhussein, A. (2013). Teaching the Teachers Effective Professional Development in an Era of High Stakes Accountability. Center for Public Education. Retrieved from http://www.centerforpubliceducation.org/Main-Menu/Staffingstudents/Teaching-the-Teachers-Effective-Professional-Development-in-an-Era-of-High-Stakes-Accountability/Teaching-the-Teachers-Full-Report.pdf