Flexibility, Ambiguity, and What if Hypothesis in PLC’s

I am currently taking part in a MOOC, Assessment and Teaching of 21st Century Skills, by Esther Care and Patrick Griffin at The University of Melbourne. One of the major elements in the course is exploring collaborative problem solving. The primary distinction between problem-solving by an individual and collaborative problem solving is its social nature – […]

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Building a Collaborative School Culture

I am currently reading,  School Culture Rewired: How to Define, Assess, and Transform It,  by Steve Gruenert and Todd Whitaker. They define six general types of school cultures ranging from toxic to collaborative. Toxic- Significant numbers of teachers focus on the negative aspects of the school’s operations and personnel, using these flaws as justification for […]

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Professional Learning Communities – Conversations for Student Achievement

I have often recommended that forming PLC’s, so that teachers have at least some students in common, greatly increases the power of conversations to impact student achievement. I recently had the opportunity to observe Twin Lakes Elementary School’s K-2, 3-5, Special Education, and specialist (music, physical education, library and computer) Teaching and Learning Teams.(PLCs)My thinking […]

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Middle School Advisory

I was recently asked to facilitate a middle school (grades 6, 7, 8- 720 students) leadership team as they developed plans for a newly implemented advisory program. They had decided the previous school year to design advisories so that teachers would keep a group of students for three years. Searching for some material to spark […]

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Collaboration Between 8th and 9th Grades

During a recent workshop that I did for the Arkansas Department of Education, I was working with Professional Learning Teams from each school in a district. As we explored collaboration among teachers, we expanded the conversation to collaboration between schools. In the July 18th blog, I identified the concept of team vs franchise as I […]

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Teacher Collaboration

I recently presented to school administrators at the Millsaps College Principal’s Academy(MS) and The College of William and Mary’s School Leadership Institute (VA). At both sessions, we examined the following belief statement. Increased teacher collaboration produces increased student achievement.As principals, how does that belief fit into your approach to school leadership? As a teacher, how […]

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Steve Barkley

For the past 30 years, Steve has served as a consultant to school districts, teacher organizations, state departments of education, and colleges and universities nationally and internationally, facilitating the changes necessary for them to reach students and successfully prepare them for the 21st century. Read more…