Friday, April 6, 2012

Follow-up On Planning for Hybrid PD (Part 5) - F2F Feedback

Just a short post today to provide some feedback from my most recent face-to-face with my two blended PD cohorts. Last posting I discussed the focus, listed here:
Lesson Five: Provide suggestions and examples of taking the activities/content of the professional development and modifying (adding to, deleting from, etc.) to meet the diverse needs of their students. By helping teachers consider how the activities might need to be altered to differentiate for students, you provide them with power and control over what they are learning, and help them make the PD learning and content their own.
Things went pretty well - we had our customary share out at the beginning, where there was some nice conversation and suggestions for helping integrate Sketchpad into lessons. There were some teachers who shared really fun experiences with their students and then some teachers are experiencing real frustration with trying to integrate the technology into their classrooms, from classroom management to access to computers. It was really empowering to hear the suggestions of things to try from others.

Modified "Hikers" Sketch to help with vocabulary and understanding question
What I really found to be positive, even though they were experiencing some frustration and some 'flops' of things they tried, they are not giving up - they are looking at ways to do things differently because they have seen the spark of engagement in their students, the excitement in learning math differently and the amazement at the conversations the students are having about math. In fact, if I had to sum up their frustration and lack of integration at this point, it is NOT because they don't want to and aren't trying, it's because they are faced with things out of their control - access to computers, access to the software (the IT folks still not supporting them and actually loading the software...after 6 months!  Yikes!) and class size and administrative pressure to "stick to the pacing and stick to the curriculum" and "keep your students quiet".  Seriously...no wonder they are frustrated!

The rest of the sessions I modeled some lessons and we really focused on what changes might be needed or things we could add to help address students needs, such as vocabulary (adding pictures to a sketch), types of questions, hiding components until they are needed, etc.  It was fun - lots of give and take and we learned some Sketchpad skills as well, such as controlled animation. I feel the teachers are contributing their own thoughts, taking things that fit their needs, and then going back to their classes and lessons and concentrating on what is going to work for their students.  Couldn't ask for more than that.
 
For the complete Hybrid PD series, click on the links below:

Planning for Hybrid PD - Comfort Level and Confidence First
Follow-up On Planning for Hybrid PD - Day 1 
Follow-up On Planning for Hybrid PD - Day 2
Hybrid PD - Online Community Development Pt 1 
Planning for Hybrid PD (part 2) - Develop Community and Supportive Environment 
Follow-up On Planning for Hybrid PD (Part 2) - F2F Feedback 
Hybrid PD - Online Community Development Pt. 2 
Planning for Hybrid PD (part 3) - Make it Relevant 
Follow-up On Planning for Hybrid PD (part 3) - F2F feedback 
Hybrid PD - Online Community Development Pt. 3 
Planning for Hybrid PD (part 4) - Teacher Input  
Follow-up On Planning for Hybrid PD (part 4) - F2F Feedback 
Hybrid PD - Online Community Development Pt. 4 - Student Focused!
Planning for Hybrid PD (part 5) - Make the PD Learning Their Own

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