Although my default compass point is West, the last 4+ years in a Pk-12 instructional coaching role have allowed me to hone my East skills. More and more I strive to make a systemic impact on student learning (a large part of why I left the classroom). Below is one small way that this plays out in my daily practice.
After attending the PYP Collaborative Planning workshop in October at AISQ8, my desire for trying to figure out how to better collaborate with my colleagues in order to positively impact student learning increased exponentially (it was already pretty high). Thankfully, Sanja and I were invited to each of the ES grade level planning meetings for the upcoming units. Our goal during this first round of meetings was to be non-judgmental observers, providing input only upon request, in order to better understand the structure and flow.
We still have a lot of (collaborative) work to do in figuring out how to best be part of the unit planning process. However this week we wanted to follow-up with teams. My Eastern (and Western) tendencies came out in taking (extra) time to draft a standard email that we could use across the grade levels. We wanted it to be focused on teaching and learning, not simply technology. I used a What? So what? Now what? structure to guide our communication. Our goal was to make sure teachers felt heard before (re)introducing our ideas. Below is our general structure and an example.
Good morning/afternoon grade _ team,
Thank you for allowing us to be a part of your 3-block planning for the ______ unit. We appreciated the peak into the teaching and learning that is occurring in grade _ classrooms.
What the unit planner says, what we heard them say
During your discussions, we heard you focus on…
We heard you say that technology might be integrated in the teaching and learning in the following ways…
Connection to Learning w/ Technology Standards
In the Teaching and Learning with Technology document released by the IB last year, they introduce the AID lens. The three principles (Agency, Information & Design) are intended to aid and extend teaching and learning. Based on your unit planner and what we heard you say, your unit might be viewed through the ____ lens where ___.
[A future version will focus on our new standards that are in development.] The Learning w/ Technology Standards are AIS standards that are we are currently drafting and piloting. They are based on the ISTE Standards, ALA Standards and IB documents. Based on your unit planner and what we heard you say, your unit connects to _____ (strands). Specifically, the following standards might enhance student learning:
Based on and in addition to this, some ways that we might be able to support you in integrating technology would be_________. These also connect to your ______ (Common Core) standards.
How can we support you and your students as you continue to create opportunities to make connections outside our school walls?
How can we support you in using the AID lens to consider how subject areas and themes can be combined with technology to create new learning experiences?
How can we support you and your students as you continue to create authentic, real-world assessments?
Looking forward to continuing to collaborate with you in order to positively impact student learning!
Good morning/afternoon grade 1 team,
Thank you for allowing us to be a part of your 3-block planning for the How Do We Express Ourselves unit. We appreciated the peak into the teaching and learning that is occurring in grade 1 classrooms.
During your discussions, we heard you focus on students inquiring into cultural identity and expression. We heard you say that technology might be integrated into the teaching and learning in the following ways:
- Search engines accessible for grade 1 students
- Netflix (Human Planet)
- Video recording interviews during the International Day
The Learning w/ Technology Standards are AIS standards that are we are currently drafting and piloting. They are based on the ISTE Standards, ALA Standards and IB documents. Based on your unit planner and what we heard you say, your unit connects to Global Communicator and Collaborator and Knowledge Constructor. Specifically, the following standards might enhance student learning:
- Global Communicator and Collaborator
- GCC1: Students choose the appropriate platforms and tools for meeting the desired objectives of their creation or communication.
- GCC3: Students communicate complex ideas clearly and effectively by creating or using a variety of digital objects such as visualizations, models or simulations.
- GCC4: Students publish or present content that customizes the message and medium for their intended audiences.
- GCC5: Students use digital tools to connect with learners from a variety of backgrounds and cultures, engaging with them in ways that broaden mutual understanding and learning.
- GCC6: Students use collaborative technologies to work with others, including peers, experts or community members, to examine issues and problems from multiple viewpoints.
- Knowledge Constructor
- KC1: Students plan and employ effective research strategies to locate information and other resources for their intellectual or creative pursuits.
- KC3: Students curate information from digital resources using a variety of tools and methods to create collections of artifacts that demonstrate meaningful connections or conclusions.
Based on and in addition to this, some ways that we might be able to support you in integrating technology would be to facilitate connections to other countries, schools, and students and investigate/share grade level appropriate research databases. These also connect to your Speaking and Listening (Comprehension and Collaboration) and Geography (G1 and G2) standards.