Please Do Now….
As you enter the room please reflect on the
following questions as you think about leading
and spending your time focused on learning.
Write a sentence or two to respond to each
1. How much of my time is spent talking about and actively
engaging in learning during my daily professional life?
2. How am I creating ongoing, job-embedded, results driven
professional learning for staff?
3. How do you rate yourself as a learner? How would the staff
and students rate you as a learner?
“Children need models more than critics.” French proverb
“Be the change you want to see in the world.” Ghandi
Research shows that the most promising
strategy for sustained school improvement
is developing the capacity of schools to
function as a professional learning
Four Corners Activity
“In times of drastic change, it is
the learners who inherit the
future. The learned usually find
themselves beautifully equipped
to live in a world that no longer
“ You cannot have students as
continuous learners and
effective collaborators, without
teachers that have the same
“Separated by their classrooms
and packed teaching schedules,
teachers rarely work or talk
together about teaching
“Never doubt that a small group
of committed, thoughtful people
can change the world: Indeed
it’s the only thing that ever has!”
• Overview the structure and function of a Professional
• Understand the role of the Professional Learning
Community in promoting improvement in teaching and
• Identify protocols that facilitate learning in PLCs
• Reflect on the role of PLCs in promoting a culture of
teacher-directed professional development focused on
• Review M-DCPS Guidelines for implementing
Agenda – Day 2
• Creating Successful Collaborative Teams
• Essential Ingredients of PLCs
• Protocol 1: Examining Professional Practice
• Protocol 2: Effective Discussions
• Protocol 3: Examining Student Work
• Protocol 4: Addressing Issues and Problems
• M-DCPS PLC Guidelines
In order to enhance this learning
M-DCPS Center for Professional Learning
• Teachers are intelligent, capable, and want to do the
right thing for their students.
• People are committed to ideas and plans that they have
• Everyone’s opinion is of equal value, regardless of rank
• Groups can manage their own conflicts, behaviors, and
relationships if they are given tools and training.
• Groups make better decisions than any one person
• The process, if well designed and applied with fidelity,
can be trusted to achieve results.
Ingrid Bens, Facilitating with Ease!, 2000
• Read the statements on the anticipation guide. Decide
if you agree or disagree with each statement.
• Meet with your team members. Be ready to share your
opinion and be open to listening to each other’s points
• After sharing and discussing, come to a consensus on
whether you agree or disagree with each statement.
No voting—if you can’t come to a consensus you can
rewrite a statement so that all of you can support the
The Last Word Protocol, pp. 82-83
Step 1: Identifying Significant Ideas (3 minutes)
Step 2: Sharing, Round 1 (4 minutes)
Step 3: Sharing, Round 2 (4 minutes)
Step 4: Sharing, Round 3 (4 minutes)
Step 5: Open Discussion (optional)
Step 6: Debriefing (5 minutes)
*When sharing, 1st participant shares significant idea but does
*Other participants have 1 minute to agree or disagree
*1st participant then has two to 3 minutes to respond to and
elaborate on what the others in the group have said.
How was this a useful way to explore
the ideas in the text and to explore
your own thinking?
PLC Essential Elements
1. Shared mission, vision, values, goals
2. Collaborative teams focused on learning
3. Collective inquiry
4. Action oriented and experimentation
5. Commitment to continuous improvement
6. Results orientation
M-DCPS PLC Guidelines
• 5-12 participants
• Regularly scheduled meetings at least one
hour in duration (not less than twice monthly)
• Focus on a common goal related to student
• First meeting is devoted to organizational
• Shared leadership is key
• Protocols keep the meetings focused and
• Submit M-DCPS form #
It’s a Shift
A Shift In Fundamental Purpose
a focus on teaching a focus on learning
A Shift In Use Of Assessments
isolated assessments collaborative on-going assessments
A Shift In Response When Students Don’t Learn
A Shift In the Work Of Teachers
He works in a foursome, but he is
truly independent. No matter
which foursome he is with, he does
not collaborate, help or encourage
them. Tiger wants to get all the
In the pros, Michael earned many
individual awards and titles including
league MVP. But of all those awards,
his greatest desire was to win the
World Championship. It wasn’t until
he began to collaborate with his
teammates that the ultimate goal
New Model of Teamwork
Time for lunch…
Please be back by
3 Minute Buzz
Spend the next 3 minutes reflecting on the
following and write your thoughts on the “Do
1. Something you’ve seen in the first part of
the session that affirms your thinking.
2. An idea that’s new to you.
3. Something you’re uncertain about.
4. Something you’re hoping to see in the
remainder of the session.
M-DCPS Center for Professional Learning
Examining Student Work
Tuning Protocol, pp. 34-36
Step 1: Introduction (5 minutes)
Step 2: Presentation (15 minutes)
Step 3: Clarifying Questions (5 minutes)
Step 4: Individual Writing (5 minutes)
Step 5: Participant Discussion (15 minutes)
Step 6: Presenter Reflection (15 minutes)
Step 7: Debriefing (5 minutes)
*During presentation, participants listen and take notes
*During the participant discussion, presenter is silent
*During the presenter reflection, participants silently take
1. Did the team honor the norms at all
2. What went well?
3. What could have gone better?
All Things PLC!
Imagine the local television station has provided
you with a sixty-second spot on the evening
news to help the community understand the
PLC initiative that is underway in your school.
Develop your presentation, keeping in mind that
you cannot go over sixty seconds, you do not
want to leave thirty seconds of “dead” air
because you have run out of things to say, and
you do not want to use a log of jargon.
Creating Conditions to Get Started
Compare and contrast your organization to the story.
This story teaches two lessons:
1. An encouraging word to someone who is down can lift them up
and help them make it through the day.
2. A destructive word to someone who is down can be what it
takes to kill them.
Speak life to those who cross your path!
• How can we create a professional learning
culture at our school?
• What can we do to begin the process and
get teacher buy in?
• How can our strengths as the PLST help
reach the goal and be used most
1. What did we learn? What helped us to do that
2. Did the conversation move us closer to our goals?
3. Did we follow the process as we planned? If not,
why? How could we improve our process?
4. How might we build on this conversation?
Stop – Start - Continue
• Take a sheet of paper and divide it into 3
columns. Label one column STOP,
another START, and the last CONTINUE.
• Discuss what you need to stop doing, start
doing or continue doing to create a PLC at
STOP START CONTINUE
“School improvement happens when a
school develops a professional learning
community that focuses on student
work and changes teaching. In order to
do that, you need certain kinds of skills,
capacities, and relationships.”
• What 3 things about professional learning
communities did you learn or were clarified
• What 2 things about professional learning
communities you interested in learning
about or what 2 questions do you still have
about professional learning communities?
• What is the 1 thing you feel is the most
important aspect about professional
learning communities that you must be
aware of when planning one at your school?
• A Big Picture Look at Professional Learning Communities. Available from www.allthings.plc.info
• Campbell, M.(2011). The PLC at Work Cartoon Book. Bloomington, IN. Solution Tree Press.
• Carmichael, D. L., & Martens, R. P. (2012). Midwestern magic: Iowa's statewide initiative engages teachers,
encourages leadership, and energizes student learning. Journal of Staff Development, 33(3), 22-
• DuFour, R., DuFour, R., Eaker, R., Many, T. (2006) Learning by Doing: A Handbook for Professional
Learning Communities at Work. Bloomingto, IN. Solution Tree Press
• Ermeling, B. A., & Gallimore, R. (2013). Learning to be a community: Schools need adaptable models to
create successful programs. Journal of Staff Development, 34(2), 42-45.
• Hord, S., & Sommers, W. (2008). Leading Professional Learning Communities. Voices from Research and
Practice. Thousand Oaks, CA. Corwin Press.
• Kise, J. A. (2012). Give teams a running start: Take steps to build shared vision, trust, and collaboration
skills. Journal of Staff Development, 33(3), 38-42
• Moirao, D. R., Morris, S. C., Klein, V., & Jackson, J. W. How Do You Know Your PLC is Working? Available
• Moirao, D. R., Morris, S. C., Klein, V., & Jackson, J. W. (2012). Team check-up: Use 4 goals to assess a
professional learning community's effectiveness. Journal of Staff Development, 33(3), 32-36.
• Thomas, J. (2011). The Road to Developing Communities of Professional Learners.
• Smith, R., Johnson, M., & Thompson, K. D. (2012). Data, our GPS. Educational Leadership, 69(5), 56-59