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The ABC's of PLC's


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Everything you need to know about Professional Learning Communities and how to implement them in your school community.

Published in: Education
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The ABC's of PLC's

  1. 1. A Focus on “Learning” Rather than “Teaching”
  2. 2. What is it.... <ul><li>“… A Professional Learning Community is a collaboration of teachers, administrators, parents and students, who work together to seek out best practices, test them in the classroom, continuously improve processes, and focus on results.” </li></ul><ul><li>Rick DuFour, 2002 </li></ul>
  3. 3. The “Big Four” Questions that guide instructional decision making. <ul><li>What should students know and be able to do as a result of this course, class or grade level? </li></ul><ul><li>How will we know that the students are not learning? </li></ul><ul><li>How do we respond when students do not learn? </li></ul><ul><li>How do we respond when students learn more? </li></ul>
  4. 4. Characteristics of a PLC <ul><li>Shared Mission, Vision, Goals </li></ul><ul><li>Collaborative Culture </li></ul><ul><li>Collective Inquiry </li></ul><ul><li>Action Orientation/Experimentation </li></ul><ul><li>Commitment to Continuous Improvement </li></ul><ul><li>Results Orientation </li></ul>
  5. 5. Shared Mission, Values and Goals <ul><li>Mission of Pender County Schools </li></ul><ul><li>Through a 21 st century infrastructure , Pender County Schools will </li></ul><ul><li>aggressively pursue fiscally responsible and measureable methods of providing innovative and creative learning opportunities that motivate students to succeed in a globally competitive world. </li></ul><ul><li>Motto : </li></ul><ul><li>Pender County Schools…..the future in progress </li></ul>
  6. 6. Collaborative Culture <ul><li>There’s no “I” in Team! </li></ul>
  7. 7. Collective Inquiry People in a learning community relentlessly question the status quo, seek new methods of teaching and learning, test the methods, and then reflect on the results. ? They reflect publicly on their beliefs and challenge each other’s beliefs. ? They share insights and hammer out common meanings. ? They work jointly to plan and test actions and initiatives. ? They coordinate their actions, so that the work of each individual contributes to the common effort.
  8. 8. Action Orientation/Experimentation Members of PLC’s constantly turn their learning and insights into action. They recognize the importance of engagement and experience in learning and testing new ideas .
  9. 9. Commitment to Continuous Improvement <ul><li>What is our purpose? </li></ul><ul><li>What do we hope to achieve? </li></ul><ul><li>What are our strategies for improving? </li></ul><ul><li>How will we assess our efforts? </li></ul>
  10. 10. Results Orientation Assessment and re-evaluation are the keys to continued improvement.
  11. 11. Ready…Set…Grow <ul><li>The steps needed to create effective PLC’s in your school community… </li></ul><ul><li>Step 1: The Seed </li></ul><ul><li>Determine School and Staff Readiness </li></ul>Step 2: The Root Use Experts/Facilitators
  12. 12. Step 3: The Stem Identify Barriers and Boosters Step 4: The Leaf Begin with the Learning Step 5: The Flower Create a Theory of Change
  13. 13. Group Activity <ul><li>Break into groups of 4 or 5. Each group will be given one of the steps and part of a plant. Discuss how your step would look in a data meeting. Write down your thoughts on the plant part and be ready to share with the group. </li></ul>
  14. 14. The Steps…again <ul><li>Step 1: Determine School and Staff Readiness </li></ul><ul><li>Step 2: Use Experts/Facilitators </li></ul><ul><li>Step 3: Identify Barriers/Boosters </li></ul><ul><li>Step 4: Begin with the Learning </li></ul><ul><li>Step 5: Create a Theory of Change </li></ul>
  15. 15. Summing it up… <ul><li>PLC’s can “look” lots of ways , but must include the following beliefs and behaviors of the participants: </li></ul><ul><li>Caring deeply about learning. </li></ul><ul><li>Feeling free to take risks. </li></ul><ul><li>Challenging each other and raising the expectations of everyone. </li></ul><ul><li>Respecting and valuing perspectives other than their own and seeking every member’s input. </li></ul><ul><li>Intentional in seeking to do the work better. </li></ul><ul><li>Aggressive in continually building capacity of each member to work smarter. </li></ul><ul><li>Professional Learning Communities: A Fable </li></ul>