Many inservice teacher educators are experienced classroom teachers; however, they have little—if any—formal training in the design of professional development. As a result, they are likely to use an unintentional design process to create professional development that conflicts with what research has found to be effective, and lacks the capacity to change deeply held pre-existing beliefs, attitudes, and assumptions of inservice teachers.
This book provides inservice teacher educators with a design process developed especially for them, in-depth knowledge of the research foundation of the process, and the confidence to use that process effectively. This book will provide a comprehensive view of the relationship between the effectiveness of professional development and its design.
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Andrea Ray is a visionary in professional development design and is on a mission to transform the processes used to create learning experiences for inservice teachers. Educational and life experiences have merged and created new path from which she issues a call for action to all who are interested in designing effective professional development.Review:
A well designed professional development plan is essential for any thriving educational community. Methods for the design, implementation and evaluation of professional development are evident in Creating Professional Development that Works. The tools and strategies provided are clearly laid out, which make the process manageable for a school or district. Identifying the gapthat exists between researcher knowledge and classroom implementation provides the foundation for all professional learning. Honoring and recognizing these two voices enables leaders to begin and implement professional development based on three critical areas (content knowledge, pedagogical knowledge and educational technology knowledge). (Tricia Robinson, student success teacher, Ontario College of Teachers, Pembroke, Ontario)
I know by experience that the Intentional Design Process works in the classroom. I was grateful to participate in the pilot project which was unique and extraordinary. For a change this professional development was relevant, interactive, and delivered by someone who understood my situation. I was treated as a professional and could assess my practice and apply all I was learning immediately to my students. I could choose to focus on just what I needed for the subjects I taught and the particular needs of my students. The meeting time was filled with information, technology, coaching, and collaboration. The best part was that the teachers had access to follow-up coaching, and by choice we continued to collaborate and build on what we started together. (Winnie Russo, National Board Certified Teacher of twenty-six years)
The PD was a different experience for me than other PD’s I had received in my educational career. This particular PD allowed me to take a current unit of study and really fine tune the learning experience my students were receiving daily. I was always able to gage what they understood and where they were having difficulties by the questions I posed for the daily lessons which connected to the overarching idea of the unit. It allowed me as the teacher to really focus on key concepts the students had to learn and make connections meaningful for them throughout the unit. (Deborah Shepherd, M.Ed., compliance support specialist, Special Services)
The difference between this professional development and previous PD mainly has to do with the element of time. The time we give to something often determines its importance or lack thereof. Right? Sadly, previous PD practically disallowed the teacher learning aspect, thus diminishing two major ingredients prevalent in this design process. Teacher collaboration (planning, peer observations, etc. and all that that entails), plus duration, which this design process clearly requires for sustained learning. Secondly, the design process brings together key ingredients in equal measure as opposed to traditional PD that focuses mainly on content. (Marilyn Morgan, National Board Certification in Early Adolescence/English Language Arts)
The author does a thorough job of explaining why the current approaches to professional development fail to bridge the research to practice gap. She provides a model that not only compensates for this failure but also leads to sustained change in the classroom. A valuable book for those responsible for professional development. (Bonnie Meszaros, PhD, associate director, Center for Economic Education & Entrepreneurship, University of Delaware)
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