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PD Activities

Choose activities that really help you meet your professional development goals! Eliminate activities that take time and resources, but don't help you meet your goals.

Model award video Model Award Winner Janice Nicklaus talks about her district's building level study groups.

Model award video Model Award Winner Janice Nicklaus talks about how building level study groups have improved instruction.

Model award video Model Award Winner Kathleen Rugger talks about the steps have she has taken to forge strong collaborative relationships among staff members.

Model award video Model Award Winner Eloise Hambright-Brown talks her 'leadership cadre' and how she uses this group to design professional development.

Planning Your PD Activities

    Professional Development: Learning From the Best
    A toolkit for schools and districts based on Model Professional Development Award Winners is located at this site.

    Blueprints CD_ROM and Web site
    A practical planning tool for professional developers in curriculum, instruction, and assessment. The Eisenhower Mathematics and Science Consortia and the Eisenhower Nathional Clearinghouse developed Blueprints to support effective professional development opportunities for teachers.

Professional Development Activities for Specific Subject Areas
See these professional development strategies specific to the following subjects.

    English/Language Arts

    Literacy Research and Best Practices Web site
    The NCREL Literacy Initiative develops strategic alliances throughout the seven-state NCREL region with state departments of education, intermediate units, and other organizations and agencies interested in improving literacy. NCREL establishes direct service relationships with school districts to research strategies that strengthen curriculum, instruction, and assessment in reading.

    Strategic Teaching and Reading Project (STRP)
    STRP focuses on professional and is based on the premise that teachers must receive training and support in strategic teaching in order to help students become strategic readers and learners themselves.

    Center on English Learning and Achievement (CELA)
    Researchers Suggest Useful Framework for Studying Professional Development

    The National Writing Project

    The National Council of Teachers of English

    Maryland Department of Education - Better Practices: What Have We Learned About Good Instruction?
    A resource to assist teachers in expanding and refining their repertoire of teaching strategies and to guide instructional planning and decision-making.

    Foreign Languages/ Bilingual Education

      ERIC Digest - Professional Development of Foreign Language Teachers

      ERIC Digest - Professional Development in Multilingual Schools

    Science and Mathematics

      Exemplary Lessons for Mathematics and Science Classrooms
      Online projects that demonstrate engaged learning and effective use of technology.

      Eisenhower National Clearinghouse
      This site has math and science resources which include materials and technical assistance.

      Teacher Change Improving K-12 Mathematics - Internet Resources (ENC)
      Highlighted here are some Internet sites that provide electronic professional development opportunities. While many relevant organizations and programs have Web sites, there are few that provide professional development online.

      Mathematical Sciences Education Board

      National Institute for Science Education

      National Council of Teachers of Mathematics

      ERIC Digest - Current Reform Efforts in Mathematics Education

      Reforming Science Education Means Teachers Must Experience Science in New Ways Themselves
      Read the Journal of Staff Development, interview with Susan Loucks-Horsley.

      Ideas that Work: Mathematics Professional Development
      Useful guide to designing an effective approach to professional development.

      Maryland Department of Education - Better Practices: What Have We Learned About Good Instruction?
      A resource to assist teachers in expanding and refining their repertoire of teaching strategies and to guide instructional planning and decisionmaking.

    Social Studies

      National Council for the Social Studies

      Maryland Department of Education - Better Practices: What Have We Learned About Good Instruction?
      A resource to assist teachers in expanding and refining their repertoire of teaching strategies and to guide instructional planning and decision-making.

    Technology
    Staff understanding of technology is critical to helping students exploit the vast resources available to them.

Staff Involvement in PD Activities
Staff can be the driving force behind improved teaching practices. Try these techniques for making staff central to your professional development process.

    Action Research
    Action research is the process of using formal research methodology to assess how well your "real world" approaches to student and staff learning are working. Staff members can design and implement their own action research to test new approaches to student and staff learning.

      Ideas That Work: Action Research (Report from the Eisenhower National Clearinghouse)

      ERIC Digest - Action Research

      ERIC Digest - Teacher-As-Researcher
      Information about action research.

    Case Discussions
    Cases studies are a quick way to learn from other schools' professional development experiences, including how to get staff involved.

      Ideas That Work: Case Discussions (Report from the Eisenhower National Clearinghouse)

      Professional Development Best Practices
      The Knowledge Loom is an interactive web site where educators craft best practices, research and theory into real world success (Lab@Brown.) This Knowledge Loom collection presents research-based characteristics for successful professional development along with examples of those characteristics in practice. You can read about the practices. Review research that identifies and supports them. View stores about the practices in real schools and districts. Learn to replicate their successes in your own organization. Add your own stores, questions, bits of wisdom. Participate on online events and discussions.

      Islands of Hope in A Sea of Dream
      A research report on the eight schools that received the National Awards Program for Model Professional Development (West Ed.) Findings on a wide variety of professional development issues including topics such as: how teachers learn, degrees of freedom, external partnerships, external push/internal motivation, evaluation, relationships with districts, overcoming barriers, and inducting new staff members.

    Coaching and Mentoring
    Mentoring and coaching are great ways to utilize your staff talents.

      Ideas That Work: Coaching and Mentoring (Report from the Eisenhower National Clearinghouse)

      The Mentor Teachers Handbook
      This document describes the nature of a productive mentor/mentee relationship and provides tips on organizing and evaluating a mentor program.

      The Mentoring Leadership & Resource Network Home page of MLRN, an affiliate of the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, includes some free mentoring information.

    Peer Assistance

      Peer-Assisted Leadership (PAL) program
      Non-judgmental, inquiry-based approach to leadership development where principals form partnership to help each other reflect on their practice. (West Ed)

      The American Federation of Teachers Web site Information on peer assistance/peer review and professional development.

    Study Groups

      Ideas That Work: Study Groups (Report from the Eisenhower National Clearinghouse)

OnLine Professional Development Courses
Here are professional development activities offered online for a fee.

    The Heritage Institute OnLine

    Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development's Professional Development On-Line

    TAPPED IN
    CyberCampus is where teachers and other education professionals create, shape, and participate in their own professional community.

    National Center for Education and the Economy
    This organization offers professional development assistance tailored to implementing standards-based reform efforts.

Other PD Activity Areas of Interest
See information on professional development activities specific to the following areas.

    Quilt
    Staff development program designed to increase students' true thinking time by helping teachers improve their classroom questioning techniques. (AEL)

    Professional Development for the Middle Grades

      What Works in the Middle: Results-based Staff Development
      Read reviews of specific staff development programs.

      Maryland Department of Education - Better Practices: What Have We Learned About Good Instruction?
      A resource to assist teachers in expanding and refining their repertoire of teaching strategies and to guide instructional planning and decisionmaking.

    Parental and Community Leadership

      Family of Learners Resource Guide
      A compilation of information, research, articles, and activities to promote student learning for educators, parents, and community leaders.

    School-to-Work Initiatives


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