Monday, March 19, 2012

Unraveling Staff Development

Summer is just around the corner and that means.....Summer Staff Development!

We are building our catalog now!

Let me brag a bit about summer staff development. It is my favorite time of the year!

Teachers love our staff development. We get the best comments. We offer a wide-range of topics and make them EVENTS. We give cheezy door prizes and provide snacks for everyone. Our topics have interesting titles and our promotional videos and flyers encourage creativity and fun. 

Our events look effortlessly strung-together. On the back-end, there is a lot of planning and cultivating. I plan sessions based on high-level and low-level technology users. I actually think of specific people in the district and try to predict what they will get from the training.

My PD runs smoothly. It looks effortless but only because so much effort went in behind-the-scenes.

Staff evaluation comments about each session are taken into account for more training. Staff appreciate the humor and candor in the trainings. They appreciate how we not only showcase a resource but we also provide lessons on how to integrate them.

Having said all that, I've decided to change things up this year. I am planning to only offer 1 day of Staff Development in our Techpalooza event on June 4. After that, all other "Joel Adkins" tech-trainings will be available in the form of eCourses.

eCourses will be able to be completed by individual or groups of staff. Our eCourses will use a variety of online learning tools with questions to help teachers not just learn a new tool, but challenge them to implement and evaluate classroom effectiveness.

Training scenarios will incorporate videos, blogs, discussion questions, calendars, and a host of interactive modeling tools on the different topics so staff can become acquainted with new resources and methods for classroom implementation. An evaluation tool will be used to help discover the effectiveness of the resource in classroom instruction and student learning.

As stated before, we are offering these courses for individual access, small group, department group, grade-level groups, etc. to encourage staff collaboration in learning in an e-learning environment. 

There are many other training opportunities for those accustomed to "sit-and-get" types of training during summer. I am sure there are other tech staff who will provide some hands-on training with SMART Boards and eduphoria! tools as well. Not all sessions will be in eCourse mode.

We are putting these together now and hope to have them in the catalog by early April as choices. All the workday Staff Development offerings for early August will be integrated into eCourses as well. Staff will be able to take the Responsible Use Agreement, Blood-Borne Pathogen, Sexual Harassment, and other mandatory trainings online in eCourses for professional development credit.

Ideas or comments about summer PD are welcome!

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