Friday, September 2, 2011

Collaboration


Collaboration
According to Wikipedia "Collaboration is working together to achieve a goal, but in its negative sense it is working as a traitor." Dictionary.com states, the act or process of collaborating or a product resulting from collaboration: This dictionary is a collaboration of many minds.
The word is thrown around a lot. Singers and rappers collaborate on tracks, bosses collaborate with workers and students collaborate with each other when learning. Collaboration, like its definitions can have a positive and negative effect. Working together to achieve a goal is a great idea and anyone who has ever tired to collaborate on anything knows it is not easy, it takes time, effort, patience, leadership, guidance, time, patience, effort and patience. Just putting people in a room and expecting collaboration does not work right away. Everyone needs to feel safe enough to share, and be wrong and confident enough to stand up when they are right. All collaborators need to be able to compromise. This week at East we have started our redesigned team meetings. Teachers have 60 minutes per cycle to collaborate. Team leaders are in charge of planning agendas and that job will not be easy. One team leader stated that focus of this meeting should be, "What can we do in the next 60 minutes to impact students?" Another talked about my idea to break the meeting down into "DIPS" (D-data, I-instruction, P-parents, S-students). If we focus the meeting around those four areas, we must be impacting students. Data can be interpreted in many ways and if you use it to inform you arguments it helps create a safe and professional discussion instead of an "I told you so argument". Instruction should be the focus of teachers. Traditionally the teacher in the classroom by themselves and makes their own additions or deletions to their lesson plans. Using this time to discuss instruction and share with other will help all teachers better their craft. Parents can expect more communication from SEMS-East teachers this year, they can also expect a hopefully regular Blog post from the principal. Students are always our focus and being able to discuss a student with all his core teachers at the table will assist in making the connection and providing the support that all us need. I am excited by the enthusiasm shown by the leaders and teachers. I expect some great things this year but I understand that it will take time, effort, patience, leadership, guidance, time, patience, effort and patience

Search This Blog