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Thursday, February 23, 2012

Teacher leaders and teacher planning time

Today, just a few thoughts having to do with teachers...

First, there's a nice piece in my in-box today from Education Week about how to recognize if you are becoming a teacher leader. Author and National Board-certified teacher Marsha Ratzel lists these five tell-tale signs: 1) You wish you had an impact beyond your classroom; 2) Colleagues often ask you for advice; 3) You "think big" about problems; 4) You want to take new teachers under your wing; and 5) You always want to know more.

I imagine most teachers will say they need support from their school districts to pursue a path of teacher leadership. In that regard, the changes proposed for middle school teachers in the Little Rock School District will do just that by instituting three planning periods per day for teachers: one for individual preparation; another for team planning, supported by the use of data, to coordiate and plan lessons across subjects for a set of students; and the third to confer with teachers in the same subject area.

This additional focus on planning and teamwork no doubt offers lots of benefits for students and teachers alike.

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