Thursday, March 17, 2016
My fuel tank is empty.
I spent the day facilitating a professional development lab day in a colleague's classroom. This year, Sarah hosted a series of three lab experiences looking at differentiation through flexible small groups. As a model classroom teacher, she is expected to open her classroom to groups of teachers looking to improve their practice. As the literacy coach, I am expected to facilitate these days.
But in a good way.
We spent the morning discussing formative assessment strategies we've tried, our attempts at flexible, needs-based grouping, and then listening to Sarah discuss her plans for the day. We talked about what we would look for when we were in the classroom with the children.
The afternoon was spent debriefing our observation, discussing an article from a professional journal, and then examining student work to determine what Sarah will do with her students tomorrow.
My brain hurts.
We talked about possibility. We talked about giving two students who often struggle a chance to shine and teach their peers something tomorrow. We talked about when to teach a whole-class lesson and when to teach in small groups, depending on what students need. We talked about our own insecurities and doubts that we are doing it "right."
Tomorrow, we'll reconvene and spend more time with Sarah and her students. We'll learn some things together. We'll talk about what we take back into our own classrooms.
We'll be drained.
But also energized.