Being able to develop a culture of collaboration and high student achievement requires rigorous curriculum development at the school and district levels. Curriculum and instruction work together to enhance student learning. Curriculum revolves around what is taught in school and instruction centers around how something is taught. (Sorenson, 2011, p. 32-35) To be more specific instruction can be defined as, “the strategies, techniques, materials, media, and place where the curriculum is implemented in schools.” If instruction, or the how, of a teacher does not match up to the curriculum, or the what, then student achievement will suffer. Vertically and horizontally aligning curriculum with the instruction that is happening within the classroom and school will in the end lead to greater student achievement which will be reflected on student assessments. (Sorenson, 2011, p.
The evidence shows that teachers from OECD countries are much more likely to visit classrooms of other teachers and be involved in instructional collaboration than teachers in the United States (Wei, Darling-Hammond, Andree, Richardson, & Orphanos, 2009, p. 12).
Teacher Collaboration measures the degree to which teachers engage in constructive dialogue that furthers the educational vision of the school.
I approach collaboration as a team player, and I believe students need more than one person to guide them to their full educational potential. Also, active and prepared participation of weekly PLC meetings with the teachers of my special education students to plan collaborative curriculum have increased results in math and reading substantially. Participating in co-teaching furthers my repertoire of knowledge to assist my students. I have learned a vast amount from sharing and consulting with colleagues regarding students, observing mentoring teachers, and planning activities to ensure growth in students.
Collaboration supports children to engage meaningfully with each other. When children collaborate with their teachers and peers, they effectively combine together to join in a deep and wilful desire to co-labour or unpack a series of events on topics of interest and importance. Collaboration has the capacity to provide rich learning environments for children with diverse, corresponding motivations and learning practices. It also produces new engaging challenges and opportunities for children to express their thoughts and feelings. These combine to enrich and transform the relationships children have with the subject material and enhance their relationships with peers and
Collaborative efforts have created more cross-curricular focus throughout the school. When teachers know what each other are teaching, they can support each other in their own curriculum.
Teach for America has an organizational culture of Teamwork. Kopp (2011) writes about teachers committed to making a difference. She tells stories of teachers becoming involved with families, providing tutoring outside of the school day, and being strong inspiring leaders in the districts they are working in. They encourage families they work with to pursue good educations. (p. 158)
Collaboration between teachers is a key component to professional development that will lead to higher student achievement. There is a need for schools to set up time for teachers to be able to collaborate together. This allows for teachers to help each other, matchup content, teach each other new and best practices, troubleshoot student issues just to name a few of the areas that collaboration time can help foster within a school. The key is to build time for teachers to be able to collaborate during the school day or week. This collaboration time needs to be between grade levels, departments, and cross curricular when needed. For many schools this is an afterthought to the school schedule or a fleeting thought after the master schedule is completed. A principal needs to keep an open mind to any strategy that will enable the teachers to be able to collaborate for the good of the students and the school.
Traditionally, teacher development typically occurs through trial and error in the isolated confinements of each teacher’s classroom with some periodic whole-group professional development (Goddard & Goddard, 2007). Within the past few decades, many schools and districts, including ours, have considered and experimented with Professional Learning Communities (PLC) as an alternative framework in guiding a more efficient development program for their teachers. PLCs are focused on enhancing student learning through developing teacher practices. The concept of PLC relies on using structured collaborative sessions amongst teachers within the school to build internal capacity. Through PLCs, teachers critically reflect on current
In the world of education, many educators work together, not only for the benefit of student achievement, but to develop and spread new ideas to each other. When one speaks of collaboration in education, it simply means being in agreement. Collaboration is important and must be taken seriously by both cooperating parties because they are working together to create a new shared vision. While collaborating communication plays a major role because both parties must share in agreement of certain classroom issues, behavioral strategies, and instructional methods that will be going forth.
During my second preclinical experience at Westview Hills Middle School, I learned the importance of cooperation and collaboration among teachers at a school. I was able to observe team and department meetings during this experience. It became clear that it is important for teachers to work together in order to provide a positive atmosphere at a school and in a specific department. Although it became obvious that personalities and teaching styles were different throughout the school, the teachers still acted professionally and used each other as resources in
Hattie reminds us in his work, The Politics of Collaborative Expertise (2015) that people bring who they are and their unique points of view to collaboration, which underscores the need for creating safe places for people to “explore ideas, make and learn from errors” (p. 27) and be able to rely on the expertise of the group to solve problems. Hattie (2015) notes that educators have embraced the ideals of cooperative collaboration for
Fundamentally the role of the classroom teacher is to implement strategies to support, engage and extend the learning of all individuals. In order for this to occur we need to also consider how we involve, collaborate and communicate with parents, fellow colleagues and specialised teachers. Ashman and Elkins (2008) state that teachers need to make themselves aware of the support systems they can access or create to support the needs of all students. This in turn will ultimately enhance teaching potential allowing teachers to fully maximise learning for all. I personally believe that collaboration is not only essential to the professional growth of teachers (Cramer & Stivers, 2007), but a vital key when acting in the best interest of the students and their families.
“Teamwork fuels group spirit, develops process skills that help teachers interact in more productive ways, and fosters a more intellectual atmosphere.” (Maeroff, 1993).
Walking into the first two weeks of the EDU program I desired to experience what it would be like to be a future educator and have a grasp of how to help the molding of our youth and giving them the possibility to become future leaders. Doctor dresser was able to bring in a Concordia alumni who had just begun to experience his professional education, career and is teaching multiple different grade levels as a young teacher. When he first walked into the classroom my first impressions were that unfortunately he looked very inexperienced and unsure of what was to be expected of the lecture I thought to myself in the position of a younger student in his classroom this is a person I would not take seriously. He then proceeded to communicate