Developing New Teacher Educators

A new brief from Education First outlines what teacher educators do and how they can be supported in their practice. To give all students great educational opportunities, we need outstanding teachers in our classrooms. But we can’t forget that, when participating in teacher preparation programs and professional development, teachers are students themselves-and they also need Read more about Developing New Teacher Educators[…]

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Differences in Performance WITHIN Schools: Why So Much Greater Than in Other Countries?

Recently in a Top Performers opinion piece in Education Week, Marc Tucker explored the reasons why differences in teacher performance within schools are so prevalent in America and more rare in other countries. Excerpts from the piece appear below: According to an OECD analysis of variation of student performance in science, between-school variation accounts for Read more about Differences in Performance WITHIN Schools: Why So Much Greater Than in Other Countries?[…]

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Three States Tried Micro-Credentials for Teachers: What they Learned

As state education agencies acknowledge, promote, and support the importance of professional development, they continue to search for effective professional learning opportunities for teachers. Micro-credentials—among the newer professional development methods—allow teachers to learn and demonstrate competency in bite-sized elements of instruction. Each micro-credential addresses a discrete set of educational practices. Educators can then weave these Read more about Three States Tried Micro-Credentials for Teachers: What they Learned[…]

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Teacher Professional Development Can Improve Student Achievement

A study released from the Learning Policy Institute demonstrates how well-designed teacher professional development programs significantly improve student achievement, challenging the logic behind the Administration’s proposal to eliminate funding for those programs. The new report, “Effective Teacher Professional Development,” reviewed 35 scientifically rigorous studies conducted over the past 30 years which showed significant gains in Read more about Teacher Professional Development Can Improve Student Achievement[…]

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Building and Supporting Improvers

In the Carnegie Commons blog, authors Jennifer Russell and Maggie Hannan explore how Networked Improvement Communities (NICs) can build educators’ capacity to use improvement science to learn from practice. Improvement science offers methods to guide disciplined inquiries that generate knowledge to improve practice. Improvement research—the inquiry processes that lie at its core—provides a set of Read more about Building and Supporting Improvers[…]

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Rethinking the Metaphors we Teach By

Andrew Wild, writing for Education Week Teacher, has offered a thoughtful examination of the metaphors utilized to speak about learning and suggests that changing our metaphors may help us to reimagine education. Excerpts of his piece appear below: Metaphors communicate the foundational ways we conceptualize others, our actions, and ourselves. Consider the knowing is seeing Read more about Rethinking the Metaphors we Teach By[…]

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Good to Great Study Series: “Investing in What it Takes to Move from Good to Great”

The Center on Great Teachers & Leaders (GTL Center) is out with the third report in a series designed to explore how great teachers have become the excellent educators they are today and what experiences and supports helped these teachers refine their practice over time. The first two reports explored the perspectives of National State Read more about Good to Great Study Series: “Investing in What it Takes to Move from Good to Great”[…]

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May Issue Brief: Professional Learning

Recent research reveals that although districts spend large amounts of money on professional development, PD has a poor reputation for actually improving instructional practice, and research shows that current approaches are not having the desired effect on teacher practice or student achievement. In the May issue brief from Core Education, we offer resources that provide Read more about May Issue Brief: Professional Learning[…]

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Professional Development Activities of U.S. Public School Teachers

A new report from the National Center for Education Statistics provides a snapshot of teacher professional development among U.S. public school teachers. The report uses data collected through the 2011–12 Schools and Staffing Survey (SASS) Public School Teacher Questionnaire. This report relies on data provided by public school teachers about their professional development activities. The Read more about Professional Development Activities of U.S. Public School Teachers[…]

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Five Unexpected Places where You can Learn to Be a Better Teacher

If you ever attend an amateur comedy contest, you’ll notice that beginning comics face some of the same classroom-management-style issues that pop up in an inexperienced teacher’s classroom. As with teaching, experienced comics can make “owning the room” look easy. That’s because they’ve had years to develop their material and practice fundamental skills like timing Read more about Five Unexpected Places where You can Learn to Be a Better Teacher[…]

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Igniting the Learning Engine

Igniting the Learning Engine, a new report from Education Resource Strategies, examines how leaders in four school systems have successfully re-organized resources to create the type of effective, job-embedded professional learning that teachers are asking for. The report describes three inter-related elements that these systems have in common: (a) Rigorous, comprehensive curricula and assessments aligned Read more about Igniting the Learning Engine[…]

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Practice What You Teach: Connecting Curriculum and Professional Learning in Schools

A new report by Ross Wiener and Susan Pimentel of the Aspen Institute makes the case for integrating curriculum into professional learning so teachers can focus on creating engaging learning environments, responding to the needs of their students, and continuously improving their craft. Practice What You Teach: Connecting Curriculum and Professional Learning in Schools  highlights Read more about Practice What You Teach: Connecting Curriculum and Professional Learning in Schools[…]

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Learning from Mixed Results: What’s Next for Teacher Professional Development?

Research from three studies has found that intensive, content-focused professional development (PD) improved teachers’ knowledge and some aspects of their practice, but did not improve student achievement. The studies are summarized by AIR in its brief, Does Content-Focused Teacher Professional Development Work? The PD examined in the three studies emphasized building teachers’ content knowledge and Read more about Learning from Mixed Results: What’s Next for Teacher Professional Development?[…]

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Meta-Analysis of Teacher Coaching

A new study authored by researchers from Brown and Harvard universities points to one promising strategy for helping current teachers improve: one-on-one coaching. Teacher coaching has emerged as a promising alternative to traditional models of professional development. Authors reviewed the empirical literature on teacher coaching and conducted meta-analyses to estimate the mean effect of coaching Read more about Meta-Analysis of Teacher Coaching[…]

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Study Finds Positive Impacts of Retired Educators to Support New Teachers

A new study finds that using retired educators to mentor and support new teachers can be a cost effective strategy to improve math achievement. Regional Educational Laboratory Central worked with Aurora Public Schools in Colorado to conduct a randomized controlled trial study in the 2013-14 and 2014-15 school years during implementation of the district’s innovative Read more about Study Finds Positive Impacts of Retired Educators to Support New Teachers[…]

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REL Report Series Helps Educators and Policymakers Implement Social and Emotional Learning Programs

A new series of reports summarizes what is known about social and emotional learning (SEL) and effective strategies that promote SEL for students ages 3-8. The four-part series is based on a literature review conducted by Regional Educational Laboratory (REL) Mid-Atlantic. Social and emotional learning is the process by which children and adults learn to Read more about REL Report Series Helps Educators and Policymakers Implement Social and Emotional Learning Programs[…]

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