Is my teaching working?
What about fidelity to the instructional model?
Those are tricky questions to answer because there are so many variables in any equation seeking to measure instruction. Process. Product. Growth. Learning. Knowledge. Evidence. The list continues and grows quickly when adding in all forms of literacy!
What might a path to studying implementation look like?
10 years ago, I
might have believed that implementation study began with an initial study of the frequency of teaching moves and then moved on to consideration of the results as one part in an intermediate study of implementation. We counted. We checked. We logged and logged and logged. That was the type of process we were using in our state. In the case of repeated reading, it might have looked something like this.
We would have collected the data from self-reporting, from classroom observations, leadership team observations, and from principal walk throughs to confirm this before we moved to another level of implementation. We would have been monitoring student growth, but it wouldn’t have been a major focus YET!
Instead today, I would probably ask teachers to begin first with a self- rating, similar to this one, to determine the teacher’s perception of both their understanding and their role in instruction.
This study of teacher’s perception of their instruction would be one way of considering some starting points and setting personal goals for teachers for future professional learning. Some work needs to be done collaboratively across a grade level, some needs to be done vertically in order to strengthen the connections and expectations for students, while some needs to be done in smaller groups, with a partner or individually. Just as we consider how time is spent for students, so must we be thoughtful about how we organize teacher learning time as well. These three structures could drive purposeful study!
The key to moving through the levels on this second data collection tool is that it is student-centered and allows for data collection around what students are doing as a result of instruction AND in response to instruction. It’s quite simply better aligned to instruction than a single summative assessment that results in a number. Instead it includes the actions and habits that increase student learning.
The second tool is also “less rigid” about a lock step set of directions “1- 5 Do This” in spite of or without any regard for the students in front of the teacher. Or without any differentiation for the student who is “almost at the target” in comparison to the student who is just learning the skill.”
What professional learning would be your focus?
What do you use as “targets” for professional learning?
Who sets the goals?
How do you know when the students are learning?
Big picture: Research + Purposeful Instruction + Students’ Deep Learning + Professional Learning = Student Success