9/30/19

10 Tips for Google Trainings and PD - GTT092

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Matt’s recent post: 27 tips to deliver powerful professional development

  • Share all sides of a tech tool: If you’re doing technology professional development, it’s always helpful for teachers to see the student side of a tool as well as the teacher side. If they can see how the initial setup works, that’s even better.
  • Go deep rather than wide: “60 apps in 60 minutes.” I’ve attended these sessions at conferences. I’ve delivered them! Many times, I think they’re “edu-tainment” more than actual professional development. It just creates a passing familiarity with lots of apps rather than actual implementation and change. I love to go deep — learn a new strategy or tool, practice it, discuss implementation — rather than wide. Sticking on one or two impactful ideas is powerful. It can empower teachers to be ready to start using a new idea when they leave rather than just knowing about it.
  • Use the meatloaf approach to PD: When we have meatloaf for dinner, my kids know what they are getting. They like the way meatloaf tastes. However, if my wife and I want to make the meatloaf a little more nutritious, we may grind up broccoli or cauliflower and sneak it into the mix. That way, they are getting the taste they want but also a little extra nutrition. Professional development should be the same way. If I’m talking about a teaching strategy or digital tool, I love to model it in a fun way. When I demonstrate Flipgrid, I ask teachers to record me videos of where I should eat dinner that evening. They learn the tool without even realizing they’ve learned it. The task can be fun and also teach them something. It’s kind of like mixing cauliflower into meatloaf.
  • Use the problem/solution framework: Ask yourself, “What are the problems these educators face? What’s the problem that this solves?” Then, use that as a guide. Show them how your ideas solve that problem for them.
  • They might forget what you said, but they won’t forget how you made them feel.” For many teachers, professional development is a drag. It makes them feel adequate. They might feel like the person leading PD doesn’t understand them and their situation. I take every opportunity to make them feel welcome. Appreciated. Capable. I smile a LOT. If someone struggles, I help them feel like the struggle is easily fixed. If they make a mistake, I help them to feel that it’s no big deal. If something goes wrong and it’s not their fault, I make sure they know it’s not their fault and they did everything as they were supposed to. Anxiety negatively affects our neurologically-based skills. Anything we can do to reduce anxiety — in adults and in children! — helps.

Kasey: How to Design Google PD That Works - a framework for trainers

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