What to put in the CPD pot?

21 01 2013
Photo by @purple_steph #eltpics

Photo by @purple_steph #eltpics

As well as everything else, the start of the year also means working on and kicking off a new programme of teacher development sessions.

What elements should a good programme include? Here are some thoughts:

collaboration and interaction / workshops

peer support and inclusiveness / swapshops

shared knowledge and experience / insets and peer observations

relevant input and practical outcomes / instantly useable ideas

outside expertise / invited speakers

challenge for the participants

challenge for the trainers

enquiry, research, reflection

choice of topics and consultation

non-compulsory attendance, but incentive

As mentioned here, I believe in self directed professional development, but as the DOS I need to provide a framework and the conditions for people to develop within, for people to find their own way. At my school, I’d like to say that we are building a learning culture – I think we can always keep developing, and I think that somehow teachers who are learning make better teachers, but more on that in a future post…

So I was thinking about what topics and themes to include in this year’s TD programme, and I thought I’d look back to recap on what we did in 2012.

TD sessions in 2012

  • Putting Reflection into Practice
  • Exploiting and extending materials – with Speak Out author, Antonia Clare
  • Demanding more in Conversation classes
  • IATEFL Report – feedback from 4 colleagues (2 who presented, 2 who attended the conference)
  • Lesson plans and resources Swapshop 1
  • The 3 Rs – Review, Reformulate, Recycle
  • Teaching Unplugged  – with co-author, Luke Meddings
  • Making the most of the coursebook
  • Teaching unplugged in practice
  • Lesson plans and resources Swapshop 2
  • Business English for the uninitiated
  • On the tip of your tongue – pronunciation workshop
  • Using the iPad
  • Using the Flipcam
  • Using the Speak Out Activebook
  • Attending to students with special learner needs
  • Methodology: Putting theory into practice
  • The board: a teacher’s best friend
  • Demand High 1
  • Demand High 2
  • Business English for the initiated

After finishing this list, I thought – hmm, that looks pretty impressive!

But momentarily I wonder – what did it all add up to? what did it achieve? are the teachers teaching better lessons? are the students making better progress? are we achieving a culture of learning?

On balance, I have to believe that we are; better to have these sessions, these opportunities, than not to have any at all. And then the rest should follow.

So, back to 2013…what ingredients to throw in the pot for this year?

What’s going into your CPD pot?

Photo by @ij64 #eltpics

Photo by @ij64 #eltpics

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