PLC’s and CoP’s – How will they work for your classroom?

What are you involved in, A Professional Learning Community (PLC) or a Community of Professionals (CoP)? Either way, both help to foster a supportive and collaborative environment for professional growth and development. The advent of technology has made it far more easy to engage in and become an active member of a PLC or CoP. Learning communities can be created around interests. Huang states “If users can find those who share the same interests with them and interact with each other, innovation of knowledge a new world can be inspired by collective intelligence” (Huang, p.7). Gone are the days of becoming the all-knowing guru of your field, or being one of the few enlightened experts. Sharing our knowledge helps to develop stronger communities, which in turn help to foster positive professional growth and development.

In terms of education, PLC’s are starting to be adopted by public K12 schools, in the hopes that it will offer its students a more holistic, supportive and knowledgable approach to learning. Schools like Pioneer Middle School in Tusitn, California have recently shifted over to a PLC, where teachers work in groups to establish common ground, share ideas, interpret data, discuss individual student performance, and provide support for each other to give their students the best education possible (Adams, p.1). For Nonnewaug High School in Woodbury, CT technology has officially made its way into the daily routines of many students and staff. In the Digital Design courses students will develop online portfolios that showcase their skills and abilities. The intent of these portfolios is to share them with potential colleges or universities. Now-a-days it is so important for students to advocate for themselves, especially in a field where there is no sustainable and secure job market. A PLC will be formed by this activity because students can engage in discussions about their own work and their peers work, as well as gain a professional perspective from potential clients.

How might you create a classroom sized PLC in your school? What technology will you use to integrate 21st century learning skills while fostering a positive learning community? How might you extend the PLC outside of the walls of your classroom? What impact do you think it will have on your student learning?

Here are some helpful tips and tricks on how to establish and build a professional online portfolio. This is an activity that can extend beyond the walls of an art classroom.

http://www.1stwebdesigner.com/design/creating-online-portfolio-tools-inspirations/

Getting your portfolio put together is half of the battle, especially when you are trying to decide what pieces to keep and take out. Here it from the professionals. Here are some tips on what to do, what not to do, and why portfolio reviews are important.

http://designshack.net/articles/business-articles/tips-and-advice-for-a-design-portfolio-review/

References:

Adams, C. (2009). THE POWER OF COLLABORATION. Instructor, 119(1), 28-31.

Huang, J. S., Yang, S. H., Yueh-Min, H., & Hsiao, I. T. (2010). Social Learning Networks: Build Mobile Learning Networks Based on Collaborative Services. Journal Of Educational Technology & Society, 13(3), 78-92.

Fine arts starts with a creative idea. *Original Photograph: Leigh Anne Coles
Fine art starts with a creative idea.
*Original Photograph: Leigh Anne Coles
Get inspired! *Original Photograph by Leigh Anne Coles
Get inspired!
*Original Photograph by Leigh Anne Coles
Bring your fine art to a digital space! *Original Photograph by Leigh Anne Coles
Bring your fine art to a digital space!
*Original Photograph by Leigh Anne Coles
Create and maintain an online presence! *Original Photograph by Leigh Anne Coles
Create and maintain an online presence!
*Original Photograph by Leigh Anne Coles

Happy Creation! I look forward to hearing your ideas! Let’s get inspired together!

-Leigh Anne

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2 thoughts on “PLC’s and CoP’s – How will they work for your classroom?

  1. Leigh-anne- you posed the question: How might you create a classroom sized PLC in your school? What technology will you use to integrate 21st century learning skills while fostering a positive learning community? How might you extend the PLC outside of the walls of your classroom? What impact do you think it will have on your student learning?

    Hi Leigh-ann. I enjoyed reading your blog and would like to reflect on some of your questions that you have posted within. As far as I am concerned, if someone is an educator, then on a weekly basis they are creating PLC’s within their school. What fosters a positive learning community is the factor that educators can come together and share thoughts and ideas of how to foster a better learning experience for their students, as well as communicatively working with one another. Like you quoted, “If users can find those who share the same interests with them and interact with each other, innovation of knowledge a new world can be inspired by collective intelligence” (Huang, p.7). All educators become enlightened experts because they combine the strengths and weaknesses of the CoP all the while developing a stronger working community, which therefore builds a stronger school system. Sharing ideas and knowledge help educators embark on positive professional growth and development within their CoP’s.

    “The professional learning community model represents an organizational approach that emphasizes faculty commitment to a mission of ensuring student learning, high levels of collaboration, and regular reflection on student and school data (DuFour, 2004b) The goal is to find what type of support and intervention can best support the needs of the students, and what teachers can do to help improve the way that students learn so they have learned in a collective way. The best thing about PLCs is that together educators can share the issues they are experiencing within their classrooms, and then find ways to gather solutions without having to struggle about the concept because team members can produce these resolutions together.

    To extend the PLC’s outside of the classroom, “Traditionally, teacher improvement efforts at the district and school levels have manifested themselves under the formal designation of professional development, which typically comprises school-, district-, or conference-based workshops” (Graham, 2007, para.5). if PLC’s can be made known district wide, it gives educators a better advantage to acquire grander things such as budgetary allowances as well as other financial support; all of which can help aide and leave a beneficial impact on student learning for the future.

    Wonderful Blog!

    Marci M

    References

    DuFour, R. (2004b). What is a “professional learning community”? Educational Leadership, 61(8), 6-11.

    Huang, J. J. S., Yang, S. J. H., Huang, Y.-M., & Hsiao, I. Y. T. (2010). Social Learning Networks: Build Mobile Learning Networks Based on Collaborative Services. Educational Technology & Society, 13 (3), 78–92.

  2. How might you extend the PLC outside of the walls of your classroom?

    Technology has made it easier to extend a PLC beyond the classroom. An interactive text between students and teachers, teachers and parents, and teachers and administrators create opportunities to share information about a student’s success or areas that need development. The parent’s role is one of the most important and can be also one of the more frustrating issues faced with education. Their involvement is key; however, if there is little or no involvement, the teacher must step in to support the student. Nice blog!

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