10 Tips for Professional Development

Seek Opportunities

  • Follow the Leaders
    Seek out the blogs written by experts in the field, addressing topics of interest to you. If these leaders are on Twitter, become a follower!

  • Join a Community
    Take advantage of Learning Networks that extend beyond the walls of your school building. Share, discuss, and problem solve as a member of a LinkedIn Community, Google Hangout, or through an in house discussion forum you create using a tool like SharePoint.

  • It Takes a Team 
    Attend off-site professional development opportunities as a team, whether grade level or vertical, which allows you to support one another in your attempts at implementation when returning to your building or district.

    10 Tips for Professional Development
  • Be Economical
    Participate in no or low cost webinars without leaving the comfort of “home”. Many webinars are even archived so if you cannot participate live, you can still access the information.

  • See and Be Seen
    Don’t underestimate the power of peer observations! The chance to talk about our practice is an often underutilized learning opportunity especially when working on the implementation of new strategies. Make It Personal

  • Student Needs
    Analyze assessment data to determine which area will result in the greatest improvement in student achievement. Seek professional development opportunities that provide evidence based strategies. Leave every PD experience with 2-3 items you plan to take action on including what you plan to do and by when.

  • Self-Reflection
    Consider what area is of the greatest concern in your teaching of reading. Target this as a high priority for professional development.

  • Be Focused 
    Identify a well-defined need, which is usually more productive than addressing multiple topics. Once defined, divide topics of interest and need among grade level team members. Seek information from scholarly articles and events, and share what you’ve learned.

  • Be Selective
    Ask yourself, “How does this fit?” Choose professional development opportunities that complement and align with district and state standards.

  • Communicate
    Convey your professional development needs and interests to appropriate district personnel. Request opportunities that will facilitate the transfer of knowledge from training to application.