Tuesday, March 13, 2012

PD in the Most Unlikely Places

A Post on Job-Embedded Professional Development for Teachers

Hi, readers. It's Jared Heath, here, once again.

To continue our conversation on job-embedded pd for teachers, I ran across something last night that I found curious. Actually, my wife found it. Seven weeks ago, my wife gave birth to our first child--a beautiful baby boy. She is now, understandably, highly intrigued by early learning, child psychology, and what makes little boys tick. Last night, she showed me this article: Parenting Boys: What Boys Need from Moms.

job-embedded professional development for teachers
from kelleyward.hubpages.com
As she read off some of the items in the article, I immediately (yes, immediately...some say I work too much) thought of you. Here's what the article offers:
  • "Recognize gender differences in brain development. The male brain according to Michael Gurian, needs time to “renew, recharge, and reorient itself between tasks by moving to what Dr. Ruben Gur has called a ‘rest state’. “ Boys need moms who appreciate the uniqueness of the male brain and how boys' brains need time to “recharge” throughout the day. Sons need moms to ensure they receive brain breaks during the day where they experience nature, listen to music, read, exercise, or draw."
  • "Understand his need for movement. Boys need moms to recognize their kinesthetic nature. Because boys’ brains often go into “rest states” they use movements like tapping a pencil or fidgeting to reorient.
  • "Engage in active play. Charades, monopoly, art, sports, digging for worms, climbing, swinging, exploring, or collecting rocks are different activities moms can join in with their sons. Moms can connect with boys love of adventure through story-telling, books, hide and seek, or unstructured play.

Oh, trust me. I know you aren't a parent to your students. There are some needs that parents can fulfill that a teacher never could.

However, there is a great deal of information in here that sure would have made my life as a teacher MUCH more bearable. Like the pencil tapping thing, for example. Not a single professional development session, job-embedded or not, told me about that. But it makes so much sense! If I replaced "mom" with "teacher" in several places in the article, then I have a treasure trove of child psychology information that would have helped me differentiate my instruction and read my class better.

So here's my question--how can you find professional development that is differentiated and really answers my questions? What does it take to actually receive the PD that you need? And how far does "job-embedded" go?

Those are my thoughts. Now I'd like to hear yours.

No comments:

Post a Comment