Online PLC: Building A Community of Learners

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Heinemann Professional Development is excited to continue our Online PLC (professional learning community) as we get back in the swing of school this fall. Look for new content each week and join in the conversation! This week, we take a look at a chapter from Subjects Matter by Harvey "Smokey" Daniels and Steve Zemelman.

“Good teachers know instinctively that the work of teaching runs even deeper than that. We need to make the classroom a community where they help and learn from one another instead of working only as isolated individuals.”

When we discuss building classroom community, common themes arise such as choice, trust, student interest, inquiry and personal connections. Yet, no matter how many times we consider these themes, we often still walk through our classroom door and allow schedule and curricular pressure to push aside what we know to be true: a classroom with strong community will be a place where students take risks and are more engaged in learning.

This week we have a chapter from Harvey "Smokey" Daniels and Steve Zemelman’s book Subjects Matter. The beauty of this chapter is that it is practical. The authors share strategies, as you might expect, but they also weave in threads of advice, supported with real classroom examples to help the reader visualize how to create classroom community.

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Click here to download the PDF

Take a look back through the examples shared in this chapter. Now that you have had time to connect with and begin to know your students, which one of these pieces might work the best with your learners? Make the commitment to keep at least one these strategies or ideas in the forefront of your mind throughout the year to build—and sustain—the community of learners before you.

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Learn more from Harvey “Smokey” Daniels and four additional Heinemann authors through TWO fabulous professional development opportunities:

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Wondering where to connect online? Start by signing up below for Heinemann's Online PLC 2015–16! Each week, we'll share content from the Heinemann Digital Library as food for thought and discussion. Our conversations can occur in comments here on the blog, on Twitter using #OnlinePLC or in our Facebook Group. Looking forward to a year of sharing content, conversation and #OnlinePLC camaraderie!

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