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Instructional Rounds in Education . A Network Approach To Improving Teaching and Learning Center Point High School . Instructional Rounds Learning Outcomes. To understand the purposes of instructional rounds To understand the potential of instructional rounds

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Instructional rounds in education

Instructional Rounds in Education

A Network Approach To Improving Teaching and Learning

Center Point High School

Instructional rounds learning outcomes
Instructional Rounds Learning Outcomes

  • To understand the purposes of instructional rounds

  • To understand the potential of instructional rounds

  • To develop clarity about the “instructional core”

  • To understand the function of a “problem of practice” in the instructional rounds process

  • To know the seven principals of the instruction core

Instructional rounds
Instructional Rounds

  • Instructional rounds sits at the intersection of three current popular approaches to the improvement of teaching and learning—

  • Walkthroughs

  • Networks

  • School Improvement Strategies

    • Instructional rounds is a way of focusing on the instructional core of teachers and students in the presence of content.

Instructional rounds1
Instructional Rounds

  • A tool for bringing focus to a school’s efforts to improve teaching and learning.

  • A discipline for descriptive observation.

  • A protocol for engaging in conversations about what high-quality instruction looks like.

  • A process for de-privatizing practice and building a community of shared practice.

Primary goals of instructional rounds
Primary Goals of Instructional Rounds

  • Instructional rounds build skills of observers by helping them come to a common understanding of effective practice and how to support it.

  • Instructional rounds support improvement by sharing what individuals learn during the observation and by building skills at the school level.

  • Instructional rounds help individuals sharpen their understanding of the instructional core and their personal theory of action about their role in improving it.

    Page100: Instructional Rounds

    Elizabeth A. City, Richard Elmore, Sarah Fiarman, and Lee Teitel

So the definition of instructional rounds is
So, The Definition of Instructional Rounds is….

  • The instructional rounds process is an explicit practice that is designed to bring discussion of instruction directly into the process of school improvement. By practice, we mean a set of protocols and processes for observing, analyzing, discussing, and understanding instruction that can be used to improve student learning. The practice is effective because it creates a common discipline and focus among practitioners with a common purpose and set of problems.

    Page 3: Instructional Rounds

    Elizabeth A. City, Richard Elmore, Sarah Fiarman, and Lee Teitel

The instructional core
The Instructional Core




Criteria for assessing a problem of practice
Criteria For Assessing A Problem of Practice

  • A problem of practice focuses on the instructional core.

  • A problem of practice is directly observable.

  • A problem of practice is actionable (is within the school’s control and can be improved in real time).

  • A problem of practice connects to a broader strategy of school improvement.

  • A problem of practice is high-leverage– if acted upon can make a significant difference in student learning.

Instructional rounds in education

The Seven Principles

Of The Instructional Core

Principle i
Principle I

  • Increases in student learning occur only as a consequence of improvements in the levels of content, teachers’ knowledge and skills and student engagement.

    • Only three ways to improve student learning.

      • Increase the teacher’s level of knowledge and skill.

      • Increase the level of content that students are asked to do.

      • Change the role of the student to ensure student engagement.

Principle ii
Principle II

  • If you change any single element of the instructional core, you have to change the other two.

    • If we assign high-level text or complex problems, then we cannot structure student learning around fill-in-the-blank worksheets.

Principle iii
Principle III

  • If you can’t see it in the core, it is not there.

    • Student performance is a result of the teaching that is going on in the classroom and the tasks that students are asked to do.

    • Teaching causes learning.

Principle iv
Principle IV

  • Task predicts performance.

    • What predicts performance is what students are doing daily.

    • Observing academic tasks, predicting what students will know as a consequence of what they are being asked to do, and providing guidance will assist students in performing at higher levels.

Principle v
Principle V

  • The real accountability system is in the tasks that the students are asked to do.

    • There is a connection between doing the right thing and knowing the right thing to do.

    • If instruction and performance are to improve, we must know what the actual practice must look like to get the expected results at the school level.

Principle vi
Principle VI

  • We learn to do the work by doing the work, not by having done the work at some time in the past, and not by hiring experts who can act as proxies for our knowledge about how to do the work.

    • In education, we must engage in professional practice.

    • We need to know what high-level instruction looks like.

Principle vii
Principle VII

  • Description before analysis, analysis before prediction, prediction before evaluation.

    • We describe what we see utilizing a common language.

    • Analysis is getting people to work at grouping what they see into agreed upon categories and start to make some judgments about how the categories are related to each other.

Principle vii continued
Principle VII (Continued)

  • Prediction is learning to use the evidence of observation and the analysis to make causal arguments about what kind of student learning we would expect to see as a consequence of the instruction we have observed.

  • Evaluation of practice is not in terms of “good”, “mediocre”, or “bad” teaching, because we want practitioners to think about the process of improvement as a clinical practice. We simply determine the next level of work in the classroom or in the school.

Supporting the next level of work
Supporting The Next Level of Work

  • There is a need for a tool to focus and define efforts to improve practice.

  • Focus on the importance of thinking in cause-and-effect terms.

Observations focuses on the instructional core
Observations Focuses on the Instructional Core

  • The kind of observing that we are talking about focuses not on the teachers themselves, but on the teaching, learning, and content of the instructional core. What is the task that the students are working on?

  • In what specific ways are the teacher and the students interacting in relation to the task?

  • What is the evidence that you see—not what you thing about what you see?

    Page 84: Instructional Rounds

    Elizabeth A. City, Richard Elmore, Sarah Fiarman, and Lee Teitel

The new focus on classroom walkthroughs
The New Focus On Classroom Walkthroughs

  • What are the students doing and saying?

  • What is the instructional task?

  • What is the teacher doing and saying?

Excellent instruction a point of view by wagner
Excellent Instruction: – A Point of View by Wagner

  • “Excellent instruction is less about what a teacher does, and more about what students can do and know as a result of the lesson.”

Personal theory of action
Personal Theory of Action

  • Use the Alabama Continuum for Teacher Development to indentify an underused area of teacher practice that has the potential of increasing student engagement and learning.

Personal theory of action an if then statement
Personal Theory of ActionAn “If…, then…”Statement

  • A personal theory of action is a cause-and-effect statement between what an individual does and the results for student learning and achievement.

Elmore s framework for a theory of action
Elmore’s Framework For A Theory of Action

  • It begins with an “if” statement that defines the actions an individual can take or the behaviors to which one might commit to impact student learning and achievement.

Elmore s framework for a theory of action1
Elmore’s Framework For A Theory of Action

  • The statement concludes with a “then” statement (or statements) that describe(s) the impact one expects his or actions or behaviors to have on students and their learning.

Elmore s framework for a theory of action2
Elmore’s Framework For A Theory of Action

  • Both the “if” and the “then” statements must be testable; that is, you must be able to collect evidence to determine whether or not both the “if” and the “then” statements occur as predicted.

Elmore s framework for a theory of action3
Elmore’s Framework For A Theory of Action

  • The statement must be open ended; that is, it must prompt you to reflect on and modify your actions as you learn more about the consequences.

Sample teacher theory of action
Sample Teacher Theory of Action

“If I teach students how to formulate quality questions related to my subject area, and if I provide students with time and opportunities for practice, then students will ask questions that will engage them in thinking about content at higher levels, and student achievement will increase.”