The goal of every teacher is to be effective for his/her students. Effectiveness is measured both by data and knowing students well-enough to know when learning is taking place. There is a science and art to making powerful learning happen for students. Teaching teachers how to be effective is both a science and an art, too.
When Moberly School District started the S.H.I.N.E. program as an avenue for supporting beginning teachers, it was important to use research and experience to determine focused practices for beginning K-12 teachers. These had to be practices that could be carried out in the classroom quickly and then developed upon being introduced. Besides having the people in place to mentor and support beginning teachers, providing quality professional development with follow-up was critical, too. Dr. John Hattie, an international and highly acclaimed researcher in education, produced twenty years of research to identify “What impacts student learning the most?” His work, and others educational research and work, was a starting point for best practices and providing professional development for beginning teachers.
The primary focus chosen from research was using learning targets to share the learning goal with students and make them a partner in learning. Beginning teachers were willing to learn together and discover the successes and challenges of implementing research in the classroom. The new teachers grew to recognize that a process as simple, yet complex when done well, was having an impact on student engagement and learning in the classroom. Simply put, when students knew what they were supposed to be learning that day and what it looked like when they learned it, they became more invested in their learning. As the enthusiasm for this practice and visible evidence of student engagement grew, several building principals recognized it as an important practice for all classrooms. This example of inspired teaching and visible learning practices was shared with Dr. John Hattie and his team of associates upon request. Moberly School District was chosen as only two districts in the United States and among 15 in the entire world to be an example of visible learning implementation. Moberly School District became an example for the education world of a research based practice that when done well, creates results for student engagement and learning.
Moberly School District's SHINE Program is featured in an article for teachers.net Gazette, March 2014, authored by Harry and Rosemary Wong.