Chapter 1 suggests that a shift in teaching practice is similar to a new weight loss program—both endeavors require commitment, time, and support. Support is important because it will increase collective efficacy and make it more likely that all teachers will continue to implement UDL, even when moving through phases similar to those new teachers go through. In the text, I encourage teachers to form or participate in PLCs in their own schools to enlist other teachers to implement UDL simultaneously, so you can channel the Biggest Loser to use effective, research based practices to keep your practice in tip top shape. As I noted in the book, UDL is a lifestyle change – it’s not a fad diet. You have to make real, long-term changes in your practice.
If you have a group of like-minded teachers already, you may consider meeting before or after school to view the presentations for each chapter and peer review each others’ lessons. If you’d like to join a virtual PLC, connect with other UDL educators on Twitter using the hashtag #UDLchat
At your first meeting, it would be awesome to not only learn about best practices in PLCs, but also review WHY UDL is necessary to transform learning. View this short video presentation I recorded, which includes an embedded presentation, on how UDL helps to transform teaching and learning.
- Explore aspects of PLCs, including evidence of their efficacy, at All Things PLC
- Learn more about Best Practices for Professional Learning Communities
- Read about PLCs as an example of Systems Thinking in Professional Learning Communities: The Key to Improved Teaching and Learning
- YouTube video on Functional vs Dysfunctional PLCs
- Hear from teachers in Supporting Individual Professional Development
- Teachers and administrators talk about PLCs in Learning for the Future – Professional Learning Communities
Another great way to help build your PLC is to institute instructional rounds. You may want to explore a little more about instructional rounds and consider how you can collaborate with other teachers to implement UDL while improving your practice. Select one or more of the resources below to learn more about Instructional Rounds and their ability to improve teacher practice.
- If you’d like a more detailed explanation of what UDL Rounds are, and how to implement them, view the complete protocol for Instructional Rounds, including the observation forms used in classrooms.
- Here is a PDF of a article on instructional rounds and on how to implement UDL Rounds. Provides a nice overview of the purpose and the process.
- 7 minute video on how to implement Instructional Rounds, Collaborating to Improve Instruction: Instructional Rounds