The first 10-15 minutes of any professional learning session provide an opportunity to set the stage for thinking, wondering, and sharing. Before you jump into the content, grease the participants’ thinking cogs by demonstrating a discrepant event. Here’s an example that we’ve used:
While a discrepant event is a fun way to begin, the impact of activities can be fleeting, so provide some time for participants to explore the cognitive activity that the discrepant event provoked. Questions such as: What did they expect? What questions did the activity bring to mind? How did they explain the outcome? After the discussion, encourage your colleagues to keep a questioning and wondering mindset alive throughout the upcoming session.
Here’s another idea that begins a professional learning session with a focus on thinking and questioning. Here’s one of our videos that demonstrate the power of an ambiguous image.
Introductions to professional learning sessions such as these are designed to set the stage for learning. Once the stage is set for thinking, the content begins.
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