The Root of School Innovation

As a member of the Learning Forward Foundation board, I am part of a team exploring a think tank for innovation. “We are inviting leadership teams to engage in the Learning Forward Foundation’s year-long Innovation Think Tank Challenge. Innovation within our educational systems is important for ensuring that we meet the needs of each child […]

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Transition to Middle School

I have continued my work presented in an earlier blog exploring the transition for students from elementary school settings to middle schools. As part of prepping grade five and six teachers working with instructional coaches to plan purposeful actions, we asked sixth grade students to record on Flip-Grid Video their responses to these questions: As a […]

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Focusing on Learning

How do school leaders continuously guide the flow of teacher conversations, PLC’s and planning from a focus on teaching to a focus on learning? How do they focus on what they see and hear students doing rather than on what they see teachers doing? I was recently asked to provide some input on work that […]

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Scaling Teachers Up or Cutting Them Loose?

I was recently facilitating a conversation with K-5 administrators and instructional coaches regarding the learning experiences they wanted students to be experiencing. At one point, someone said that they would have to “scale teachers up” for this to happen. In a few moments, someone else suggested that it wasn’t about “scaling up” but more about […]

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Teacher Leaders—Middle Leaders

I was asked to facilitate a day-long session of middle leaders for a K12 school. As I gathered information about the participants, I found that they all taught full time with some duty- free periods. The elementary leaders oversaw a curriculum (math, science, etc.) and therefore worked with all the teachers in the school. The […]

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How Mastery Oriented Are Your PLC Conversations?

If we recorded the conversations during your PLCs, how much of the language would be identified as being mastery oriented vs self-limiting? In our classrooms, we would label these student statements as self-limiting: I tell my parents about an assignment late on Sunday, they help me with it a lot more than if I start […]

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Steve Barkley

For the past 30 years, Steve has served as a consultant to school districts, teacher organizations, state departments of education, and colleges and universities nationally and internationally, facilitating the changes necessary for them to reach students and successfully prepare them for the 21st century. Read more…