- Amid a 1:1 Chromebook deployment, California's Tulare Joint Union High School District addressed the need for a significant amount of professional development by gamifying its approach for a more fun and engaging experience for educators, according to EdTech: Focus on K-12.
- In order to do this, the district had to remove silos around professional training so coaches across subject areas could collaborate, assemble a single instructional vision, and find an approach to professional development that teachers were excited about.
- The gamified, "microlearning" approach that the district adopted also necessitated well-rounded PD design and ongoing support through a flexible online component and prizes for top-performing teachers.
The days of "one-size-fits-all" in education are as done for in teacher professional development as they are in a classroom full of students. Not only is it important to ensure everyone is engaged, but educators must also be trained using the approaches they're being asked to incorporate in their own classrooms, giving them firsthand experience on what it's like to learn through these models.
Microlearning approaches have become increasingly popular in PD in recent years due to their ability to provide educators with additional training in areas they need or want to improve in the most, without requiring their peers to undergo the same training if it's redundant for them. In some cases, this approach can save the district more money than it would under traditional "sit-and-get," mass lecture programs, and it's likely to foster greater enthusiasm and buy-in from the teachers participating in it — a win-win for all involved.