Monday, March 17, 2008

Focusing on a Gradual Release of Responsibility

Doug Fisher, San Diego State University, held an outstanding session on gradual release of responsibility and how he trains districts to make this theory come alive in the classroom. The presentation included discussions on the prupose and modeling of lessons; guided instruction to differentiate, collaborative learning, and independent practice.

Most models include modeling, guided practice and independent practice and skip over the collaborative practice, which is where the student learning and thinking occur.

This session offered many insights on this process and made us truly reflect on our practice as professional development trainers. All too often we jump through the hoops to present our content, and don't include these steps along the way. This might be one reason that we sometimes don't see the changes we would like to see. It is a slow process, but if you follow the steps, you might actually see the understanding occur more quickly. Sounds easy, but remember, it does take time.


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I think responsibility is a concept or doctrine, according to which individuals are to be held responsible for other people's actions by tolerating, ignoring, or harboring them, without actively collaborating in these actions.

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