Reflection and Analysis Newsletter

Sasha Johnson

Collaborative Teaching

The teachers who participate in collaborative learning are using a cross disciplinary approach to teaching. Instead of two ELA teachers working together, there might be a science and social studies teacher working together. These teachers work together in one classroom to present a lesson that meets the needs of both core subjects. They are accountable to one another and work as a team to solve problems. The teachers work together to plan the lesson and decide who will be the lead and who will be the support. This is helpful so that the teachers aren't awkwardly talking over each other. It also ensures that if one teacher is the expert on something, they lead in areas that they are comfortable. From the student point of view, collaborative teams offers two sets of expert eyes and additional support. The teachers are able to meet with different members of the class and be more effective during there formative assessment because they have smaller groups to work with.

Inquiry Teams

With Inquiry Teams, several teachers work together to help one teacher at a time. The teacher that is being supported, takes to time present the student work that was completed to the inquiry team and explain what they wanted the students to get out of the assignment. The teacher identifies several target students and explains the struggles the student had with the assignment. The team is then given time to look over several pieces of student work. The other teachers on the inquiry team take the time to ask questions for clarification about the students or assignments. The teacher that is being focused on is given time to reflect and make changes to their lesson within the same day. The benefit of such a teams is that is allows for multiple perspectives on a lesson and gives the teacher ideas for how to improve an area where students are struggling. While they are focusing on just the one teacher, the other members of the inquiry team may reflect on a similar lesson that they have done and offer suggestions. Another strength is how quickly the teacher is able to use what the reflected on in the team meeting to inform instruction. The teacher can make a change to a lesson that same day while it is still fresh in there minds.

Practical Use

Which might be the most effective in delivering the plan you developed in Week Three?

Inquiry Teams would be most effective for delivering my professional development plan. The teams allow the focus to be on one teacher at a time but gives the perspective of 3 or more other teachers. This is very beneficial for both novice and veteran teachers as their fellow team mates may catch something critical that they are missing.

How utilizing student work as a focus guides the collegial dialogue and focus for teacher learning

Using student work as a focus helps to create a frame of reference for the dialogue. The teachers can point to various portions of student work as support for a point they are trying to make. The teachers are all able to look at the student work in a different way and reflect on the implications.


Collaborative Teaching for Interdisciplinary Learning. (n.d.). Retrieved September 12, 2016, from

Inquiry Teams. (n.d.). Retrieved September 12, 2016, from