Supporting Teachers in Practice

Professional Learning with the Hybrid Instructional Model

Using the Standards for Professional Learning with the Hybrid Instructional Model

For the past several years, the Manheim Central School District has embarked on a journey of working with educators to help them successfully implement the Hybrid Station Rotation Instructional Model into their everyday practice using the Learning Forward Standards for Professional Learning. Our program is completely voluntary for staff and has consistently received very high ratings from teachers who have participated in our integrated model of professional learning. The station rotation instructional model allows learners to actively engage in content and learning at various stations. The model uses an independent station, a collaborative station, and a direct station. In the independent station, a student would work on a task involving some type of online learning that matched content and ability.This can be personalized to meet the student's needs. In the collaborative station, learners work together to complete a task or some type of project and lastly; in the direct station, the teacher is able to work with a small group of students on a specific skill or teach a mini-lesson that is differentiated for the group in front of him/her.

Click HERE for information on various different ways that stations can look within the classroom.

Manheim Central has over 60% of K-12 staff trained in using the Hybrid Instructional Model. Each year, we include an additional cohort of teachers who volunteer to be a part of this training. This model of professional learning has been effective as teachers are well-supported and provided with the necessary structures and resources to implement the Hybrid Roatational Model into their teaching. Using the Standards of Professional Learning to make this successful and impactful for increasing student learning has been the norm in Manheim Central.

HLI - Hybrid Learning In Action

The Learning Forward Standards

The vison of Learning Forward is for "Excellent Teaching and Learning" to occur in our classrooms every day. There are seven Standards for Professional Learning that can help districts to implement successful professional learning for all educators. These standards were used in Manheim Central in order to help the Hybrid Station Rotational Model to have an impact on student learning and for teachers to feel and experience success in its' implementation. The seven standards are: Learning Communities, Leadership, Resources, Data, Learning Designs, Implementation, and Outcomes. Below, each standard is described and we will explain how Manheim Central used the Standards in its' successful implementation of the Hybrid Rotational Instructional Model.

Learning Communities and Leadership

Manheim Central's model for Professional Learning is grounded in the standards of: Learning Communities and Leadership. It is the belief of Learning Forward that increased educator effectiveness occurs "within learning communities that are commited to continuous improvement, collective responsibility, and goal alignment." (Learning Forward, 2011). At Manheim Central, the Hybrid Training begins with three initial training days of learning about the Hybrid Rotation Instructional Model at our local IU before the full year of implementation. The teachers who attend this initial training at the IU are then part of an ongoing Learning Community that meets four additional days throughout the year where they receive expert coaching from Liz Lubeskie, the Districts's Coordinator of Online Learning and Technology Integration. During these training dates, Liz Lubeskie is able to set goals with each teacher while modeling the three modalities: direct instruction, collaborative learning, and independent pathways.

In Learning Forward's vision for effective professional learning for all educators, Leadership plays a central role. We are fortunate at Manheim Central to have a leadership team that believes that developing capacity, advocating, and creating effective support systems for educators is essential for effective professional learning (Learning Forward, 2011). Within the Learning community, goals are established for the year and revisited at each Professional Learning Community Meeting. Shared leadership is ongoing and you can find leaders in the Hybrid Rotatiional Model at the district, school, and classroom level. The focus is on continuous improvement; not perfection. Learning facilitators have a growth mindset and are willing to take risks for student success.

Resources, Data, and Learning Designs

Prioritizing, monitoring, and coordinating resources for educator learning is essential for educator effectiveness and the improvement of student learning. (Learning Forward, 2011). At Manheim Central we had a plan for what we wanted to see in our classrooms. Manheim Central is looking for our learners to be "Wildly Excited" in coming to school each day. Creating this vision was successful in our support of the Hybrid Rotational Instructional Model. We believe that student engagement has been increased in classrooms that have implemented the Hybrid Instructional Model effectively. Thus, we have had to prioritize our resources, and allocate funding to make this a priority in the district. In addition, a variety of student, educator, and system data has been utilized to allow for continued planning and implementation of the Hybrid Instructional Model. Each of the trainings with Liz Lubeskie includes time for educators to investigate new technologies, access content providers (free and paid), explore interactive digital learnng tools and other forms of blended learning. Effectively crafting Learning Designs that have "integrated theories, research, and models of human learning" are essential in designing effective professional learning that leads to student success. As part of the ongoing four days of training throughout the year, staff engage in design time where they are able to work with peers that either teach the same grade level or content area to develop effective content and plan for each of the rotations. Furthermore, two optional days (fall and spring) are provided for teachers who want to have extra support and time to work one-on-one with the Coordinator of Online Learning and Technology Integration to plan lessons and create materials that will be used in the independent, direct, or collaborative stations. The model of Professional Learning used for successful implementation of the Hybrid Station Rotation Instructional Model was grounded in active engagement. Our learning facilitators had the opportunity to delve deeply into the learning process with content and with other learning facilitators (Learning forward, 2011).

Implementation and Outcomes

Reflection and feedback have a huge impact on the success of the Hybrid Instructional Model in Manheim Central. Each training day has time carved out for facilitators to discuss what is going well and what work needs help. Engaging in this work has created a sense of comradery and support within the cohort. Successful implementation is key and the ongoing support is part of what makes this professional learning experience so successful. In additon, each member of the cohort has the opportunity to have 1:1 coaching meetings with our Coordinator of Online Learning and Technology Integration, Liz Lubeskie. Through this 1:1 coaching experience, each facilitator is able to share any concerns, invite her into their classroom to offere suggestions and support, and for technology set-up help. Each educator involved in this training model has two to three observations where feedback is shared with the teacher and this is used to plan for the next Learning Community pull-out days. Visits to other classrooms already successfully implementing the Hybrid Instructional Model are scheduled as requested.

Outcomes from the implementation of the Hybrid Rotational Instructional Model are plentiful. Learners are excited and engaged. Teachers collaborating and discussing how to better meet the learner needs using this model have been prevelant and conversations have been directly tied to curriculum standards and student achievement. Because this Professional Development Model has been grounded in Learning Forward's Standards for Professional Learning, Manheim Central is able to strive toward the goal of: "Excellent Teaching and Learning Every Day." (Learning Forward, 2011)

Tracy Fasick, Learning Forward PA Board Member

Tracy Fasick is the Director of Curriculum and Instruction in the Manheim Central School District. She previously worked at the School District of Lancaster as the Coordinator of Professional Learning, at the Lancaster Lebanon IU 13 as a Literacy Consultant and as a classroom teacher in the Elizabethtown Area School District. She has a Master's in Educational Administration from Temple University along with Principal Certification and Reading Specialist Certification as well. She enjoys working with educators and looking at ways to provide meaningful professional learning opportunities. Tracy considers herself a lifelong learner and enjoys reading and golfing.