Learning Labs

Self Directed Professional Learning

Take Control Of The Learning

The Question

There is no question that autonomy and personalized learning are components to student achievement. How might we consider using these two concepts to develop and inspire professional learning next year with our teachers?

The Answer

Woodridge School District 68 will implement Learning Labs as a platform for personalizing teacher professional development to:

  • Grow instructional capacity among teachers
  • Hone leadership skills among proficient, master, and exemplar teachers
  • Develop a culture of learning PK-8
  • Significantly amplify student achievement

We would like to give teachers opportunities to share effective teaching practices and learn from colleagues.

The Purpose

To provide in house PD to teachers by creating D68 Learning Lab classrooms for other teachers to observe throughout the year. This self-directed professional development will foster a growth mindset and align with Domain IV on the Danielson Model.

The Inspiration Behind This Idea

Quarterly FOCUS for Learning Labs

Quarter 1

Cooperative Learning/Classroom Engagement

Design Thinking/Technology Integration

Quarter 2

Formative Assessment

Conferring (reading & writing)

Gradual Release of Responsibility (Reading & Math)

Quarter 3

RTI: Using student data to inform Tier 2 instruction

Effective Tier 2 Instruction

Effective Math Instruction

Quarter 4

Reading Workshop/Metacognitive Think/Read Aloud

Cooperative Learning/Classroom Engagement

All topics are subject to change

The Key Players

Learning Lab Teachers

Three to five learning lab teachers are needed from each grade band: K-1, 2-3, and 4-8.


  • Effective instructional leader in the particular focus that is indicated
  • Attend meeting with coaches to establish common expectations between all parties
  • Allow colleagues to come and observe
  • Attend debriefing meetings

Learning Participants

Interested teachers who will have the opportunity to visit the learning labs:


  • Observe lesson(s)
  • Look for specific evidence to support lesson focus
  • Follow observer protocol
  • Implement a SMART Goal based on observation