Saturday, December 13, 2014

Mind Mapping during Professional Development

Simply giving each teacher a poster board, a few pre-printed images, a variety of Sharpie markers, and a brief tutorial on drawing, can transform traditional "sit and get" professional development.  The "drawing" or note-taking skills also transfer into the classroom via co-constructed anchor charts and student-generated academic notebooks.

I was initially inspired to try this strategy  after watching this TED talk by Rachel Smith.

A gallery of examples from a 2010 professional development (6 hour session)... 

Add the central image
(I provided all of the teachers with an image of the brain.)

Branches represent the key points
(I provided a few images to anchor thinking relating to the central image and each branch.)
Add Details
(We provided the teachers with Sharpie Ultra-Fine-Point Permanent Markers and let them keep them at the conclusion of the professional development.)

Add Realia
I also provided the glasses (realia) to emphasize the point of focusing on the target and essential questions. This teacher chose to attach her glasses to the Mind Map.

We chose to display the Mind Maps in the hallway leading to the principal's office. This allowed teachers to compare, question, and simply continue the conversation of "Focus Lessons."
Everyone takes notes differently.
Mind Maps are engaging and powerful!

 A gallery of examples from a 2013 professional development (3 hour session)...

Drawing During Staff Development -
The Parson ES instructional plan and PZ 4 initiatives were introduced while the teachers synthesized the key details.
The maps are displayed in the lounge and work room to serve as a reminder that we all have a hand in making "Our Academic Environment" language-rich!

Teachers are able to view how colleagues synthesized the same information differently.

The central image is the cover of the 2013-2014 Building a Culture of Achievement instructional blueprint 

Free Sharpies were provided and teachers were allowed to keep them!

The Mind Maps are displayed above the copier too! Making every minute count...

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