PD = Play Date... for the teachers!

Opportunities for unstructured time for teachers to experiment with innovative tools and resources and collaborate with each other.

Photo of Krissy Venosdale
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With great tools like Makey Makey, Little Bits, robotics, Lego Wedo, MakeDo cardboard building, and so much more, there are endless possibilities for "hard fun" in the classroom.  But when do teachers get the chance to relax, explore, share with each other? 

I dream of a PD environment where PD stands for "Play Date."  Invite teachers to join in, explore, play, let their guard down, take a risk.  Make the environment about having fun while taking a chance to try something new.  Finish up the PD with brainstorming-- "How would this work in our classroom?" and allow teachers the chance to connect their fun experience with their students' learning. 

So much of our PD in the world is full of dread, long days listening and sitting.  It's time to make it fun, engaging, and allow teachers to reconnect with their inner child.  

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Hey Pal, 

I dig this idea too.

I think if I were trying to sell this to administrators who might be skeptical about setting PD time aside to "just play," I'd push the notion that this is also about building relationships between teachers and helping them to understand the power that those relationships have for driving learning.  

Essentially, what you are creating is a space for people to be vulnerable with each other and to support one another through moments where they feel vulnerable.  That has real value for a faculty in any circumstance.  But what I also love is that teachers get first hand experience with the vulnerability that the learners in their classes feel almost every single day.  So not only do they build a sense of empathy with their peers, they build a sense of empathy with their students.  

Any of this make sense?  Essentially, I think the way to get school leaders on board with "play dates" is to point out other less tangible outcomes that matter, too.  

Hope this helps, 
Bill Ferriter

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