Professional Development

I am passionate about the Critical Friends Group (CFG) model for professional development and am interested in helping others learn how to start and lead these inquiry-based learning communities.

A CFG consists of approximately 8-12 educators who come together voluntarily at least once a month for about 2 hours to learn from each other's strengths and challenges. Participants bring professional dilemmas and student work from their own teaching practices, then use protocols to structure the conversation. Sometimes CFGs discuss articles about best practices and review data on student achievement.

I lead a CFG that has met monthly since 2002. Our current members teach at Salmon Bay, Thornton Creek, Meridian,
Graham Hill, and Washington Middle School. Below is a sampling of protocols and materials we commonly use in our CFG. You can also find many protocol resources on the National School Reform Faculty (NSRF) website.

Looking at Student Work

Exploring a Dilemma, Idea or Plan
Focusing on a Child

Discussing Text

Please contact me if you are interested in help starting or facilitating a CFG at your school. You might also consider forming a CFG with colleagues who work in different settings.