GID Transforming Student Research @ BCPS

In my last post, I referenced a few examples of our BCPS Online Research Models (ORMs) for extended, in-depth research, which our Office of Digital Learning Library Media team has been designing using the eight phases of the GID model since 2012. I’d like to share in a little more detail how one of our ORMs was completely transformed at last summer’s 2016 Curriculum Workshop using the GID model. In 2001, our BCPS Office of Music requested a research model on Native American music for the Grade 8 American Music curriculum. As a library media specialist on the ORM curriculum writing team that summer, I co-designed an ORM titled First Music, First Nations—it was the first research model I ever designed. Courtesy of the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine, I can show you the Webpages for the original 2001 version of the “First Music, First Nations” ORM — even though I’m extremely embarrassed to do so!


As you can see, we were using our own research process steps at the time: Scenario, Task & Product, Assessment, Question, Gather, Organize and Conclude. This ORM has a nice poem at the top (but no connection to the poem is made anywhere in the process), and lots of “cutesy” clip art of Native Americans, drums, etc. The Scenario and Task & Product were NOT authentic or engaging —how many 8th graders would seriously be excited at the prospect of being a museum curator for the Smithsonian Institute? Students were asked to select from 5 research topics about traditional Native American music (Instruments, Pow-wows, Dances, Songs, or Ceremonies), take notes using resources including targeted Websites, and create a “display” of some sort; usually students made a diorama or something like that. Believe it or not, this ORM remained virtually unchanged (except for updating broken resource links) until summer 2016. THEN, with some new leadership in the Office of Music and new state learning standards for Music education, our team was asked to do a much-needed revision last summer.

The result was the new ORM, Native Dreams: Contemporary Native American Music. This research model benefitted in SO many ways from our use of the GID model. First and foremost was our consideration of “Third Space” to make real-world connections to the content for students. We focused on contemporary Native American music artists and framed the research around the overarching Inquiry Question: How is contemporary Native American music both an expression of traditional culture and a powerful force for change? The musicians we featured have fused traditional Native American sounds, instruments, etc. with contemporary genres that are familiar to our students – hip-hop, rap, pop, EDM, heavy metal, etc. These music artists are also passionate about social justice and the issues facing Native Americans; these are issues that many of our students and their families/communities are facing themselves. We found articles, music videos, and songs online for students to read, view, and listen to as they did their research. As we always do now, we included many GID tools for students to use throughout the process—Inquiry Journals, Inquiry Logs, Inquiry Circles, etc. We also included student choice of topic selection in the Explore phase, and choice of presentation formats in the Create phase. In the Share phase, students are asked to apply their learning from their own research and from each other’s presentations in a culminating activity, by responding to a quote from one of the musicians featured in the research model (in their Inquiry Journals and then in a discussion with Inquiry Circles and the whole Inquiry Community):

In the Rebel Music: Native America video episode you saw in the Immerse phase of this research, Native American rapper Frank Waln said: “The music is my shield and my weapon.”

  • What do you think he means? How does this statement relate to music as both an expression of traditional culture and a force for positive change?
  • How is this statement true for the other contemporary Native American musicians that you and your classmates researched?

This culminating activity allows all students to apply and synthesize their learning from each other, to build a response together to the overarching question posed at the beginning of the inquiry. In the Evaluate phase, we included a suggestion for students to extend their learning by researching a social issue that is personally relevant and important to them, and to create their own music or other form of artistic expression about the issue.

Thanks to the GID process, our students in 8th grade American Music classes at 27 Middle Schools across the district now have an inquiry-based learning opportunity that is both engaging and rigorous. Feedback from the music teachers who implemented this model during the 2016-17 school year has been really positive, and they report that this was a MUCH more rich and meaningful learning experience for their students than the previous ORM was.

I welcome your feedback about this research model!  NOTE: Please excuse any broken links in this ORM; I did make a few updates since my last blog post before sharing with you here today, and any remaining broken links will be updated during our Summer Curriculum workshop beginning next week. We are looking forward to designing more ORMs like this one this summer!

Kelly Ray, BCPS

BCPS Shines with GID

Greetings fellow Guided Inquiry Design fans!

I’m Kelly Ray, a Library Media Resource Teacher with the Office of Digital Learning at the Baltimore County Public Schools (BCPS). It’s my pleasure to share again this year about how GID is transforming student research and inquiry-based learning in BCPS, the 25th largest school system in the U.S. and 3rd largest in Maryland. Please visit my June 5, 2016 post on this blog, GIDesign @ BCPS: Our Journey Begins, where I shared how BCPS first began using GID in 2012 after attending the CISSL Summer Institute at Rutgers. In that post, I described how BCPS has been using the GID model to structure our Online Research Models (ORMs) for extended, in-depth research across the curriculum; we have also been trying to incorporate some elements of GID (such as Third Space) into our Slam Dunk models for brief, focused research (a model from Dr. Jamie McKenzie that we adopted in 2004).

BCPS Online Research Models & Slam Dunks portal screenshot

 

We will continue to use GID this month at our annual BCPS Summer Curriculum Workshops, where a team of our library media specialists will collaborate with content curriculum writers to design new Online Research Models and Slam Dunks aligned to various content curriculum units. Have a look at the first ORM we designed using GID in 2012, An American Student in China (High School World Languages), which is used by students who visit China to complete the required research component for our BCPS Chinese Cultural Exchange program. See also an Elementary example, Act Now, Supplies Limited! (Grade 5 Library Media/Science) and a Middle School example, Native Dreams: Contemporary Native American Music (Grade 8 American Music) which was created in Summer 2016. Our BCPS ORMs and Slam Dunks were showcased at last week’s 2017 ISTE Conference at the Librarians’ Network Playground: Information Fluency, Creativity and Innovation.

Photo-BCPS ORMs & Slam Dunks station at 2017 ISTE Conference Librarians' Network Playground Tweet advertising BCPS Online Research Models & Slam Dunks at 2017 ISTE Conference Librarians' Network Playground

 

As you may have heard, BCPS was named the 2017 National School Library Program of the Year by AASL! Our system-wide use of Guided Inquiry Design was an important part of the body of evidence that earned us the NSLPY award. As our Superintendent said in the Award announcement, “… through collaborating with other educators or working directly with students, our school librarians help students gain in-demand 21st-century skills including constructing meaning through research, problem solving, creativity, and communicating new knowledge.” Accepting the Award at the 2017 ALA Annual Conference on June 24, our Coordinator Fran Glick explains in this Knowledge Quest blog post how our school library programs continue to evolve along with BCPS’s multi-year transformation of teaching and learning known as STAT (Students and Teachers Accessing Tomorrow). As a student-centered inquiry model, Guided Inquiry Design has been a natural fit with our school system’s broad instructional transformation.

 

We are fortunate to have a certified library media specialist at every elementary, middle and high school in our large school system. In addition to implementing the Online Research Models in collaboration with their teachers, our school librarians have received professional development on GID and are encouraged to co-design their own projects. At the beginning of our GID journey in 2012, we purchased a copy of Guided Inquiry Design: A Framework for Inquiry at Your School for every school library. Our 160+ K-12 school librarians engaged in a year-long book study, sharing ideas and strategies for using GID at our quarterly professional development sessions. Recently our office has purchased the Guided Inquiry Design in Action books for both Middle School and High School; both books are a treasure trove of GID lessons and implementation ideas! We will be using resources from these great books as we design new Online Research Models and revise existing ORMs at this year’s Summer Curriculum Workshops; we are particularly interested in incorporating some of the excellent tools and strategies for student collaboration, reflection, conferencing, and assessment found there. We also plan to use lessons and resources from these books at our 2017-18 quarterly professional development sessions for secondary school library media specialists, as they work to refine their practices for planning and facilitating learner-centered instruction aligned to the AASL Standards for the 21st Century Learner. We are anxiously anticipating the release of the revised AASL Standards at the 2017 National Conference in November, and confident that there will be many points of alignment between the new Standards and GID.

Guided Inquiry Design book covers

 

In my next post, I will share more examples of how GID continues to transform teaching and learning in BCPS.

Kelly Ray

 

The Tyrion Lannister of Blog Posts

As you may have guessed from the title, this is like, the Tyrion Lannister of blog posts- especially in comparison with yesterday. If you are not a crazed Game of Thrones fan like me (the show, not the books- sorry!), ignore my nerdy reference and let’s move on.

So, when my team and I  went to training in 2015, we were the only ones from Whittier.  So when we came back, singing Guided Inquiry’s praises and overflowing with excitement about our plans, I really do think people thought we were crazy.  But then, there were two summer institutes, and Whittier teachers when to both of them.  Then there was a fall institute, and more people went.  Then there was a spring institute, and even MORE people when. I’m so ecstatic that this year, every single eighth grader and two-thirds of sixth graders experienced Guided Inquiry.  And seventh grade- this is even more exciting- all the seventh graders will participate in TWO guided inquiry units. It’s spreading like wildfire in our school and our district, and I want to share a little of what other teachers are doing.

SIXTH GRADE:

I loved hearing from Jan Filbeck, sixth grade social studies teacher and social studies department chair, about the cross-curricular unit taught by sixth grade social studies and Language Arts. Their unit was Ancient Cultures, focusing specifically on the Egyptians. Greeks, Incas, and Mayans. These cultures were chosen because sixth grade social studies curriculum covers the Western Hemisphere and language arts curriculum encompasses Greek and Egyptian literature. They wanted students to discover for themselves what makes a civilization great, and hoped that they would discover along the way that some civilizations create lasting literature and some don’t.

Jan also shared her frustrations about technology.  This is a common theme in conversations about research, because we have eleven hundred students and an estimated two hundred student computers available for classroom use- IF they’re all working. She said that on the days the computers were all booked, some students used their phones, but not all students have web-enabled phones.  Jan and her teammates are looking forward to next year, as the district’s 1:1 technology initiative is implemented, and all students will have their own device. She stated, “Most of our units are research based, so it will be easy to convert a new unit to guided inquiry now that I know what I am doing…I think it will work with several of our projects.”
SEVENTH GRADE:

Seventh graders at Whittier are especially fortunate this year. In addition to the Language Arts unit planned at the summer session, seventh grade science teachers are getting ready to teach a unit they planned at the most recent institute.  I spoke via email with Kim Heaton, seventh grade science teacher and science department chair.  She told me that the unit is about how technology has modified the traits of plants and animals.  I can only imagine how interesting that research will be, and I can’t wait to hear about the great things their students learn.

Christiona Reid, seventh grade Language Arts teacher, shared with me about their Civil Rights unit, which is currently coming to a close. She did such a terrific job explaining that I have included her words here:

“Students began the unit with an open gallery walk using images from past to current civil rights issues.  Next, students immersed themselves into a memoir about the Little Rock Nine.  While students read, they created discussion questions and wrote journals about what they read.

For the explore phase, students were added to a Google Classroom to explore various topics dealing with the concept, then at the end of each day completed journal responses and responded to a classmate’s journal.  The explore phase has been the most successful part of the Guided Inquiry Unit.  Google Classroom has been helpful for differentiating material and checking progress. For students who were struggling with exploring through sources, I was able to schedule a time for material and websites to be sent out to those students. This allowed them to struggle a little and then have support at the right time.

For the identify phase, students in my class did a gallery walk for questions.  Individually, students created higher level questions over various topics, then spent some time talking in groups and writing those are large sheets of paper.  At the end of the day, we had questions from every class and almost every student.  Then, the next day, students walked through the questions and wrote three that interested them.  After the identify phase, we spent another day exploring.  Students took their top three questions and searched to see if there was enough information.  They then narrowed it down to one top question they wanted to research.

For the gather phase, students spend a week research their large research question.  We reemphasized the importance of leveled questions for the gather phase.  Students had to create lower level questions that helped answer their large research question.  This phase I struggled with the most because of technology issues.  Also, students created really tough questions that were above seventh grade level, but I didn’t realize it until they started gathering or were in the middle of the process.  For example, one students created the following question: How did women in the military affect the military’s productivity?

We are about to start the create phase, where students are creating projects from a choice board.  They have to make a physical product, complete a piece of writing, and complete their gather page with sources.  When they finish, students will do a museum share out and a quick write evaluation.”

-Christiona Reid, Seventh Grade Language Arts                                                                                                                                                                         

I am SO thankful to those awesome teachers for sharing with me, and to Norman Public Schools for being a district that values and invests in professional development.  Because of them, the majority of students at our school were able to experience inquiry learning this year, and that will only increase as we have access to more and more technology.  But more about that tomorrow. 🙂

 

–Paige Holden

 

CCPS’s Journey with GID

Chesterfield County Public Schools (CCPS) is a large, suburban school district just outside Richmond, VA. We have 63 schools and serve just over 60,000 students. As part of our district’s comprehensive plan, we are becoming a Project Based Learning (PBL) district – training several schools each summer until all are on board. As part of LIbrary Services, I wanted to find an inquiry research model to support the division’s move towards becoming a PBL District. That is how our journey began with GID. Leslie has done all day trainings with the librarians, and we spend other PD time looking at how GID supports all types of inquiry, not just for PBL.

 

This year we have had lots of change. We have a fairly new School Board and July 1, we got our new Superintendent. We also have had quite a few administrative changes happen at the building level as well. With all this change, the expression “Shift Happens” has become quite a mantra in our district. To help support the librarians here, I offered two book studies on professional books that talk about library services but were written for administrators. Our first book, Tapping into the Skills of 21st-Century School Librarians: A Concise Handbook for Administrators by Dr. Audrey Church, helped our librarians frame the types of conversations that can happen, especially with a new administrator in the building. We have new administrators who are new to CCPS but not new to administration; we have new administrators not new to CCPS but new to administration; and we have new administrators new to CCPS AND administration so we ran the full gamut. One of the big connections I wanted the participants to make was in using GID, they were tapping into 21st-century skills and inquiry learning was all about that Dr. Church describes. It was to allow them to use the format Dr. Church set up to frame their initial conversation with their new administrator.

 

Our second book study was with Dr. Rebecca J Morris’ School Libraries and Student Learning: A Guide for School Leaders. In her chapter on Inquiry Learning, I asked the participants “How does Guided Inquiry Design support what Rebecca Morris calls the ‘Collaboration Arc’, ‘Assignment Design’ for educators; ‘Thinking and Questioning’ and ‘Developing Questions’ for Students? “

 

Here are their responses:

“Guided Inquiry supports the Collaboration Arc because it assumes that there will be planning, teaching and co-teaching between and among the classroom teacher(s) and the librarian. Assignment Design supports guided inquiry because GI encourages students to construct meaningful questions to ponder and research. As Morris writes, “educators model how and why we attend to the process.” Thinking and Questioning is part of GI in that it encourages active thinking and ‘course correction.’ Developing Questions makes Guided Inquiry personal which as we know, makes learning much more meaningful.” Elizabeth K

 

“Assignment Design mirrors Guided Inquiry in that it moves away from students researching from a pre-selected topic or list of topics. Inquiry based assignments want students to choose to research a topic that interests them by encouraging them to ask good questions. Think Open, Immerse, and Explore. Similarly, with the students, the ‘Thinking and Questioning’ and ‘Developing Questions’ aspect of the Collaboration Arc are in the same mold of Explore, Identify, and Gather. I like the term ‘satisficing’ the book uses to explain how students typically accept resources that are passable. I may steal that.” Gillian A

“When first learning about Guided Inquiry, I actually imagined more of an arc shape than the linear process that was offered in the text. The inquiry process is a circular process in that an idea starts small then gets bigger and grows as the student is immersed in it and explores more deeply. The student reaches his/her highest level of discomfort (top of the arc) when trying to identify quality sources to validate the idea. As the student concludes the most difficult process, he/she begins to slide into a more comfortable place as synthesis and the creation process begins to take shape. After sharing and evaluating, the process comes full circle. It’s a circular process with collaboration, as well. You can only go up when breaking ground with veteran teachers and building new relationships with fellow teachers. We, then, must immerse ourselves in and explore each other’s content areas to ensure they flow seamlessly together. The librarian will identify & gather quality sources that support the curriculum, and possibly create student exemplars. The resources are shared with teachers and students, and the librarian and teacher reflect/evaluate how well the lesson worked and how it can be improved.

 

Guided Inquiry totally supports the Assignment Design for Educators – it’s the framework for getting away from the “bird units.” Admittedly, we are all more “comfortable” in a controlled environment, but a controlled environment does not allow deep thinking. I am currently working on Genius Hour with 8th graders. The ELA teacher and I definitely say “what were we thinking??” but the ideas that students are generating may not have come out otherwise! We still don’t know how everything is going to work out, but we are definitely celebrating the process!

 

By its nature, Guided Inquiry supports thinking and questioning for students in the immerse and explore phases. Students delve deeply into their topic, and as they are immersed, they discover a wide variety of sources from diverse perspectives. This allows them to compare, contrast, validate, and support their thinking and the questioning process.” Heather M

 

“Guided Inquiry Design supports the new PBL training that everyone in the district is doing. Using the library to support project based learning by doing research and being part of the inquiry work. Project Based Learning often promotes students working in small groups and the library helping to develop questions, research and complete their projects. Inquiry is a natural path to collaboration and working with curriculum!” Laura I

 

“Guided Inquiry Design supports collaboration as teachers and librarians work together to create meaningful learning experiences for students where they can immerse themselves richly in a topic before addressing a more finite research question. Collaboration arc (as would also be true in guided inquiry) means that the nature of the project dictates the type and frequency of collaboration. Not all projects are the same, nor is all support the same. Assignment design and guided inquiry are parallel in that students move away from selecting topics that have little meaning for them to choosing topics driven by good questioning. By learning how to create their own questions and by increasing confidence in questioning, students learn how to be self-directed in inquiry. Students are more engaged as a result supporting the development of critical thinking skills. By thinking and questioning throughout the research process, students develop the skills to replicate the research process across content areas and for future units of study.” Lindsey H

 

“Collaboration Arc seems to be similar to PBL. PBL is based on inquiry learning. Inquiry learning allows for collaboration with librarians and classroom teachers. Inquiry learning also allows students to gain knowledge by engaging them in questioning, critical thinking, and problem solving. Teachers and librarians working together is best practices for guiding students through the process of inquiry learning. If teachers and librarians collaborate instruction will be more effective for students because learning will be authenticating and engaging.” Ruby P

“Guided inquiry mirrors the collaboration arc, assignment design, thinking and questioning, and developing questions ideas presented by Rebecca Morris. The collaboration arc of working with teachers, sharing the responsibility, creating a culture of collaboration, and varying the degrees of collaboration is exactly what we do when we assemble the team for guided inquiry. We work with teachers and community experts to support the learning process for students. I like her point that having a collaborative partner encourages risk taking and innovation. The idea of assignment design is exactly what guided inquiry is. We have a goal for students to learn so we design the lesson to guide them in their learning. The process of learning is as important as the content they are learning. We use their third space to make it matter to them and we create a hook to get them thinking and generating questions. Students generate their own questions and drive their learning. Students look at how they learn and they evaluate information by forming higher level thinking questions. The immerse, explore, identify, and gather portions of guided inquiry are where learning questions are formed, reflected on, and revised.” Tami W

Lori Donovan is a National Board Certified Librarian and is the Instructional Specialist for Library Services for Chesterfield County Public Schools, VA. She holds a master’s degree in education with a specialty in school library media programs and a Graduate Professional Endorsement in Educational Leadership from Longwood University. She has published several articles in Library Media Connection and co-authored Power Researchers: Transforming Student Library Aides into Action Learners by Libraries Unlimited. She can be reached at lori_donovan@ccspnet.net or follow on Twitter @LoriDonovan14.

 

Other blog posts: 52guidedunquiry.edublogs.org/2016/07/25/; 52guidedunquiry.edublogs.org/2016/07/27/; 52guidedunquiry.edublogs.org/2016/07/29/

Inquiry Stations in Explore

This week I am sharing our district newsletters about inquiry learning.

Inquiry News 3

Here’s the link to our third newsletter.  inquiry-news-3-nov-2015-for-gid nnps-nl3-p1

In Newport News, we combine Guided Inquiry’s “Open, Immerse, Explore” stages into one stage, “Explore.” This issue focuses on the Explore stage of the Inquiry Process, and shows how teachers have set up Inquiry Stations in their classrooms, supported by their librarian and reading specialist.

nnps-nl3-p2

I hope you have enjoyed seeing some our work in NNPS.

Mary Keeling

Supervisor, Library Media Services

Newport News Public Schools

Lilead Fellow, 2015 – 2016

Week Long Inquiry Leads to Community Service

This week, I am sharing our district newsletters about inquiry learning as part of my project to amplify our message.

Inquiry News 2  

Click this link to read NNPS Inquiry News #2 inquiry-news-2-oct-2015-ed-for-gid

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In this school, the principal empowered the librarian and reading specialists to work with a single class in each grade level for a week-long inquiry immersion experience. In this project, students selected a community service project for their school and developed a message to promote this project to their school.

nnps-nl2-p2

 

On Thursday, I’ll share our last newsletter for this week.

Mary Keeling

Supervisor, Library Media Services

Newport News Public Schools

Lilead Fellow, 2015 – 2016

Amplifying the Message of GID through One District

I am Mary Keeling, Supervisor of Library Media Services in Newport News, Virginia.

My district’s librarians have been working with an inquiry process model since 2006. Universal adoption, our goal from the start, has been elusive. As a 2015-2016 Lilead Fellow, my project goal was to transform learning in my school district using teacher-librarian teams to foster inquiry and support teachers as they adopted an inquiry stance. We understood that implementation would be different in every building, and that sharing experiences would empower others to try. It is not enough to do good work; we have to share our stories so people can visualize themselves doing the same thing. Part of the change process involved amplifying the message!

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The communications plan for this project included several elements: meeting one-on-one with principals to explain inquiry, securing news coverage for inquiry projects through our districts’ television production department, and sharing inquiry stories through newsletters. A design goal for the newsletters was to make the information highly accessible with colorful pictures, examples of student work, short paragraphs, and bulleted lists of “how-to” information. The newsletters were distributed monthly to principals, executive directors, and curriculum supervisors.

In the next posts, I’d like to share some of these newsletters to show what we’ve done to amplify our message.

Inquiry News 1

nnps-nl-1-p-2

In this issue we introduced two examples of different experiments with Inquiry that had been conducted between March and May of the previous school year. Reading specialists and Instructional Technology Coaches were invited to join librarians. However, in some schools, librarians OR reading specialists worked alone. Principal support was significant in both of these examples.

To read the full newsletter, click on the link below! Enjoy!

inquiry-news-1-aug-sept-2015_ed-for-gid

Tomorrow, I’ll post another example!

Mary Keeling

Supervisor, Library Media Services

Newport News Public Schools

Lilead Fellow, 2015 – 2016

GID @ the District Level Part 3

AASL states that school library programs should employ an inquiry-based approach to “inquire, think critically, and gain knowledge” (2007). Using GID in my district as our inquiry approach is a way to tap into student’s natural curiosity, and help students develop a foundation using an inquiry process to facilitate all their academic work. GID breaks down inquiry into manageable steps, and gives students an opportunity to Immerse and Explore to better understand a research or essential question. GID is divided to provide specific scaffolds in learning the content and how they learn. GID helps students find gaps in their research and develop plans for how they can close those gaps to produce an effective product they would want to share.

I like how Leslie and I worked with the librarians in developing their sense of understanding in how to use GID. Leslie made sure we modeled the scaffolding ideas in Guided Inquiry Design: A Framework for Inquiry in Your School so that they can see how to use them in their own lessons. Another key element was that you didn’t always have to be a part of all the phases in GID. Most likely they would be involved in the Immerse, Explore, Identify, and Gather phases, and that was okay. We know it is ideal for us to be involved in all phases, but time is a precious commodity in schools, and if we scaffold well in the phases we are involved in, then we built the metacognition of students to be able to move through the other phases well. Overall, the librarians in my district see the value of this process and are making changes to input these phases into their lessons to help their students understand and apply what they have learned to new situations.

Lori Donovan, Instructional Specialist, Library Services, Chesterfield County Public Schools

Using GID at District Level Part 2

One way I have been able to use GID as the Instructional Specialist for Library Services is in training new librarians in my district. In the four years since coming into this position, we have hired over 50 new librarians. All new teachers/librarians (and teachers/librarians new to the district) have an opportunity in my district to get professional development and training before teacher work week. 

I get the new librarians for a whole day on curriculum. Part of that day is to go over the instructional models and expectations of library services in CCPS. GID is part of that day. To model blended learning, I use School Library Connection’s edWeb.net community to have new librarians view two archived webinars Leslie has given in the  past: Getting Started with Guided Inquiry and Research with Rigor: Guided Inquiry Design Reaching to the Higher Expectations of the Core . They develop a “Need to Know” list of questions they have about GID that will be answered during the actual PD day.

I love Simon Sinek’s TEDx talk “Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Action” (https://youtu.be/u4ZoJKF_VuA) and I make sure to include the what, the how, and the why when doing training on GID (well, with all my PDs), but specifically for this training because Leslie is not there for at these trainings. After going over their “Need to Know” list, I give them some practice using a sample library lesson from AASL’s Standards for the 21st-Century Learner in Action book and they collaborate on how  these lessons can become GID lessons using a template that Leslie designed for CCPS. Because we are using the Buck Institute for Education’s model of Project Based Learning (PBL), I incorporate PBL and Understanding by Design (UbD) to show that school library lessons need the same pedagogical look as lessons they may have done in the classroom when they were teaching.  This provides data to administrators of the instructional role librarians have in student academic achievement. As they collaborate together, they are working in the same formats as students would in their libraries, and I model the scaffolding techniques described in the GID books.

Based on feedback, the librarians have said this approach has better helped them understand the process both in theory and practice, and they are comfortable to start thinking and using GID in their library planning and instruction. I am looking forward to working on GID with my new crop of librarians when they come this August. 

Lori Donovan, Instructional Specialist, Library Services, Chesterfield County Public Schools

GID @ the District Level

In 2012, I became the Instructional Specialist for Library Services for Chesterfield County Public Schools, a school district just outside Richmond, VA. Since no one had been in this position for three years, my Director of Curriculum and Instruction at the time said to create a program that I felt would best benefits librarians and the teachers and students they served. Using the goals our district’s comprehensive plan as a guide, I looked for ways librarians/library services could enhance student learning through the use of 21st-century learning & technology skills and knowledge in all 63 of our schools.

Our district plan (http://mychesterfieldschools.com/about/design-for-excellence-2020/) puts inquiry at its forefront. Empowering Learners bases all library instruction on inquiry, so I began reviewing inquiry-based research models. We were loosely using Big6 as a model, but as I researched other inquiry-based models, I came across Guided Inquiry Design (GID) through a webinar on the edWeb.net community Library Media Connection )now School Library Connection) community. I bought the book and saw it parallels the same format and structure in Buck Institute for Education’s PBL process (bie.org), and I knew this would be the best model to use comprehensively in the district.

Mary Keeling, Supervisor for Libraries in Newport News, VA had been working with Leslie Maniotes providing PD for her district and she helped with an introduction to Leslie.  After devising a plan with Leslie, we began training the librarians in GID the fall of 2013. The 3 year plan began with a book study of both Guided Inquiry and Guided Inquiry Design: A Framework in Your School, practiced the steps in small lessons and culminated in a full-blown Guided Inquiry Unit. Leslie had come for three, all day PD focusing on theory, practice, assessment, & engagement with GID. As more librarians became trained, the more Guided Inquiry made sense to them, their collaborative teachers, and most importantly, the students.

My district is a Google Apps for Education (GAFE) division, & has deployed a 1:1 Chromebook initiative with all its secondary students. We use these apps to create and share GID plans. We also use LibGuides as our instructional platform to model GID. The district page houses all our common resources/access points, & school pages drive instruction by developing online pathfinders/resource pages for students, teachers, & parents.

We are moving into our fourth year with GID, and are still refining resources and trainings around the resources provided both in print and electronic format to keep current on how we can incorporate GID into more and more collaborative lessons. I am hoping to continue to create a repository of our GID projects so that we have plenty of ideas to share and use in our district to create life-long learners of our students.

Lori Donovan, Instructional Specialist, Library Services, Chesterfield County Public Schools

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