The Galileo Educational Network was proud to serve as the professional learning arm of the Werklund School of Education at the University of Calgary during which time they pioneered a mentoring approach for continuous professional learning.
The Galileo Educational Network has had the privilege of serving the educational community since 1999. Over the past 21 years, we have provided professional learning to over 40,000 dedicated leaders and teachers supporting and encouraging them to improve, strengthen, and change their professional practices to become more effective and innovative. We have contributed to the research literature in areas such as design-based professional learning, school and district leadership, design orientations to leading and teaching, responsive teaching, student intellectual engagement, and effective mathematics teaching. Unfortunately, like many good ideas, our time has come to an end as a formal organization. We know that many educators use our website for resources.
As a courtesy to those individuals we will maintain our website until June 30, 2021.
Impacts of Design-based Professional Learning for New Teachers
Teachers new to the profession require additional supports to strengthen teaching practices and launch them on a trajectory of success and career long learning. Working in collaboration with a large urban school jurisdiction, Galileo designed and engaged cohorts of probationary teachers in a year long professional learning series. The focus of this series was to support new teachers in building competency to better meet the expectations of the Teaching Quality Standard (Alberta Education, 2018). Throughout the series new teachers engaged in cycles of learning where they were invited to design authentic discipline-based tasks and assessment practices to improve the learning of their students. These learning cycles also required teachers to gather evidence of the impact of their teaching on student outcomes and review this evidence with colleagues at each subsequent session.
Over the course of the 2018-19 school year, researchers from Werklund School of Education at the University of Calgary, studied this professional learning intervention and found statistically significant growth of these new teachers in four competencies of the Alberta Teaching Quality Standard: (1) demonstrating professional body of knowledge (through planning and designing learning activities, using instructional strategies to engage students in meaningful learning activities, applying assessment and evaluation practices); (2) engaging in career-long learning, (3) establishing inclusive learning environments when designing learning, and (4) applying foundational knowledge about First Nations, Métis and Inuit to Learning Designs.
The video reflects the learning experiences of teachers who participated in this professional learning series.
Hear from educational professionals about how the mentors at the Galileo Educational Network have transformed their teaching
“This practice encouraged me to be more intentional in all aspects of teaching and focusing on student learning. Intentionality in relation to outcomes, groupings, practices, process, product, etc. It also providing a grounding point when having conversations around student learning. What was the desired outcome vs. what evidence was providing. How did you use this information to guide your next steps in teaching and supporting student learning.”
“This has been such an amazing PD for me as a teacher. I thank you for your encouragement. Your expertise and for your passion to enable us to be more powerful dynamic educators. I can’t wait to carry on this journey”
“I greatly appreciate these sessions. I always feel excited and energized to move the work forward. These past two years have been some of the best professional development of my career. Thank you.”
“Thank you for a great day [in our school]. It was wonderful to be focused on meaningful work that we can utilize immediately in our classrooms.”