We remember when we first learned about CLASS (it was a long time ago!). It was EXCITING! Interactions are at the core of every moment of the classroom day. And CLASS seemed to draw out everything that we knew would lead to engaged learners and long-term success for children. We wanted to shout CLASS from the rooftops!
As we started our CLASS journey, we realized that it was not only an incredible tool, it was also challenging. Really challenging. It all made sense, but figuring out how to support a teacher with 20 rambunctious children in having meaningful conversations seemed daunting. Explaining what we learned during training to our peers proved difficult. We knew it was needed, but it wasn’t an easy sell.
We wanted so badly to know how others had gone about moving the needle for teachers and children. How had they instilled such powerful interactions across their organizations?
Further down the road, as we thought more about how to scale CLASS in an organization, we realized that gaining buy-in, cultivating a CLASS environment, and just figuring out how to make it fit with everything else going on was no small task. We wanted our organizations to embrace CLASS, but it seemed like there was never enough time or resources.
Again, we longed to have thought-partners who could answer our questions, or at the very least, relate to the uphill battle we were waging.
That’s why we created the CLASS Learning Community!
Good question. The CLASS Learning Community, or CLC for short, is a new service where you can interact with teachers, coaches, observers, and administrators—all who wear their "CLASS lenses" with pride. In the CLC you can:
We are so excited to have this Community and to connect such a committed and caring group of educators. Through our work with so many of you, we’ve already witnessed the power of connecting CLASS devotees to one another. We’ve seen the results: better coaching, improved teaching, and stronger outcomes for children.
We’ll be officially launching the CLASS Learning Community in 2018, but we are adding early adopters on a monthly. If you are interested in being one of our first members, you can apply for early access here.
We're excited to share a sneak peek of just a few things you'll see at the 2019 InterAct CLASS Summit coming to Nashville April 15-16. In addition to everything you've come to expect (engaging sessions, interactive learning opportunities, delicious food, opportunities to network with other educators and thought leaders, and more), this year we're hosting a special free, pre-summit event! We're screening the film No Small Matter, the first feature documentary to explore the most overlooked, underestimated, and powerful force for good in America today: early childhood education.
On August 1 I joined Teachstone as Chief Impact Officer. If my name sounds familiar, it may be because I am one of the authors of the CLASS and a co-founder, with Bob Pianta, of Teachstone. For the last 20 years, I’ve spent my days researching ways teachers can best support children’s and adolescents’ development and learning. I’ve conducted many studies, written many papers, and trained doctoral and post-doctoral candidates who have gone on to do even more and better work in this area. Most of those 20 years I’ve worked at the University of Virginia’s Center for the Advanced Study of Teaching and Learning (CASTL) and have had the privilege of working with incredible colleagues at UVA and elsewhere. Honestly, it’s a dream job: getting paid to think, write, and travel to talk about our work and find inspiration in the ideas of others. So, not surprisingly, when I tell people about my new job, I get a lot of quizzical looks.
Think about the biggest challenge you’re facing in your role today.
Perhaps it’s handling teacher turnover, managing your time while coaching over large geographic regions, or dealing with the disappointment of not seeing the results you thought you might see when you implemented that new professional development program.