4. Developing Community
This module will provide you with information on building community in the professional learning environment. You will examine strategies for building community and fostering collaborative working relationships that will engage the professional learner. You will also select a toolkit of strategies for building community in both face to face and online professional learning environments.
Building community is an important factor in the success of any professional learning situation. According to Eib and Miller (2006) - “Carefully designed faculty development approaches can facilitate and create a culture that supports a thoughtful focus on teaching, while at the same time, nurturing a sense of connectedness and collegiality across the organization that is vital to continuous innovation and improvement.”1 Whether in face-to-face, blended, or fully online learning environments, professional learning leaders need to facilitate the development of a connected learning community. A vibrant community is one where everyone feels accepted and connected, and where individuality is not only tolerated but also encouraged.
Upon completion of this module, participants will be able to :
- Identify and understand techniques for building community in a face to face, blended, or online professional learning environment. (iNACOL Standard C)
- Build a toolkit of strategies to use in various professional learning situations to enhance the learning community's sense of connectedness.