When we work together as a team, much and more can be accomplished. Sometimes, we tend to be surprised at how much we can do. At other times, teaming up results in much more work required on our parts (and often, much more in the way of outcomes for those we work with).
This morning I had the opportunity to co-facilitate a learning session with our Regional Science Coordinator on New York’s new science standards. We had spent quite a bit of time designing the session, and we worked on facilitation strategies both together, and on our own.
When we met to debrief after the session, it was clear from session evaluations that we had met our initial goals for the workshop’s design. It was also clear that we could have made a few alterations to make it even more meaningful for participants.
Let me reflect a bit about what was shared. First, participants felt that we were incredibly informative and that we shared a well-balanced description of the changes to the standards. We had built in a number of reflection periods, and it was clear that not only were these appreciated, but we would have benefitted from even more opportunities to engage in discussion. Our structure of “forest to trees” seemed to make sense, and attendees were easily able to follow our focus and connect to what was important for each of them. Finally, the conversation and information shared led to interest in school/district planning. For our next session, we’ll need to make sure we have time available for teams to do that work while they are with us.
The benefit of collaborative work is that it provides us with another lens to consider what has taken place and where we need to go. Thanks to the work we had done previously, we were able to highlight key changes we both wanted to make, and we were able to provide each other with feedback on facilitation, direction, and next steps.
Just like it is always about relationships, it certainly seems as if it is also always about teamwork. I’m glad we had the opportunity to put this together, and I look forward to our next session, to see how our facilitation changes!