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Effective Collaboration Video Introduction Transcript
Hello and welcome to the professional development series "Essential skills for engaging conflict." My name is Greg Abel and I will be guiding you through the six learning modules that make up this series. I'd like to start a taking a couple minutes to introduce you to the overall learning objectives for this series. "It seems as though we are expected to collaborate on shared objectives in both our personal and professional lives on a daily basis. The quality of our lives is to a significant degree correlated to the quality of these types of relationships. Our ability to achieve a range of goals or objectives is dependent on how well we are able to work together. My hunch is that for those of you participating in this series you’ve found this to be true in the context of education, where we are tasked with working together to improve student learning. In an article entitled "Relationships in the Schoolhouse," educator Roland Barth states, One incontrovertible finding emerges from my career spent working in and around schools; the nature of the relationship among the adults has a greater influence on the character and quality of that school and on student accomplishment than almost anything else." Now that's a powerful assertion.
A couple of things are important here from my perspective. We know that if we are to improve student learning, you must address such topics as focused instruction, professional development, and assessment for learning, in addition to another, a range of other strategic options. Now, while these conversations are critical, our ability to engage the inevitable conflict that surfaces when we take on these complex challenges is equally critical. The fundamental question we're too often, or that too often we ignore is this; Do we trust each other sufficiently both personally and professionally to fully engage in the challenging conversations encountered when confronting change in pursuing improvement? Now the objective of this six part series is to introduce you to skills and strategies for engaging difficult and yet critical conversations. Let me briefly share with you the structure of each lesson. Each module has written material that will prepare you for your team's dialogue around the concepts and skills introduced in each session. Each module is divided into three to four sections. Each section has information specific to the topic, followed by discussion questions or activities designed to support your groups learning. Finally, each session starts with a brief video such as the one you're watching now, which will introduce you to the overall learning objectives for that session.
So the basic structure of each session will look like this; Individuals will read, review the written material provided for the session, and take time to review the discussion questions. You'll meet as a group and watch the video introduction for that section. As a group, you will then discuss your learning for that module using the discussion questions that are provided. The number of sessions you use for each module is totally up to you. "Finally, I invite you to wrap up each session by identifying specific actions you'll take either individually or collectively to act on the new learning that you've achieved. We often say that insight is not sufficient to create change; insight plus action will create change. I'd like to end with this invitation; the interesting thing about life from my perspective is you'll find no lack of opportunity to practice the skills which you'll be learning here. I invite you to be open to the opportunities that you will show up in order to apply this learning. Thank you for your willingness to take on this important area of development.