Dozens of Landon faculty members used the start of summer break to continue their own education. Forty-three teachers remained on campus to participate in the 2nd annual Landon Curriculum and Pedagogy Week.
“Two years in a row now, I have come away from this week with fresh ideas, fresh energy, actionable items, new and deeper relationships, and a greater appreciation for what we get to do as educators,” Liz Coffey, Upper School Spanish Teacher, said.
After the success of last year’s inaugural week, when thirty-two faculty members participated, Assistant Head of School Charles Franklin was hopeful the participation would increase given its success.
“I was thrilled that so many faculty members signed up. It is a testament to our faculty’s commitment to teaching and to the positive word of mouth from faculty members who attended the first iteration to their peers about the week,” Franklin said.
The Curriculum and Pedagogy Week provides faculty the time to develop and align curriculum in accordance with five guiding principles: Incorporating resources from outside the classroom, interdisciplinary learning, incorporating student interest into lessons and activities, independent scholarship/original work, and increasing the creativity of course content and activities. These themes are driving Landon’s curricular innovation efforts and draw on research of best practices in boys’ education.
“The power of these themes is that they apply to all our boys, regardless of their grade level, as teachers of any age can apply these principles in their courses. We know from our work developing our Advanced courses, which are replacing AP courses in the 2022-23 school year, that engaging and high-level courses need to incorporate critical-thinking skills, real-world applications, and what we know about best practices in boys’ education,” Franklin explained. “The Curriculum and Pedagogy Week has provided us with the opportunity to develop lessons and units focused on these themes in a collaborative, coordinated, and energizing manner.”
Throughout the week, faculty members presented on one of the themes they have incorporated in their course. Presenters shared how they are incorporating one of the themes; the higher levels of engagement and critical thinking they have seen in their students during the activity/unit; and suggestions and resources for other faculty to consider as they look to implement this theme in their own courses.
“I found it very rewarding to have the extra time and space to collaborate with my colleagues and learn from other members of the faculty. The week also gave me a deeper insight into different ways that I can continue to grow as an educator at Landon,” Alexis Kahn, Grade 4 Teacher, said.
“I found the collaboration with other departments and divisions invaluable. I also really liked hearing from other teachers about what they are doing in their classrooms. It was good to see how I could incorporate or adapt an assignment,” Upper School English Teacher Stephanie Wooten said.
Support for the Curriculum and Pedagogy Week was funded through a $50,000 EE Ford Foundation Grant for Faculty Professional Development received in 2019. The grant was matched by members of the Landon Community increasing the funding to $100,000. We are grateful to the EE Ford Foundation and the Landon Community for their commitment to faculty professional development.