Learning Labs from Nearpod: Engaging Professional Development Resources

June 27, 2017Nearpod Team

This blog was originally published on ClassTechTips.com by Author and Speaker Monica Burns.

If you’re a regular follower of ClassTechTips.com you know I’m a huge fan of Nearpod. It’s an engaging, interactive tool that can be used to check for understanding during a lesson, promote discussion and collaboration and connect students and teachers with high-quality resources. Earlier this year I had the opportunity to connect with the Nearpod team and fellow Nearpod PioNears for a special demo of their new engaging professional development: Learning Labs.

Learning Labs from Nearpod: Engaging Professional Development Resources

Learning Labs is a new type of teacher professional development designed by the folks at Nearpod. They call it, “tech-enhanced, people-led.” When I sat in a session of Learning Labs earlier this year this statement definitely rang true. Although we all had devices in our hands to easily see content presented on our screens, there was still discussion and conversation around the content making it super engaging for the group. With this Collective Inquiry model, there were plenty of opportunities for participation built into the structure as well as open-ended questions that let us apply what we learned to our own role as educators.

With Nearpod’s new PD options, school and district leaders can host interactive, research-based professional learning workshops with their faculty. There are 25, 1-hour workshops available from Nearpod’s Learning Labs collection giving you lots of choices for professional development.

The professional development content comes from subject matter experts including PhDs, authors of best-selling books, and nationally recognized institutions. It’s a collaboration of strong, research-based material with a PD design team who presents the information in an engaging, interactive format. You’ll find content from The National Equity Project as well as The William and Ida Friday Institute for Educational Innovation.

Here are a few of the Learning Labs sessions from Nearpod schools are currently exploring:

How might you use Learning Labs?

These professional development opportunities from Nearpod make it easy to share high-quality content with the educators at your school. It might be used in whole group settings to set the stage for a new initiative, in PLCs or grade level teams where teachers are focusing on a specific area for their professional learning, or for small group breakout sessions during a larger district-wide or school-wide PD day.

What’s great about the Learning Labs content is that you can edit the materials to make them fit the specific needs of your district – customizing the content so it aligns with your goals. Fellow Nearpod PioNear and Instructional Coach Billy Spicer is quoted on Nearpod’s website about Learning Labs, sharing how “it was a great mix of research, media applications and strategies delivered in the gradual release model, I do, We do, You do. This lists the nail on the head. You nailed it!”

Ready to get started? Check out Nearpod’s website to learn more about Learning Labs!

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