On October 14-17, AIW Institute Coaches, Laura Lang and M. Bruce King, conducted four days of workshops in Tel Aviv, Israel, with regional teacher leaders, as well as leaders from the Mofet Institute, the Ministry of Education, and the Yad Hanadiv Foundation. The workshops were designed to introduce Authentic Intellectual Work (AIW) and to enhance teacher leaders’ capacity across three districts in Israel to implement the framework and accompanying professional development processes. AIW is an instructional framework initially developed by Emeritus Professor of Curriculum & Instruction Fred Newmann and colleagues in WCER in the 1990’s. The framework consists of three criteria that are essential to high quality learning experiences for students: construction of knowledge, disciplined inquiry, and value beyond school. Over 20 years of research that includes studies of diverse schools from the U.S. and Australia has consistently demonstrated higher and more equitable achievement benefits of Authentic Instruction on both assessments of students’ intellectual performance and conventional standardized tests across all grades and all subjects studied.
King and Lang are partnering with Hashkafa teams at The Mofet Institute on their “Teachers who lead colleagues in professional learning” project, which seeks to improve and enhance professional development for K-12 teachers. The work of Teacher Leaders is built on documenting and elucidating the classroom practice of teaching and learning, in order to make it more effective in improving the quality of learning among students. On-going video conferencing with the teams and a follow-up visit is planned throughout the year.