MAX Teaching Train-the-Trainer Program (TTT) prepares in-house professional developers to present and facilitate MAX Teaching within their schools. This five-day program consists of several days of modeling in a staff-development setting plus an emphasis on techniques for later sharing the process with other teachers. It also may involve practice in the local schools’ classrooms where trainees are actively participating with a MAX Teaching consultant in the modeling and implementation of the MAX Teaching classroom activities. Thus, the focus is on developing expertise in both the methods of instruction and techniques for helping other teachers change their behavior.
The participants chosen for the program need to be academic and/or career-technical educators willing to make a commitment to:
use the methods in their own classrooms,
model for fellow teachers how to increase student engagement and learning in any academic or vocational classroom,
demonstrate how to create opportunities for all students to practice higher order thinking on a routine basis in every class, and
provide staff development for other content-area teachers in the various classroom activities.
We suggest limiting this program to approximately twenty participants who have been identified by their supervisors and peers as role models in education, committed to their own self-improvement and student success, and planning to stay in their schools for several more years.
An optional additional investment is recommended: We suggest that participants be offered the opportunity to earn 3 college credits – 2 credits for participating in the 30 hours of training, and 1 credit for documenting the performance of 15 hours of staff development within their schools or school systems. We also recommend that the school system provide funding for this credit as an incentive to participate as well as an incentive to share the knowledge afterward. By adding earned college credit to the training, participants will be able to grow professionally and they will be motivated to share their learning. (This credit can be arranged through most universities and colleges.)
The 5-day Train-the-Trainer (TTT) session will:
- Model all the classroom activities of the routine two-day staff development session normally provided to groups of teachers, and many additional literacy-based classroom activities,
- Focus on how to share literacy-based teaching techniques with other teachers, and
- Provide materials (and permission) to be duplicated for subsequent staff development activities.
Evidence suggests that many teachers will not consider changing their teaching techniques unless they feel that they have enough "ammunition" to do so. Teachers need to understand the new processes well (because the techniques have been modeled for them by the TTT group), and teachers also need to feel that ongoing support exists in the form of administrators who encourage the change, and in the form of in-house TTT expertise. Thus, it is recommended that an administrator attend, if possible, and that the train-the-trainer in-house experts immediately get the classroom practice that they will need to be able to model for other teachers how the classroom activities work to facilitate deeper learning for students.
Modeling is the key to making this work. Just as Dr. Forget models in his workshops, the train-the-trainers must be able to model for other teachers. Thus, participating teachers need to immerse themselves in this form of teaching once they return to their own classrooms. Such practice will allow them to be able to talk to other teachers about how the strategies have worked for them.
The stages of the process are as follows:
Intense introduction staff development for TTT staff,
Classroom modeling by the MAX Teaching consultant, followed by debriefing discussions,
Real classroom modeling by a MAX Teaching consultant and by one or more participants (if school or summer school is in session),
Introductory staff development by TTT staff to teachers, and
Continuous in-house staff development, modeling, and support over time.
It is important to select train-the-trainer staff from real content-area and career-technical teachers who are progressive enough to want to develop their own techniques for teaching, willing to change, and bright enough to understand why these strategies work to help students acquire knowledge and skills simultaneously. This professional development opportunity should not be limited to language arts teachers or reading specialists. If this occurs, the message to the other teachers is that content-literacy-based instruction only “works in those areas but not in mine.” It would be best if you have teachers of subject areas such as precision machining, mathematics, agriculture, social studies, science, or other content areas. Also, consider what extrinsic incentives you might provide teachers for participating in this enterprise. Whether you provide them with staff development units, financial rewards, some combination of those, or something else such as college credit, you should make it worth their while to get started. (Once they begin to immerse themselves in this form of teaching in their own classrooms, they will have the intrinsic reward of seeing their own and their students' success rates improve.)
If you have further questions about the MAX Teaching Train-the-Trainer program, please contact us.
Classroom Activities for Helping Students Learn New Subject Matter While Acquiring Literacy Skills.
Classroom Demonstrations of Reading & Writing Activities that Help Students Learn New Subject Matter while Acquiring Literacy Skills. (Set of 4 DVDs)