PLN - Professional Learning Networks

This page is intended to serve as a resource point for educators to connect to their own Professional Learning Networks - collaborative areas for connecting and sharing professionally with others.

PLNs are also called PLCs - Professional Learning Communities - groups of educators and community members who work together toward common goals. Learning networks/communities can be organized by subject, grade level, speciality, or a combination of topics that district administrators believe need attention.

Creating a PLC/PLN:

1. Learn how to collaborate: Ask questions that don't put people on the defensive. Circulate articles and books while encouraging members to form their own study groups. Allow the group to establish the rules for communication.

2. Create an atmosphere of trust: Encourage participants to form a book club or discussion group about a teaching topic. Once they start sharing in a trusting setting, they will be more open to discussing more. Another idea is to have teachers pair up and observe each other's classes.

3. Allow enough time: Allow not only enough time to have discussion but time to also work through the issues regularly. Plan to meet at regular intervals with enough time to share studies and have discussions.

4. Reach out and include a broader population: Depending on the topic, you may want to extend the reach of your PLC to include administrators, parents, students, and community members who support their school. The objective is to align everyone's interests and expertise with the vision and goals of the school and district.

5. Remember the L in PLN/PLC - The team will always learn from each other. There may be healthy disagreements from time to time, but they are learning discussions.