Create shared understandings

Growing collective knowledge is more possible when participants have a shared understanding of key concepts and a common language for talking about these ideas.

Presentation of multiple perspectives

One way to begin building a shared understanding is by providing key quotes from a range of sources for participants to reflect and discuss. For example, during the first face-to-face session for the Learning for All community of practice, the following perspectives on disabilities were presented and discussed.

Responding to a video

Viewing a short video, followed by a focused conversation, can be a useful strategy for building a shared understanding.

For example, in the initial Learning for All face-to-face session, participants watched a short video on the importance of positive and hopeful language and then discussed the following questions.

Expanding definitions

Another strategy for creating a shared understanding is to invite participants to examine a definition and revise and add to it with the goal of creating a more comprehensive and helpful description.

In the Learning for All community of practice participants used the description above as a starting point for discussion and then made revisions in order to create a more comprehensive description that contained key information about these students and their specific learning characteristics.

Next… Unpack research