Professional Development

 The Teacher Education Department at UWRF is now hosting a workshop series entitled "Peer-to-Peer: Tried and True Strategies to Renew College Teaching." This series is open to all faculty and instruction staff and will showcase different teaching strategies that support general literacy and disciplinary understanding.  Each workshop will model engaging approaches intended to foster critical thinking and deep processing of complex material (both hallmarks of "common core" literacy).  There are also a limited number of Peer Coaching stipends available to support faculty who wish to apply a new strategy in their own classroom.  

Peer-to-Peer Workshops

  • First week of each month (see below), all workshops will be held at UC Trimbelle 231 except the October 3rd session (at WEB 114).
  • 11:45-1:15 on Thursday OR 3:00-4:30 Friday (both sessions will present the same material)

 October 2 and 3
Hooks and Openers
Geoffrey Scheurman

Announcement (PDF)document

 A sequence of active and engaging strategies to START a lesson, each designed to "hook" students intellectually and motivationally by creating cognitive disequilibrium. 

Note: the October 3rd session only has been moved to Wyman Education Building (WEB) 114. 

 November 6 and 7
21st Century Skills for Teachers and Learners
Tyler Christensen

Suggestions for how faculty might use technology to support the acquisition of critical 21st century skills, including collaboration as well as access, assessment, and dissemination of information 

 December 4 and 5
Authentic Group Discussion
Mary Wright

Specific strategies to help students ask thoughtful questions that link personal, text and world connections; view text from diverse perspectives; and empathize with characters and events within a text.  

 Spring Semester
(Dates TBA)

 Possible workshops: Cooperative learning; inclusive syllabus; constructing tests; supporting English learners; academic open meetings; philosophical chairs

These workshops and collaborations are supported by the Retraining and Renewal Grant: "Best Teaching Practices for Common Core Literacy Across Disciplines: A Model of Expert Demonstration, Peer Coaching, and Mutual Feedback." 

Peer Coaching: 

Faculty members who wish to experience with integration of a specific strategy in their course (participant) makes arrangements with appropriate TED faculty member (coach), including: a) pre-teaching consultation and conference between coach and participant; b) in-class or on-site visitation by coach, c) post-visitation conference and consultation.  Limited stipends are provided for both coach and participant on a first-come basis to participants for each workshop. Click Herelink after you attend the workshop to apply for a stipend.


 Workshop Presenters (peer coaches)

 Attendees/Participants (1-4/workshop)


1. Present new teaching strategy (in workshop). 

2. Meet with interested participants* afterward on first-come basis to set goals for "testing it out". 

3. (optional) Observe the participants testing out the new strategies in their own classrooms. 

4. Meet with participants again to see how things went.

1. Attend workshop 

2. Meet with Peer coach and create simple action plan for "testing it out" in participants classroom (Note: you might arrange to have this audio or video-taped)

3. Meet again with peer coach to report on how it went and discuss possible strategies moving forward


 $100 for 1-2 participants, an additional $50 total for 1-2 more

 $100 per participant* 


 *Note: Due to funding availability if more than two registered participants are interested in peer coaching for any given workshop (with the $100 stipend) they will be asked to complete a small application at the workshop to secure one of up to four funded peer coaching spots.

What is the Common Core and Why Does it Apply to UWRF? 

The Common Core is a set of rigorous literacy criteria with widespread influence across all curricular areas.  School districts across America are currently working overtime to implement the standards, which call for deeper understanding of text (including and especially non-fiction) than what is typically called for on standardized exams, as well as broader and deeper understanding of mathematics concepts and processes than what is currently taught to all but a few select groups of students.  This widespread reform (45 states have currently adopted some version) has reached other areas, with specific sub-standards dedicated to deep literacy in science, history, social science, and fine arts.  As with our feed school partners, we are all literacy teachers with a vested interest in the success of the Common Core spirit and substance, even if ewe disagree with teh politics of its implementation.  Furthermore, all of the assessment instruments for which we are responsible in preparing our particular majors are, or should be, infused with the foundational principles and practices identified by the Common Core. 


geoffrey.scheurman@uwrf.edumail (715.425.3420) or tyler.christensen@uwrf.edumail (715.771.9016)