PD Bingo

Here is a great way to diversify the professional development offerings at your school. During Term 3, I held a ‘PD Bingo’, based on an idea by @nbgreene, found via @cultofpedagogy (also see bottom of post).
This Bingo poster contained a mix of 24 teaching ideas, strategies and PD choices. The aim was to inspire staff to try new things, and to get a sense of what they found easy or challenging to implement in their classes or in PD. I got the Bingo sheet printed on A2 size and hung it in the staff room for 3 weeks. Here is what it looked like:

Many staff members participated and it got some great conversations going. Below is an analysis of the results:

The top 5 ‘Bingoes’:

  1. Run a quick low-stakes / formative quiz to test students’ understanding
  2. Use one of Schoolbox’ collaborative tools
  3. Design a lesson which is explicitly centred around one of your unit’s key concepts.
  4. Share a worked example with your students to model ‘What a good one looks like’ (#WAGOLL)
  5. Start your lesson with a review of last lesson or previous material

And here are the 5 least ‘Bingoed’ options:

  1. Participate in a relevant online webinar or online course (Coursera, Lynda etc). Tell your Head of Faculty about it.
  2. Invite a colleague into your class and ask for feedback on a specific aspect of your teaching.
  3. Focus on using one of Barak Rosenshine’s 10 Principles of Instruction in your lessons.
  4. Present to your faculty, at a Teachmeet or at a conference.
  5. Visit someone else’s classroom to observe their methods and strategies

The ‘Top 5 Bingoes’ are the great things we all do regularly in our classrooms, and these are supported by research into effective teaching strategies, like running frequent checks for understandings (See Dylan Wiliam), Concept-based learning, modelling (see ‘Worked examples’ in High Impact Teaching Strategies), and ‘Interleaving’.

But what about those five least ‘bingoed’ options? They are valuable tools and strategies, the next step is to encourage teachers to get out of your comfort zone with these. In 2020, I will further promote our Open Classroom days, online learning, teachmeets and we’ll revisit Rosenshine’s 10 principles.

Below is the breakdown of the strategies and the ranking (ie, amount of stickers) they achieved on the Bingo poster: 

Our other campus used the same poster. It is interesting to see a similar pattern of easier and popular options at this campus too.

If you are interested in making a poster like this, here is the file on Canva, you can edit it to suit your needs.

Of course I did not come up with this idea myself. I found it on Twitter, via the wonderful site by Jennifer Gonzalez (@cultofpedagogy), on her very popular and useful post and podcast episode: OMG Becky. PD is Getting So Much Better!!:

“At Westfield Middle School in Bloomingdale, IL, assistant principal Nicole Gabany and Instructional Technology Coach Nanci Greene introduced a DIY PD Bingo Board to their staff this year. The board contains lots of different choices for short learning activities. “I think a lot of our staff were doing some of these on their own,” Gabany says, “but it was nice for them to recognize what they do independently and for us to see since they wouldn’t always share those things.” They created a whole-staff board where teachers would place dots on activities they’d completed, so they could see where they were as a school.”

Thank you to Nanci, Jennifer and of course our staff for having a go at this. It was fun and certainly worth it.