PLS Self-Paced Course Offerings

Building a Professional Network™

This course will equip students with knowledge and skills to build a professional network. Topics will include pedagogy resources, professional responsibilities, 21st century networking tools, and ongoing professional growth to support classroom learning and achievement. Download Syllabus >

Classroom Communication™

This course is designed for participants who wish to improve their skills and abilities related to effective classroom communication. When students are engaged in meaningful work where everyone contributes to classroom discussions and deep understanding, transfer of knowledge to real-life applications is more likely. Participants will explore ways to communicate clear directions and procedures and how to evaluate their effectiveness. They will also create and analyze instructional outcomes that represent high expectations and rigor. The verbal and nonverbal communication techniques offered in this course provide participants with ways to encourage, redirect, engage, and challenge students. In addition to facilitating effective communication with and among students, participants will explore how to increase their cultural sensitivity to facilitate conversations with families and students. Download Syllabus >

Content and Assessment™

Effective teachers assess student knowledge before, during, and after instruction in order to collect feedback, and understand how and when to adjust teaching and learning appropriately. Purposeful formative and summative assessments may improve student achievement and challenge students at their instructional levels. In this course, participants will explore ways to engage students in collaborative learning, how to monitor student learning, the role of self-assessment and progress monitoring, and how authentic and performance assessment can improve content knowledge, learning, retention, and application. Download Syllabus >

Creating an Effective Classroom Culture™

Participants will evaluate instructional strategies designed to promote learner engagement and classroom participation. This course offers strategies to ensure that student choice, roles, expectations, reflection, resources, technology, and differentiation are each considered in student grouping within an environment founded upon respect and rapport for each individual learner. Verbal and nonverbal communication with students and their families, a healthy school environment, and trust are emphasized throughout this course. Download Syllabus >

Essential Classroom Strategies™

Effective teaching involves the thoughtful selection of instructional strategies based on student needs, subject matter, and the context of the lesson. A differentiated classroom is also one that is physically safe and effectively-managed, with self-responsible students. Teachers who set clear expectations and are able to prevent or respond to behavioral matters that may arise are integral to effective classrooms. Participants will examine ways that students may transfer learning as a result of classroom activities that are tightly aligned to instructional outcomes. Download Syllabus >

Purposeful and Engaging Classroom Discussions™

In this course, participants will explore how to promote a safe learning environment where reflection, encouragement, peer review, and goal setting each has a role. Ways to engage students in discussions that promote intellectual, active exploration of content are a primary focus. With a deep exploration of questioning strategies, participants will examine how to facilitate classroom discussions where all students are engaged, all perspectives are sought, and all voices are heard. Participants will also explore how to effectively use questioning to encourage students to ask questions and reflect on peer comments to deepen their understanding and real life applications. Download Syllabus >

Responsive Teaching and Equitable Practices™

Accommodating student interests, explaining outcomes, creating activities, and designing instruction that ensure engagement and success among all students are key ingredients to a flexible and responsive classroom. This course explores strategies for creating a classroom environment designed to support self-directed student learning and teacher-student collaboration with maximum instructional flexibility. Participants will become advocates for students, explore their role in educating families, and examine ways to form effective partnerships with students, teachers, and other stakeholders. To maximize the benefits of flexible and responsive teaching in an equitable classroom, participants will explore the role of implicit biases and the effect these biases have on teachers, students, school leaders, parents, and other stakeholders. Finally, participants will create an action plan designed to help them implement culturally responsive teaching and encourage colleagues to do the same. Download Syllabus >