PLPs and Presentation

Personal Learning Plans can be leveraged into outstanding presentations. Here’s the proof.

A few months ago, our school’s Technology PLC was asked to present the work we had completed towards implementation of a Google-based Personal Learning Plan template. Having a year of experience with the PLPs, we agreed.

After discussion and input from group members, we decided to focus on multiple goals. First, we wanted to evaluate staff understanding or awareness of Act 77, the statute identifying personalized learning and flexible pathways. Second, we wanted to model relevant and appropriate professional development around personalized learning and its role in the classroom. Finally, and most importantly, the team wanted to familiarize the staff with the Google Sites template that was created and adopted for the pilot project.

Deciding on the best method for presenting our work on the PLPs was difficult. We had a limited amount of time and we wanted to give teachers proof that the PLPs could be a viable part of the classroom. To do that, we asked several students to present their work.

The first student segment was conducted by two eighth graders who have completed Phase 1 of the PLP process. Admittedly, these two students provided exemplars of the PLP process. That said, their presentation, created without teacher guidance, was outstanding. They were able to move through the pages of the Google site fluently and, because of the “personal” elements of the project, with great familiarity. The old adage about students doing their best work on topics that they know most deeply was brought to life.

The second student segment included a student panel answering questions from the staff about their PLP experience. Again, these students were asked to speak without prior preparation. Again, their performance was flawless. Not only did they provide accurate information about the PLP process, they also were able to articulate how the process differed from traditional teaching methods.

Post-presentation feedback indicated that the student presentations were convincing, relevant, authentic, and professional.

My conclusion? PLPs can be used to help students create outstanding presentations because they are comfortable and familiar with the material. It’s an added bonus to the project.

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