Are your faculty meetings painful? Is attentive listening absent? Can you remember the important topics that necessitated the staff meeting? Does one person do all the facilitating?
If you answered yes to one of the questions above, injecting a little of the Tribes TLC process will make a staff meeting more enjoyable, productive, collaborative, and collegial.
Here are some simple tips:
- The first thing on your agenda is an energizer or inclusion strategy – get people moving and talking (that’s what they do anyway?! – make it productive). Ask someone from your staff to facilitate; now you are sharing leadership.
- Review the agreements! If you model at your staff meetings what you expect to happen in your classrooms, you support and build consistency. Don’t hesitate to say so…”I’m modeling what I expect…”
- Use that energizer or strategy that started the meeting, and flip it into your content. Here’s an example: Pen Pals (Instant Bulletin Board) is the first, fun energizer. Later in the meeting the topic is “what to do to make discipline more consistent”. Use Pen Pals and have staff write suggestions, then as they share, they can elaborate, agree, wonder, laugh, or listen. When all the post-its are on the board, there may even be a common thread, or a bright new idea. And, you’ve just modeled how to use a Tribes strategy for productive learning and sharing of information and ideas.
- End your staff meeting with reflection and statements of appreciation. Three simple reflective statements or questions (have staff write it on a slip of paper if you like) and three statements of appreciation will take only minutes. Plan for it.
- Start on time. My principal would greet us with a handshake and a raffle ticket. When it was time to start, no more raffle tickets were passed out. At the end of the meeting, he raffled off some useful and fun prizes – one of which was “I take your class for an hour – your choice of class and day!” People were rarely late.
We’d love to post your great ideas, suggestions, and opinions!