The Good Teacher Toolkit
Project Zero resources help you dig into your practice and navigate common classroom dilemmas
What makes a good teacher? There’s no single answer — and no one way to be proficient. But it’s a question that should spur reflection, and that’s something teachers may find hard to make room for in their daily lives. After all, assessing one’s own practice can feel like an indulgence when placed next to the critical business of getting through a lesson plan.
Tools and resources developed by Project Zero’s Good Work Project can help teachers carve out the time to enter that reflective process, offering them structure and guidance as they navigate their own particular questions and explore common classroom dilemmas.
The “Good Work framework” — which positions the notion of good work as encompassing excellence, ethics, and engagement (“the 3 E’s”) — provides a scaffolding that teachers can use to think about what good teaching means to them.
And they can use the framework to help students reflect on similar questions — what good work means in their capacity as learners and as people beginning to think concretely about their aspirations.
- Educators (and parents) can download and use the Good Work Toolkit [PDF] — an expansive, 161-page resource that includes dilemmas and other activities that can help professionals and students navigate their understanding of good work.
- Peruse Good Project resources for teachers:
- Sample dilemma on teaching: Excellence at Risk?
- Sample activity: Looking at the Big Picture: Investigating Professional Goals
- Watch “What Does Good Work Look Like?,” a video made to document a mini-course taught by educator Ron Berger at the 2013 GoodWork Conference, in which he inspired teachers to support and celebrate young people’s desire to do meaningful work.
- Read a case study [PDF] on how a culture of good work was developed by and for faculty and students in one school setting (specifically pages 10–12).
- Explore Good Project research on the challenges teachers face and the responsibilities they hold:
- Responsibility at Work: How Leading Professionals Act (Or Don’t Act), edited by Howard Gardner. See Chapter 8, “Service at Work,” by Lynn Barendsen.
- “Creating Good Education Against the Odds,” by Wendy Fischman, Jennifer A. DiBara, and Howard Gardner, in the Cambridge Journal of Education.
- Attend Project Zero Classroom, a weeklong institute at the Harvard Graduate School of Education that includes workshops on good work, among other Project Zero topics.
- Sign up for the Good Project newsletter.
- Get more information and join the Good Work community by contacting the Good Project.
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