Initiated by Kurt Wittig, Teacher Librarian at our Dover Campus, staff had the option to sign up to read one or three books throughout the academic year. Books were selected for their compatibility with the UWC mission, our College strategy and overall quality. The short list is created from books that have been reviewed and recommended by UWCSEA staff.
On a professional learning day, participants had a chance to meet up for a burrito lunch and to discuss their thoughts and findings about their reading. Throughout the year, staff could test out ideas and strategies from the book and then share their feedback with the group.
Funds were used to support the purchasing of books (not burritos!) that would have been beyond the means of the College’s professional learning and development budget.
185 staff members participated in the programme and feedback was extremely positive, with
many reporting it was the best professional development opportunity of the year. Many teachers went on to run workshops for other staff members, based on what they learned in the book(s) they had read. Inspired by the overwhelming success of Books and Burritos, other departments followed suit and set up their own professional development book clubs, including the first book club for administration staff!
I loved it. It was personalised. It was individualised. It allowed me
a chance to talk with colleagues from different departments. It was
meaningful and it will have an impact on my teaching practice.
Tim Pruzinsky, High School teacher, Dover