By Steve Barrett, Director of Outreach
The Wildwood Way plays to many audiences—the most important one: our students. They are the primary beneficiaries of Wildwood’s program and practices designed to foster scholarship, innovation, and compassion.
The Wildwood Way has an outward focus as well: through the Wildwood Outreach Center, which I have the privilege of directing. Since opening our middle and upper campus in 2000, Wildwood has intentionally been an independent school with a public purpose: the Wildwood Outreach Center helps educators adapt elements of The Wildwood Way at hundreds of public, private, and independent schools across Los Angeles, the country, and world.
Throughout the year, the Outreach Center runs 1-5 day workshops and institutes here at Wildwood, and travels near and far to provide on-site workshops and consulting services on a wide variety of Wildwood programs.
This week’s blog provides a snapshot of just some of the ways in which the world learns from Wildwood through the Outreach Center.
Multicultural Leadership Institute
This 5-day event brings public and private school educators from across the nation eager to learn about Wildwood’s K-12 multicultural program, and learn from Wildwood’s nationally recognized Multicultural Leadership Team, lead by Wildwood’s Director of Multicultural Affairs Rasheda Carroll.
Now in its 4th year, the Multicultural Leadership Institute has drawn public school educators from across Los Angeles, as well as independent school participants from across California and all corners of the U.S.
Advisory Is Essential 101 & 201
Our most popular workshops highlight Wildwood’s role as a world leader in Advisory programs. Participants from public and independent schools across the country visit Wildwood advisories in grades 6-12, learn from our teachers and students, and forge plans to begin (101) or strengthen (201) Advisory programs at their own schools based on the Wildwood model.
The Advisory Toolkit
The Advisory Toolkit is a unique two-part kit published by the Wildwood Outreach Center that includes a detailed workbook, Advisory curriculum, and a DVD. The Toolkit is designed to provide guidance and ideas from designing an Advisory program that fits each school’s mission to establishing a purposeful curriculum that advances student achievement.
Since 2006, the Outreach Center has sold nearly 1,000 copies of The Advisory Toolkit to schools in dozens of states, four Canadian provinces, as well as in Asia, Europe, and South America.
On-site Advisory and program development
The Outreach Center travels locally, nationally, and abroad to assist public and independent schools in starting and strengthening their Advisory programs based on the Wildwood model, as well as in other areas—like the elementary Life Skills and the middle/upper Habits of Mind and Heart.
In just the past 5 years, Outreach Center programs have brought The Wildwood Way to schools in 7 states, Mexico, the UK, Singapore, and Switzerland.
Making Across the Curriculum: Tech-Based Learning Everywhere
Wildwood’s Applied STEM Coordinator Joe Wise leads this half-day workshop. Visiting teachers discuss how educators can harness the tech-oriented ‘maker’ movement in order to integrate key skills—creativity, problem solving, collaboration, and design—into students’ everyday learning, across academic disciplines.
Life Skills: A Foundation for Lifelong Learning
Wildwood 3rd grade teacher Roxanne Bergmans leads this two-day exploration of our elementary campus’s Life Skills. Visiting teachers meet for one day in November to learn how the Life Skills provide the basis for student learning and classroom conversations, and then reconvene in late January to share with each other how they’ve used Life Skills in their classes.
Critical Friends Group New Coaches Training
Critical Friends Groups (CFGs) is a teacher-driven professional learning practice used by Wildwood teachers for nearly 15 years. Small groups of 8-10 teachers meet regularly under the guidance of a trained CFG coach. These groups use a variety of discussion protocols to share their work and professional dilemmas with a distinct purpose: to improve student learning.
Over the past several summers my upper school colleague Deb Christenson and I have led these 5-day trainings that regularly attract both a national and international audience of educators.
Never Too Young: Engaging Elementary Age Activism
Wildwood 5th grade teacher Monique Marshall shares teaching strategies and projects to help a school’s youngest students engage in conversations around multiculturalism and making a difference in their world. Now in its 4th year, word of mouth about Monique’s workshop continues to grow, as past participants recommend “Never Too Young” to their peers, and new schools send cohorts to learn from Monique’s work within The Wildwood Way.
Each educator who visits Wildwood and learns with us leaves with strong impressions of The Wildwood Way. They also serve as an ideal mirror for our community’s professional growth, providing us feedback on what they see, and what they have questions about—encouraging our healthy growth and development as a school.
Click HERE to learn more about this year’s offerings through the Wildwood Outreach Center. While workshops are geared to an educator audience, we encourage visitors within the Wildwood community. Please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more.