Welcome back to the Neuroscience Meets Social and Emotional Learning podcast, episode #77 with Doug Fisher and Nancy Frey, who are both professors at San Diego State University in Educational Leadership where they focus on policies and practices in literacy and school leadership. Watch the interview on YouTube here.
For those who are new here, my name is Andrea Samadi, I’m a former educator who created this podcast to bring the most current neuroscience and educational research, matched with social and emotional skills, with interviews from experts who have risen to the top of their field with specific strategies or ideas that you can implement immediately, to take your results to the next level. My vision is to bring the experts to you, share their books, resources and ideas to help you to implement their proven strategies, whether you are a teacher working in the classroom or online, a student, or parent working in the corporate space.
Welcome Doug and Nancy, it’s wonderful to meet you after enjoying your books for the past few days.
Doug and Nancy are also both teacher leaders at Health Sciences High & Middle College, an award-winning open-enrollment public school in the City Heights neighborhood of San Diego that they co-founded in 2007. For over 2 decades, they have dedicated their work to the knowledge and skills teachers and school leaders need to help students attain their goals. Their shared interests include instructional design, curriculum development, and professional learning. Doug and Nancy have co-authored numerous articles and books on literacy, and leadership that I’ve included links to in the show notes, including: This is Balanced Literacy,[i] The Teacher Clarity Playbook, PLC+,[ii] All Learning is Social & Emotional[iii], The Teacher Credibility and Collective Efficacy Playbook,[iv] and most recently The Distance Learning Playbook[v] with co-author John Hattie[vi].
I couldn’t start this podcast, without acknowledging John Hattie’s Visible Learning Research[vii] and the fact that he is the co-author of your Distance Learning Playbook. I 100% agree with the write-up I saw in your book that says “The pandemic teaching of mid 2020 was not distance learning but rather crisis teaching.” But starting now, teachers have the opportunity to prepare for distance learning with purpose and intent.”[viii] I’d love to learn how the idea of The Distance Learning Playbook came about and why it was important for you to include John Hattie as your co-author. (Discuss the playbook style of PD book and about John’s Visible Learning research).
My next question for you ties into our last podcast, episode #76 with Michael Horn on “Using a Positive Lens to Explore Change and the Future of Education”[ix] where he spoke about the importance of embracing technology as an important component of our future, and the article you wrote for SmartBrief.com on “4 Steps for Powerful Distance Learning Experiences”[x] ties right into this topic. This morning I had both my girls go “back to school” online and I was grateful that I felt a bit more prepared for this after getting ready for this interview and reading that article. Could you outline these 4 steps as many schools and families are like me, in the beginning stages of going back to school, with distance learning being the platform to launch the school year, before students transition to in person learning?
Because this podcast focuses on social emotional learning, I’d love to dig a little deeper into the concept of the all-important teacher-student relationship. I know that building relationships is one of John Hattie’s teaching effects from one of our earlier episodes, #7 with Assistant Superintendent Greg Wolcott, who wrote his book Significant 72 based on the importance of student-teacher relationships.[xi] What type of impact do those relationships have on student learning and how do teachers build th