Q: What is the Tarrant Institute Learning Lab?

A: The Learning Lab is a year-long experience that invites educators to partner with each other and students to conduct action research that helps answer the questions: What, exactly, are teachers and students doing in settings that are becoming increasingly student-centered, and to what end? How might our findings be helpful to each other, our colleagues, and the field of education in general?

Q: Who’s leading this experience?

A: The University of Vermont and the Tarrant Institute for Innovation in Education.

Q: What does this cost?

A: $1500 for 45 hours of recertification credit.

Q: Is there a clear list of expectations and obligations so I have a better feel for the rhythm and demands of the year?

A: This is a blended learning experience, so in addition to committing to our in-person meetings (see dates below), you’ll be working independently to make progress toward the outcomes that matter most. Attending from out of state, or can’t make an in person session? We’ve designed ways for you to join virtually to engage with this network.

Q: Is this for educators ready to really dig into and get transparent about how they and their students go about the business of learning?

A: Bingo! The curriculum is the network of Learning Labs, where teachers and their students identify and refine their own inquiry question, pursuing that question through experimentation and reflection, sharing their findings along the way. All with an eye to sharing our findings in ways helpful to each other and educators everywhere.

Q: I see that you’re encouraging teams to apply. Do these have to be team teams, or can it be, for example, a couple teachers from different teams, a special educator, and an administrator?

A: Either works for us. It’s a richer and more meaningful experience when shared with colleagues, be they teammates or strangers.

Q: If we come with a teammate, can we work together on the same question with both of our classes?

A: Yes! Each of you might come at the inquiry question from a unique angle in terms of sharing your learning & growth but the focus and work can be team-driven. One year, we had three educators from Peoples Academy Middle Level, in Morrisville VT. They all worked on the same question:  How can we shape "Opportunity Time" to introduce the power of personalization to young adolescents?

Q: Can’t think of another question now, but I bet I think of one later. Who can I contact?

A: Susan Hennessey and Bill Rich co-coordinate this program. You can reach them via this contact form or via email at learninglabvt@tarrantinstitute.org.