Alliance College-Ready Public Schools launched Blended Learning for Alliance School Transformation (BLAST) at three high schools in 2011 and 2012. What they found was this powerful model had an impact on teachers at every level of experience. They found:
- Teacher roles morphed from “sage on he stage” to “guide on the side."
- Teachers had to plan out multiple lessons in advance, with minimum one week ahead, to keep up with the different learning paces.
- Increase in the need for classroom management skills.
- Teachers need to particularly focus on analyzing real-time data about what students are and aren’t learning each day.
- School leaders play a critical role in creating a culture of collaboration, shared learning and an atmosphere of openness and willingness to make and learn from mistake.
- In hiring teachers for a blended learning classroom, seek those who are willing to innovate and take risks.
- Before sending teachers into blended classrooms, provide orientation training that goes above and beyond that of teachers in more traditional classrooms. Address the use of digital content, classroom management and planning and techniques for using data to differentiate instruction.
- Throughout the year, have teachers participate in ongoing professional development in weekly two hour sessions as well as quarterly.