Introducing our NEW Community & Culture Toolkit!

You know the vibe when you walk into a classroom where everyone is engaged and buzzing with learning, and the room is humming with good energy? It’s not accidental. Culture takes deliberate work to build and grow. Learning is happening. Collaboration is smooth. Laughter is present.

How do we get more of that?

Building community, all day, every day

We know that a thriving learning community is essential to student success and wellbeing. And a connected class brings more joy to each school day. But how do we build and maintain an engaged, respectful, and curiosity-centered classroom culture?

Slowly. Daily. With patience, clarity, and laughter.

Community & Culture is such an important topic that we’ve written about it a lot and often. So we are especially excited to present our new Community & Culture Toolkit. Find it in it’s permanent location here.

Building the Culture & the Beginning of the Year

We all want to get off to a strong, solid start. These posts share ideas on how to build the foundation of a strong learning community from the beginning.
See also our tool kit on advisory for more ideas on how to build culture through advisory.

Maintaining the culture

A positive and thriving learning culture must be tended throughout the academic year. These posts address keeping things fresh and real in pursuit of a learning community.

Pandemic Reflections, Reverberations, & Ripples

The pandemic may not be over, but we have certainly progressed from the early moments of 2020 when we pivoted to remote schooling. We’ve moved past the mask mandate and daily case reports, into now, the as-yet undefined third year of pandemic schooling. While many things have returned to ‘normal’, we are changed. This collection of posts by middle level expert Nancy Doda offers rumination on what we’ve learned, what’s important, and what we should still be asking ourselves.

Adult culture

A positive and collaborative adult culture is essential to a positive and collaborative student culture. As educators, we must attend to both. We believe that a thriving adult community in schools is essential, so we built a special toolkit just for that topic. Find it here!

Food for Thought

These episodes of #vted Reads invite us to think more broadly about schooling and culture, and reflect on the implications for our practice.

Emily Hoyler

Emily Hoyler is a Professional Development Coordinator with the Tarrant Insitute for Innovative Education. Part of Emily's role within TIIE is a collaboration with Shelburne Farms, where she is co-developing academic programming and professional learning centered on Education for Sustainability. She has nearly two decades of experience working as an educator, including five years as a sixth-grade teacher, and several years as the Curriculum Specialist at Shelburne Farms. Emily’s current interests include decolonization of education, contemplative practices in the classroom, systems-thinking/sensing, and creating rejuvenating professional development experiences for fellow educators. Emily is a nationally certified facilitator for The Origins Program’s Developmental Designs workshops and served as a Visiting Lecturer in Education Studies at Middlebury College where she taught community-connected courses on elementary methods and Education for Sustainability. Emily lives at the top of a mountain in Ripton, Vermont, with her husband and many Wild Things, including three children, 19 chickens, a dog, and various other untamed critters.

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