Event Details

Drawing on the collaborative research between Harvard’s Project Zero and educators in Reggio Emilia, Italy, this course offers you the opportunity to learn how to document student learning in ways that “make visible” what and how students learn and that provide useful data for reflecting on and improving teaching.


Learning is social. Every day, children and adults learn from and with others, encountering new perspectives, strategies, and ways of thinking. Together, groups can achieve greater perspective and understanding than any individual can alone, but we need tools for sharing thinking and making learning visible to others.

This course will examine group learning through the Making Learning Visible framework, which began as a collaborative research project between Harvard’s Project Zero and educators in Reggio Emilia, Italy, and has since been adopted by thousands of teachers to promote group learning. Participants will explore how to use documentation to “make visible” both what and how students learn. Through observation, evidence collection, interpretation, and information sharing, participants will learn how to produce a record that students and teachers can use to build self-awareness and guide instruction. This course does not cover Project Zero’s Visible Thinking framework and the associated thinking routines.

Course Details

This online course, originally developed by Project Zero’s Mara Krechevsky, was fully revised for the September 2021 term by HGSE Faculty member Steve Seidel, who led the Making Learning Visible research work for more than 30 years along with researchers Daniel Wilson and Terri Turner. The course begins with a one-week orientation, during which you will explore the online platform and get to know fellow members of the learning community. Six two-week content sessions follow, each with an average time commitment of approximately 2.5 hours per week, including a required, synchronous 60-90 minute team meeting once during the two week session. Throughout the course, educators will explore these core questions:

  • What does it mean to learn and to make learning visible?
  • What is my image of the learner? What’s my role as the teacher?
  • What does it mean to document learning, and why is it valuable to me?

Participation: Course participation is team-based, which promotes a deeper and richer learning experience and will help you sustain your use of core Project Zero ideas after the course concludes. Members will collaborate on team assignments. Teams are required to meet face-to-face or virtually once every session.

Although the sessions are structured and coach-facilitated, all the online interactions in the course are asynchronous. You and your team members can decide when to work on the course materials as long as you submit the assignment(s) on or before the due dates.

Team members must be able to try out course ideas with students/learners in classrooms, either virtually or face-to-face, or other direct learning environments with students. If you are not currently working in a school or educational organization, you will need a regular classroom context or a consistent group of students with whom you can try out the ideas you are learning throughout the course.

Course Designers & Instructors

Daniel Wilson (Co-Instructor) is the Director of Project Zero at the Harvard Graduate School of Education (HGSE), where he is also a Principal Investigator, a Lecturer at HGSE, and the Educational Chair at Harvard’s “Learning Environments for Tomorrow” Institute – a collaboration with HGSE and Harvard Graduate School of Design. His teaching and writing explores the inherent socio-psychological tensions – dilemmas of knowing, trusting, leading, and belonging -- in adult collaborative learning across a variety of contexts. Specifically he focuses on how groups navigate these tensions through language, routines, roles, and artifacts.

Tina Blythe (Co-Instructor) is the Project Director for Project Zero’s online learning collaboration with the Independent Schools of Victoria. She is part of Project Zero’s online learning development team, developing, facilitating, and assessing Project Zero online professional development courses. She is also the Education Chair of Project Zero’s summer institute, “The Project Zero Classroom,” and Lecturer on Education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education.

Mara Krechevsky (Initial PD Course Developer) is a senior researcher at Project Zero at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Mara has been conducting educational research for over 30 years, including directing Making Learning Visible (MLV), an investigation into documenting and assessing individual and group learning in U.S. classrooms from preschool to high school. MLV is based on collaborative research with educators from Reggio Emilia. Mara has worked with hundreds of teachers and administrators in the U.S. and abroad to create powerful learning environments for children and adults. She has authored or co-authored seven books and over 30 articles and book chapters. Her most recent book, coauthored with Ben Mardell, Melissa Rivard, and Daniel Wilson, is Visible Learners: Promoting Reggio-Inspired Approaches in All Schools.

Terri Turner (PD Course Revision 2021) began working at Project Zero in 1999 and is currently a Project Specialist on the Learning to Think, Thinking to Learn (LTTL) Project with Principal Investigator Ron Ritchhart. Prior to joining LTTL, Terri was part of the Cultures of Thinking (CoT) project, the Visible Thinking (VT) Project, and the Making Learning Visible (MLV) project. All of these projects share an interest in better understanding how to create environments that encourage critical thinking, and how to make these critical thinking moments shareable with learners inside and outside of the school context. Terri is also interested in how to assess classroom and school cultures, and how to evaluate changes in these cultures over time.

Since its inception in 2008, Terri has also been the facilitator of “DIG” (Democracy Inquiry Group), a Reggio-inspired critical friends group comprised of teacher educators from 11+ colleges, universities, and early learning centers.

Perhaps at the core of all of Terri's work with teachers, spanning from kindergarten through higher education, are two essential motivators: a philosophy of children as highly capable citizens and an excitement about ideas being provisional, meant to be revisited and revised.

What past participants are saying:

“The course is so well designed. Its layout, structure, and pacing fit with a working teacher's life, and assignments can be easily applied to the classroom. It made me look at my classroom like a laboratory and sparked curiosity and camaraderie among colleagues.”

 

“I used to think my role as a teacher was to deliver knowledge and skills to my students. After finishing the course, I can see the importance of observing, collecting, documenting, and sharing–to make learning visible, empowering, and purposeful.”

 

Online Course Schedule

Please review the course schedule to ensure that you and your team will be able to participate fully in the course, taking into account your local holidays and vacations. Teams can plan ahead for scheduled holidays and vacations and need to coordinate those plans with their coach.

September 2022 Term Schedule

  • Session 1 (Orientation): Monday, September 19
  • Session 2: Monday, September 26
  • Session 3: Monday, October 10
  • Session 4: Monday, October 24
  • Session 5: Monday, November 7
  • Session 6: Monday, November 21
  • Session 7: Monday, December 5
  • Course closes: Sunday, December 18

February 2023 Term Schedule

  • Session 1 (Orientation): Monday, February 27
  • Session 2: Monday, March 6
  • Session 3: Monday, March 20
  • Session 4: Monday, April 3
  • Session 5: Monday, April 17
  • Session 6: Monday, May 1
  • Session 7: Monday, May 15
  • Course closes: Sunday, May 29

Who Should Participate

  • Teachers, Teacher Leaders, and School Administrators and Leaders
  • Museum Educators and educators working in informal learning environments
  • Facilitators of Pre-K to Adult Learning

Required Course Textbook

The following textbook is required for participants in this course, and is not included in the course tuition. The textbook is available for purchase on Amazon or through the publisher Jossey-Bass — in both paper and digital format.

  • Visible Learners: Promoting Reggio-Inspired Approaches in All Schools. Mara Krechevsky, Ben Mardell, Melissa Rivard, and Daniel Wilson. (Jossey-Bass/Wiley, 2013)

Tuition, Discounts, and Scholarships

Tuition

  • For In-Depth Courses (6 sessions, 13 weeks), tuition is $615 per person registering as a member of a team, and $695 per person registering as an individual who will be placed (by Project Zero) on a virtual team.

Scholarships

Scholarships are available for educators from qualifying organizations. For online courses (in-depth and mini courses) offered from September 2022 through June 2023, scholarships will cover approximately 70% of the tuition. Eligibility guidelines and the application link are below. Scholarship applications must be submitted and accepted prior to registration for the course. If you would like to apply for a scholarship, please do NOT register for the online course until you have completed the scholarship application and have been approved for scholarship. Those who register for the online course prior to applying for a scholarship will become ineligible for the scholarship. Please note: scholarships are limited and are assessed and awarded on a first come, first serve basis.

Eligibility guidelines: With generous support from the Saul Zaentz Charitable Foundation and many individual donations honoring Project Zero’s 50th anniversary in 2017, Project Zero is able to offer a limited number of professional learning scholarships to support a range of schools, districts, and organizations as well as a diverse group of educators. These scholarships aim to support teams of educators and individual educators working in under-resourced contexts and/or with historically marginalized students.

  • In the United States, public school educators working in schools with a free and reduced lunch rate of 25% or more OR educators working primarily with students who attend these schools.
  • Outside of the United States, educators whose schools or organizations serve 25% or more students whose families meet the country-defined standard for low-income.

Apply for a Scholarship

Registration

Register for the Online Course

Confirmation and Payment

Registration confirmations are sent automatically from the registration software. Please keep these emails as they include your receipt of payment for documentation as well as your confirmation number should you need to access your registration in the future.

Payments are accepted via credit card or invoice for payment by check or wire transfer. Confirmation of registration does not confirm full payment if participants selected to pay other than by a credit card. All required paperwork and payments must be completed (or evidence provided of payments in process) by the registration deadline. For participants whose required paperwork and/or payments are not finalized at the registration deadline, they will be removed from the course roster and placed on a wait list.

Deadline for Registration

For the Making Learning Visible and Visible Thinking in-depth courses starting September 19, 2022, the deadline for registration is Wednesday, September 8, 2022 at 11:59pm Boston Time.

For the Making Learning Visible and Visible Thinking in-depth courses starting February 27, 2023, the deadline for registration is Wednesday, February 15, 2023 at 11:59pm Boston Time.

Please note: Space is limited. The courses may fill prior to the registration deadline.

Refund Request and Participant Substitution Deadlines

Requests for refunds and participant substitutions for the in-depth course September 2022 term must be submitted by September 7, 2022, and for the February 2023 term by February 15, 2023, both at 11:59 Boston Time.

To request a refund, submit a participant substitution, or to ask questions, please email pzlearn@gse.harvard.edu.