2018 Learning Team Award winner

The Hawaii Math Lab Cohort Team from Maunawili Elementary School
in Kailua, Hawaii has won the 2018 Shirley Hord Teacher
Learning Team Award. The annual award, named for Learning Forward
Scholar Laureate Shirley Hord and sponsored by Corwin, honors a
school-based team that successfully implements a teacher-led cycle of
continuous improvement.


The Hawaii Lab Cohorts are teacher learning communities that offer an ongoing, job embedded, differentiated approach to professional learning for teachers to keep them renewed and accountable to continuous learning and growth in their profession. Following their initial learning in the HLC, the Maunawili Math team set a goal to provide targeted professional learning on facilitating mathematics discourse. The team engages in a 10-week cycle of professional learning that supports teachers in conducting action research. Team members create teaching goals, engage in professional learning to support their goals, apply new instructional strategies and collect evidence of student learning, and provide peer coaching and feedback to each other through observational visits and collective reflection.

Cohort teachers are now expanding this model of deep learning, leading schoolwide professional learning to develop others' collective knowledge and responsibility in their practice.

The Maunawili team was selected from a record number of applicants for the award.

“What sets this team apart is the intentionality of their learning," said Learning Forward Executive Director Stephanie Hirsh. "Their intentional study, goal setting, sharing of practices, observation and feedback, their use of data, and their collective responsibility for their own learning and their students' learning, this team exemplifies the learning that leads to improved teaching and increased student results.”

Teams from across the United States submitted applications for the award. Applications included documentation of each team’s work and its impact on teaching and learning, as well as a video showcasing the team engaging in the cycle of continuous improvement.

Located on the island of O'ahu, Maunawili Elementary School serves 360 students from preschool to Grade 6.

The Maunawili team will be recognized at Learning Forward's 2018 Annual Conference in Dallas, December 1-5. The award, sponsored by Corwin, includes funds to support conference attendance for team members, $2,500 to support collaborative professional learning, and a gift of Corwin books for the school’s library.


About Shirley Hord

Shirley Hord focused her ground-breaking researchon the impact of professional learning communities. Her research teams identified the attributes of effective learning teams and benefits to staff and students of collaborative learning. Later in her career she focused on assisting schools and districts in building structures and acquiring strategies for this form of professional learning. Shirley, who passed away on October 15, 2019, served as Learning Forward's scholar laureate.