27 Ideas for Going Deeper in Collaborative Team Meetings

Over the past number of years, we have worked extensively with schools and districts in establishing collaborative response models to serve as an overarching framework for how the organization collectively and systematically identifies and responds to the needs of all learners. In the 2015 text Envisioning a Collaborative Response Model, we laid out an overview of the model and how to get it established in a school.The book essentially focused on getting started. However, over the past number of years, we are now working with educational organizations who have established the essential components of the model and are now going deeper. What extensions to the initial components should be considered when sustaining and deepening the model in schools and districts?

Collaborative Team Meetings at the Heart

It has become abundantly clear that the collaborative team meeting is at the absolute heart of the model. Healthy and vibrant team meetings fuel innovation for how we address student needs and lead to approaches or ideas previously left unexamined or unimagined for individual staff members. Unhealthy collaborative team meetings lead to stagnation, frustration and eventual eroding of the model as a whole.

Over the past number of years, I have learned so much through conversing with educational leaders invested in ensuring effective collaborative team meetings and observing those meetings in action. I have had several moments of “I wish I would have thought of that in my own school” and I now intend to share some of those best practices in a series of blog postings. I intend to identify and discuss 27 ideas for going deeper in collaborative team meetings.

Why 27?

The number 27 was my “go-to” number when playing hockey as a youth and later in adulthood. It seemed like a nice random number to set as a goal!

27 Ideas for Going Deeper in Collaborative Team Meetings

These ideas are shared in no relevant order of importance. Click on the hyperlinked title to review the idea in depth. Ideas will continue to be added until I’ve achieved 27 in total!

  1. Focus on Impact During Celebrations – when sharing celebrations to start a collaborative team meeting, going deeper to examine what led to that success for students (posted September 8, 2018)
  2. Establish an Annual Calendar determine and intentionally align when collaborative team meetings will occur throughout the year for your teams (posted October 4, 2018)
  3. Establish a Focus establish what the focus of the collaborative team meeting will be to assist in the flagging students to bring to the conversation and bring greater clarity to the collective conversation (posted December 21, 2018)
  4. Determine Team Tasks – at the conclusion of a collaborative team meeting, determine team tasks that could provide focus for future collaborative time for teams (posted March 2, 2019)
  5. Establishing a Collaborative Meeting Space - considerations when thoughtfully designing a space intended for the collaborative team meeting (posted July 23, 2019)
  6. Question and Discussion Resources - ideas related to the intentional use of question and discussion cards, posters and other resources to prompt collective dialogue and team enquiry (posted October 3, 2019)
  7. Roles in Team Meetings - ideas, samples and templates related to establishing roles in team meetings, as well as communicating the responsibilities for those assuming each role (posted February 23, 2020)