Collaboration and the Value of Assessments

Name: Nicdao, Jocelyn

Topic: CO

Citation: Moreillon, J. (2019). Co-planning and co-implementing assessment and evaluation strategies for inquiry learning. Knowledge Quest, 47(3), 40-47. Retrieved from

Summary: Moreillon discusses the importance of school librarians to work in “comprehensive collaboration” with classroom teachers and/or learning specialists in order to be valuable in the academic partnership. In such collaborative efforts, both school librarians and classroom teachers and/or learning specialists actively work together in the planning, implementation, assessment, and evaluation of a unit. More specifically, Moreillon emphasizes the value and use of assessments especially from both the school librarian and classroom teacher and/or learning specialist. Assessments coming from the collaboration of two or more adults allow for reliability and for different perspectives in practice and in the learning process. Assessments guide in the co-planning of learning throughout the unit, focused on the “what?” and the “how?” students learn in the process and the quality of that learning. Further, assessments allow for the co-implementation of further academic supports such as small groups or one-on-one for students who may struggle or the co-implementation of lessons to reteach with examples or to  re-frame for the whole class. Moreover, assessments inform the evaluation of the unit itself, with both the school librarian and classroom teacher and/or learning specialists seeing its successes and needs for improvement and thereby, planning for the next unit.

Evaluation: I find that Moreillon is basically encouraging school librarians to be a valuable part of the collaboration process, using assessments as tools to collaborate successfully with the classroom teacher and/or learning specialist in the planning, implementation, assessment, and evaluation of a co-taught unit. With that, she includes in this article examples of forms that can be used in the collaboration process. As she points out the many benefits and examples of co-assessments from both librarian and classroom teacher and/or learning specialist, I realize how much rich input school librarians can provide in co-teaching a unit and thus, become a prolific part of the academic partnership.

Universal Design and the Arts

Ward-Sell, Krista

Topic, Collaboration

Glass, D., Meyer, A., & Rose, D. (2013). Universal Design for Learning and the arts. Harvard Educational Review, 83(1), 98-119


Glass, Meyer and Rose make an argument in this article that the arts should be integrated into classrooms. The overarching framework is the idea of Universal Design for Learning, which is a transitional framework, hoping to move student engagement in new directions that take into account different learning styles, offer a methodology for teachers to follow to deliver multiple modalities to reach a wider student audience and encourage engagement with the material. UDL focuses on the why, what and how of teaching and learning. 

The authors assert that not every student can be engaged in the same way, being unique, changeable individuals.  Ultimately, to reach more students, one must have a flexible approach to teaching. Specifically they present the case that co-teaching the arts in the classroom presents a unique and highly exploitable opportunity to engage students in new ways. Given that the Arts are becoming increasingly marginalized in our school systems, Co-teaching opportunities with arts teachers, who may, it is argued by the authors, have more experience in engaging students of all different learning styles and abilities should not be missed. 


I was particularly inspired by the author’s acknowledgement that while variability in ability and cognitive style results in frustratingly different student populations, this matrix of difference is roughly predictable, and when understood properly, can be planned for. I was often the outlier, as a child, this philosophy would have helped me immeasurably, especially in math. Visuals would have been helpful, but the teaching materials from the mid 1980’s were still heavily focused on rote memorization. How wonderful it would have been to have music incorporated in a math lesson, or painting, photography, or sculpture, origami?  While UDL is so much more than this specific example, anyone looking for a method to engage a student that is constantly daydream-drawing in her notebook and not paying attention, this is an article for you.

A Prime Co-Teaching Opportunity

Taylor, Diana


Jones, T. N. (2016, March 5). A Prime Co-Teaching Opportunity. Retrieved from

Summary: In this article, Jones discusses what it means for librarians to collaborate alongside of teachers and provides various co-teaching structures that can work. When just starting out, she recommends strategies for how to find likely partners of collaboration, how to find what research projects are planned, what to do next, and how to incorporate technology. She provides an overview the seven models of co-teaching. She also provides an overview of her “team teaching” model experience working with another teacher.

Evaluation: This article is particularly useful to new individuals going into the teacher librarian profession. It gave very specific strategies on how to support classroom instruction, so it was very real world applicable in terms of take away points.

Collaborative Learning Tips & Strategies

Kumar, Amy


TeachThought.20 Collaborative Learning Tips And Strategies For Teachers.June 28, 2018. Retrieved from

Summary: This article from the team at the TeachThought online journal features a numbered list of twenty learning strategies for collaboration among teachers as well as the research supporting those efforts.

Analysis: While the website itself is rife with ads, set aside those distractions and you will find a great article on collaborative teaching and the science behind why it works. According to the authors, research “suggests that students who worked collaboratively on math computational problems earned significantly higher scores than those who worked alone.” While teacher librarians are often convincing teachers to co-teach alongside them, it is this kind of data that may help our case.

Piloting the Learning Commons

DeLuca, Allison


Murray, E. (2015). Piloting the Learning Commons. Teacher Librarian, 43(1), 18–24. Retrieved from


This article discusses using learning commons in the process of co teaching and collaboration between classroom teachers and teacher librarians. The article is told by a classroom teacher who works with the media specialist in her school in order to introduce her students to the learning commons and use it as a productive space for learning. The teacher realized the excitement that the children had when introduced to the learning commons and saw the potential for her students. The article emphasizes the importance of putting aside time for collaboration and the success that comes from collaborating with a media specialist in the school. The author gives details on her personal collaboration process with the librarian in order to give an idea on how to successfully collaborate in order to benefit students.


I feel as though this article is helpful for encouraging schools to transform library spaces into learning commons as well as encouraging classroom teachers to work towards collaboration with school librarians or media specialists. Collaboration is a key to success when it comes to the achievement of students. Also, the highlighting of the learning commons space was also a significant part of this article. Learning commons allow for students to be more creative and have more freedom when it comes to inquiry and learning. Current library spaces in schools have the potential to be transformed into learning commons in order to not only encourage student use, but to encourage collaboration between staff.

Co Teaching Models: Strategies and Planning

Walker, Machelle


Teachings in Education (2016, August 26). Co Teaching Models: Strategies and Planning.  Retrieved September 07, 2018, from


This short video reviews the five models of co teaching. It describes each model in detail along with the roles each teacher undertakes.  It also describes in what situation each model it can be used for the most benefit to both teachers and students.  Narrator points out what kind of student grouping is normal to each model of co teaching: including station, parallel, one teacher one support, alternative teaching, and straight on team teaching.


This was quick but helpful video that reviews the multiple models of co-teaching.  It expands far past typical teacher and assistant co-teaching which is seen in most classrooms.  I found it help in it analysis of each model ad how it can be utilized to benefit students along with in which situation each model is best used.

Inquiry-Based Teaching and Learning – The Role of the Library Media Specialist

Cruz, Loren


Stripling, B. (2008). Inquiry-based teaching and learning – The role of the library media   specialist. School Library Media Activities Monthly. Vol. 25(1)

This article discusses the role of library media specialists in collaboration, teaching, collection development, and leadership and professional development in schools.  It focuses on how library media specialists and teachers must support each other, so that they can support students in their own inquiry processes.  It talks about creating a community of learners, creating a learner-centered environment, and making assessments of the content matter.  It also touches on collection development, and how library media specialists can carefully pick resources relevant to the curriculum that can help aide in the students’ inquiry and research process.  Effective professional development for teachers and library media specialists involves having these professionals go through the inquiry process, reflect on their inquiry experiences, and participate in a collaborative community.

This article did well at briefly describing the ways that school library media specialists can support inquiry in the classroom when collaborating with teachers.  It views library media specialists as a special resource for both students and teachers when approached with a research project.

Collaboration: Finding the Teacher, Finding the Topic, Finding the Time

Kolling, Kathleen

Collaboration and Coteaching


Gess, A. (2009). Collaboration: Finding the teacher, finding the topic, finding the time. LMC, 27(4), 24-25.


Many classroom teachers view the library as either a waste of time or chance for them to have planning time. Good collaboration between the classroom teacher and library media specialist can help increase language arts test scores, as shown in studies done in Colorado and Oregon, where they have strong collaborative library media teachers. The first step is to find the right teacher who values your work and is excited and willing to work together. The second step is to choose a topic that meets the AASL standards and utilizes technology, such as webquests . The third step is deciding if it should go as an introduction to a unit, in the middle, or as a conclusion/review. It’s always important to make it accessible to students with different learning and language needs. Always finish a unit by evaluating the success of it with the classroom teacher. Through successful collaboration, teachers will stop viewing library time as a break or waste.


At my library placement last year in a middle school, teachers hardly ever brought their classes to the library, so I found myself doing a lot of collection weeding and other tasks that didn’t involve working with students. I met with the Language Arts department every week and always offered to collaborate with whoever wanted to, but no one ever took me up on it. In my experience, most teachers don’t want to collaborate because they think that there may be extra planning and preparation. I’m at an elementary school this year, and most of the teachers drop their kids off at the library so they can do planning, which makes it difficult for collaboration. Recently, the administrators started requiring all the teachers meet in the library for grade level planning, so I’ve been able to join in the conversations they are already having about their current units of study. I work on tying that into my read-aloud with the younger grades, and with the older grades, I’ve been showing them primary sources that connect to their units. Ideally, teachers would stay during library time to support learning goals, but at my school, teachers are not required to stay, so I think my more successful units will happen with the teachers who do stay.

Best Practices Collaborative Teams

Sue, Jason


APA Citation

Fairfax Network – Fairfax County Public Schools. (2013, December 11). Best practices: Collaborative teams. Retrieved from


Larger education institutions should consider developing professional learning communities (PLC) organized by either shared a common subject and/or grade level to share knowledge and expertise. PLCs not only improve the instruction but also improve the instructors through the sharing of unique ideas and testimony. PLCs should have regular short meetings to identify areas in the curriculum that could be improved or identify students who need a bit of extra attention. PLCs work best when they adopt a measurable, attainable goal and work towards accomplishing said measurable, attainable goal. Pre-assessments and post-assessments are key in measuring whether a “smart goal” has been achieved.


This YouTube Video, Best Practices: Collaborative Teams, showcases a fantastic example of the benefits of teacher collaboration and provides on how teachers can start their own professional learning communities (PLC) within their own school.

Monthly menu: Collaboration tool

Gomes, Kathline

Collaboration (CO)

Hincks, K. (2018, May 1). Order up: A monthly menu for collaboration. Retrieved from

This is a blog post about how to use a “monthly menu” of activities to proactively suggest ideas for collaboration/coteaching with classroom teachers. It includes sample documents.

I like the idea of coming to classroom teachers with ideas already formed – I think they would be more open to collaborating or coteaching if the librarian has already generated some ideas. The author really takes into consideration teachers’ perspectives, curriculum needs, and time constraints, which I am sure goes a long way towards building those collaborative connections. This seems like a good way to advocate for all of the possibilities a librarian can provide for supporting and improving instruction!