Hosting A Book Discussion Group for Faculty

Being a School Counselor means not only working with students, but all persons in your building.  Our district is lucky that we are a part of a Teachers’ Center, and not only are we lucky to be a part of it, we are lucky enough to have it hosted in our building.  For those of you who don’t know what a Teacher Center is, a TC  is a work room for teachers.  Ours houses books and reference guides, a laminating machine, a cricut machine, binder, magnet maker, not to mention many other wonderful gadgets.  In addition, it provides professional development training to staff through a variety of programs. 
When the new Director took office in December, I told her I wanted to hold a book discussion group for teachers.  I picked the book, The Tiny Warrior, an inspiring book about reaching one’s personal goals.  Bonnie, our Director ordered the books, and they just came in.  Now I need to advertise the group and begin planning.
In the mean time, Bonnie also asked me to co-facilitate another book group on Understanding Poverty.  I am so excited to be able to help! 
To facilitate a group you need to remember a few key ingredients:
  1. Pick a book
  2. Pick some dates–depending on how long your book is, you can have 1 meeting – 6 meetings.  After all, you want everyone to actually have time to read the assignment before the next discussion group meeting.
  3. Limit the group size.  I wouldn’t have more than about 10 people.  This will allow everyone enough time to share their ideas, questions, and thoughts.
  4. Focus on a few key questions that will be presented to the entire group, and always include this question, “How can I use this is my classroom?”
  5. Bring goodies.  People like to eat, and food is always a motivator for people to come.
  6. Promise that it will be fun AND useful.  I am not lying; it will be both.

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