Engage Thinking.

          Improve Learning.



You may click on each box to read and access more information regarding each component of the Learning Wheel below:

Above diagram based upon information found in:

 Jacobson, D.  (2010).  Coherent instructional improvement and PLC’s: Is it possible to do both?  Phi Delta Kappan, 91(6), 38-45.


Focus Questions to Improve Learning for ALL Students

1. How can our everyday lessons be "tweaked" or enhanced to help students engage and become more involved in their own learning?
2. What is the difference between students being engaged in the learning process and students complying with the learning process?  What do these both look like in the classroom?

Professional Development Purpose

Vista High School Staff will focus on increasing student engagement in the learning

process for the purpose of helping students make their own meaning of the content

knowledge and skills, improve thinking and reasoning skills, and develop thought

processes that can be utilized to help students solve real world problems and

make decisions based on available information.


When teachers design learning tasks without requiring rigorous student engagement, they end up assuming more responsibility for doing the work.  Teachers end up more exhausted and students end up more passive.  Teachers provide study aids, lecture notes, review checks, and practice exams but overlook the more fundamental issue that inhibits achievement: many students do not understand the work they are doing because their learning keeps them at the surface level of knowledge.

The challenge for educators is to develop innovative ways to engage students in the exploration of conceptual threads and develop fluency with key rules and skills that define the discipline.  Teachers must shift their focus away from giving students information and toward equipping students to think deeply and flexibly about their subject.

--Allison Zmuda


Assessing the Improvement of Learning at VHS

Learning Walk Tool

Learning Walk Pre-Reading: Orientation Pamphlet

Learning Walk Pre-Reading: DI2

Learning Walk Examples of Evidence

For questions or more information, please contact one the following VHS Faculty:

Craig Gastauer, Kim Collier or any of the Core Department Chairs