November 9, 2017

Group Norms: Creating Communities of Trust and Growth

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This blog was written by Walking Together Learning Leader Diane Stronks who is working alongside co-leaders Elco Vandergrift and Guillermo Yan with Nicaraguan educators and leaders as part of the Leading Change With a Growth Mindset Walking Together project.

Whenever we are working with groups, whether that be a classroom, a staffroom, a board, leadership teams... one of the most important discussions that needs to happen is how will we "be" together.  What are our group norms?

Creating a set of group norms helps all the participants to understand what is expected of them and of the group as a whole.  Ensuring that everyone has a voice in creating the group norms builds trust and ownership.  When we are involved, our ownership of the "rules" is much greater.

As this week comes to a close, Elco and I are amazed at the growth and the crucial conversations that we experienced with the ACECEN leaders and facilitators.  The trust that has been built in a short time has allowed all of us to ask difficult questions and deal with hard realities.  

Thanks to our friends and colleagues at COCREF in the Dominican Republic for allowing Guillermo Yan to join the Nicaraguan educators for this training.  His contributions have been invaluable.

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