The Learning Cycle

The Learning Cycle is a model for professional learning that undergirds most of the partnerships in which INSPIRE engages. This model is an outgrowth of the research and practice of UW College of Education faculty as well as faculty and practitioners from other institutions. It's use has been evolving over the past 15 years in pre-service teacher education methods courses and in-service professional development. For more information on the history of the model, click here.



Introduce: The group begins by selecting an aspect of practice they want to investigate collectively and selecting informational resources and an instructional activity to support that investigation.

Prepare: They collaboratively plan and practice a lesson or intervention to try with students.

Enact: They go into a classroom to try the lesson or intervention, sharing the responsibility for the decision making of live teaching during the lesson. Often groups will do two classroom visits in one day so that plans can be revised between visits and multiple teachers can try leading the activity.

Analyze: Then the group analyzes how the lesson or intervention was implemented, considering what they learned about student thinking and how decisions played out in the classroom. They then plan for next steps.