Elevating Student Equity Through Effective, Research-based Lesson Study

Around the world, educators aspire to nurture the learning of all students–including students from cultural, language, and economic groups underserved by educational institutions in the past.  Many educators are using lesson study to investigate and build equity. WALS 2020 will provide an arena for educators from around the world to share their thinking and work around the following strands:

Issues of equity

  • What is equity?  How do different definitions illuminate different issues?  How can we measure equity and gauge our progress toward achieving it?
  • How can we use lesson study to build equity? How can lesson study in non-traditional educational settings, such as out-of-school settings, build equity of learner outcomes?
  • What strategies and tools are particularly useful for building equity through lesson study?

Effective lesson study practice

  • What makes lesson study effective? For example, what attitudes, practices, or tools support effective content study, planning, observation, and reflection? 
  • How can lesson study contribute to valued outcomes for students and teachers–outcomes such as learning, agency and leadership?  
  • What learning outcomes (students, teachers, facilitators) are important to measure?  How do we gauge effectiveness of lesson study in different school and out-of-school-time settings?
  • How can administrators know whether lesson study is effective and builds equitable outcomes?  What can they do to nurture and support effective lesson study?

The role of research

  • How does research enrich lesson study and how does lesson study enrich research?  For example, how do teams use research on student thinking, instructional routines, content, equity or other topics, to enrich their work? How can a lesson study team’s findings or methods shape research knowledge?
  • What does research tell us about key issues in lesson study–for example, how to sustain and spread lesson study, and how to improve it over time? How do we know if an adaptation to lesson study practice, such as technology use, is effective and equitable? 
  • What theories are useful in examining lesson study–for example, variation theory, community of practice, activity theory and others.  What research traditions outside lesson study, such as improvement science, formative research, teacher inquiry, and action research can make valuable contributions to lesson study?