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Uncommon Impact FAQ

About Uncommon Impact

What is Uncommon Impact?
At Uncommon Schools, we know that many educators, schools, and school systems are interested in the same things we are interested in—practical solutions for classrooms and schools that work, can be performed at scale, and are accessible to anyone. We are fortunate to have had the opportunity to observe and learn from outstanding educators—both within our schools and from across the United States—who help all students achieve at high levels. Watching these educators at work has allowed us to derive, codify, and film a series of concrete and practical findings about what enables great instruction. Uncommon Impact shares these techniques, skills, and practices of high-performing teachers and leaders with educators from around the world.
 

How does Uncommon Schools share with other organizations?
We share our best practices through books, workshops, and partnerships. Please explore this website to learn more about our three areas of expertise—improving teaching, deepening content knowledge, and strengthening leadership.
 

About Workshops

How are your workshops different from the professional development that I’ve previously received?
Our 1- and 2-day workshops are based on best practices in adult learning and structured so that attendees internalize best practices. Workshops emphasize actionable skills that can be used immediately in schools, with a heavy use of video and role-play (practice) to ensure that concepts and skills transfer to the classroom. Workshops also incorporate reflection time to enable attendees to plan for the implementation of techniques. Uncommon Impact workshops use a Train-the-Trainer model, with the intention that workshop attendees will train and coach educators in their schools on the content learned at workshops.
 

What types of topics do your workshops cover?
Our workshops focus on Uncommon Impact’s three broad areas of content that support educators and leaders to:
Improve Teaching
Deepen Content Knowledge
Strengthen Leadership
To learn about our full offering of workshops, please click here.

 

Can I earn graduate or in-service credit for attending one of your workshops?  
Our workshops enable practitioners to improve their craft, but do not officially provide credits. We can provide a certificate of completion or attendance upon request.

 

Workshop Registration

How do I register for a workshop? Can I register far in advance to secure a spot?

We provide information on this website and on our mailing list about when registration will open for each workshop. You can register for each workshop when the registration opens for it, which typically occurs 6-8 weeks in advance of the listed workshop date. To be added to our mailing list, please click here.


I see that a workshop I’d like to attend is sold out. How can I be added to the waiting list?
While we would love to include all interested attendees in our workshops, we have limited capacity. We encourage you to join and remain on our waitlists in case a spot opens up. To do so, go to our Workshops page and click on your desired workshop listing.

 

Workshop Logistics

Where are your workshops located?
We currently hold our workshops in the cities listed below; the specific location of each workshop will be noted on our Workshops page and on all workshop-specific communications.
Albany, NY
Florham Park, NJ
Tarrytown, NY

Do you serve food at your workshops?
Breakfast, lunch, coffee, and snacks are included in the price for all workshops. Please check workshop descriptions for details and any variations.
 

Workshop Materials Licenses

What is a workshop materials license?
Uncommon Schools workshops use a Train-the-Trainer model, with the intention that workshop attendees will train and coach educators in their schools on the content learned at workshops. We believe that having the video clips and carefully crafted, ready-to-use practice activities associated with the workshop are essential for attendees to be able to teach the workshop techniques to others at their schools.

When attending a workshop, participants purchase a license for their school, which affords them a comprehensive collection of materials that they can use to lead sequences of professional development sessions for their school staff. The license for a workshop entitles attendees to receive a flash drive containing all the video clips discussed at the workshop as well as many additional clips; a full description of all techniques, methods, and practice activities; and additional clips and practice activities on the workshop’s focal techniques. In addition, the drive includes a copy of the presentation used in the workshop and additional materials and planning tools and guidance for conducting professional development on the content (for our Great Habits, Great Readers workshop, the presentation and additional materials that are not included on the drive are provided electronically post-workshop).

 

If I attend a workshop, is my school eligible for the renewal license price for a different workshop license?
Each workshop is accompanied by a unique set of materials that attendees can take home to implement skills learned with their schools. The first time that any school sends attendees to a given workshop, the school pays a $1,000 (for a 2-day workshop) or $500 (for a 1-day workshop) license fee for school staff to use the materials that accompany the given workshop. We frequently update the materials and videos that we provide to attendees; in fact, nearly every time we host a given workshop, the materials will differ. If a given school sends attendees to the same workshop multiple times, then the school can either opt to:

  • Pay a $300 (for a 2-day workshop) or $150 (for a 1-day workshop) license upgrade fee after the first workshop to receive updated materials, or
  • Continue using older materials at no additional cost (with the exception of our Great Habits, Great Readers workshop).


Please note that the upgrade fee exists only within the same type of workshop (e.g. Engaging Academics or Behavior & Culture); when a given school sends attendees to multiple different workshops, the school must pay the full $1,000 (for a 2-day workshop) or $500 (for a 1-day workshop) license fee for the materials for each type of workshop.

 

My school sent attendees to Uncommon’s Great Habits, Great Readers workshop and paid for a materials license. We would also like to attend the Reading and the Common Core workshop (or vice versa).  Are we eligible for the license upgrade fee of $300 rather than the full $1,000 license fee?  
Like any two of our workshops, Great Habits, Great Readers and Reading and the Common Core are different workshops that cover different topics. Since the associated materials and videos that attendees receive are quite different, attendees are not eligible for the discounted license upgrade fee for one of these workshops if they have attended the other.

How can I purchase video clips or other supporting materials if I have not attended a workshop?  
We believe that our videos and materials can drive significant improvement for students, teachers, and leaders in concert with our workshops. Therefore, our videos and materials are only available through our workshop materials licenses for the attendees of each associated workshop.

We offer ready-to-use training modules on specific aspects of our Improve Teaching content. Some of these modules are available for purchase only following attendance at specific Uncommon Schools workshops, while others are available for purchase by anyone. Entitled “Plug and Plays,” these modules provide busy school leaders all materials necessary to easily facilitate 2-3 hour training sessions for their teachers. For more information about Plug and Plays, including a listing of our offerings and clarification on which modules do and do not require prior workshop attendance, please click here (add link to Ready to Use Trainings tab on Workshops page)

What is the difference between the materials that I receive from the workshop materials license after attending an Uncommon Impact workshop and the materials that I could purchase in a ready-to-use Plug and Play training?
When attending a workshop, participants can purchase a license to receive a comprehensive collection of techniques and videos, the full Power Point presentation used in the workshop, and many practice activities and corresponding coaching guides that they can use with their staff. These workshop-specific resources allow school leaders to design and lead sequences of professional development sessions that may unfold over several months or an entire school year.  

In contrast, each ready-to-use Plug and Play training module provides a deep dive into a single Teach Like a Champion technique with a ready-to-deliver 2-3 hour training session. Each module includes a script for what to say and do when leading the training, embedded videos, practice activities and a coaching guide. Some Plug and Plays present topics that are not part of workshops or that go into greater depth on a specific topic than we typically have time to present in a workshop.
 

Books

Where can I purchase copies of Uncommon Schools’ books?
You can purchase any of our books from any major book retailer. To learn more about our books, please click here.

We would like to purchase a bulk order for one or multiple of Uncommon Schools’ books. Where can we find bulk order information?
Please contact: Chris Hegg, bulk sales specialist at our publisher, chegg@wiley.com  

I am a Professor and am considering using one or multiple of Uncommon Schools’ books in a university course that I teach. How can I request an evaluation copy?
Professors and faculty may request an evaluation copy of Uncommon Schools’ books. To do so, click on the pictures of our books on this website, and you will then find a link for university instructors to request an evaluation copy.

 

Additional Resources

Besides the books and workshops, does Uncommon Schools provide other resources?
You can find videos and other resources on our Workshops page.

We offer a suite of ready-to-use training modules on specific aspects of our Improve Teaching content. Some of these modules are available for purchase only for attendees of specific Uncommon Impact workshops, while others are available for purchase by anyone. Entitled “Plug and Plays,” these modules provide busy school leaders all materials that are necessary to easily facilitate 2-3 hour trainings sessions for their teachers. For more information about Plug and Plays, including a listing of our offerings and clarification on which modules do and do not require prior workshop attendance, please click here (add link to Ready-to-use Training tab on Workshops page)

Click here for a free, downloadable resource every month.
 

Speaking Requests

I would like one of Uncommon’s leaders to lead a training at our school or speak to our organization. How do I get in touch with them?
While we would love to honor training, coaching, speaking engagement, and other requests, Uncommon’s leaders are largely focused on supporting Uncommon’s schools and facilitating the set of workshops detailed on this website. We will do our best to respond in a timely manner to additional requests, but please be advised that our facilitators have limited availability. To submit a request, please email uncommonimpact@uncommonschools.org