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I’m really excited by how increasing numbers of educators are opening up their classrooms to their peers. I believe that the type of feedback they give and receive has great potential to help educators improve. Two of the biggest movements in support of that trend are #ObserveMe and Pineapple Charts.

What I’ve been noticing though is that educators think that these two separate movements are the same. The tweets below are examples of what I mean.

 
So, in this post I want to clarify how these two initiatives share the same goal of helping educators learn from one another, but aim to accomplish that goal differently. I’ll briefly explain what each one is and then share my take on their relative strengths and weaknesses so that you can find a balance that works for your situation.
 

Pineapple Chart
Pineapple Charts were first written about in 2015 by Jennifer Gonzalez and Mark Barnes in their book Hacking Education and later in 2016 on Jennifer’s blog.

As Jennifer describes it on her blog:

A Pineapple Chart is a system that allows teachers to invite one another into their classrooms for informal observation. The chart is set up in some location where teachers go on a daily basis: the teacher’s lounge, the copy room, or wherever teacher mailboxes live in your school. On the chart, teachers “advertise” the interesting things they are doing in their classrooms, activities they think others might want to observe. The activities could be as complex as a science lab, a history simulation, or a Skype session with a school in another country. Or they could be as simple as a read-aloud or a lesson on badminton.

Here’s an example of what it looks like in practice:


 

#ObserveMe
I first wrote about #ObserveMe in August 2016. It involves educators making a sign that welcomes their colleagues to observe them and give feedback in specific areas they have listed. Then they ask their peers to come by and share their expertise.

Here’s an example of what it looks like in practice: