Bryan Adams Schools Updates

May 25, 2015

Great Community, Great Schools

Honoring Memorial Day

Feeder Celebrations

  • Bryan Adams HS - Destination Imagination, 2nd Place in Global Finals
  • Robert T. Hill STEM Academy Induction Ceremony
  • Robert T. Hill Theater Group Wins Gold
  • Bayles Receives Donation from BBVA Compass Bank and NBA
  • Casa View Students Attend Rangers RBI Benefit
  • Orchestra Classes Attend Sandy Lake Competition
  • Reinhardt Student Recognized for Poetry Competition
  • Parent Appreciation Celebration Held on May 20th - Exemplary School Rating Award

Upcoming Events

  • SMU Coaching Class - Summer Session June 1 - 30
  • Bryan Adams Green/White Wednesday, May 27 @ 6:30 PM

Education Update/Edutopia May 15th

  • Starting Student Feedback Loops

Links for Feeder Use

  • BA Roaring Readers Volunteer Link
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Bryan Adams High School Destination Imagination - 2nd Place in Global Finals

The BA Literacy Militia was tremendous in their performance at the Destination Imagination Globals and placed 2nd this year in the world competition. This team of seniors was unbelievable in both Team Challenge and Instant Challenge. There were six teams representing Dallas ISD at the DI Global competition and the following secondary schools were also successful - the Travis Middle School team placed 14th, the two teams from TAG placed 11th in their respective categories and projects. The BAHS team members are Julian Carrillo, Alejandro, Arteaga, Karen Macias, Anel Quevedo, Gabriel Ortiz, Thomas Jennings, and Daniela Gonzalez. Way to Go Cougars!

Robert T. Hill STEM Academy Induction Ceremony

On Friday, May 15, 2015, Robert T. Hill held a ceremony to introduce our inductees for the 2015-2016 school year. A total of 126 students are enrolled in the academy for next year, including 40 new sixth graders! The honorees were presented with a certificate, and then students and their families went to the library for a reception. Mrs. Tseng had STEM students’ projects on display for the families to view. Our administrators, coaches and STEM teachers enjoyed visiting with students and their families.

Robert T. Hill Middle Theater Group Wins Gold!

A huge congratulations to the Pre-UIL Theater group. Hill was the only school that managed to execute a full show with lights and sound without having the equipment on the home school grounds. Practice makes perfect!

  • Klandir Luna placed second in the Best Character category.

  • Joselyn Maricella placed second for the Most Dramatic category.

  • Hill Middle School won Gold for Best Effort and Make-Up.

Bayles Receives Donation from BBVA Compass Bank and NBA

Bayles Elementary hosted a wonderful event with BBVA Compass Bank and six NBA and WNBA stars: Bruce Bowen, Keisha Brown, Eduardo Najera, Taj McWilliams-Franklin, Chandler Parsons, and Ashley Robinson. Our Assistant Superintendent, Israel Cordero, and our Board Trustee, Dan Micciche, also attended to support Bayles faculty and students. The school was presented with 32 tablets and a charging cart. The teachers and administrative team at Bayles are also champions for promoting the success of the financial literacy Ever-Fi program.

Casa View Elementary Students Attend Rangers RBI Benefit

Parent Appreciation Celebration Held on May 20th - Exemplary School Rating Award


  • Casa View ES
  • Charles A. Gill ES
  • Victor H. Hexter ES
  • Martha Turner Reilly ES
  • Larry G. Smith ES
  • Alex Sanger ES

These schools were recognized at the May 20th Parent Appreciation Event for achieving an Exemplary Rating in parent engagement. This means that the campus met the standard in 10 to 11 out of 11 exemplary categories in the Parent Engagement Rubric. Well done!

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Mr. Spanke's Orchestra Classes Attended Sandy Lake Competition and won 1st Division

Congratulations Reinhardt Student for Poetry Competition

Ayanna Hammonds, 3rd grade Reinhardt student, was one of 60 finalists (selected from a pool of 1400) in the 19th Annual Express Yourself Youth Poetry Competition sponsored by Dallas Public Library and funded in part by the Joe M. & Doris Russell Dealey Fund of the Dallas Foundation. The finalist winners excelled in writing poems judged on originality and structure and were honored at an awards ceremony with a medal, luncheon, and published work in a bound anthology.

Up Coming Events

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BA Green & White game

Wednesday, May 27th, 6:30pm

8233 Military Parkway

Dallas, TX

SMU Coaching Class for Instructional Coaches and Lead Teachers - Summer Session June 1 - 30

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Edutopia, May 15th

Starting Student Feedback Loops by Taylor Meredith

Feedback has been in the spotlight lately. Gone are the days of feedback scrawled below a letter grade, the days of red-inked papers and assignments. What was once final is now formative. As an educator (and person), my feedback approach has changed. I used to provide what I called feedback to my students on final assignments, writing pieces, and projects. Even though I had provided thoughtful suggestions for improvement, I was not seeing visible improvement in their subsequent work. I decided to take a closer look to understand where my feedback process was failing.

I read educational researcher John Hattie, author of Visible Learning for Teachers: Maximizing Impact on Learning. He identifies feedback as a classroom practice with one of the highest effect rates on student learning and achievement. Hattie cautions that not all feedback is effective and that student-to-student feedback loops can also provide misguided feedback.

And then I read Dylan Wiliam, author of Embedded Formative Assessment, who says:

However, the thing that really matters in feedback is the relationship between the student and the teacher. . . Ultimately, when you know your students and your students trust you, you can ignore all the "rules" of feedback. Without that relationship, all the research in the world won't matter.

Reading this, I was confident that our classroom community of practice and growth would support a culture of feedback, and I was inspired to try student feedback loops.

What Are Student Feedback Loops?

A feedback loop is a process that aims to move learning forward through feedback. Ideally, this feedback loop would happen frequently, in all subject areas. This is one way to structure the process:

1. Begin With an Aim

An aim is a learning target or essential question that is unpacked from the standards, a part of a learning progression that is clearly communicated to the students at the beginning of each lesson.

2. Feedback Exchange

Feedback should be specific, non-evaluative, manageable, and focused on the aim. If the aim for the day is that readers should structure reasons to develop a compelling argument in a research-based essay, all feedback exchanged should be focused on that aim. I used the heart and brain strategy to support effective feedback exchanges (more on that below).

3. Revision and Application

In order for feedback to be effective, students must be given time to revise and apply their new understandings or ideas. Susan Brookhart and Connie Moss, authors of Advancing Formative Assessment in Every Classroom: A Guide for Instructional Leaders, speak of the Golden Second Opportunity, that moment when feedback is grasped and applied. When a student takes the feedback, makes changes to his or her work, and as a result moves a step closer to meeting the desired learning of the day's aim, then the loop has started. It is authentic, purposeful learning. The teacher begins the process, but the student owns it.

4. Reflection

Closing the loop is time to reflect on the aim. Did students meet the desired learning of the day's aim? Could they move to a different level of proficiency? Could they ask for more feedback? Are there any other areas to revise?

In student feedback loops, students are the ones who drive this process. The teacher supports the students by clearly defining a structure for feedback, modeling effective feedback, highlighting critical student feedback, and participating when necessary.

Heart and Brain Feedback

The structure that has worked best for my fifth grade students has been the heart and brain strategy. Provide one piece of feedback for each:

The Heart

This addresses something that you liked or loved, something that really stuck with you in a positive way. Related to the aim, the heart is something that worked well, be used as an example or a mentor to others. For example: "The way that you structured your reasons from broad to narrow really worked. It created a compelling argument that made me think in a new way."

The Brain

This is something to try or consider revising. Related to the aim, the brain is a suggestion for specific growth, change, or improvement. For example: "Have you thought about using repetition here to make this stand out?"

This strategy keeps things simple and actionable. As a class, we brainstorm the language we can use to ensure that feedback is non-evaluative and feeds forward.

Who Benefits?

Everyone benefits: students who receive feedback, students who give feedback, and anyone who listens to the feedback. Even when giving feedback, students are focused on the aim of the day. Throughout the process, students may identify areas of growth in their own work, find peer examples as models, and take ownership over their work. As a teacher, my instruction is informed through these feedback loops. Listening to these loops tells me if I need to revisit a certain aim or set my expectations higher. I can pull exemplars and students to model their thinking aloud. All learners benefit from effective feedback loops.

Where to Start?

Reflect as a teacher. Start small. Think aloud while you model. Ask students for feedback, point out effective attributes, and revise. Start your first feedback loop as a whole class. Reflect as a class. Your classroom community will keep feedback loops in their hearts and brains as they grow and explore.

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