M-Powerment Strategy #6

Maximize Instructional Time & Resources

MMS Media & Tech Team: Allison Long, Felicia Davis, Elizabeth Stapleton, and Michael Cline

M-Powerment Strategy #6 Highlight: PLC is Common Sense

M-5: Maximize Instructional Time & Resources

Teachers design engaging lessons with a variety of instructional strategies, a focus on academic achievement, and an effective use of instructional time, resources and personnel.

Common Sense

Instructional Strategy: Collaborative Group Roles

When creating groups assigning and teaching expectations through student roles will help group work be more efficient. Check out these roles to simplify your groups and provide equal responsibility for all students within the group.

Instructional Strategy: Anchor Activities

Anchor Activities - Activities for early finishers to avoid "I'm done, now what can I get into" syndrome

“In this class we are never finished. Learning is a process that never ends.”

Carol Ann Tomlinson

What are anchor activities?

• specified ongoing activities on which students work independently

• relate to the concepts and the content being learned

• engaging, meaningful tasks, not busywork or packets of worksheets

Why use anchor activities?

• provide a strategy for teachers to deal with down time when

students complete work at different times

• allow the teacher to work with individual students or groups

• provide ongoing activities that relate to the content of the unit

The goal is to have students moving independently from

one assignment to another without needing teacher direction.

Sample Anchor Activities

Instructional Strategy: NO- OPT OUT

Engage Students in Learning

Instructional Tool Highlight: Google Apps for Education

The Superpowers are looking for YOU!

If you are teaching a lesson or using a strategy that shows

  • Standard Aligned Lessons
  • High Expectations and Rigor
  • Culture of Caring

in your classroom, please let us know so we can come by and check it out!

Picture Courtesy of Quora

MMS Media Tips:

What can your Librarian do for you? As your work to maximize instruction and resources, use your school librarian to accomplish more - Batman and Robin are here to help you and your students find the best resources so your class time will be maximized. See the top 10 below, but don't stop there!!!

Picture Courtesy of Tiffany Whitehead

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From Cuz's Desk

Last week I had a day that was a little unsettling for me (sat on a computer, almost late to clock in, yada yada) and I needed a brain break.....BAM! I realized how important it is for students as well. We offer a creation space, puzzle station, selfie station, game station, a stress free coloring station and a riddle board. Spheros are coming soon for those techie students. Distressing is an important process in our day and we can help you help your students. Just let us know in the CAVE!

MMS Instructional Tips

Five Hallmarks of Good Homework

Cathy Vatterott

"Educational Leadership:Giving Students Meaningful Work:Five Hallmarks Of Good Homework". Ascd.org. N.p., 2017. Web. 1 Mar. 2017.

This article from "Educational Leadership" will give you a better understanding of what makes homework meaningful, purposeful work, not "busy" work. Here are the "Fundamental Five" hallmarks of good homework and examples; the full article has much more good information.

1 - Purpose

  • Show that you know the meaning of the science vocabulary words by using them in sentences or in a story.

2 - Efficiency

  • Create a video or a game to demonstrate your knowledge of the steps in a process, such as how the digestive system works, how a bill becomes a law, or how to solve an algebra problem.

3 - Ownership

  • If you want to promote ownership and encourage students to enjoy reading, we must go beyond the assigned reading list. Consider how you can broaden what "counts" as reading to include such nontraditional sources as blogs, websites, and magazines.

4 - Competence

  • A simple means of differentiating is to make homework time-based instead of task-based. Instead of assigning all students 20 questions to answer, assign all students to complete what they can in a specified amount of time: "Answer as many questions as you can in 30 minutes; work longer if you like."

5 - Aesthetic Appeal

  • Every day, students make decisions about whether to do a homework assignment on the basis of their first impressions. The way homework looks is important. Five-page worksheets or endless lists of definitions or math problems look boring and tedious. As a gourmet cook would say, "Presentation is everything." Wise teachers have learned that students at all levels are more motivated to complete assignments that are visually uncluttered. Less information on the page, plenty of room to write answers, and the use of graphics or clip art make tasks look inviting and interesting.

Picture Courtesy of Ide Instsructional Coaches Corner blog

From the Help Desk:

The Importance of Staying Covered

I have noticed recently that a number of students have taken off the STM cover from their computers. The MGSD Technology Department is aware of this issue as it is also a problem at the intermediate schools and MHS. It is also a violation of the Responsible Use Policy to remove them. So what are some steps you can take?

1. Encourage students to express their individuality by changing their desktop background, not adding stickers under the cover.

2. When you notice a student removing the cover tell them to replace it. I have a specific tool that will pop the covers off easily without breaking the clips. 99.9% of the students with "broken" covers broke them by taking them off.

3. Strongly encourage students who do not have covers to find them and re-attach them. They WILL be charged at collection if they do not have a cover.

So why is this so important? Those bulky, ugly covers have proven themselves effective numerous times at preventing damage in some of the worst instances. A computer fell off the back of a moving truck with the cover attached and suffered very minimal damage. I've seen computer sat on, dropped, and even heard of one being thrown with no damage that resulted in a fine. The covers are important.

PIcture Courtesy of Duplicator Sales and Service

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Superpowers Are Here For You!