Winsor Faculty Update

Late September Edition

School Improvement Team

Please join us in the library this Thursday for our first School Improvement Team meeting. Building from our successful plan last year, this year's plan continues the growth in the Responsive Classroom Approach, incorporates the re-launch of My Math, extends the depth and breadth of the Collins Writing Approach, and has specific goals to increase student performance on the RICAS assessment. We will meet at 3:30 in the library and hope to see you there. Our plan is below for your review.

Collins Writing Approach

A very special thank you to Bill Atwood, our Collins lead facilitator this year. For the past two days, Winsor educators have had the opportunity to deeply dive into Collins- working with other teachers to extend understanding of this approach. Our goal in year two is based upon using our writing protocol as a means of evaluating student performance. By watching a model lesson demonstration, coupled with the opportunity to debrief, we will build the capacity to provide an even higher level of writing instruction to our students. Bill's dynamic sessions offered practical ways to increase student engagement, incorporating movement and increasing student motivation to write.

Responsive Classroom

Thank you to the ten teachers that joined our first book club last week. Our text, Interactive Modeling, serves as a focal point for conversation and practice. Students benefit tremendously from explicit, purposeful modeling of key skills. This, coupled with direct student feedback and intermediate checkpoints, ensures students understand what is expected and has the result of increasing both student performance and self-efficacy. Please see the power of Interactive Modeling, elucidated below.

Faculty Meeting Next Week

We will come together as a faculty next Wednesday- October 2nd. Our focus will be gathering teachers in grade level teams. We will continue the work started over the summer by utilizing the Unit Unpacking Protocol, linked below:

Please, prior to the meeting, make sure that you have your My Math access codes and make sure you have previewed the unit. As an example, if you unpacked Unit 1 over the summer and are still working on this, you will work on Unit 2 during the faculty meeting. If you have already begun Unit 2, please move on to Unit 3. By coming prepared ahead of time, we can maximize efficiency during our meeting.

Math Walkthroughs

As we have re-launched My Math this year, we are looking to align our instructional materials, practices, and pacing across the district. Principals will be walking through classrooms to collect data on these indicators. At times, Sara or another administrator may join the walk through. In an effort to have cohesiveness across the K-12 spectrum, we plan on using the same walkthrough tool that the secondary teachers in Smithfield adopted. The walkthroughs will begin this week and will continue throughout the school year. These visits are not evaluative and in fact, teacher names will not be recorded. Instead, this data will guide our conversations going forward on math instruction and professional development needs. Teams of educators worked diligently over the summer months to revise our curriculum and pacing. These visits will be an opportunity to see the progress being made.

The template for the Walkthroughs can be found here:

Please see me if you have any questions or concerns.

Classroom Doors

This is a friendly reminder that classroom doors should be closed and locked during instruction. I know that on days where the weather is unexpectedly warm that this can pose a challenge. Please know that I understand this, however, as a matter of general practice- excluding severe weather days, please make sure that your doors are closed and locked. Thank you for your cooperation.

Clean Outs

As we have done for the past two years, we are gradually removing excess materials and items no longer relevant for instruction. Please continue to clean out your classrooms. Should you need boxes, contact either myself or Brent. We will be having another formal clean out and disposal soon, so kindly begin this process now. As we begin thinking about our building transition, the more we do ahead of time, the easier the process becomes.

Thank you for all that you do. Our students truly look up to you and our families are appreciative of the climate and culture we have cultivated together. Whenever I encounter community members, they are frequently effusive in their praise of the quality of instruction that occurs here. Your hard work does not go unnoticed. Instead, there is a deep affinity and appreciation for the community that we are. The work we do is truly worth it!