January 2016: Volume 2, Issue 5
Eureka Math Trainers in Tulsa, January 15 & 16
Friday's session is entitled Eureka Math: Customization and Preparation of Eureka Lessons. This session empowers educators to customize and deliver the lessons of Eureka Math, fine tuning them to meet the needs of their students through a simple step-by-step process. Educators are first guided through the process as they work with a pre-selected lesson; they then work to apply the preparation process to collaboratively and independently prepare "just in time" lessons to be taught in the coming days or weeks.
Saturday's session is Eureka Math: Focus on Fluency. In A Story of Units, fluency practice is a daily, substantial, and sustained activity that is carefully designed to help students develop the speed and accuracy that allow them to solve complex problems efficiently. Many fluency routines build from grade to grade, developing further coherence within the curriculum and leveraging the time spent introducing each routine. In this workshop, participants will examine and practice three types of fluency work that appear frequently in the curriculum-counting exercises, white board exchanges, and Sprints-and will take home strategies that they can use immediately to invigorate their mathematics instruction.
Both sessions are capped at 100 participants, so be sure to sign up today on My Learning Plan.
Annual Trash Poster Contest
Human Geography Academy
HIGH SCHOOL AND MIDDLE SCHOOL: READIN', 'RITING, AND GEOGRAPHY OR "MINI-QS IN GEOGRAPHY"- This is a lively, interactive workshop for high school geography teachers and other secondary geography teachers, including Grade 6 and Grade 7, to discuss how the DBQ, or document-based question, can be a powerful tool for teaching students to read authentic geographic sources and write about them.When: Wednesday, February 17, 2016
Where: Oklahoma Center for Continuing Education, 1700 Asp Avenue, Norman, OK 73019.
More Information: Click here for a description: Feb 2016 HGA
Register: Click here to register: Event Registration
MLK Day - A Day On, Not a Day Off!
In 1986, President Reagan signed a bill establishing the 3rd Monday of every January as the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Holiday. The King holiday is celebrated not only in the U.S. but is observed by local groups in more than 100 other nations. It should highlight remembrance and celebration and should encourage people everywhere to reflect on the principles of nonviolent social change and racial equality as espoused by Martin Luther King, Jr. It should be a day of community and humanitarian service, and interracial cooperation.
See more at:
UPCOMING Professional Development and Meetings
January 15th - On the District Professional Development Day, you will have a variety of sessions to choose from to ranging in content development, new teaching strategies or tech integration tools. Some of the social studies sessions you might want to check out are:
The American Revolution - Why America is Free for 5th grade ELA/SS
Boomtown - Engaging Literacy Strategies through the Lens of Tulsa, Oklahoma and U.S. History
Google Virtual Field Trips
Thinking Geographically - How Do Humans Interact with Their Environment
The Holocaust - Cause, Course, Effects and Eyewitness Accounts
Featured Website: Teaching with Primary Sources (TPS) at Barat
Funded by a grant from the Library of Congress, TPS-Barat uses digitized primary sources from the Library to engage K-12 students, foster inquiry and enhance critical thinking skills. You can search for primary sources by subject, city, state and country. Follow them on twitter @PSNTPS to stay up to date with their “Today in History” segment in which they highlight a primary source that is significant to each day. Click on some of the links below to check out the resources available.Barat Bits & Bytes
January events include Kindergarten visits to see a live stage performance at the Tulsa Performing Arts Center or Hardesty Library Auditorium and 7th grade visits to Sherwin Miller Museum of Jewish Art. For specific dates for your school site and more information, click here.
AGC-T Professional Development Institute Update
To equip teachers with skills to integrate the arts into their classrooms on an ongoing basis and to become arts integration leaders in the district.
Ari Christopher, Executive Director of Tulsa Modern Movement, presented movement strategies to the teachers, from across the district, who are participating in an in-depth, ten-month arts integration institute developed in accordance with the Kennedy Center’s definition of arts integration.
6 Strategies for Working with Diverse-Needs Students, by Cossondra George
- Carefully consider seating assignments.
- Use project checklists
- Establish behavior cues early on.
- Give alternative presentation options.
- Provide alternative testing options.
- Provide organizational tools.
To read more about each of these strategies, click here.
Oklahoma Foreign Language Teachers' Association Winter Workshop
OFLTA is having its Winter Workshop on Saturday, January 30 from 9:00-12:00 at OSU in Stillwater (campus location TBA so please check out the webpage for the most current information). Please go to the OFLTA website events section and register to attend and to download the workshop flyer. It is FREE to members and students. Membership in OFLTA is a bargain at $35! There will be presentations on creating standards-based lessons using authentic resources. You will leave with at least 1 ready-to-use lesson.
Characteristics Often Found in Gifted Hispanic Children
For the next few months the gifted department will focus on characteristics of our diverse groups of students. Tulsa Public Schools’ Hispanic population continues to increase. Our numbers of identified gifted Hispanic students have grown too. But, more often than not these children are overlooked for gifted programs.
Below is a brief list of behaviors typical of Hispanic gifted children that teachers should be on the lookout for when thinking about recommending students for our gifted program. If you would like more information about ELL and gifted, Identifying Gifted and Talented English Language Learners is a blueprint developed by the Belin-Blank International Center for Gifted Education and Talent Development to help educators recognize bias and take steps to make changes. The guide includes recommended practices and practical implementation strategies that I believe will help us develop a stronger gifted program that meets individual student’s needs.
Frequently overlooked Bernal and Reyna (1974) identified several characteristics as typical among gifted Hispanic American children. The term “Hispanic” is used to describe people with origins in Puerto Rico, Mexico, Cuba, Latin America or Spain. We must recognize that there exists no single, distinct model of the Hispanic family. Some general traits that help to identify G/T Hispanic students are listed below (Bernal, 1979; Meeker & Meeker, 1972):
- English language skills are rapidly acquired by children once they have been exposed to the language and given an opportunity to use it expressively.
- Leadership ability is exhibited with strong interpersonal skills although often in an open or modest manner.
- Children tend to have older playmates and can easily engage adults in lively conversation
- Children enjoy intelligent and (or effective) risk–taking behavior, often accompanied by a sense of drama.
- Children tend to keep themselves entertained or busy, especially with imaginative games and ingenious applications, such as getting the most out of a few simple toys and objects.
- These children accept responsibilities at home normally reserved for older children, such as the supervision of younger siblings or helping others to do their homework.
- Many are “street-wise” and are recognized by others as children who have the ability to “make it” in the Anglo-dominated society.
- Possession of strong figural abilities and memories.
Differences between G/T and non-G/T Hispanic students
The G/T Hispanic students are more likely than non-G/T Hispanic students to:
- Be sought after by other students;
- Understand and remember detailed instructions when they are given the first time;
- Accept what parents tell them without question or without talking back when being corrected for doing something wrong;
- Show self-discipline by not eating a snack right before a meal;
- Make very high grades in school;
- Take care of personal belongings, (e.g., returning toys to their proper place when play is finished);
- Use a large vocabulary for their age;
- Learn things more quickly than other students do;
- Speak correctly with good grammar for their age.
When Spanish-speaking students encounter written language (i.e., standard written English) in their school experience, they find that the syntax is different from the language they are accustomed to hearing. Further, written language does not contain the contextual clues that speech does, as speakers stress patterns, facial expressions or physical referents for the vocabulary.
DeBernard (1985) suggested that when G/T bilingual students lack prior experience to help them understand what they have read, they misinterpret textual material and perpetuate comprehension errors. As long as English reading test scores continue to be used as a major criterion for entrance into G/T Programs, the cost for many of the brightest bilingual students will be exclusion from these programs.
Adapted from the Indiana State Guide for the Identification of Gifted/Talented Students.
Beyond the Textbook: Online Science Resources
TeachingKidsNews.com: Similar to Newsela, this site offers articles to use for additional reading in your classes.
Instructables: DIY Science activities
MysteryScience.com: Mystery Science provides open-and-go lessons that inspire kids to love science. The online resource makes it easy for elementary school teachers (currently grades 2-5) to deliver an incredible science lesson without a science background. Rather than a textbook approach to science vocabulary, hands-on activities engage students with the mysteries of science and expose them to the joy of scientific inquiry at an early age. Lessons are aligned with Next Generation Science Standards and designed to supplement existing curriculum.
NextGenScience.org: Sample curricular tasks created through NGSS can be found here.
I would love to share your go-to resources. Send suggestions to LeeAnne Jimenez.
Science Professional Development
The district-wide professional development day is coming up on January 15. Be sure to look for the following science-related sessions:
CSI Zoo (Secondary)
Science the Write Way (All)
What do Energy, Animals and Soil Have in Common? (5th grade)
Project Archaeology (Upper elementary)
The Science Fair is coming back to Tulsa Public Schools! It will not be the same old science fair in which you (or your students) have participated before. This will be more of a science showcase and will be K-12. Save the dates for late March. If you want to be in on the planning, please contact LeeAnne Jimenez.
Spotlight On: Discovery Lab @ Tulsa Children's Museum
Visitors will have the chance to explore why the human body produces mushy, oozy, crusty, scaly and stinky gunk at “Grossology:
The (Impolite) Science of the Human Body.” Hosted by Oklahoma Museum Network funded by the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation, “Grossology” is a 2,500-square-foot exhibit based on the best-selling book of the same name by author Sylvia Branzei. The exhibition uses sophisticated animatronics and imaginative exhibits to let visitors explore the good, the bad, and the downright ugly about runny noses, body odor, and much more.
Discovery Lab is a great place for students to explore and discover. Groups must have a minimum of ten children and an advanced registration to qualify for group pricing of $5 per visitor. We also recommend one adult chaperone for every five children.
To start planning your field trip, please contact 918-295-8144 x5525 or email@example.com. Ask about an in-depth museum class that can be scheduled during your field trip. Read more about museum classes here.
You will be asked to complete a Field Trip Request form. Every effort will be made to accommodate scheduling requests. To personalize your experience, a museum educator will be assigned to your group and will meet you at the museum entrance to present a Discovery Lab orientation. For more information, go to this website: http://tulsachildrensmuseum.org/education/
Science Curriculum Pacing
Where are you in your curriculum? If you are following the pacing calendars, you should be in the following units:
Biology – Unit 4 – Biological Diversity
Physical Science – Unit 3 – Forces and Interactions
8th grade – Unit 4 – Earth’s History
7th grade (JH) – Unit 2 – Molecules to Organisms
7th grade (MS) – Unit 3 - Heredity
6th grade – Unit 3 – Molecules to Organisms
5th grade – Unit 2 – Ecosystems
4th grade – Unit 2 – Earth’s Systems
3rd grade – Unit 2 – Motion and Stability
2nd grade – Unit 3 – Earth’s Materials
1st grade – Unit 3 – Earth and Sky
K grade – Unit 3 – Earth and Sky
SENSEational Science 2016
With the start of a new year, what better to think about than STEM professional development! Attached you will find our recruitment information for SENSEsational Science 2016. Are you interested in a unique professional development experience learning how to integrate STEM and building community partnerships? This year we are excited to offer PD for PreK-8th grade with three different workshops:
- PreK-5th Grade Tulsa Teachers – June 6 -17
- 6th – 8th Grade Tulsa Teachers – June 20-July 1
- 6th – 8th Grade Lawton Teachers – June 27-July 1
Teachers from ALL content areas may attend. In the past we have had Media Specialists, Art teachers, Special Ed, Music, Spanish, etc and all benefited from the curriculum and content. To further entice you, I have listed our workshop partners and presenters:
Tulsa: Tulsa Zoo, The University of Tulsa, Tulsa Community College, Gilcrease Museum, Philbrook Museum, Oklahoma Aquarium, Oxley Nature Center, Linnaeus Teaching Gardens, Tulsa Geosciences Center, Tulsa Botanic Gardens, Tulsa Glass Blowing School, Tulsa FabLab, Tulsa Children’s Museum, Tulsa Air and Space Museum, University School, Red Bud Valley, Tall Grass Prairie Preserve and Tulsa Symphony
Lawton: Comanche Nation College, J.A. Manning Fish Hatchery, Museum of the Great Plains, Wichita Wildlife Refuge, Medicine Park Aquarium and Hackberry Flat
Teachers may apply online at : SENSE 2016 Application
Have questions, need clarification? Contact Emily Mortimer by email or by phone, 918-669-6204.
Last month, we covered three of the six 21st century skills defined by the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE): creativity and innovation; communication and collaboration; and research and information fluency. This month, we’ll look at the other three skills: critical thinking, problem solving, and decision making; digital citizenship; and technology operations and concepts.
Critical thinking, problem solving, and decision making – Students are able to use the critical thinking skills that have been developed through their education to solve problems, make informed decisions, work efficiently, and analyze data. To reach this standard, critical thinking must be taught at every grade level as appropriate. Students must learn to question, reason, and find answers.
In the classroom, this may many different ways. It could be students engaging in group work to identify then solve a real-world problem related to the subject matter. Students might be discussing a topic using research and prior learning to inform their statements. Research and data analysis might be taking place to allow students to make an informed decision. Technology can play a role in providing students with the research and data, but the majority of these skills are developed through modeling, scaffolding, and intentional instruction in the classroom on a daily basis.
Digital literacy – Digital literacy refers to the ability to safely and sensibly interact with others online, to efficiently find and evaluate information to meet one’s needs, and to ethically use and create information to share with others. Digital literacy is a life-long skill that our students will need to function successfully in a digital society.
Although school librarians teach digital citizenship lessons at each grade level, teachers must model and, occasionally, explicitly teach digital literacy any time technology is being used. It is very easy for a teacher to demonstrate an internet search and discuss his or her thinking when selecting search terms. In all classrooms, ethical information use should be a topic any time students are doing research for a project or a paper. Sometimes, teachers are appalled to find that their students have copied and pasted information from the Internet. Students may never have been taught what ethical information usage looks like.
- We often think that students are born understanding the Internet and how it works; unfortunately, that is not the case. The most recent Pew Internet Trust data show that students over the age of 12 are still sharing a great deal of information online and a majority have “friends” on their social media accounts that they have never met personally.
- 92% post their real name to the profile they use most often
- 91% post a photo of themselves
- 84% post their interests, such as movies, music, or books they like
- 82% post their birth date
- 71% post their school name and the city where they live
- 53% post their email address
- 24% post videos of themselves.
- 20% post their cell phone number
It becomes the responsibility of teachers to discuss appropriate social media usage when opportunities arise in the classroom.
Technology operations and concepts – students understand how to use technology tools, which tools are right for different situations, and how to troubleshoot hardware and software problems. Students also develop the ability to apply current knowledge to new technology. This sounds like something that should be taught in “computer’ classes, and, in many cases, it is. However, we often find that we want students to engage in tasks that involve explicit technology skills long before these “computer” classes are available. For example, our Kindergarten students use iRead software, which requires them to effectively use a mouse. Some of our third grade students use System 44 software, which requires students to type. We don’t teach mouse skills in PK or keyboarding in second grade. So, teachers often find themselves explicitly teaching technology operations and concepts. A fifth-grade teacher may have to teach students the basics of PowerPoint or Google Slides before asking them to create a presentation for class.
Teachers sometimes feel that they are not expert enough to teach technology skills to their students. There are a number of resources to help teachers feel more confident. Most schools now have an instructional technology coach. These men and women will happily work individually with a teacher to develop the skills he or she needs. We also have a partnership with The 8th Floor for technology training. Each semester, they offer numerous classes in the Microsoft Office suite of products as well as in Google tools and various other areas. To see the schedule for the Eighth Floor, click here. To sign up for an 8th Floor class, click here, and remember to use your TPS email address.
Reading Strategy: Slow Down the Zoom, Zoom to Make Sense, The Reading Strategies Book by Jennifer Serravallo
This strategy may be used with any reading level and with any genre or text type. Reading to Slow Down the Zoom, Zoom, Zoom to Make Sense, reinforces the skills of monitoring for meaning and decoding and may be taught as a whole group during shared reading, in small group during guided reading, or as an independent reading strategy during student conferencing.
Strategy: Try not to be a zoom, zoom, zoom reader who keeps breezing through words without thinking. Always ask yourself, “Is what I’m reading making sense?” and if you answer “No!,” go back and fix it up.
Teaching Tip: Model reading a few ways: quickly, with and without errors, and slowly, with and without errors. Model pausing to ask yourself, “Did that make sense?” in instances where you can say, “Yes!” and “No! Let me fix it!” As you move to small-group instruction and conferring, be sure to encourage kids to pause and reflect on meaning, both when their reading was accurate and did make sense and when they may have made an error that affects meaning.
- Check yourself.
- Did that make sense?
- Slow down; make sure you’re thinking about what makes sense.
- I notice you fixed it to make sure it makes sense!
- Yes, you caught yourself there. What made you realize you had to fix that?
- Was that OK?
- Why did you stop? What did you notice?
Serravallo, J. (2015). Teaching Reading Engagement: Focus, Stamina, and Building a Reading Life. In The reading strategies book: Your everything guide to developing skilled readers (p. 86). Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann. Available for purchase from Heinemann publishing here.
Literacy Station Tip: Author Study Station
Teachers may begin to find students who were once going to the classroom library with enthusiasm, but lose interest in it over time. One way to bring excitement back to your independent reading station or classroom library is to do author studies with your students. Readingrockets.org provides teachers with an author study tool kit that may be helpful.
Create an Author Study center in your classroom:
- Choose a corner or other place where you can keep and display books for the author study. Or you can ask students where they think the author study center should be located.
- If you’re doing a classroom-wide author study, take a tri-fold display board and decorate it with the author’s name and photo. Students can add more information and more photos as they research the author.
- If students are doing different authors, you can use a tri-fold display board as a photo gallery of the authors. If you can have a computer in the author study center, students can create an online multimedia display, including websites, Facebook pages, and related resources.
- Make sure you have enough room in your center to later display work created by students as part of their author study.
Diller, Debbie. Practice with Purpose: Literacy Work Stations for Grades 3-6. Portland, Me.: Stenhouse, 2005. Print
Get To Know Unit 5 on January 26
January Deadlines for Fine Arts Teachers:
January 5: Kravis Summer Arts planning meeting for teachers begins
January 7: Vocal Music Teacher Meeting-ESC 4:30-5:30
January 12: Fine Arts Chairs Meeting-ESC 4:30-5:30
January 15: District Professional Development Day-Fine Arts Offerings available
January 19: Metro Honor Band Auditions-High School & Middle School -Memorial HS 6:00
January 19: Elementary Music Meeting- Patrick Henry 4:00-5:00
January 20-23: OMEA Convention-Tulsa Convention Center
January 21: Elementary Art Meeting-Bell Elementary-3:30-4:30
January 25: Metro Honor Band Rehearsal – Rogers HS 6:00 – 8:30
January 28-29: Elementary Art Show at the Zarrow Center downtown-elementary all schools
- Gwynievere Harris, art teacher for Celia Clinton Elementary School for putting up a beautiful art display in this month’s Superintendents Display Case on the 2nd floor of the Education Service Center.
- Sheryl Miller, music teacher for Patrick Henry Elementary for putting together the stunning music video featuring her performers and Dr. Gist getting in the holiday spirit.
- Patty Duncan and the Hale High School Choir, and Don Stambeck and Sequoyah Elementary Music students for their performances at December school board meetings.
- Maria Reed and Whitman students and the Metro Honor Choir for school board meeting performances in January.
- Edison HS and Hale HS who performed “Home for the Holidays” at the PAC along with the Tulsa Oratorio Chorus. (Directors Patti Duncan-Hale HS and Julie Boucher-Edison HS)
- Ben Schwartz and Sophie Kimery who both made Oklahoma Choral Directors Association All State Choruses. Ben Schwartz, 8th Grader, will be in the All State Mixed Chorus and Sophie, a 9th Grader, will be in the All State Treble Chorus. This is a first for Edison Preparatory Middle School. Go Eagles!
An invitation from The University of Tulsa Department of Theatre...
The University of Tulsa’s Department of Theatre would like to extend a special invitation to you and your students to our production of the hilarious Broadway smash hit I Hate Hamlet. We are offering a free student matinee on Friday, January 29th at 10 a.m.
In Paul Rudnick’s I Hate Hamlet, Andrew Rally seems to have it all: fame from his starring role in a hit TV series, a rich and beautiful girlfriend, a devoted agent, the perfect New York apartment and the chance to play Hamlet in Central Park. There are, however, a couple of glitches in his paradise; for one thing, he hates Hamlet. When John Barrymore’s ghost appears, dressed in high Shakespearean garb, Andrew’s life is no longer his own. Barrymore presses Andrew to accept the part and fulfill his actor's destiny. The laughs are nonstop as Andrew wrestles with his conscience, his sword and playing Hamlet.
Students will have the opportunity to talk with our guest director, Erin McLaine, and student actors after the performance. This show is appropriate for students ages 13 and up. Performances are held in the Chapman Theatre of Kendall Hall, on the TU campus. If interested, please contact Sandy Plaster at 918.631.2566 for reservations, as seats are limited. Additional show dates run Jan. 28, 29, and 30 at 8 p.m. and 31 at 2 p.m. Student tickets for the other performances are $7.50 and can be purchased on myticketoffice.com or the TU Kendall Hall box office two hours prior to show time.
Things to do at the Zarrow Center for Art & Education on January & February holidays!
- January 18, Martin Luther King Jr. Day: 1 pm - 4 pm - Free - Celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day downtown with a parade in the morning and family art activities in the afternoon. Drop by the Zarrow Center located on the corner of the Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard and Brady Street to enjoy fun art activities for the whole family.
- February 15, Presidents’ Day: 1 pm - 4 pm - Free - Show your patriotism for Presidents' Day by making exciting art projects while learning fun historical facts about U.S. presidents. It’s fun for the whole family.
Academic Coordinator of the Month - Ayn Grubb
Ayn Grubb has been an educator for twenty-two years, teaching 8th graders and sophomores in their English classes and teaching teachers as well. She has a special place in her heart for middle school and claims it is because she is still an eighth grader herself. Grubb taught in Union Public Schools and worked as a teacher and curriculum coordinator in Broken Arrow before coming to Tulsa. Currently the Academic Coordinator for Secondary Language Arts and AP, Grubb is in her fourth year in Tulsa. She and her husband Sean have one daughter, who is currently an 8th grader at Thoreau Demonstration Academy.
Cindy Barber, Academic Coordinator for Instructional Materials
Sharon Dautermann, Academic Coordinator for Elementary Curriculum Integration
Ayn Grubb, Academic Coordinator for Secondary ELA
Julie Hasfjord, Academic Coordinator for STEM
Gary Horner, Academic Coordinator for Secondary Math
Natalie Hutto, Academic Coordinator for Elementary ELA
LeeAnne Jimenez, Academic Coordinator for Science
Lea Ann Macomber, Music Coordinator
Andy McKenzie, Director of Early Childhood Services
LeeAnne Pepper, Academic Coordinator for Elementary Math
Mary Jane Snedeker, Academic Coordinator for Social Studies
Dr. Ann Tomlins, Director of Fine Arts
Dr. Linnea Van Eman, Coordinator of Gifted & Talented
Cathy Walton, Administrative Secretary
Danielle Neves, Executive Director of Curriculum & Instruction