The "Oskaloosa Syllabus"
March, 2013 "News You Can Use"
Characteristics of Effective Instruction and the "Tool for Success"
How So you ask?
Look at each category and the description of each. Defining Quality Instruction is the purpose of the rubric and the CEI describe the elements present if quality instruction is observed. The tool even has the CEI you would be implementing listed! :-)
A Little Test - AND a Challenge!
Can you list the Characteristics of Effective Instruction WITHOUT looking them up? Can you give an example/define what each might look like in the classroom? IF NOT - your PLC should review them as a team and have a discussion about what Quality Instruction looks like and how you will learn and shape your lessons to integrate these elements.
PLC Work Around the CEI
- Is your team having conversations about what Quality Instruction looks like as described in the "Tool"?
- Does your team observe one-another and provide feedback for improvment?
DLT Update from February
- DLT reviewed and assessed progress toward the SMART Goals written at the beginning of the year. We discussed what we need to be doing in each building to help reach our goals
- We watched a couple videos about aimsweb - the Universal Screening and Progress Monitoring Tool we will use next school year in the RtI process
- We watched a video to review the Characteristics of Effective Instruction (CEI) and talked about what we observed that would be "quality instruction" as defined by the Characteristics.
- Grading - 1-4 coding. We began a conversation about the current code used on the report card. This conversation will continue at the next meeting in March.
- The 3rd Grade needs to determine how to communicate to parents they will not be using grades next year. A survey was sent out to the parents of the current 2nd graders to gauge their opinion and concerns, but only 34 responded. They will present to the board in March.
- Mary is creating a quick-guide to RtI in Oskaloosa. The AEA will print these and everyone in the district will receive one and parents will have them made available as well.
- Mike Goudy updated the BOE in February
Universal Screener and Progress Monitoring Tool
The transfer of data to determine interventions beginning in the fall will be a tremendous assistance to students who struggle! The RtI processes in place in each building will also benefit with a tool to monitor the progress of students being provided additional assistance. We will begin administering the screener this fall. In the meantime we will use the current data points to identify students for targeted interventions.
Iowa Professional Development Model
Learning Targets Examples
Learning Target Expectations
So... if you are working on comparing and contrasting that day, for example, WHY are they working on that skill? They are learning to do that because readers of non-fiction must be able to determine the similarities and differences in author's purpose and point of view.
It is very important to revisit the Learning Target at the end of the lesson as well. Have students self-assess how they did on the lesson. Can they say.. I CAN....
- Do your Learning Targets begin with I CAN?
- Do you verbalize what and WHY you are learning that day and your GLB?
- Do you have students interact with the Learning Target? Do they write it down, turn to their neighbor, etc.?
- Do you revisit the Learning Target at the end of the lesson?
- Do you use motivating and positive language when you talk about the Learning Target with students?
- Did you mention why we have Learning Targets?
- Do you have students monitor their success on Learning Targets?
LETRS 5-Year Plan
2013-2014 School Year Training Dates
September 16th (Full day of PD) will be training for Module 8 (Assessment). In addition to these full days, the AEA will meet with this group on November 15th and February 21st in the P.M (opposite work days). Coaching will take place during PLC collaboration in each building where data will be analyzed and interventions planned.
Additional specific details will follow
Teaching Channel and Edutopia - Both are FULL of A PLETHORA of teaching videos!!!
PLC To Watch for March!
PLC to Watch is 3rd Grade - The 3rd Grade Thrivers
100% of Third Grade Students will attain level T of the Reading A-Z Assessments as measured documented progress of the A-Z program for comprehension and will improve 50 words per minute from initial reading September 2012 as measured by fluency probes through April 2012.
- Small Group Reading Instruction implementation of guided reading practice and application will be an area of focus for literacy improvement.
- The use of varied resources implementing reading instruction, practice, and probes.
- RTI Tier Instruction implementation to meet the needs of all students.
The 3rd Grade PLC has committed not only to the PLC time allotted during early release days, but they are part of an extended Learning Team on student management as well. After PLC time is over, they get together to focus on their other goal. Each are earning credit or renewal to be part of this collaborative Learning Team through the AEA. If your PLC is interested in this opportunity, see Dana Sereg (Facilitator) to see how you can take advantage of this collaborative work.
- Be Respectful by Listening
- Be Responsible by Starting on Time
- Be Caring by Honoring Diverse Perspectives
- Be Safe by Agreeing to Disagree
Pictured below are the 3rd Grade Thrivers: De Thostensen, Nicole Bunnell, Jennifer Arnold, Carol Knoot, Allison Stout, Alexis Shipman, Dana Sereg, and Hillary Gingerich. Not pictured are Marcia Hadden (Instructional Specialist) and Krista Schilb (SPED)
Professional Development Opportunities Coming Up!
1:1 Institute in April
Standards-Based Grading Workshop
Iowa ASCD RtI Workshop/Conference
If you are interested in attending, please see your building principal.
What Level of Thinking are Your Questions?
This month we looked at the use of Questioning to move students to higher levels of thinking on Bloom's. Questioning is a skill requiring practice and planning. These are the type of questions we are analyzing. The Iowa Core wants students to provide evidence of their thinking - leading us to create conditions/questions for them to do this on a regular basis....
At what level of Bloom's do you think these questions are written? When would it be appropriate to ask that question? Are students capable of answering these questions? If not, do you ask enough higher order thinking questions to provide practice?
- What happened first in the story?
- Who are the main characters in the story?
- Why do you feel s/he made the decision they did?
- What do you think the message of the paragraph/story/article was?
- Which details or passages helps others to see your point the best?
- Who is narrating the story and how do we know?
- Is the behavior of the character right or wrong? Why/Not?
ATLAS - NEW CATEGORY!
- Student Centered Classroom
- Teaching for Understanding
- Assessment FOR Learning
- Rigorous and Relevant Curriculum
- Teaching for Learner Differences
Angela Maiers Works With the Elementary!
Her main message: 2-5-2 structured block of instruction. Her main message is about PASSION - passion for learning transferred to our students to increase love and motivation for learning. It is about not "the act of doing" but "the act of becoming" a champion reader, champion writer, champion scientist, champion WHATEVER. We must model, model, model to students how proficient learners problem solve, think critically, etc. Rather than teaching skills in isolation, practice needs to be authentic and based on the experiences of those who practice reading, writing, science, etc. on a daily basis.
Participants in her work so far this year know she is passionate about her work. In Oskaloosa, we must use our filter to determine what aligns with the work we are doing. The Workshop Method of Instruction aligns with Angela's 2-5-2 structure and we feel this model should be followed. Learning Targets establish the foundation for what we want our students to become, but we are still writing them as I CAN statements. One thing we have recognized is what we model as instructors is critical - from what we want students to know and be able to do - to the passion for learning. Angela will return again this spring to work with the 1st and 4th grade team.
Angela Maiers works with the Kindergarten team (above)
Angela works with the 3rd Grade team (above)
2013-2014 Calendar is Approved
- There are 4 PD days prior to school starting
- New teachers will start on August 13th and all teachers on August 14th
- There will be 2 early release days the 1st 2 days of school - we will use them for PLC goal setting and Action Planning
- September 16th is a full day of professional development - topic TBD
- We will still have 1-hour early releases on Wednesday's with PLC and extended PLC's, Vertical Teams and building meetings
- The last day of school is currently on May 23rd
- Spring Break has been divided up into two longer weekend breaks rather than a full week
- There are 3 snow make up days built into the calendar in Jan, April and May
- The 2 work days after each trimester will be 1/2 day work day and 1/2 PD next year (not stated on calendar)
Standards-Based Grading - Challenge
- 1-4 instead of points or a letter grade
- Specific Feedback for Improvement
What Is Your Grading Type?
Those using this believe the primary purpose of grading is to communicate on a summative level - students' achievement and performance. Focus on WHAT students kn ow and are able to do at a certain point in time. Teachers who use product criteria based grades on final exams or final products or an overall assessment - showing a culmination in an overall grade. Is this you?
Those using this believe that product criteria do not provide a complete picture of student learning. Grades should not just reflect the summative, but also HOW students go there. Teachers consider responsibility, effort, work habits, etc. when assigning grades. Teachers also count quizzes, formative assessments, homework, punctuality of assignments, participation, or attendance. Is this you?
Those using this believe the most important aspect of grading is how much students gain from their learning experiences. Teachers who use progress criteria look at how much improvement students have made over a period of time, rather than where they where at a given point in time. As a result, scoring is very individualized. Grades may be based on the standards or skills students have mastered on a level of progress for each student. This also promotes more differentiated or individualized instruction. Is this you?
A Different Puzzle to Ponder
Technology Goals for Next Year
- 100% of teachers and students will utilize technology at the highest levels of Bloom's Digital Taxonomy.
- 100% of teachers will integrate the Technology and Information Literacy Grade Level Benchmarks into instruction