The ASOT Reflection

Region 9 High Reliability Schools-Sept/Oct 2019

How is it October already?

Wow! This year is off to a quick start! We hope you are settling into a routine and having a lot of fun with your students. However, we know that October can often feel even more rushed than the beginning of the year. That's why we've compiled lots of ideas that fall into Element 32: Motivating and Inspiring Students. We hope you'll find the ideas for mindfulness and growth mindset useful for your students...and maybe you'll find an idea or two that will help you make it through this long month as well!
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According to, mindfulness is the "basic human ability to be fully present, aware of where we are and what we're doing, and not overly reactive or overwhelmed by what's going on around us." Definitely sounds like something both teachers and students can benefit from, doesn't it? In fact, Juan-Diego Estrada, high school counselor in The Woodlands, Texas, says research shows the benefits of mindfulness to include improved attention, better emotion regulation, and reduced stress and anxiety levels. To read more about the benefits of mindfulness, check out these sites:

To find some strategies to incorporate mindfulness in the classroom, check out these sites and use the resources below:

Growth Mindset

Carol Dweck said "a growth mindset is when students understand that their abilities can be developed" (2014). Our goal as teachers then is to utilize opportunities in the classroom that allow students to develop that way of thinking.

Research is beginning to show the importance of allowing students to struggle, and that's where growth mindset can play a big role. Growth mindset isn't about praise or effort; it is about teaching students that the brain is "capable of overcoming the challenges it faces in new areas of learning" (Twig Education). When we think about students long-term goals, this type of thinking should be first and foremost.

Growth Mindset for students - Episode 1/5
Class DoJo: Growth Mindset Resources

Find videos, activities, and discussion guides to promote a growth mindset in your students.

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You've got questions...we've got answers!

In one of our recent ASOT sessions, we asked participants to leave us any questions they had. We'll address some of those in this section each month.

If you have any questions for this section, please let us know by emailing Christy at

There are 43 elements. That's a lot! How do we do ALL of that at once?

Miranda says...

The short answer is you don't. The Art and Science of Teaching is designed to provide teachers with a resource of over 330 specific instructional strategies embedded in the form of forty-three elements.

"Instructional strategies are best likened to techniques an artist might develop and refine over years of practice. The artist then uses these techniques to create works that are not only unique and complex but elegantly focused. The more skill the artist exhibits with available techniques, the better his or her creations. Likewise, the more skill the classroom teacher has with the instructional strategies that research and theory have uncovered over the decades, the better the teacher will be able to create lessons that optimize student learning."

Dr. Robert Marzano

Ideally, you would choose one or two elements that you would focus on at a time. Many teachers incorporate their chosen ASOT element into their TTESS goal. Some teachers have used the ASOT Self Audit to rate themselves on all of the elements and narrow down which element(s) on which they would like to work.

Once you know your focus, you can reach out to us here at Region 9 for more resources and guidance in that element. We'd love to help!

Why does ASOT mean more observations?

Melissa says...

The Art and Science is a unique training in which you do not just come to training and leave unsupported, but you receive individualized coaching and feedback from your trainers after the sessions are over. This can be accomplished in many different ways with your ASOT coach. One way this is accomplished is by the coach visiting your classroom, observing teaching, and giving you targeted feedback on ways to implement ASOT elements in your practice. These visits are not evaluative, and are only between you and your coach.

The HRS/ASOT team is here to help you improve and meet your personal goals. We can help you with goal-setting for the year (TTESS and ASOT) and give you strategies to support you in reaching that goal. We can also assist in lesson planning, model strategies you would like to see, and give you feedback when you are ready to implement those strategies yourself! If there are other teachers teaching an element or lesson that you would like to see, we can help facilitate instructional rounds for you. The HRS team hopes that you will see us as a teammate in your growth and welcome these visits as a chance to grow. We look forward to coming to your campuses and seeing you all this year!

Do I need to collect evidence on the ASOT elements like we do for the HRS indicators?

Christy says...

The easy answer? No!

In the High Reliability Schools framework, schools seeking certification collect evidence for each of the leading indicators to show the school's efforts in meeting that statement of expectation. However, in The Art and Science of Teaching, there is no certification and therefore no need to collect evidence.

In saying that, though, you'll want to track your progress as you work on implementing new strategies as a way to show your professional growth. This would make great evidence to use during your T-TESS evaluation process.

We have some different templates and ideas you can utilize for tracking your progress. Take a look at this tutorial on Setting Goals for more resources.

As for resources to help you reach your goals (when they align with elements in ASOT), check out our site: (Resources>Resources by the Elements). See below for more information!

Resource: R9 HRS Site

Don't forget about our website, which you can find at There is a tab just for you as an ASOT teacher complete with files and documents that will help you reach your goals. We are constantly updating the site are especially proud of the Resources by Element document that you can find under the Resources tab (or click the document below). This is a great way to find ideas for how to implement the goal you set for yourself for next year.