CPS Teachers Make A Difference

Week Ending January 8, 2016

Happy New Year

Welcome back! Prep week seemed to have gone fairly smoothly. The level of time management skills and idea of quality of work to be turned in was very apparent. Some were very overwhelmed by how much there is to do and others are under the impression they can get it together within an hour or two and be fine.

I thank you to all of you who gave explicit written details and have been sticking to your deadlines in class as to what is due each day (or couple of days). This makes a huge difference.

After you are done with presentations, please be prepared to reflect with the students on performance both verbally and written. On Friday at the staff meeting, please turn in to me the following from the presentation exams:
*Each student's graded paper
*Journals from the presentations
*Grades for end of term presentations

*January 10, 2016 - Artsedcamp 2016 from 9:00 - 2:00/2:30.
* January 15, 2016 - Faculty Meeting from 12:10 - 2:20 (students have early release)
*January 22, 2016 - Norma - We will be leaving at 5:45PM and return around 11:00PM. Please let me know if you would like to attend.

"The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires." William A. Ward

Teacher Meetings With Wendy

Due to some changes in the schedule for next term, in some cases I needed to alter your meeting time with me. We will begin the schedule this week.
Please bring to the meeting the following as we will upload onto moodle:
* Your outline for the upcoming semester
* Plans for first unit including your assessments

Mondays - 10:30 - Jumana Lakdawala
Tuesdays - 10:30 - Tracey Rockett
Tuesdays - 11:30 - Rachel Klein
Wednesdays - 11:30 Nora Teitzman
Thursdays - 11:30 - Joyce Hawkins
Fridays - 9:30 - Tyler Smith
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Attendance, participation and make-up assignments

Several of you have spoken with me privately regarding the issues of attendance, participation and make-up assignments. Your convictions for change have come from experience and insight. I appreciate your suggestions and realize that the definition of insanity - the notion of doing the same thing over and over again with the hope of a different outcome - applies to this policy and change is needed and overdue.

Based upon your collective responses, I propose the following to start for second term:
1. Teachers will need to continue to take attendance each class and notify the office if a student is not present. Students who are absent 10 days (which are unexcused) in a semester will not receive credit for the class. This follows Florida Law. Students who are late, but in attendance for at least half the class will receive 1/2 an absence.

2. The majority of the grade needs to be on the assessment and actual work produced. Students have come to realize that if they don't misbehave they will achieve their points. Students need to be graded on cumulative projects, based upon class lessons. Students need to have a minimum of one grade per week, per class. This way, if a student misses a class, he or she will need to catch up quickly in order to give the presentation, paper or project for the week. It is imperative that teachers create assessments which are very detailed with the expectations and adhered to on a weekly basis. A project may last for 2-3 weeks, but each week there should be part of the project due.

3. Participation can be part of the assessment for the cumulative project. For example, if you are having the students prepare for a debate, 10-20% can be for their participation in preparation.
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A new platform for grades and posting lessons

For the last 2 years plus, we have been the guinea pig for Thinkwave. While there are good qualities to the program, we are not finding it to be as user friendly and easy to use as expected. Starting next term we will be using https://conservatoryprep.moodlecloud.com
Your username is your first initial followed by your last name in lowercase (e.g. wweiner). The password is cps5850. You may change the password when you log in to the program. Your course is already posted and editing is easy. You all have access to the Service Learning Class, where I fill out the first lesson, to give you an idea.

Since most of our classes are unit to unit, please write an overview of each unit (this will be in place of writing the overview each month in the monthly portfolios) and add any films and readings you want the students to have completed with due dates. You will also be able to upload your class project assignments. Student will be able to send you their papers through icloud and you will be able to grade online. There is a grade book online for you to set up as well. We will be going over this program step-by-step at the meeting on January 15th and I will be happy to go over during our individualized meetings.