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Thursday, September 10, 2015

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Teaching Construct 1.3: Learning Environment

Many times when you hear the word "environment" when it comes to teaching, you may think of it in the physical sense: the arrangement of desks and furniture, the bulletin boards, the library, the centers, the placement of the teacher's desk, the decorations. While all of these physical characteristics of "environment" are vital to student learning, I'd like for you to think of "environment" as synonymous with "milieu". Now there's a fancy word for you and a nod to our French teacher :)

According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, "milieu" is both "the physical and social setting in which something occurs or develops". In the context of teaching, think of all the opportunities for both physical and social occurrences and developments. It's overwhelming!

Read the article below posted by te@chthought which simplifies 10 Characteristics of a Highly Effective Learning Environment

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What's Next for Mentoring?

We've been having some great discussions during our follow-up meetings this week! I love hearing the thinking behind your plans and actions, and have found that I am learning a lot from all of you!

Next week, I will start asking you to schedule formal observations with me. Remember: I'm not here for you to "WOW" me and I'm not here to evaluate you, so be thinking about maybe the least ideal time you would want an evaluator in your classroom and some things you might want me to take data on so we can make the most out of these observations and turn them into true learning and growing opportunities for us both!

A reminder to start planning your ETMs after we've spoken about it and to send me your plan when you've got it. These can be changed, but I'd like to have a general idea of where you'd like to go with your learning.

Some up and coming face-to-face ETMs are as follows:

  • 9/10/15 6-12 Creating and Maintaining an Effective Classroom Environment Part 1
  • 9/16/15 K-12 (SPED) Graphing Part 1
  • 9/22/15 K-12 (SPED) Setting up Effective IEP Meetings
  • 9/23/15 K-5 Differentiated Reading Centers

A Little Something Extra

Watch this short clip about how a teacher uses humor to create a learning environment that works for both her and her students.
Don't Smile 'Til December? Humor in the Classroom