How might we learn and grow together? How do we connect ideas and engage in productive, purposeful learning experiences (aka professional development) around common mission, vision, and goals? What if we model what we want to see and experience in our classrooms?
In August, we introduced our goal for teacher-learners and began our work and learning with the faculty.
Throughout the semester, we have been working with teacher-teams in many ways. We hope our faculty notice how we are modeling be together, not the same taught during Pre-Planning. We have worked and learned with teams to design and implement common assessments and analyze the results to understand what students know in reading, writing, and mathematics.
Based on our observations and conferring with teams and individual teachers, we know that we are ready to move to the next level of our work. Here is a copy of our plan:
We can design and implement a differentiated action plan across our grade to meet all learners where they are.
Intro to Purpose: Instructional Core: Relationship between content, teacher, student
Brightspot observed Instructional Core teamwork
Movement to Grade Level Teams and spaces
Analyze Student Work Together (a la Norming Meeting)
Use PAST assessment (Pre-K), Founts & Pinnell winter running records (K-6th) as common assessment.
Strong teams regularly self-assess how well they function within their norms – the hopes and dreams for how they are when together. As we learn and grow together, we pause to reflect, revise, and recommit to strengthen our teams by reviewing our community norms.
We commit to collaboratively design the agenda for each team meeting and that the agendas are shared ahead of the meetings. (ALT)
We commit to fostering a growth mindset with our learners and ourselves. We embrace the power of yet. (Carol Dweck)
We commit to use technology as a tool for learning and not as a barrier between us. (ALT)
We commit to speaking about our learners as if they are in the room with us. (Katherine Boles, Harvard)
We need to give students the opportunity to develop their own rich and deep understanding of our number system. With that understanding, they will be able to develop and use a wide array of strategies in ways that make sense for the problem at hand. (Flynn, 8 pag.)
Let’s say that the essential-to-learn is I can subtract within 100. In our community we hold essential I can show what I know more than one way.
Using our anchor text, we find the following strategies:
I can subtract tens and one on a hundred chart.
I can count back to subtract on an open number line.
I can add up to subtract on an open number line.
I can break apart numbers to subtract.
I can subtract using compensation.
What if we engage, as a team, to deepen our understanding of subtraction?
Deep learning focuses on recognizing relationships among ideas. During deep learning, students engage more actively and deliberately with information in order to discover and understand the underlying mathematical structure. (Hattie, 136 pag.)
As we begin the second part of our school year and as the calendar changes from 2016 to 2017, we review our goals.
The leaders of our math committee set the following goals for this school year.
Continue our work on vertical alignment.
Expand our knowledge of best practices and their role in our current program.
Share work with grade level teams to grow our whole community as teachers of math.
Raise the level of teacher confidence in math.
Deepen, differentiate, and extend learning for the students in our classrooms.
Our latest action step works on scaling these goals in our community. The following shows our plan to build common understanding and language as we expand our knowledge of numeracy. Over the course of two days, each math teacher (1st-6th grade) participated in 3-hours of professional learning.
Our intentions and purpose:
We started with a number talk and a number string from Kristin Gray‘s NCTM Philadelphia presentation. We challenged ourselves to anticipate the ways our learners answer the following.
From our earlier work with Lisa Eickholdt, we know that our ability to talk about a strategy directly impacts our ability to teach the strategy. What can be learned if we show what we know more than one way? How might we learn from each other if we make our thinking visible?
After working through Humphreys and Parker’s strategies (and learning new strategies), we transitioned to the number string from Kristin‘s presentation.
To practice, each team practiced their number string and the other grade-level teams served as learners. When we share and learn together, we strengthen our understanding of how to differentiate and learn deeply.
Deep learning focuses on recognizing relationships among ideas. During deep learning, students engage more actively and deliberately with information in order to discover and understand the underlying mathematical structure. —John Hattie, Doug Fisher, Nancy Frey
As we begin the second part of our school year and as the calendar changes from 2016 to 2017, what action steps are needed to reach our goals?