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Posts Tagged ‘Student-Centered Instruction’

New Teacher Evaluation Instrument: Standard #4

March 28, 2010 Leave a comment

Standard IV: Teachers facilitate learning for their students

Teachers know the ways in which learning takes place, and they know the appropriate levels of intellectual, physical, social, and emotional development of their students.

Teachers know how students think and learn. Teachers understand the influences that affect individual student learning (development, culture, language proficiency, etc.) and differentiate their instruction accordingly. 

Teachers keep abreast of evolving research about student learning. They adapt resources to address the strengths and weaknesses of their students.

 

Teachers plan instruction appropriate for their students.  

Teachers collaborate with their colleagues and use a variety of data sources for short- and long-range planning based on the North Carolina Standard Course of Study. These plans reflect an understanding of how students learn.

Teachers engage students in the learning process. They understand that instructional plans must be consistently monitored and modified to enhance learning.

Teachers make the curriculum responsive to cultural differences and individual learning needs.

 

Teachers use a variety of instructional methods.  

Teachers choose the methods and techniques that are most effective in meeting the needs of their students as they strive to eliminate achievement gaps.

Teachers employ a wide range of techniques including information and communication technology, learning styles, and differentiated instruction.

 

Teachers integrate and utilize technology in their instruction.  

Teachers know when and how to use technology to maximize student learning.

Teachers help students use technology to learn content, think critically, solve problems, discern reliability, use information, communicate, innovate, and collaborate.

 

Teachers help students develop critical-thinking and problem-solving skills.  

Teachers encourage students to ask questions, think creatively, develop and test innovative ideas, synthesize knowledge, and draw conclusions. They help students exercise and communicate sound reasoning; understand connections; make complex choices; and frame, analyze, and solve problems.

 

Teachers help students work in teams and develop leadership qualities.  

Teachers teach the importance of cooperation and collaboration. They organize learning teams in order to help students define roles, strengthen social ties, improve communication and collaborative skills, interact with people from different cultures and backgrounds, and develop leadership qualities.

 

Teachers communicate effectively.  

Teachers communicate in ways that are clearly understood by their students. They are perceptive listeners and are able to communicate with students in a variety of ways even when language is a barrier.

Teachers help students articulate thoughts and ideas clearly and effectively.

 

Teachers use a variety of methods to assess what each student has learned.  

Teachers use multiple indicators, including formative and summative assessments, to evaluate student progress and growth as they strive to eliminate achievement gaps.

Teachers provide opportunities, methods, feedback, and tools for students to assess themselves and each other.

Teachers use 21st century assessment systems to inform instruction and demonstrate evidence of students’ 21st century knowledge, skills, performance, and dispositions.

Examples of Artifacts

Lesson Plans

 

Use of Student Learning Teams 

 

Collaborative Lesson Planning

Display of Technology Used to Facilitate InstructionDocumentation of Differentiated Instruction Professional Development

Materials Used to Promote Critical Thinking and Problem Solving

 

To access the full North Carolina Teacher Evaluation Process Document, click here:  http://www.ncpublicschools.org/docs/profdev/training/teacher/teacher-eval.pdf   (Pages 5-9 of this document will provide you with background information, definitions, and a rationale for the changes in the teacher evaluation process and instrument.)

To access all documents, videos, forms, PowerPoints, and charts related to the New Teacher Evaluation Process, click here:  http://www.ncpublicschools.org/profdev/training/teacher/

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Summarization Techniques that Work

November 7, 2009 2 comments

As we continue to make adjustments to our instruction based on the results of the 6-week benchmarks, pacing guides, and formative assessments, retention is a common area of concern. Putting strategies in place to assist students with comprehension and retention of lesson concepts will decrease student and teacher frustration.

mnemonicsConsider poor old Aunt Sally. She’s constantly making mistakes in the mathematical order of operations. You will have to excuse her if you already understand when to perform each order of operation: parentheses, exponents, multiplication, division, addition, and subtraction.

“Please Excuse My Dear Aunt Sally” is an extension of PEMDAS, the angry-old-ladyclassic acronym for the order of mathematical operations. This mnemonic device assists students daily in understanding what to do and in what order. When you think about it, PEMDAS is also a summarization strategy. Creating acronyms for concepts, cycles, protocols, sequences, and systems is a great way to allow students to summarize and retain information.

 

 

 

writing3One way to begin is by asking students to list the essential attributes of something that you have been teaching. For example, say that you have been focusing on how to write good introductions to essays. In response to your prompt, students might generate a list that includes the following:

• Hook the reader with an interesting attention getter that provides background information to set the stage for your thesis.
• Add your thesis statement.
• Provide an organizational hint to serve as a preview for the content of the essay.
• Use a clincher to transition from the introduction to the first body paragraph.

Classroom Instruciotn Book

Great information on summarization can be found in this book. See me to borrow a copy.

Then, ask your students to examine each attribute and identify a single term to serve as a key word for remembering that attribute. This group activity involves discussing and deciding on key words, providing yet another opportunity for summarization. Key words for remembering how to write good essay introductions might be attention getter (AG), thesis (T), organizational hint (OH), and clincher (C).

Now it’s simply a matter of sequencing the letters in an order that makes sense. If the attributes are things that do not need to be in a specific sequence, then all the students have to do is move the letters around until something coherent and meaningful emerges. If the sequence is set, such as the steps in a math problem, the process of how a bill goes through Congress, or the metamorphosis of mealworms, the order of the letters is nonnegotiable, and creating a memorable acronym can be a bit more challenging, but it is certainly a worthwhile task.

 

thesis_funnelThis technique can also work as a pre-assessment activity. You might ask your students to create an initial list of attributes as a whole class activity. Then, have the students revise the lists on their own (another opportunity for summarizing). As mnemonic devices, acronyms can be even more powerful when created by students themselves. Consider asking each student to design his or her own acronyms for something to be studied, and then vote on the top three. The voting criteria might include clarity, accuracy, and how easily the acronym can be remembered.

 

wormeli book

See me if you would like to borrow this book.

Summarization is not only a technique proven to improve student achievement, but it is also a method of formative assessment that can help you assess where your students are and help them self-assess. By implementing various summarization strategies, we can help provide students with yet another exposure to higher-order thinking activities.

 

References

Marzano, R. J., Pickering, D. J., & Pollock, J. E. (2001). Classroom instruction that works: Research-based strategies for increasing student achievement. Alexandria, VA: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.

Westerberg, T. R. (2009). Becoming a great high school: 6 strategies and 1 attitude that make a difference. Alexandria, VA: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.

Wormeli, R. (2004). Summarization in any subject: 50 techniques to improve student learning. Alexandria, VA: Association For Supervision and Curriculum Development.

Summarization in any Subject

September 21, 2009 7 comments

studentReading_256x257

Students today must learn facts, of course, but they must also be skilled “information archeologists.” They must dig for information, make sense of it, and attach meaning to what they have learned. They must identify the main ideas, as well as the supportive details, the principle arguments as well as their evidence.

One of the greatest gifts that we can give to students is to teach them (1) how to identify salient information, no matter what subject that we teach or how we present it, and (2) how to structure that information for meaning and successful application” (Wormeli, 2005). The ability to summarize indicates students comprehend material, and this is the goal of learning.

Classroom Instruciotn BookMarzano, Pickering, and Pollock (2001) cite extensive research studies in their book Classroom Instruction That Works: Research-Based Strategies for Increasing Student Achievement to prove summarization is one of the nine research-based strategies that have the greatest impact on student achievement. Often our students struggle with summarization. They would rather copy information from an Internet resource than actually take the time to restate the essence of the text or an experience in as few words possible. Many of us make the assumption that summarization must be done in writing— either with pen and paper or on a keyboard.

boys with teacherThis week and during the weeks to come, let’s explore the versatility of summarization. Summarization is a form of formative assessment that can be written, oral, dramatic, artistic, visual, physical, musical, and digital. Students can summarize individually or in a group. We must make a commitment to use summarization strategies as often as we can to promote comprehension and retention of concepts.

When we do not use summarization strategies, we must ask ourselves “Am I teaching so that students will learn, or am I teaching so that I can cover the required material?

Chunking, direct instruction that is delivered in “chunks,” instead of one long whole, can result in a tremendous amount of information moving into long-term memory. Chunking a lecture means that the teacher speaks for approximately ten to fifteen minutes, then pauses and facilitates a summarizing or processing experience about the information just presented. Summarization/processing activities can last from 1-10 minutes, as needed. Then the teacher continues the lecture and selects another summarization/processing strategy.

LiteracyBlocks_000During our professional development last year, we focused on Vocabulary and Literacy strategies. Several summarization strategies were shared including:
GIST
Graphic OrganizersCornell Notes / Q – Notes
–  F-I-T Sheets
–  “What I know…” sentences
– 3-2-1

– Admit Slips
– Ticket out the Door

Please contact Heather Mullins, our Curriculum Specialist, if you need more information on how to implement these strategies in your classroom.