Sunday, February 23, 2014

Teaching Well: The Details

After spending the week focused in part on learning design, today I'm focused on the details of teaching well.

Planning lessons well is only one part of the teaching equation while the other important parts include facilitating those learning experiences and responding to student work.

Hence, as I lift learning design, I'll also lift delivery and response with the following actions.
  • Clear introduction.
  • Chart introduction and follow-up activities for all to see.
  • Chart who has completed the tasks, and who has not.
  • Chart follow-up actions and response. 
  • Revise and personalize lessons to respond to students' needs. 
  • Create a positive order of lesson delivery--an order to follow in the year to come. In a sense, a more detailed scope and sequence with room for revision and thoughtful response.
Keeping track of the efforts and needs of multiple students is an important part of the job.  A part of the job that requires streamlined systems.  I will use the following systems:
  • Clipboard w/student list and related materials for each lesson to chart student work, needs, and response.
  • A place to keep those lesson clipboards visible and accessible to all educators and students. 
  • Online class excel sheet of performance scores, comments, and needs.
  • Class list which charts our ongoing efforts, goals, and needs--a list that helps the class coach, teach, and encourage each other.
  • A system of weekly review and response where students' weekly efforts, needs, and response are synthesized and parents are informed of extraordinary needs or efforts in order to enlist support and encouragement. 
Good teaching requires careful attention to both the broad dimensions of the job as well as the finer details--the subtle points that moves a learning experience from good to great.  This emphasis complements the learning design focus as we continue our efforts to teach children well.