Friday, February 16, 2018

Moving Forward on the Teaching/Learning Road 2018

Change is in the air in the school system, and I am thinking about where I fit into all this change. Essentially during these days, I'll champion many who are contributing significant good time and good work to making our schools strong. There are many administrators, colleagues, family members, students, and community members who are giving the teaching/learning program significant attention and care. I want to cheer them on and support their good ideas, advocacy, care and creativity.

I also want to continue to dig into the science and math teaching/learning to build greater capacity for every student. There are many good initiatives at play in this effort, initiatives that I'll continue to explore, develop, and build. Those initiatives include the following:
  • Wednesday Math/Science Labs: Students will continue to learn math/science during Wednesday 90-minute labs. I look forward to building this effort with my colleagues.
    • Volume Lab
    • Measurement/Balance Lab
    • Geometry Lab - Origami
  • New Science Curriculum: With grade-level colleagues I'll continue to build this effort in ways that are meaningful, engaging, and productive for students.
  • Standards-Based Math Program: I'll continue to build a good teaching/learning routine with students that includes study packets, multiple learning experiences, practice tests, unit tests, and reflection.
  • Math RTI: I'll continue to support these efforts in ways that are positive.
  • Math Tech: We'll work carefully with students to continue to use and complete the math tech sites that are allowed in our system.
  • Collaborative Learning Lab: I'll look for ways to update the classroom to make it a more dynamic collaborative learning lab. I would like to write a grant for new furniture, but I am having some difficulty with finding the just right furniture and funders. I'll explore this more.
  • Data Charts: I'll continue to update and improve the data charts we use to analyze the teaching/learning program and students' needs and interests.
  • Portfolios/Family-Student-Educator Conferences: Soon we'll prep for these upcoming conferences and update portfolios as part of this effort. 
  • Field Studies and Expert Visitors: We have a number of special events in the works that will require some administrative work, research, and student prep. 
  • STEAM Projects: We have a couple of great STEAM projects to complete with all fifth graders. 
  • MCAS Tests: We have six days of MCAS tests
  • Systemwide Grade Five Test: This test will likely take a few days
  • Biography Project: This is a deep, rich, and meaningful project that takes time.
  • Global Cardboard Challenge: This will be an end year multi-day celebratory project.
  • 2018-2019 Teaching/Learning Plans
Not only is there change in the midst of the learning environment, but the rocky winter weather, illness, and an uptick in personal needs/events has created a bit less consistency than usual. This kind of winter and change makes it more important than ever to find the areas you will focus on, develop, and do well in the days ahead.