How do you translate your overarching goals into a detailed action plan, and then how do you regularly assess and refine that action plan to meet your goals. As a tangental thinker who can easily move from the daily to-do list to issues of politics, family, systems, and more, I need to continually revisit the goal attainment process--what will I do to reach my goals? (Note that I've refined my goal language a bit below.)
Learn, Explore, and Prove math knowledge with greater project/problem based learning and process including pictures/models, numbers, words, and algebraic statements.
- Create the co-lab, a learning environment that supports project/problem based learning.
- Work to schedule therapists, special educators, and assistants to support both individual student and program goals with fidelity and depth. Scaffold lessons to provide every child with an opportunity for rich learning and standards-based success.
- Assess teaching/learning efforts from last year via MCAS data, EWIS list, and other formal and informal metrics. When assessing, use the following questions:
- Did students perform as expected given district and classroom observations, teaching, and regular assessments?
- When students did not perform as expected, analyze what happened? Was the material taught well to that student? Was the student available for the learning in real time or with respect to his/her readiness to learn? Were there good supports to support the child's learning? What does the data tell about this digression from expected results?
- Did I teach the expected curriculum with enough depth, repetition, and right focus? First by simply looking at the released questions, one can tell if he/she taught the material with good depth or focus. Then when looking at how students responded to the questions as a group, one can determine if the material was taught well.
- How can I change this year's program to better teach areas where individual students or students in general were not able to accurately apply that knowledge?
- Set the stage for apt math learning one, two, and three.
- Continue to read Boaler's Mindset Mathematics for Grade Five and embed her project-based activities into related units throughout the year.
- Use a weekly home-study reflection/journal assignment and That Quiz practice sets that is predictable and that I respond to on a regular basis. (Example)
- Use a predictable routine of response and assessment to continually assess the program efforts and result. Revise as needed in response to the assessments.
Increase rigor of scientific inquiry and experimentation related to science standards, environmental science, and STEAM study with greater student collaboration, use of lab sheets, and scientific and engineering design processes.
- Create the co-lab.
- Decide with colleagues how we will determine the science and STEAM teaching leadership and scheduling.
- Review all related standards, practices, and curriculum materials. Review related summer work to support prioritization.
- Start year with team building STEAM and related SEL activities to build a strong mindset and abilities to do rigorous, rich science and STEAM work.
- Explicitly introduce science/STEAM practices, processes with specific activities and classroom signage.
- Revise related lab sheets to guide independent exploration and investigation. Respond to lab sheets for each significant science/STEAM exploration. Chart science/STEAM performance via lab sheet rubric, students' reflections, and images of learning experiences.
- Enrich the program with expert visitors, special events, and field studies
- Review expected standards prior to MCAS tests via online Google Form assessments.
- Encourage students at-home continued exploration and creativity related to the concepts, knowledge, and skill introduced.
- Continue to read and research about these efforts.
- Work with Drumlin Farm in conjunction with a grant they received to develop greater environmental science education and stewardship with students.
Scaffold the curriculum to give every child a just right entry point to successful learning.
At times last year, there were not apt entry points for learning for some activities and this made it difficult for support personnel to rightly support a child's learning in those endeavors. This year I want to more clearly denote levels of entry including review, grade-level, and enrichment. Then when educators coach students ahead, we can know which level to begin our deep coaching with. I will use Boaler's floor-to-ceiling approach in conjunction with this, and I will match these efforts with simple, easy-to-administer formal and informal assessments to assess a child's independent skill with specific skills, knowledge, and concepts embedded in the project/problem based explorations.
Engage more effectively with the broader education team with specific strategies to teach all students well.
- Begin with looking deeply at student IEPs and other data to determine what the priority teaching efforts should include. Chart and discuss those priorities with the broader teaching team.
- Schedule services strategically with the learning priorities in mind beginning with the most complex and difficult to teach students--when their services are well organized, that leaves room to better teach all students.
- Embed priorities into the curriculum maps, and continually focus on those priorities with regard to planning and implementation of all learning experiences.
- Work with the team to better our collective processes and efforts to meet the priorities determined. Assess regularly and revise as needed.
- Keep the conversations and efforts positively centered on what we can do to meet the identified goals for the students and their families.
Nurture each and every student.
- Make consistent efforts to know every child well.
- Use a strengths-based attitude and model to nurture every child.
- Embed SEL activities throughout the curriculum to help children develop their capabilities to learn and live well.
- Use compassionate curiosity to gain insight into students' struggles and work with family members and others sooner than later when challenges occur.
- Create learning experiences with and for students that are positive, enriching, engaging, and meaningful.
- Develop a dynamic, compassionate, and kind classroom of students, friends, and leaders.
As I work on my overall goal which is to LISTEN, I will listen for the following:
- Ways that system leadership encourage us to meet the published goals for the year.
- New learning and summer efforts that colleagues and administrators share.
- Students' interests, needs, passions, and questions.
- Colleagues' short-term and long-term plans and pursuits.
- Service providers questions and needs.
- Changes in the way we do things individually and systematically.
- Research and study related to modernizing and bettering education for all.
I'm sure that I'll refine this list in days to come as I listen more.