Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Classroom Operations that Enhance the Ability for Students to Grow

Excellence in Education: Classroom Operations that Enhance the Ability for Students to Grow
Earlier today, I was asked, “How do the students here differ from the students at Kettle Run?”

The first part of my answer was pretty simple, “Students are pretty much the same. They adapt to the surroundings.”

This brief conversation with Coach McDaniel got me thinking. Learners are adaptable. After all, they have to adapt to four different teachers and four different sets of rules, norms, and guidelines every day. Most have no trouble adjusting. But what about those who do have trouble adjusting and need classroom procedures that can help students?

Here are a couple of classroom operations that help ALL students and convey “We Embrace our Students, Inspire Learning and Innovate Opportunities.”

Establishing a caring classroom environment with high expectations
  • By greeting each student as they enter the classroom, teachers can ensure they have personal contact with each student
  • Using cold call or other questioning techniques to convey, “I expect each of you to learn and will help you when you don’t know the answer.”
  • Posting visual cues to help students attend to the task at hand. These can be temporary (e.g. steps to the assignment) or more permanent (e.g. how to take Cornell Notes)

Time is valuable:
  • Students enter the class with a do now/bell ringer that engages them before the bell even rings
  • Spare moments at the end of the class are used for review, formative assessment, or teacher-student conversations
  • Anchor activities or tasks to which students automatically go to when they complete an assignment result in all students always learning
  • Routines for collecting work, handing out papers, posting homework
  • 3 before me: When a student has a question, require students to ask 3 other students before asking you.

Recognizing Student Growth
  • Celebrate student growth by asking, “Could you do that at the beginning of this class?” and creating an environment where students affirm one another

By establishing routines like the above, students become more autonomous. As teachers, we cannot attend to the unique needs of all of our students all of the time. It’s with confidence that I say the teachers who have used the above routines, or ones like them, have classrooms that support and challenge their students (the above ideas come from so many teachers that it would be irresponsible for me to associate them with just a handful of teachers).

Need to Knows
Positive Referral Link : http://go.shr.lc/1XRoeub

Normal bell schedule for this shortened week.

Shout Outs
Thanks to all who participated at Making Connections and especially those who presented: Mr. Jacoby, Mr. Weaver, Mr. Warren, Ms. Orme, Ms. Deegan, Mr. Trent, Ms. Lantz, Ms. Dudley, Mr. Bredder.

Calendar Items
November 4, 5: English Writing SOLs for students who were absent

November 5: Long-lunch faculty gathering to discuss switch to A/B schedule for 2016-7 (forum)

November 11: 10th grade Career and College Expo at UVa (9:45-11:15)
11:00-11:30 - 1st Lunch (9th, 11th, & 12th grade students who eat 1st lunch)
11:45-12:15 - 2nd Lunch (All students who eat 2nd lunch and 10th grade students that eat 1st lunch)
12:30-1:00 – 3rd Lunch (All students who eat 3rd lunch)

November 4: Lori Rocco
November 5: David Glover
November 6: Hannah Bailey, Yulanda Hatchett
November 8: Dawn Anderson, Trey Roberts

Worth Your Time

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