Nexting events give us an opportunity to pause and think about what’s next for us, our students, and the District. They’re about creating memories of the future. Click on the word GRIT to watch the short video clip about GRIT from author Sylvia Duckworth. Think about how focusing on your work in your PLC, Design Teams, and Work Groups can enhance our system to with GRIT. How do you provide space for students to show and experience opportunities to demonstrate GRIT? How will your next activity impact student learning using the GRIT mindset? Share your thoughts and follow the conversation using #Westside66Hope on Twitter.
Asking the right question is an integral part of engaging students in learning. The right questi0n is congruent to the objective. It is accurate, clear, planned, and encourages all students to respond with something other than a “yes” or “no”. Benjamin Bloom tells us that students who ‘process’ and ‘practice’ will learn. According to Bloom, “In general, about 20% of the variation in achievement of individuals is accounted for by their participation in the classroom learning process. The amount of active participation in the learning is an excellent index of the quality of instruction.” – Benjamin Bloom, Human Characteristics & School Learning. Active participation allows information to be processed so the learner can reveal what they know, what they don’t know, how they are linking background knowledge with newer concepts, and if their fundamental misconceptions are getting in the way of understanding.
Formative Assessment: Critical Attributes of HINGE Questions
Dylan Wiliam “Characteristics of Quality Hinge Questions” Educational Testing Service August 27, 2007) speaks about Hinge questi0ns as a way to ask the right question. A Hinge question…
– is based on the content piece of the daily objective that students must understand before you move on in the lesson.
– is congruent with the level of thinking stated in your objective.
– is asked at critical times in the lesson. You may have more than one hinge question or the same hinge question may be repeated.
– is a benchmark. Every student MUST be able to respond to the hinge question. The teacher must be able to quickly and effectively collect, interpret, and diagnose the responses from all students before moving on.
The Power And Opportunity Of Technology
Google Forms, Kahoot, Google Classroom, Comic Life, and Blackboard Discussi0n Board are few of many ways teachers can ask a question they might say aloud in a classroom setting. Asking the question the same way and responding the same way is c0nsidered substitution according to the SAMR model by Dr. Puentedura. The thinking would be to leverage technology to the modification level to transform the learning vs. just enhancing it. A few ways a teacher might be able to do this is to first think about the content, pedagogy, and then technology as a means for significant task redesign. A few questions a teacher might ask themselves to guide them in this process might be:
- How might this questi0n and task connect to previous learning and how can technology leverage this learning?
- How are students interacting with each other that would not have been possible with0ut technology?
- Can I use more than one application to streamline and enhance the learning that would not have been possible without the technology?
- How might the question I am asking allow for the student to redesign their thinking and learning?
- Referencing Bloom’s Taxonomy, how can I use question stems from Create, Evaluate, and Analyze to assist in my question creation?
- How do I involve the student to take ownership of their learning and create engaging dialogue?
Combining the pedagogy around developing and asking questions at the correct cognitive level combined with technology, enhances the learning opportunity for the student and provides a richer experience for all students.
Staff members at Westside Community Schools continue to demonstrate high efficacy and craftsmanship by putting students first. This was evident as WCS staff members attended multiple training sessions during the first week back for staff refining their teaching craft and expertise. This year, each elementary grade level will have one topic they will focus on during five different learning sessions throughout the year.
All kindergarten and first-grade teachers spent 8 hours on August 9th and will receive between 12 and 20 hours of explicit instruction on instructional routines that focus on phonemic awareness, phonics, and sound blends. WCS is partnering with Lynette Block from the State MTSS team to implement this training. Instructional routines are similar to classroom/behavior routines, a consistent format that is generalizable for teaching specific skills, an explicit, interactive, research-based format, designed to engage students and increase their chances for successful learning.
“Routines are the foundational architecture for creativity, and in the classroom they give birth to deeper reading, rich writing, and meaningful conversation.” —Tanny McGregor, author of Comprehension Connections
All second and third-grade teachers spent 6 hours on August 9th and will receive a total of 12 hours of reflection and student learning focused on math mindset. The 5 sessions are led by Karin Mussman, Michele Patterson, Sarah Meraz, and Diana Williams. Click to see a previous article about math mindset. Teachers will focus on:
- Everyone can learn math to the highest levels
- Mistakes are valuable; mistakes grow your brain
- Math is about connections and communicating; math can be represented in words, diagrams, graphs, pictures, equations that can be linked to each other
- Questions are really important; ask yourself: why does that make sense?
- Math is about creativity and making sense
- Math class is about learning, not performing; it takes time to learn and it is all about effort
- Depth is much more important than speed
Fourth-grade teachers will be spending the year refining their skills on how to personalize learning for all students. Teachers spent the entire day with National speaker and author, Jim Rickabaugh learning about WCS’s philosophy of personalized learning and focusing on providing voice and choice for students. Teachers will spend the rest of the year working with Personalized Learning Collaborators (Andrew Easton, Katie Sindt, Kristin Hogan) focusing on WCS’s five elements of personalized learning.
1. Knowing Your Learners. 2. Voice and Choice 3. Flexible Groups and Space 4. Data Informed 5. Technology Support.
Fifth and sixth-grade teachers are continuing to improve student writing and critical thinking by focusing the year on Text Dependent Analysis (TDA). WCS is partnering with Janet Foss from ESU 3 to provide the year-long focused training.
On July 13th-14th, a group of Westside Community School educators and leaders traveled to Lincoln, Nebraska to participate in the 2017 Great Plains Google Summit. This two-day, high-intensity event focused on using Google tools to promote student learning. Nearly 500 educators experienced over 50 sessions on topics ranging from Google Apps to Chrome extensions to programming. View sessions and access content and read about the event on Twitter.
Four WCS staff members represented the State of Nebraska at “Foundations of Math” at North Carolina State University. The intense five-day event was offered for the Northeast and Southeast Regions of North Carolina, as well as Nebraska and Iowa. This was a state level session presented by NCDPI consultants Melissa Towery and Carol Moffitt. Members were able to attend with support by grant funds.
A group of Westside Community School educators and leaders traveled to the Century Link Center in Omaha, NE to participate in the 2017 NETA (Nebraska Educational Technology Association) conference. This three-day, high-intensity event focused on leveraging technology to promote student learning. Westside is proud to recognize our staff member, Dr. Matt Lee, who was sworn in as the 2017 NETA president and our multiple staff members who were selected to present.
Allison Pontious – Google Classroom in the Primary Grades
Allison Pontious and Dustin Carlson – Engaging Students in a 1:1, Primary Classroom
Allison Pontious, Dustin Carlson, and Andrew Easton – Breakout of Your Box with Breakout EDU!
Andrew Easton – App-Smashingly Great Instructional Videos
Paul Lindgren – Jedi Data Tricks: Information Submits to YOUR will with Filemaker Pro
Blane McCann, Matt Lee, and David Williams – Implementing and Evaluating a K-12 1:1 Initiative: 3 Perspectives
Offering choice to meet the needs of teachers!
Westside hosted a professional learning morning for staff with 33 choice sessions and experts from Westside Community Schools, Educational Service Unit #3, Region #3, Nebraska MTSS, University of Nebraska Omaha, and Children’s Hospital. Sessions were available at 8:00 – 8:45 and 8:55 – 9:40. Staff members signed up for sessions using sched.com and full descriptions of each session can be found using the sched.com link. See the Twitter postings from this event at #westsidepl . Staff were encouraged to engage in a twitter contest and share learnings and find some special people.
JEANS DAY! Please bring an item to donate to our Westside Pantry and drop your item off at the front entrance of WHS. Shampoo/Conditioner – Deodorant – Bar Soap – Lotion – Toothpaste – Toothbrushes – Toiletpaper Paper towels – Laundry Soap
February is a Nexting month for Westside Community Schools. Nexting events give us an opportunity to pause and think about what’s next for us, our students, and the District. They’re about creating memories of the future. Watch Mike Robbins speak about the difference between recognition and appreciation and download the flyer to access all of the links. #westside66hope .
Mike Robbins (www.Mike-Robbins.com) is the author of two books, Focus on the Good Stuff, and Be Yourself, Everyone Else is Already Taken, as well as the forthcoming book Nothing Changes Until You Do. He’s an expert in teamwork, leadership, and emotional intelligence who delivers inspirational keynote addresses to audiences throughout the world. (copied from the youtube description at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a3wX8nmvlZ0 ).
We recognize that aspiring candidates for leadership positions have a great deal to learn about the work environment, duties, roles, challenges, and demands. To assist in the learning process, Leadership Westside participants are encouraged to engage in a variety of additional experiences when creating their learning path. Some of these experiences may be completed as part of a shadowing experience, while others can be experienced as needed for each participant. We strive to meet the needs of all of our leaders and supporting them through personalized learning opportunities, real life experiences, and collaborative groups.
Sessions will be offered by Westside Community School staff and local experts supporting the interests of our Leadership Westside members.
Leadership Westside members will complete sessions using courses from lynda.com. allowing members to learn at their own, place, pace, and space.
Leadership Westside members will have opportunities for internships and job shadowing experiences during their year two journey.
Personalized Professional Learning
Choose learning opportunities from the Learning Leader, Operational/Organizational, Humanistic/Relational, and Making the Transition matrix. The learning opportunities are presented in a way to guide experiences. Staff members choose as many experiences as they would like and have the option for individual coaching sessions from District leaders to guide their journey. Leadership Westside members will have first choice of attending a local conference or book purchase to develop their leadership capacity.
Our professional learning day was cancelled due to inclement weather. We had fantastic sessions available and we will offer many of them again in February.
|Presenter(s)||Session Titles (45 minute sessions will be offered at 8:00 and 8:55 unless otherwise noted)|
|Allison Pontious – RM143||Google Classroom in the Primary Grades (K-2) – Teachers will learn how to effectively integrate Google Classroom into their daily lessons through a variety of examples and hands on learning.||N|
|Andrew Easton – RM144||Leveraging Twitter for Professional Learning and Professional Collaboration (K-12) – This session is for teachers looking to connect and collaborate with other educators to generate new innovative practices and new professional learning groups specific to the teacher’s grade level, content area, and/or interest.||Y|
|Angela Bergman – RM133||Cross Curricular STEM Education (7-12) – Learn how to adapt your existing lessons to meet Nebraska’s vision of STEM with your community and colleagues.||Y|
|Bridget Brown – RM132||Using Instagram for Narrative Writing. (K-12) – Children naturally connect thoughts, words, and images long before they master the skill of writing. Come explore how the use of images can harness the power of observation, analysis and writing. Explore 1. How to use images to help students transfer visual content into ideas and information. 2. Better understanding of social media tools such as Instagram and the role they can play in the classroom. 3. Develop a resource library for locating images.||N|
|Chad Schmeckpeper – RM200||Make a Game of It (K-12) – Gamification in education is the concept of using the competition of games to motivate and engage students to accomplish learning objectives.||Y|
|Dave Baker – RM214||Unlocking the Power of Edpuzzle (7-12) – Do you want to be able to push out videos to your students, monitor their progress, and check for understanding? Let me show you Edpuzzle.||Y|
|Dr. Ashley Harlow – RM138||Depression at School (K-12) 8:55 session – Review signs and symptoms of depression in children and teens. Discuss what symptoms of distress are in the typical range and when increased intervention is needed.||N|
|Dr. Blane McCann – RM142||Good Seeds Grow in Good Cultures: Culture of Success through Collaboration (K-12) – Collaborate with Dr. McCann about the 12 norms of a collaborative culture. “Giving shape and direction to a school’s culture should be a clear, articulated vision of what the school stands for, a vision that embodies core values and purposes.” Jon Saphire||N|
|Dr. Enid Schonewise – RM130||Westside Wellness (K-12) – Learn about the Westside Wellness program.||N|
|Dr. Ginger Starks-Yoble Dr. Crystal Bolamperti RM238||Testing the Water with Personalized Learning (7-12) – Several examples will be presented and time will be provided for you to embrace how you can integrate personalized learning into your teaching.||N|
|Dr. Julee Sauer – RM212||Questioning (7-12) – Participants will explore a template for planning questioning that increases cognitive rigor and discussion that deepens student understanding.||N|
|Dr. Mark Weichel – RM204||Personalized Learning Early Adopters Revisited (K-12) – Brainstorming session for past early adopters. Collaborate and share your experiences.||N|
|Dr. Martin Harrington – RM138||Psychs, Counselors, and Social Workers only 8:00 Session – Current Trends in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry – Review psychiatric medications types/categories prescribed in children and adolescents. Review common or serious side effects due to psychiatric medications which are appropriate to be shared with the prescriber of the medication.||Y|
|Dr. Matt Lee – RM308||Keynote Super Ninja Skills (K-12) – Have you ever wanted to make keynotes like the pros? Need to jazz up your lessons? Then this session is for you! Warning: This is not for the faint of heart. We will be hacking Keynote to create animations, alter images to create new effects, use motion graphics and more! A basic understanding of Keynote is assumed and a Mac is required.||N|
|Dr. Paul Lindgren – RM202||Digital Dialogue (K-12) – Here’s your chance to speak your mind with Westside’s Director of Technology. What do you want to see more of? What might you like to see changed? How can the technology team serve you and your students better?||N|
|Dustin Carlson – RM140||Earn Recognition as an Apple Teacher! (K-12) – Come learn how to become an Apple Teacher and have the time to earn your first badge!||Y|
|Elementary EY Team -RM222||Differentiation Through Enrichment (K-12) – Learn simple ways to differentiate in 4 areas: Content, Process, Product, and Learning Environment.||Y|
|Janet Foss – RM210||TDA – Text Dependent Analysis (5-12) – Learn how to help students comprehend difficult text through close reading practices and effective Text Dependent and Text Dependent Analysis questioning.||N|
|Jeff Ingram – RM206||Google Expeditions: Virtual Field Trips using your iPad (must have an iPad) K-12 – Expeditions are collections of linked virtual reality (VR) content and supporting materials that can be used alongside existing curriculum.||N|
|Kate Carlson – RM208||Technology Tools to Support TDA (Text Dependent Analysis) in All Classrooms (K-12) – We will highlight ways to utilize educational technology apps, tools, and resources to incorporate this type of analysis in all classrooms, regardless of the content area.||N|
|Kathie McGill – RM145||Supporting Bereaved Individuals (K-12) – Participants will learn compassionate considerations and resources to help self or others on their grief journey.||Y|
|Kay Glidden – RM136||Compassion Fatigue (2 hour session) (K-12) 8:00 – 10:00 – Attendees of this two hour workshop for adults will improve their understanding of compassion fatigue, vicarious trauma and burnout effects, symptom recognition and tools for self care.||N|
|Lance Mosier – RM141||Digital Dipsticks: Using Digital Formative Assessments (7-12) – These five tools will be discussed: Kahoot, Socrative, Quizziz, Padlet, & Wizerme to help provide formative assessment opportunities.||Y|
|Mikayla Baker – RM135||Creating Learner Profiles with Autocrat and Google Forms (K-12 Advanced Tech Users) – We will be using a Google Add-On called Autocrat and Google Forms to create Personal Learning Profiles.||Y|
|Stephanie Heitmann Stephanie Pueppka – RM240||Useful Strategies for Writing Instruction and Assessment in the 7 – 12 Classroom – This session is designed for teachers of all content areas who are interested in adding or improving paragraph writing in their curriculum.||Y|
|Ted Dondlinger – RM216||Paving a Path (K-12) – This breakout session will help participants find what is truly important in our lives.||Y|
|The IT Toolbox – RM137||Coding Interactive Games Using Scratch Jr. & Hopscotch (K-6) – While coding isn’t the only component of IT (information technology), it provides an engaging way for students to imagine and create while problem-solving and thinking critically.||Y|