Our final Professional Learning Day is a success! Thank you to all of the presenters and individuals who helped to organize the day. A few highlights are outlined below.
Special Services Department – (at WHS) PK and All Elementary Special Educators, Counselors, Social Workers and Educational Assistants will receive a presentation from Dr. Pat Freiman from Boys Town, on behavioral intervention strategies. The MS/HS special education staff will stay with their buildings for building collaboration and training.
Grades K-1 (at Swanson Swing School) – All schools have implemented the instructional routines and have been working with local and state consultants to ensure validity and fidelity. Teachers will complete the final component of the decoding/phonics training with a focus in Small Group Reading-Decodable Text Routine.
Grades 2-3 (at Underwood Hills Professional Learning Room) – Teachers will dig deeper into the “mindset of a great math teacher” with Michelle Patterson, Diana Williams, Karin Mussman and Sarah Mosel. They are focusing on:
#6. Math class is about learning, not performing; it takes time to learn and it is all about effort.
#7. Depth is much more important than speed.
Follow their progress on #mathmindset and #westsidepl
Grade 4 (at West Campus Demonstration Classroom) – will be focusing on Personalized Learning Element #5 (Technology Support) and design opportunities and next steps for participants. This session is with our PL Collaborators Andrew Easton, Kristen Hogan, and Katie Sindt.
Grades 5-6 (at Swanson Swing School) – The final session Text Dependent Analysis (TDA) will focus on technology to support teachers and students in TDA. Kate Carlson from ESU #3 will facilitate the learning for our teachers.
Westside Middle School has designed their day for select a session, collaboration, and a schoolwide approach. Please see below for a glimpse of their engaging day.
- Sessions to attend. 8:00-8:40
- Modifications (Mahacek/Albers)
- Instructional Technology/AppPalooza (Mosier)
- Set/Closure (Murillo)
- Active Participation (Starks-Yobel/Baker)
- Question/Discussion Techniques (Dowd/Sahak)
- Sessions to attend. 8:50-9:30
- Rubrics outside of Language Arts (Horton)
- Differentiation (Job/Weeks/Martin)
- Instructional Technology – SAMR Model (Allen)
- Data Services – How to use NWEA MAP scores and Illuminate to help guide your instruction. (Lumpkin/Durante)
- Library Services (Saetveit)
12:45 – 2:45 — The afternoon will conclude with small group sessions on PBIS and Trauma Sensitive Teaching.
WHS – will continue their year-long emphasis on multiple facets of PBiS during the morning session and will focus on choice professional learning groups in the afternoon. All of the choice groups are intended for teachers to do a “deep dive” with some element of the strategic plan so that there are real applications in the classroom. Choice groups are:
Boys Town Foundations – Mike Nolette and Lois Rasgorshek (both are BT trainers)
Gamification in the classroom – Andrew Easton and Michael Fryda (personalized learning collaborator and game enthusiast)
Google Apps (Advanced) – Ben Powers and Theresa Gosnell (eMerge)
Personalized Learning, motivation for at-risk learners – Deanna Bahl and Kristen Hogan (reading specialist and personalized learning collaborator)
Community partnerships and Authentic learning – Jeremy Stoll & Dawn Nizzi – literacy framework, personalized learning
Beginning Google Classroom – with Stephanie Heitmann & Stephanie Pueppka
Mindfulness – Foundational with Kirk Henningsen
- Conducting a special education PLC or Steering Committee follow up meeting
- EA training or development of EA training materials
- Revising student BIPs following winter break
- Analyzing student level data in preparation for ESY decisions
- Entering or analyzing SWIS data
- Navigating and becoming familiar with Illuminate
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.
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
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|
A number of Westside teachers have tried “flipping” their classrooms as a way to personalize learning. With a flip, students typically watch a lesson on their own time and then work through what traditionally would be homework in class.
The District modeled this practice for teachers by flipping the Feb. 15 Professional Learning Day for all Pre-K-8 staff. Teachers completed a 45-minute class on Blackboard about sentence expansion and participated in a reflection conference at every building regarding the content on Feb. 15. Personalizing learning for all students is one of the strategic goals the District has been working to implement for the past two years and strives to model with staff.
The results were a resounding yes with the success of the endeavor. 92% of K-8 staff who responded to the survey were in favor of continuing to explore making content available using a learning management system (LMS).
For two years, Westside has been working to implement its strategic goal of personalizing learning for all students. Flipping classrooms is one way to personalize. Students watch a lesson on their own time and then work through what traditionally would be homework in class. Westside Community Schools modeled the practice for teachers by flipping the Feb. 15 Professional Learning Day for Pre-K-8 staff. Teachers gathered at 8:45 a.m. at their home building for a 25-minute reflection conversation on the lesson before continuing with the professional learning agendas laid out by building administrators.
February is Nexting month @westside66 and the idea comes from Dr. Shane Lopez’s work on Hope. Staff will be engaging in thinking about what is next for our students and making memories of the future. Click on the following PDF Nexting 2016 and see what is prompting staff to think differently about the future. Follow the conversation @westside66hope.
Text from the live PDF. 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 picture to watch the short video clip. Think about things once considered impossible that now are possible. How will you inspire students? How are you preparing students for a future that is changing an an unbelievable pace? Share your thoughts and follow the conversation using #Westside66Hope on Twitter. Click here to watch Shane Lopez’s ‘Hope is a Strategy’ video.The section of the video beginning at 8:15 and ending at 18:15 highlights the idea of Nexting.
Westside faculty took time during the morning of January 18th to learn from each other and attend a featured session on eliciting student response. Most of the choice sessions offered were led by our talented and gifted staff. Teachers had the opportunity to choose sessions including A Guide to Passion Projects, Google Sites, Vocabulary on Fire, Students of Poverty, and Supporting Pubic Schools which was led by Superintendent Blane McCann. For a full list of offerings, click the following link https://plday11816.sched.org. Congratulations to our Twitter contest winners for winning their Tweet categories. #westsidepl