Resources from my NCTM 2017 presentation are included below.
This week I had the opportunity to spend time with two amazing groups of elementary educators, K-2 and 3-5. Teamed with our Director of Science, Linda Cook, we devoted the first three hours of our time together to dive into the Understanding by Design model, including a focus on backward design and constructivist learning. Throughout the professional learning, I created sketch notes on chart paper. The final product…
We also modeled formative assessment strategies by embeding them within the experience. Again, I took sketch notes. The final product…
Our goal is to provide curriculum documents that include Stage 1 (transfer goals, organized standards, enduring understandings, essential questions, and knowledge and skills) and Stage 2 (performance assessments, other evidence, and formative and summative assessments) content. We are making great progress in this undertaking and our new hires were relieved to learn they may focus their design time on Stage 3 (planning learning experiences).
The second half of the professional learning concentrated on content. The focus for mathematics was on the developmental progression of learning math and the numeracy continuum.
Utilizing rekenreks, the educators explored Number Talks. I shared What to Do with a Rekenrek, by Diana Saylak. This multi-touch book in the iBooks Store includes 21 activities for educators from subitizing to fractions.
We watched videos of elementary children using rekenreks to model mathematics. Listening to learners’ thinking paints such a clear picture of where they are on the continuum. I beamed with pride as my new educators pointed out pivotal moments like – when the children used counting on rather than counting up and when there was evidence of subitizing a structured set. In one video clip a child arrived at an incorrect answer and one of my educators added, “if she would have answered that on a worksheet, I would have just counted it wrong – I would not know why. But, I can see there exactly what happened.” Yes. That’s it. That makes me proud.
Then the educators had an opportunity to build a number bead string and we practiced formulating questions appropriate for lower and upper primary learners as well as discussed possibilities of using the bead strings as take home activities or a make-and-take during meet-the-teacher.
Materials needed per string:
After cutting the paracord, either burn the end slightly or use tape to prevent fraying. Then, string the beads in sets of 10, alternating red and white sets. Allow a small amount of movement of the beads (an inch or so), then tie double knots on each end of the paracord.
Example Questions/Skills for Bead Strings:
Planning for a few precious hours with new hires is challenging. Prioritizing what content in what format for their first experience in our district is not taken lightly. The wide range of needs exhibited by these educators are carefully considered and I am confident time spent seeing the forest (big picture mission and goals) as well as the trees (details of curriculum documents and implementation of strategies to support the numeracy continuum) were well worth it.
The anticipation of the start of school each year is so difficult to describe – it is exhausting and exciting at the same time! I am looking forward to another great year!
This week I had the opportunity to learn alongside other instructional leaders from Coppell ISD (campus Principals, Assistant Principals, Instructional Coaches, District Administrators) at our annual Principals Academy. The great Ainsley Rose from Jim Knight’s Instructional Coaching Group led us through two days of collaboration and contemplation of our next phase of Instructional Coaching and one day of work on Principals as Communicators. Powerful stuff.
My sketch notes from the three days are below. Impactful thoughts worth remembering…
Here’s the full circle part…Recently, I had the opportunity to accompany a team of colleagues to IBM for a day and a half of design thinking. What came from one team’s work there that I will not soon forget was the realization of how burdensome, stressful, and exhausting a day in the life of a teacher can be. I knew this, but to see it in light of our work is motivating. What can I do to change this? More coaching. More empowering. More support. More celebrating. More listening. More empathy. More trust. More individualized attention. More understanding.
Switch provided clarity to the need to dig deeper when faced with a change problem. The bright-spot philosophy (“What’s working and how can we do more of it?”) sums up my daily perspective. Rather than dwell in the doldrums of ineffectiveness and doubt, I challenge myself to use counterintuitive thinking and maximize success.
Switch clearly articulates three surprises about change:
We must shape the path.
We must motivate the elephant.
We must direct the rider.
I appreciate the action verbs in the chapter titles – such as Shrink the Change or Tweak the Environment. This challenges me to take action to make a change. As an instructional leader, I wonder how I can use what I know about change to help others… remove friction from the trail to make the journey more accessible, make the right behaviors a little easier and the wrong ones a bit more difficult.
My notes from my reading are below.
Drive provided clarity to what makes me tick. What is it about me that can’t get enough of the work that I do? It is the intrinsic motivation that I experience when I am in flow, challenged with a Goldilocks Task and benefiting from the Sawyer Effect.
Drive clearly lays out the three types of motivation:
Type I behavior (intrinsically motivated, devoted to becoming better and better at something that matters) depends on:
This is me. Type I. This is the niche I work toward and recognize when I am there.
As an instructional leader, I wonder how I can use what I know about motivation to help others… provide autonomy, become keenly aware of mastery and the gap between an individual’s knowledge/experience and that which is required by the given task, and think bigger picture – toward purpose.
My notes from my reading are below.
I am participating in the CISD Digital Learning Coach Blogging Challenge. I have chosen to utilize the Think Kit in Paper Fifty Three to organize ideas and reflect on the experience and outcome with this blog post.
I am experienced with sketch noting with Paper, but I rarely use the Think Kit. On the sketch below, I used tools in the Think Kit to enhance my practice.
Using the app, Paper, I created this sketch to illustrate and organize the new (updated 2015) Texas Prekindergarten Guidelines. The blue oval and orange circles in the center are connected with arrows – all created with the Think Kit tools embedded within Paper. A few other shapes on the sketch were also created with the Think Kit tools.
Read about the features of Think Kit, including diagram, fill, and cut here.
Other sketch notes I have created can be found on my blog here.