Q: I like the idea of having an RA or rent-a-tutors come into my classes before final exams, but I don’t know what to do with the kids who do not need remediation. What is the best way to structure my class when I have such great diversity of ability levels and needs?
Q: I have been allowing re-takes for important test/quizzes/papers/projects. But, the kids who need to do retakes are not coming in to do them. I am struggling with balancing remediation efforts and moving forward curricularly. What can I do to make the end of the semester run smoothly?
Last week at the redefine team meeting, there was a lot of discussion about remediation and retakes. A lot of our assessment practices have changed this year, and it may be feeling a bit difficult at this moment, with final exams rapidly approaching, to balance curriculum, assessment, remediation, and reassessment.
Based on the feedback of this team, I created a list of Qs, and Chris and I collaborated to provide some As! This week, I will post 1 Q and 1 A each day since they are a little long!
If you have more Qs after reading, feel free to reply to the blog or email me! We definitely hear your concerns and frustrations and want to help make the end of term 2 successful for our students AND staff!
As you may know, community service is an important aspect of Redefining Ready! One of the indicators of career readiness is 25 hours of community service. Additionally, our Harper Promise students are required to complete community service hours to qualify for the Harper Promise scholarship at the end of their four years. Read more about our efforts to engage kids in community service at WHS from our guest blogger, Mike Bosco! (Thanks, Bosco!)
When the LEAD team met last week, the PLC leaders were able to share all that was accomplished on Monday’s institute day. Clearly, SO MUCH work has happened in PLC during the first term of school! And while all PLCs are at different points in their journeys, the talk of the day was aligned, leveled assessments and standards based grading.
It is really important that when we talk about Standards Based Grading (or SBG), we all are talking about the same thing. So, this blog is going to function as an SBG Q&A. FEEL FREE to submit more Qs about SBG by commenting on this blog!
Q: What is SBG?
A: Technically, “Standards-based grading is a system of assessing and reporting that describes student progress in relation to standards” (from A School Leader’s Guide to Standard Based Grading). But what does that really mean? When you are thinking about your class, you know there are certain skills or standards kids need to master. If you are shifting towards a Standards Based Grading model, you are giving kids feedback on their progress towards meeting these standards by formatively and summatively assessing their proficiency of each standard.
In October (yes, I am a little behind in the blog!), the Redefine team met to explore how to get kids COMMUNICATING more in our classrooms. I was very encouraged by this meeting because teacher from all different divisions shared instructional strategies and ideas to get kids communicating, and so many of these ideas were transferrable. We felt UNITED in our mission to increase effective communication in our classroom.
Here were some of my big take-aways: Continue reading “Getting Kids Talking”
The PREPARE team met last week, and there is so much interesting work happening through this group. From community service, to collaboration between CTE and Math to infuse coding in geometry, to external mentorships for our Nano students, when you listen to this group talk, it makes you proud to be a Wheeling Wildcat!
While these projects are big entities that may not really impact our day-to-day instruction, there is a group of teachers on this team focused on exploring Redefining Ready! One thing this team is discussing is the use of student portfolios to document growth. Continue reading “Student Portfolios”
The LEARN team met last week, but with the really short week combined with some sick Kinnee kids, I am just getting around to blogging about it now. I know you have been WAITING for this email to come to your inbox!
The LEARN team is for any teachers to join, and the focus is to study the Danielson rubric to improve our own professional practice. This week, 3 different teams met with 3 different focuses: student OWNERSHIP, student ENGAGEMENT, and formative and summative ASSESSMENT.
I am not going to write about all 3 of these topics in this blog entry because it would be too long. If you are a teacher in 214 reading this and want to join our schoology page to access the LEARN team resources, here is the join code: HP9WS-XQ7BM.
Today, I am just going to focus on student engagement. We KNOW student engagement is important! We KNOW it leads to increased student learning! We WANT students to be engaged in our classes! But, sometimes it feels like that is really, really hard to make happen. Continue reading “Increasing Student Engagement”