All posts by mba04jvs3

About mba04jvs3

An Educator, Continuous Learner and Advocate

BSP – August 10, 2017

Literacty Stategies in Math –

http://www.nctm.org/Publications/mathematics-teacher/2015/Vol108/Issue7/Anticipation-Guides_-Reading-for-Mathematics-Understanding/

Thank you so much for the article and this echoes a number of strategies that were discussed in several of my cohort trainings over the last two years.

· THEC Disciplinary Literacy through Apps

· Core Coach Training discussions for the Tennessee State Standards Rollouts

· Item Writing & Item Review sessions with Questar to develop field test questions for the State Tests

· SpringBoard training on Unit Planning for HCDE Textbook adoptions

The example cited in the text was actually extracted from the Districts last adoption which had a diverse selection of reading supports included with the text but it requires additional constructs developed by the instructor to “get at this protocol”.

The extended discussion of the SpringBoard Embedded Assessments and Learning Targets parallels this protocol and has proven effective in my delivery of Geometry and Algebra 1.

However, the conditions that I am encountering in my population are linked directly to an inability to decode and fluently read math technical texts. This is also stymied by retention of past vocabulary.

The NCTM article suggests that math teachers are ideally suited to train students to read these technical texts; however, the pace at which we cover materials (especially Algebra 2) have to assume fluency which is not present.

Last year in my work with ELA RTI students there was a vast separation between Vocabulary & Reading Comprehension. I am looking for texts that address this issue in a consistent use of research based protocol(s) to enhance performance in Reading Comprehension.

I will “progress monitor” students in the ReadingPlus program and may have some of the Edgenuity content for math switch to text from verbal delivery.

If you have a moment I would like to discuss strategies to migrate some of the Edgenuity materials in text form without corrupting its purpose.

Jim Snyder

Literacy Strategies

Literacty Stategies in Math –

http://www.nctm.org/Publications/mathematics-teacher/2015/Vol108/Issue7/Anticipation-Guides_-Reading-for-Mathematics-Understanding/

Thank you so much for the article and this echoes a number of strategies that were discussed in several of my cohort trainings over the last two years.

  •         THEC Disciplinary Literacy through Apps
  •         Core Coach Training discussions for the Tennessee State Standards Rollouts
  •         Item Writing & Item Review sessions with Questar to develop field test questions for the State Tests
  •         SpringBoard training on Unit Planning for HCDE Textbook adoptions

The example cited in the text was actually extracted from the District’s last adoption which had a diverse selection of reading supports included with the text. But the strategy and the use of this example requires additional constructs developed by the instructor to “get at this protocol”.

The extended discussion of the SpringBoard Embedded Assessments and Learning Targets parallels this protocol and has proven effective in my delivery of Geometry and Algebra 1.

However, the conditions that I am encountering in my population are linked directly to an inability to decode and fluently read math technical texts.  This is also stymied by retention of past vocabulary.

The NCTM article suggests that math teachers are ideally suited to train students to read these technical texts; however, the pace at which we cover materials (especially Algebra 2) have to assume fluency which is not present.

Last year in my work with ELA RTI students there was a vast separation between Vocabulary & Reading Comprehension.  I am looking for texts that address this issue in a consistent use of research based protocol(s) to enhance performance in Reading Comprehension.

I will “progress monitor” students in the ReadingPlus program and may have some of the Edgenuity content for math switch to text from verbal delivery.

If you have a moment I would like to discuss strategies to migrate some of the Edgenuity materials in text form without corrupting its purpose.

Jim Snyder

 

BSP – August 9, 2017

BSP – August 9, 2017

My first two rounds of clients arrive tomorrow and the next 4 rounds in three weeks. 26 students in a classroom environment and 28 in an independent study environment,

They are sharing a need to gain “educational credit” for coursework designated to contribute to their progress toward graduation. They will enter a computer based, blended learning environment to gain access to these credits,

Requisites:

Computer literacy

Willingness & Ability to work in a self paced, isolated environment

As the leader of this group i have choices:

  1. Data Driven facilitation – developing a snapshot of a student’s capabilities from the data trail generated by the student. I connect this approach to the Fixed- Growth Mindset with the data representing a “fixed picture” and outlining to the instructor the areas of “growth”.
    1. Fixed Mindset Search
    2. Growth Mindset Search
  2. Blank Slate facilitation – take the student as they walk in the door, give them a thorough orientation of of the task at hand along with their environment and resources. This method allows a picture to develop of the student’s current capabilities. I connect this approach to Project Based Learning where a scenario is outlined, the student is granted access to a variety of tools and the work product represents a student’s use of the tools.
    1. Tabula Rasa
    2. Tabula Rasa Educational Theory

I choose Blank Slate and will approach it using these models:

Tomorrow commences Blank Slate and I intend to share daily observations with the intent of connecting past pedagogical study,

I would appreciate your feedback as I mount this project,

Schrage & Customers & Becoming

Not since

Stop Stealing Dreams by Seth Godin

Christensen’s Disruptive Innovation

Covey’s 7 Habits of Highly Effective People (see past posts)

has a concept struck a chord with me as

Michael Schrage’s  “Who Do You Want Your Customers to Become?”

In the next weeks, I will be reading, digesting, and writing about how educators’ primary customers are the students Are Students Clients or Customers? .

I hope I can draw others into the conversation in a Google Group on the topic. Who Do We Want Our Customers (students) to Become?

I look forward to the “read”.

I will be posting topics.

Please join in the discussion.

Covey’s Habit 6 – Synergy

When I began this series of blog postings, I thought it would be:

  • Rereading the book
  • Looking at the material with fresh eyes
  • Deconstructing each rule and reassembling around current education initiatives.

This would be my method of working through these habits and refreshing my personal skills in the practices I had read through at the time of their publication (Simon & Schuster, copyright 1989 by Stephen Covey).

As I progressed through the series of Habits, given their age and their (perceived) amount of adoption, I assumed that they were in widespread use.   However, I observe colleagues, who:

  • Start processes with little or no thought as to obstacles they will encounter (Proactivity).
  • Suggest courses of action without seeing the completion in sight. (Begin w/ the End in Mind)
  • Expect positive trajectories to develop just out ahead of their actions. (First Things First).
  • Push a solution that solely suits their particular part of the solution. (Think Win/Win)
  • Push justifications of failure to affected stakeholders as “the best they could do with what they were given” (Understand/Understood)

This, I believe, comes from a belief that they can accomplish more as an individual than as a group.

Covey says:

To put it simply, synergy means “two heads are better than one.” Synergize is the habit of creative cooperation. It is teamwork, open-mindedness, and the adventure of finding new solutions to old problems. But it doesn’t just happen on its own. It’s a process, and through that process, people bring all their personal experience and expertise to the table. Together, they can produce far better results that they could individually. Synergy lets us discover jointly things we are much less likely to discover by ourselves. Covey’s Habit 6

Synergy requires the action of combining things.

Not a combination of an individual’s actions but the combination of individuals’ actions.

I press for contribution so I can capitalize on cooperation.

I have pursued this action through:

  • Serving as a math tutor with other members of the math department, exchanging classroom experiences and instructional styles
  • Training as a Core Coach with teachers across the state listening to their work with new standards
  • Co-facilitating training in Tennessee State Standards roll-out
  • Pitching & securing access to TechGoesHomeCha grant for my high school
  • Reading, joining and marking BLOG posts and Twitter-chat exchanges (Twitter: amba04jvs3)
  • Maintaining open conversations with various constituencies (public and private)
  • Mentoring students involved in the TNPromise program

Through this I am finding a student-centric voice for “success” that empowers students to continuously advocate for themselves throughout their education pipeline.

Not a series discrete programs that elevate their trajectories just to drop support at critical junctures, but instead a “student fueled” resource that could follow the “pipeline journey” and support incremental decisions they make along the way.

  • Career interest inquiry
  • Mentor specific career trajectories
  • Job shadowing (virtual or real-time)
  • Career camps or internship opportunities
  • Post-graduation placement (high school or college)
  • Web-based & Participant sustained

To initiate this resource it will require individuals who want to join together and share their Synergy and believe in its strength.

They are out there to be cultivated and supported and this network would grow to be an scalable resource for career trajectory information.

Covey’s 5th Habit – Seek First to Understand Then to be Understood

Using Habit 5 and posting to my BLOG  are almost incompatible and has made it the most difficult to write about, so far.

With the responses available on Social Media outlets “like, favorite, & stars” and the only feedback received is “number of views” or “tagging” SM communication makes it difficult to evaluate the relevance of your writing.

Engaging in Twitter chats on particular topics requires rapid fire digestion of hash-tagged comments” full of condensed thought and abbreviations. The forum allows for groups to assemble but generates a deluge of conversation offering little or no “private think time” on questions and an ever escalating rapidity of response to be heard above the din.

Grant postings offer the writer free range to their imagination, give voice to tangential ideas that can be accepted or rejected with no feedback on why the idea was “rejected” and little follow on dissemination of information of the grant’s work product.

It has become acceptable to request submission of in-depth personal information for public job postings with no guarantee of feedback for the effort expended preparing the submission.

If active recruitment includes clearer candidate identification and submission qualifications, a more focused pool of candidates would appear for screening.

This type of activity could occur during the education pipeline with:

  • Assessment of career interest
  • Development of career interest-matching
  • Internship programs for high school students matching interests with skill trajectories
  • Technical certification recruitment for TNPromise candidates
  • Career trajectory counseling for university bound students

All of these require listening from both parties and realistic assessment of current potentials with career development track counseling, support-through-study sponsorship, intern development and post-graduation placement

Written by an associate of Covey’s, Let’s Get Real or Let’s Not Play is directed toward sales teams with the intent of improving performance.

It features five characteristics (O-R-D-E-R) to move from the beginning of an opportunity to closing in the business world.

  • Opportunity – listen to whether a true opportunity exists
  • Resources – resources in place to move the opportunity ahead
  • Decision Process – clear decision process necessary to proceed
  • Exact Solution – requisites and measurements clearly identified
  • Relationship – strong communication channels to exchange constructive criticism (trust).

I use this set of criteria in the classroom to open classroom conversations around learning.
O – Is there a true opportunity with this person or group to learn?
R – What resources are in place for them to:

  • Grasp the concept?
  • Apply it to practical situation?
  • Gain fluency in the use of the knowledge and its application?

D – How will the person/group decide to engage in the learning?
E – Will they push toward an verifiable (exact) solution?
R – Is the relationship (trust) in place to offer evidence of their learning?

Covey says:

Communication is the most important skill in life. You spend years learning how to read and write, and years learning how to speak.

But what about listening?

What training have you had that enables you to listen so you really, deeply understand another human being?

Probably none, right?

Because you so often listen autobiographically, you tend to respond in one of four ways:

Evaluating: You judge and then either agree or disagree.

Probing: You ask questions from your own frame of reference.

Advising: You give counsel, advice, and solutions to problems.

Interpreting: You analyze others’ motives and behaviors based on your own experiences. Covey’s Habit 5

My work as Core Coach utilizes techniques encompassed in the Modeling Process and Accountable Talk. Accountable Talk Sourcebook

It  places the teacher in the role of the facilitator, helping participants through a discovery process of clearly understanding essential understandings and learning.

It moves away from pure didactic instruction and uses keen listening to direct discussion toward discovery.

When a person engages in this process there should be a open expression of learning.

Proactive “response-ability” results from listening to the requirements of others and focusing attention on the learning.

Listening (before speaking) is now more relevant than ever to keep the focus of conversations clear, resulting in the formulation of responses that satisfy the stakeholders’ criteria.

Covey’s Habit 4 – Think Win/Win

An analogy was presented in this year’s Tennessee State Standards training with teachers making the following comparisons:

  • Teacher A – I teach students math so they may answer them correctly on the test.
  • Teacher B – I teach students math so they may understand and apply mathematical concepts.

During intense discussion, participants aspired to be Teacher B but saw Teacher A keeping their job. The conversation resolved itself in a discussion of Rigor, which was defined as follows:

Content taught with rigor is represented by the following concepts taught with equal intensity:

  • Conceptual Understanding
  • Contextual Application
  • Procedural Fluency

This approach to instruction is Thinking Win/Win. Teachers need to strike a balance between Teacher A and Teacher B in the classroom. Gaming the test yields higher test scores but does not lead to deeper understanding. Project based learning without practice of the discovered concepts could lead to deceptive assessment results and put a teacher’s job in jeopardy.

A classroom represents the ultimate in Thinking Win/Win but poses major conflicts with school boards looking for higher scores, administrators maintaining retention and graduation rates as evaluation measures and future employers looking for well-rounded students with a basic set of executive skills to function in the workplace.

Covey says:

A person or organization that approaches conflicts with a win-win attitude possesses three vital character traits:
Integrity: sticking with your true feelings, values, and commitments

Maturity: expressing your ideas and feelings with courage and consideration for the ideas and feelings of others

Abundance Mentality: believing there is plenty for everyone

Many people think in terms of either/or: either you’re nice or you’re tough. Win-win requires that you be both. It is a balancing act between courage and consideration. To go for win-win, you not only have to be empathic, but you also have to be confident. You not only have to be considerate and sensitive, you also have to be brave. To do that–to achieve that balance between courage and consideration–is the essence of real maturity and is fundamental to win-win. Covey’s Habit 4

Educators involved in the long term delivery of a very critical economic product (well-prepared students) should also experience the same kind of Win/Win thinking coming from their stakeholders.

It is not a matter of someone succeeding at someone else’s expense:

  • re-indexed student proficiency scores
  • school closures based on performance
  • students socially promoted to reduce retention rates
  • students transferred to “adult high school” to maintain graduation rates
  • standards and tuition elevated making them inaccessible to in-state students
  • reduced funding to schools because of tax-incentives offered to industry
  • complaints about an ill-prepared workforce without communicating about present and future skill profiles & offering internship programs

It requires a long-term balanced approach where students should be the beneficiary of Win/Win Thinking giving them a “personally owned”  trajectory.

Covey’s Habit 3: Put First Things First

It is not about working on the right thing.

It is about working on something.

The first thing is the first step, deciding to act, setting a trajectory.

It is not going to be perfect but the first step does also not decide the total end product.

As a math teacher facilitating seniors’ work in Bridge Math during their last year of high school, the path that brought them here has been full of unrewarded attempts and perceived failures.

During their math career, 11 years in the making, they have been taught that there is only one right way, one right answer, written in pen and impossible to change. Their first mark has to be the right mark toward crafting the exact right response.

Because of missed classes, missing concepts or past failures at a particular subject, they question each step they take before they take it.

Early on, i teach them to give up the pen in lieu of a dry erase marker (easy to modify), read the problem out loud, write down anything they think is important, and start work. I ask them to use what they know to start work toward an answer they can check and see if it solves the problem.

When I get them to do that; even if it is not the most efficient route to a solution, I let them continue until they arrive at a solution they can report out and check.

In my work as a TNCore Coach, I put educators in the same position using “real world context problems”, I answer questions about the context (not the answer), encourage them to work toward a solution in which they are confident and report out using permanent marker (making a record of their work). Then and only then, can they compare their answer against their peers.

I have heard more than one teacher say, “Now I know how a student feels.”

Covey says,

Habit 3 is the physical creation. This habit is where Habits 1 and 2 come together. It happens day in and day out, moment-by-moment. It deals with many of the questions addressed in the field of time management. But that’s not all it’s about. Habit 3 is about life management as well–your purpose, values, roles, and priorities. What are first things?” First things are those things you, personally, find of most worth. Covey Habit 3

To find worth in something you have to offer something, have it accepted at face value, and compare it with other peer’s offerings.

A person has to be comfortable to step out, take risk, check reaction in a safe environment and use feedback to hone their vision and craft their next step. (trajectory)

This process nurtures confidence.

So often a person’s offering are rejected as wrong. Small wrongs build to a break in confidence and a generate a willingness to accept failure.

A person who has their “first things” supported, have the confidence to share their experience, get feedback from their peers and continue to pursue the priorities they recognize as their “first things”. The alternative is a group who have no “first things”, no visible trajectory to follow.

Industries can help in this process by offering a variety of trajectories that match student interests and making present and future trajectories visible.

Craft guilds, then trade unions provided visible evidence of trajectories. Paths to realizing productive lives. Coopers. Chandlers and Taylors, family names associated with trades are long lasting evidence of these trajectories. Families become aligned with public service: politics, law enforcement, fire fighting, education, all have clearly outlined and supported trajectories. The Mannings: Archie, Peyton and Eli provide another visible trajectory.

Clear, intentional, and supported efforts at making trajectories visible is a role that industries can play in education.

Industry initiatives could sustain students’ choices toward ownership of a trajectory that makes education one of their “first things”.