Director of Learning Report
February 9, 2011
TO: Michael Green, Superintendent
FROM: Asha Riley
RE: Instruction, Curriculum, Assessment, and Professional Development Monthly Update
What do we want students to know?
Answer: Students will have a seamless K-12 standards based experience to develop the knowledge, skills, and self-worth necessary to become a responsible contributing citizen.
Action Step: Math Professional Development Training for Integrated One and Two teachers
December 9th and January 6th and January 10th
This year our middle and high school teachers are attending training each month regarding instructional resources from the Southwest Washington Math Consortium. To support their implementation of these resources and deepen understanding of instructional strategies we bring in math coach Debra Schneider to meet with them for an additional day of professional development, and unit planning. Outcomes of this day included analysis of common assessment data, collaborative planning of the next unit in light of those results, alignment of instructional resources and pacing among our classrooms, and teachers' deeper understanding of how to support student learning of new concepts.
Action Step: Fourth grade standards focused math curriculum alignment
Fourth grade team of teachers met for the day and realigned their units of instruction to better address the math standards outlined by the state. Standards that are not addressed well by our curriculum were identified so team and the team addressed them with supplemental lessons from other resources. This work was all recorded in a "curriculum map" which is essentially a year-long lesson plan. It outlines when they will teach the standards and with which lessons from the curriculum.
How will we teach them?
Answer: Students will be exposed to the kinds of instruction that will promote academic excellence
Action Step: The Art and Science of Teaching Workshop December 9th and 10th
Roughly 18 teachers (with a representation from every building) and 5 administrators attended a workshop regarding research on effective teaching practices. The workshop presenter Dr. Robert Marzano discussed his compilation of research with us. He also shared some tools to support implementation of these practices in our classrooms here in Woodland. It was a timely opportunity for us as we are using his compilation of research as an instructional framework for professional development here in our district. Since attending the workshop we have been conducting "learning walks" in various buildings in our district. Our goal is to deepen our understanding of these teaching practices and thus inform how we can better implement them in every classroom here in Woodland.
How will we know they learned?
Answer: Implementation of assessments that both inform instruction and indicate student achievement in a timely fashion.
Action Steps: Analysis of student achievement of number sense as measured by standards based assessments, December 13th, 20th , and January 10th
Our first round of standards based math assessments was administered in November to grades K-6. We then collected the data and reviewed in grade level teams over the course three Monday morning meetings. The teams analyzed what students do know, what misconceptions they may need help untangling, and concepts students showed little or no understanding of. Then teams discussed and how they'd adjust instruction in light of those results to ensure all students learn the math standards. Our next round of the standards based math assessments will be in late February. When we analyze the data in March we hope to see our scores improve based on our adjusted instruction.
How will respond if they did or didn't learn it?
Answer: Students will be provided timely and effective interventions and support to learn and succeed in areas where they struggle and excel.
Action Step: Differentiated Math Instruction Training
Staff from WPS and WIS attended an in district training about how to provide math instruction to students with varying skills and levels of understanding in mathematics. The workshop first covered how to use assessments to inform instructional decisions. Then teachers deconstructed a few math standards to better understand components of math content (math content includes understanding of concepts, processes, and procedures). Then staff reflected on how students may need differing instruction depending on which part of the standard they are weak or strong in. They also observed some differentiated lessons and were introduced to a lesson planning tool called Tiered lesson design.