What We Do

11 Jan

This article, found by clicking the title of the article below, really captures what we do as educators and encapsulates why we do it.  Everything we do with our students resonates with them and effects them far more than many can imagine.  This reinforces the quote we posted at the beginning of the year that states that the single largest variable, by a factor of 20, in a student’s education is his/her teacher.  There are a few controversial topics and conversations within the article, but the most important point I’d like to reinforce is the significance and impact strong teachers have.  I’ve provided the beginning of the article below.

 

Thanks!

Drew

Big Study Links Good Teachers to Lasting Gain

By ANNIE LOWREY
Published: January 6, 2012

WASHINGTON — Elementary- and middle-school teachers who help raise their students’ standardized-test scores seem to have a wide-ranging, lasting positive effect on those students’ lives beyond academics, including lower teenage-pregnancy rates and greater college matriculation and adult earnings, according to a new study that tracked 2.5 million students over 20 years.

5 Responses to “What We Do”

  1. Amanda Stark January 15, 2012 at 3:00 pm #

    With greater demands on student performance, I think that an enevidable next step is to measure our teaching standards. As with any career, as time goes by, complacency sets in. A key strategy we teach our students is to self monitor. Learning involves not only the curriculum content, but the experience or actions that go along with learning; how to prepare, organize, mangage time, evalutate and understand content as well as how to effectively communicate such understanding. This learning process should be ongoing for students and teachers alike.
    The value-added evaluation sytem is a step in the right direction in my opinion. Although, as stated by Checker, it does offer some complications to it’s methods of evalutating, I do agree that there is much merit in recognizing our teachers that truly do make a difference!

    Interesting.

  2. checkerhansen January 12, 2012 at 12:04 pm #

    I found this article very interesting too. There are schools all over the country moving toward value-added metrics as a piece of their teacher evaluations. It is an intriguing, albeit complicated idea. There is so much merit to recognizing and rewarding our great teachers!
    I particulary liked this piece of the article….

    “We are performing these studies in settings where nobody cares about their ranking — it does not change their pay or job security,” said Jesse Rothstein, an economist at the University of California, Berkeley, whose work criticizing other value-added assessments unions frequently cite. “But if you start to change that, there is going to be a range of responses.”

    The last sentence of this paragraph really says it all. The key is change, and making that change matter! Changing our expectations of ourselves and others, changing our expectations about student achievement, and changing the cultures in our schools. All of these changes create the opportunity for great teachers to shine and be recognized.

  3. Maryann January 12, 2012 at 5:25 am #

    An interesting read!

    My niece teaches in Florida and they’ve added this approach to their teacher evals- everything is connected to the FCAT- She is teaching in a “D” rated school and says since this model has been adopted- school climate is very different-

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/11/07/florida-teacher-evaluatio_n_1079758.html

    Is our district adopting “The value-added” model to our teacher evals?

    The closing paragraph is disturbing….:( It’s clear this research group hasn’t been to FCU- haha

    “The new study found no evidence for one piece of conventional wisdom: that having a good teacher in an early grade has a bigger effect than having a good teacher in later grades.”

  4. Ralene St. Pierre January 11, 2012 at 7:06 pm #

    This article validates the worth of a good teacher, and all the hard work that goes into making a difference. Thanks for sharing.

    • Mary Lou Donahoe January 12, 2012 at 7:05 pm #

      I like Checker’s point:” The last sentence of this paragraph really says it all. The key is change, and making that change matter! Changing our expectations of ourselves and others, changing our expectations about student achievement, and changing the cultures in our schools. All of these changes create the opportunity for great teachers to shine and be recognized. ”

      Change is part of life and without it life would be boring. That brings me to the point of change in our communities with new populations mixing with the mainstream culture. This change to the “status quo” requires for us as teachers to “critically think about our teaching and belief systems” regarding student’s from other cultures and different learning styles. When we critically think about our teaching we then differentiate our teaching by adopting new methods and strategies to reach all students. As Haim Ginott (1993) once said: To reach a child’s mind a teacher must first capture his heart. Only if a child feels right he thinks right (as quoted on Herrera Murry(2011) Mastering ESL and Bilingual Methods, p.370). I am a strong believer that a caring connection between a teacher and student is crucial to content and language learning.

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