March Faculty Meeting

8 Mar

Today’s faculty meeting topic is the result of an amalgamation of events.  As you know, Ralene and I have conducted walkthroughs throughout the year.  We have been working on our teacher evaluation process (observations and summatives), Amelia Van-Name Larson has visited and provided feedback, Checker, Becky and Marge have conducted walkthroughs as well.

We have gathered data and observations and have reached a crossroad.  We know what we need to do.

We have a series of videos to view today that helps explain, exceedingly well, where our focus as a staff needs to be.

Universal Design for Learning

UDL at a Glance

UDL: Principles and Practices

UDL: Guidelines

UDL: Guidelines in Practice 5th Grade

UDL: Guidelines in Practice 1st Grade


(Augmented 21st Century Learning Requirement)

Between now and the end of the school year, you will video an entire lesson of you instructing your class of students.    You will then watch and critique your lesson with a partner.  The videos above (UDL: Guidelines in Practice 1st and 5th Grades) should be a model of the discussion that should occur between you and your partner.  You will use the Guidelines Checklist 2.0 document to help guide your discussion.

A representative committee of teachers will meet to create reflection questions to answer for submission to Drew and Ralene.  You will submit your reflection along with your video to a secure website.  Drew will email you the directions for security.

Sample Lesson Plans from Cast:

Book Distribution

Better Learning Through Structured Teaching by Douglas Fisher and Nancy Frey

Corresponds directly with UDL and our intentions with the Video Reflection assignment.  Please read the first two chapters prior to our next faculty meeting.

Guidelines Checklist 2.0

Click above for the guidelines checklist.  We will use these criterion to evaluate your recorded lesson.

2 Responses to “March Faculty Meeting”

  1. Mary Lou Donahoe March 21, 2012 at 7:50 pm #

    Although our faculty meeting happened two weeks ago, I really wanted to take my time to watch all the videos in the at my own pace and take notes. What I find important about these videos is the realization that although we know many of the topics brought forth, on the day to day we forget many small details in the lessons. First of all our school is becoming more diverse in its population, and diversity takes many forms, not only it means people from other countries but also subcultures within our own. We all are very different, not bad not good, just different. As teachers meeting all these differences has become more difficult also because our students are changing. Children are very technologically savvy but also are exposed to more life experiences than say, my own children 26 yrs ago. Therefore it is a disservice to our students to continue to teach them and use the same worksheets or workbooks we used 25 yrs ago or even 10 yrs ago. UDL is, as Drew wrote is an amalgamation of things we have been reading until now regarding 21st Century skills. Wrongly, I have thought 21st Century learning is all about using technology, but it is not the case. As very well expressed int he videos above is about collaboration, having each student feel successful int he classroom, allowing diversification by letting students use their talents when working in groups. The key is to have workshops or most definitely letting students come up with their own answers. We need to change our mindset that we are the “boss” of the classroom. We are Managers yes, but we need to set goals and monitor progress. I liked how they discussed the students using Executive functioning, and that’s how learning happens. Let the students to determine their roles for a given project, and rotate those roles so everybody works outside their comfort zone yet builds confidence. When we have very high expectations students learn more. This in turn reduces behavior issues as the children are engaged and on task and also reduces special ed referrals because we are meeting each students at their level, teaching to their “comprehensible input” The first grade video was also very good, and the teacher asked at the end of the lesson What did we learn today? I have begun to ask that from my students, it is hard for them in the beginning but if this is something we do each they they will learn to listen so they can tell us what they learned. In the end however intimidating to tape ourselves, It is important to regularly critically self reflect, not only about our teacher but our biases as well and how well we are understanding others. Great is not good enough we need to thrive for excellence each and every day for our student’s sake.

    • Maryann April 2, 2012 at 7:00 am #

      As always I enjoy reading your reflective responses!

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