In conversations around equity, we often see the image above used as a metaphor to describe how it is different from equality. As educators, we know that every student is unique and their needs diverse. This image depicts that when we provide the same supports to each learner regardless of their unique needs, only some will be able to see over the fence to access learning. We can abstract that while a one-size-fits-all (equal) system of education helps some students access learning, it leaves some without, causing inequities to grow. However, when we provide supports consistent with their needs (equity) every student is able to access learning. Continue reading Equitable Education through Personalized Learning
Has anybody been around cinema long enough to remember a couple of the famous lines from Kevin Costner’s 1989 film, A Field of Dreams: “build it, and he will come” or “go the distance”? Now I have to admit, the film I automatically think of when I hear Kevin Costner’s name is “The Bodyguard.” Blame it on the soundtrack, but I digress – tee hee hee!
Kevin Costner’s character in A Field of Dreams, Ray Kinsella, was practically mocked, ridiculed; and he almost went for broke for building a baseball field on land that had historically been used for farming – something predictable and something that upheld current social patterns. Perceptions, relationships and other variables were immediately strained, as Ray felt compelled to transform the land and eventually the hearts of the people in his community. Why would Ray change what on some level was working? The land was familiar, traditional and it just “fit” into the existing community, expectations and cultural patterns. Continue reading Build it and they will come!
It’s the beginning to a new school year. As you start the year take into consideration this mind-blowing fact.
Did you know that the term “didaskaleinophobia” is the acute fear of going to school? And, that it affects about 2.4% of all children?
I bet you didn’t know that, or are asking yourself why I bring that up? Well, I believe it is fair to say that most students have a sense of anxiety, nervousness, or a feeling of unexpected emotions that arise from going to school each day. Although these feelings may not all be considered “fears”, they are emotions that need to be controlled and tended to in order to give a sense of comfort and focused mind to learning. When we, as teachers, understand our students as individuals first and learners second, we are more inclined to make their experience within the classroom both productive and focused to their goals and success. Continue reading Individuals First, Learners Second
Do you find yourself perpetually breaking up with your educational technology tools or not even sure that they are worth the investment? Let me share a perspective that may help you determine which tools are worth your time, money and energy.
The Triple E Framework, developed out of University of Michigan by Dr. Liz Kolb, is a simple to use framework that may help you quickly identify what a technology tool can bring to your lessons. Dr. Kolb synthesized current technology and learning research into three E’s: Engage, Enhance and Extend. If I could sum up Dr. Kolb’s work into one statement, it would be this: Continue reading Which tech tools are worth your time and money?
School districts across Kent ISD are teaming together to deliver a common message to all students, to their families and the community at large: Strive for Less Than 5 days absent.
You should soon be seeing yard signs, posters and this Strive for Less Than 5 video to spread the message that students who miss five or fewer days of school a year perform better than those who miss school on a regular basis.
The data for students who are chronically absent is clear: Students who miss more than 10 percent of school time, just two days a month, are far less likely to be proficient than their peers who regularly attend school. Continue reading Strive for Less Than 5!
“Individuals with reading problems commonly display difficulties in both phonic decoding and instant word retrieval. Phonic decoding and orthographic mapping are so central to the development of proficient reading that research on both of these word-level reading process should drive our assessments, instructional practices, and intervention efforts.” (1)
On September 19th, Dr. Kilpatrick will be presenting (based on his book) to literacy coaches, reading specialists, curriculum directors, and special education directors at the Prince Center at Calvin College.
The presentation will focus on how children learn to read words and why some children struggle. Understanding the nature of word-level reading development and word-level reading problems will guide both assessment and intervention. Continue reading Dr. David Kilpatrick Presents on Overcoming Reading Difficulties
Students from Grandville, Caledonia, Kenowa Hills and Kentwood who participate in their districts’ Peer to Peer programs went to a Whitecaps baseball game to enjoy friendship and some summer camaraderie. The Cap’s were victorious and a wonderful time was had by all. The annual outing is supported by a special grant from START, Statewide Autism Resource and Training and Kent CAN (Collaborative Autism Network). Continue reading Peer to Peer Participants Enjoy Whitecaps Win
It is that time of year again. The students (and teachers) are starting to get excited for summer break. The days are getting longer and the weather warmer. And, we are starting to plan for next school year.
Before we start to plan for the future, it is sometimes nice to reflect on where we have been. Recently, I gathered some data from the past five years of professional learning offered at Kent ISD to see how our organization has evolved to meet the ever changing needs of our local education agencies. Continue reading 2018/2019 PD Plan is LIVE
Do you ever run out of ideas to keep students engaged? Have you ever wondered how to keep the students’ brains stimulated? Do you want to create a safer classroom for your students? Have you ever had trouble keeping students’ attention?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, “Structures for Active Engagement” is the professional learning you need.
Twenty four years ago, I took a very similar class. My principal sent me to North Carolina to see what Kagan Cooperative Learning was all about. The week that I spent there changed my entire teaching career, as well as, all of my students’ educational experiences in my classroom. Continue reading Making Students Accountable for Their Learning
What were you reading before you turned your eye onto this article? Chances are it could be categorized into informational text reading.
With the shift to Common Core State Standards and Next Generation Science Standards also came a heightened focus on informational text reading, writing, and analysis. And, why shouldn’t it be.
Learning is a journey Continue reading The Importance of Informational Text