Strategy Teams Selected for 2016-17: The following strategies and coaches were selected for the 2016-17 school year. Teachers interested in learning one of the strategies described below may apply to be Strategy Team Members. Team Members are teachers who wish to learn one of these new instructional strategies by collaborating with the Team Coach. Teams meet for a minimum of three, 1-hour sessions. The Team Coach schedules times and locations to meet the needs of team members. Selected Team Members will receive a $500 grant award*
1. Read the described strategies below.
2. Select a strategy that you would like to learn. NOTE: Please notice the grade level and location of the Coach. S/he will likely hold the meetings at or near her/his own school
3. Click HERE to download the application
4. Complete and return the application by November 16, 2016
*Certain restrictions to grant award payments apply. Contact us for details: (805) 964-4710 ext. 5277
Geometry is the key to a perfect SELFIE!
High School Art, Ernest Righetti HS, Santa Maria Joint Union High School District
Brief Strategy Description
This strategy springboards off the pop-culture phenomenon of the “Selfie.” Students bring in an 8×10 picture of themselves that they have taken with their cell phone. Folding the image and using the mid line, they reproduced the missing half with their own drawing. Students struggle as they start to draw, because as they take in the visual information, and unwittingly use their left brain to process the information.
Most of the time we unknowingly default to processing what we see with our logical, analytical, left side of the brain. We mistakenly assume that it sees and deals with reality. However, your left brain actually analyzes the visual input and categorizes it into symbolic information. That’s why people always try to draw noses with a pointy 2/3 of a triangle. Do noses really look like that? Inverting the image, the left brain no longer recognizes the picture as a face so the processing of the image is popped over to the Right brain, which is then able to see what is REALLY there. Students interact with line, shapes, slope, angles, and shapes created by the highlights and shadows. Students easily analyze and reproduce the shapes from one side to the other as they draw. When they turn the picture right-side up again, Voila! A beautiful, and ACURATE drawing. Drawing is EASY when we use our Right-brain to see what is truly in front of us. Members will engage and experience this technique that forces the Right-brain to engage with shapes and angles in a way makes drawing easy and fun!
Horizon Literary Teaming
Paul Forster, High School English, Santa Barbara HS, Santa Barbara Unified School District
Brief Strategy Description
This strategy leverages a horizontal team of teachers with the purpose of improving student engagement and student literacy by sharing curriculum.
With this strategy English teachers use the curriculum from other classes for their students to practice reading and writing skills. Students choose a weekly research topic from any class and write a one page research paper following specific guidelines. These weekly research projects support Professional Learning Communities, integrated standards, and also serve as a benchmarks for larger research projects.
Inquiry Science Modeling and Claim Evidence Reasoning Writing
Torri Burke, High School Science, Pioneer Valley HS, Santa Maria Joint Union High School District
Scientific Modeling is an engaging approach to introducing new content to students. Instead of direct instruction to introduce content, students have the opportunity to observe real phenomena, engage with the scientific process of asking questions, form explanations based on data, and making conclusions that can be refined through further exploration.
This approach to exploring scientific phenomena in the classroom allows students to form a scientific explanation prior to direct instruction which allows for a much deeper and more relevant understanding of the content.
Students are asked to communicate their ideas through a process of writing called Claim, Evidence, Reasoning, which is a type of writing that support Common Core Standards. This component of the instructional strategy allows all students to connect their scientific explanations with hard evidence and reasoning.ty.
Super Star Math Mentors
Susan Reilly, Elementary Math, La Honda & Los Berros Schools, Lompoc Unified School District
Brief Strategy Description
This K – 6 instructional strategy is used to scaffold students as they do a daily Number Talk. Number Talk is a math practice whereby students mentally solve a string of related math problems that build their knowledge. The knowledge building happens when students explain step by step how they mentally solve the problem. Many students struggle with the language needed to adequately explain how they are solving problems mentally. That is where sentence stems scaffold students with language support needed to explain their thinking. Sentence stems that align with CCSS math and language arts standards are visible and practiced ahead of time so as a child is struggling with the mental math, they won’t struggle with how to frame their thinking as well. The regular use of sentence frames for math discussion takes a learner from where they are to a higher level of discourse due to the fact that they are tiered from easier to more complicated language which differentiates for all learners. Students are encouraged to progress to higher and higher levels with a variety of language formats. The sentence stems are designed to adjust for the different purposes for speaking. For example, if a student wants to agree or disagree with a point originating from another student, they would use the sentence frame that fits that purpose, while adding evidence of why it is so. Through this process, students learn to prove their thinking and explain with detail. Ultimately, the sentence stems help them engage more confidently at a deeper level with other students.
Writers Workshop in the Primary Classroom
Krista Munizich, K-6 Writing, Canalino School, Carpinteria Unified School District
Writers Workshop is a method of writing instruction that focuses on the process of writing to support the teaching of writing strategies and incorporates authentic practices with a consistent structure. Teachers will implement the principles and structure of a primary writers workshop to support instruction and foster the implementation of a successful writing program for their students.
Writers Workshop is a highly effective and comprehensive methodology to teach writing strategies. It focuses on mini-lessons, conferring, and independent writing time. There is also time for sharing and public speaking. This strategy will focus on the use of the three main components of writers workshop, and strategies to effectively implement them. Teacher modeling and mentor texts are used to teach the process of writing and the distinct phases.
Robotics Instructional Strategy Team Grant – RISTG
Eileen Craviotto, 3rd Grade Teacher, Peabody Charter School, Santa Barbara Unified School District
This instructional strategy teaching robotics focuses on discovery/inquiry approaches, peer collaboration, and the engineering design process. The idea of self-discovery about materials, how it works, and how to accomplish a task is key to empowering students. Working with robots can be challenging and failure and revision is an integral part of the engineering design process. During this discovery time it is important for students to collaborate about their trials, errors and revisions. This is where real life intersects with school, and this teaches students that real world collaboration is at the heart of most “work” and “learning”. Because students are naturally curious they will generate and test hypotheses. “How do I make the robot go forward?” or “How do I get a slow right turn with one wheel?” happen organically when they are interacting with robots in order to generate a task for robots to do.
All of this however cannot just happen in a vacuum. The teacher’s role is to facilitate student learning during this process through questions such as, “Have you tried this?” or commenting, “It looks like only one wheel is moving”, which can help student learning move forward. Because robotics can be overwhelming, teacher support is critical. This support makes visible to students the concept that the “difficulty” is a pathway to learning. Often times students believe there is one answer to a problem and look to the teacher for that answer. With robotics students learn there are multiple solutions to a problem and that students can design multiple answers by persevering and collaborating with others.
These three strategies (inquiry, collaboration, and working through the engineering design process) are used in a constant loop during this robotics instructional strategy as students generate solutions to robotic tasks.