Monday, October 24, 2011

North Bay Haven Teachers

Welcome to Power Curriculum 101  Session 1.  I look forward to reading your comments.  If you have trouble posting comments, please e-mail me at eidsops@bay.k12.fl.us.

41 comments:

Jeanine Howard said...

This information was very interesting. I agree that it is most important that our students be able to apply knowledge to real-world situations as well as other subject areas. The encouragement of divergent thinking is vital.

Carmel Daly said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Carmel Daly said...

I am increasing the rigor and relevance in my classroom by using the Common Core standards to drive my instruction. The CC asks students to do more synthesis of information from multiple sources and analysis of what they read in class. It also raises the text complexity of the reading selections I make for them. I find that these PD items agree with that and make some of the ways I can continue to add this more concrete.

Charla Perdue said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kealy said...

Teachers today re challenged to do more with less as they try to meed the changing demands of society. I agree with the speaker of the video about "Creativity in our schools" the speaker enlightens us about how educators are finding that traditional methods of managing classrooms and transmitting information are inadequate to prepare students for the 21st century learning. Incorporating rigor and relevance into the classroom will help students combine knowledge to solve real world problems both predictable and unpredictable.

Charla Perdue said...

I agree that most state standard testing is geared toward areas 1 and 2. I assume this has a great deal to do with the expense of grading these exams and I am not clear as to the ability of a bubble test to properly assess students ability to apply information in a well- educated, thoughtful manner at a level 4 and 5. I feel that this type of learning is best represented by writing on the subject matter. I could be wrong so I look forward to learning more.

Johnene Dobernig said...

"Schools kill creativity." I so believe this statement, that I never sent my own children, ages 18 and 19 to school. Ever. (Both attend Gulf Coast) Almost every educational study that I have read for the past 15 years says the same thing, yet school systems continue to do the wrong things. I agree that divergent thinking is important, but it is not the same thing as creativity. So many brilliant kids today think that they are not because our educational system was designed and conceived for a different age. Rigor and relevance are imperative for students who will be living and working in the 21st century.

Dana said...

As a vocational teacher, I couldn't agree more with what was said in both videos. The emphasis on standardized testing and that college is for everyone, has resulted in what I see as "sucking the fun" out of school for many students who started out as divergent thinkers. I was glad to see this addressed by Sir Richard. Many creative students don't have much to look forward to in a typical school day with much of the arts and vocational classes cut and many end up dropping out or just getting by. It is scares me to think of a world without the arts or creative people. I am glad that our schools see the benefits of "Special Areas" for today's students.

Allison C. said...

Wow! So much to think about...I've already been thinking about much of it before now, such as: testing at level 1-2 but knowing level 4-5 is real life and the "epidemic" of drugged students. The use it or lose it cliche is true; however, I know students learn the eight parts of speech at each grade level, yet they lose it-Over the summer?! Maybe the eight parts of speech is level 1-2 and using the eight parts of speech is level 4-5. Here's a wild idea: maybe the eight parts of speech isn't real world!!! I think Rigor and Relevance will help us allow divergent thinking at level 4-5 for students. I am not sure it will work whole class or for our current students. I am interested in learning more.

Heather H said...

I found all the information beneficial and want to learn more. Many children have problems understanding why they are learning something if they will not have use it in the "real world", especially high school students. I see my own children losing interest, when they cannot apply what they are learning. If there is a connection to a real thing they tend to keep those skills. If we can move to more level 4 and 5 learning in our classrooms, I believe kids will see how Math, Science, English, and Social Studies apply to the real world.

Claudia Busuttil said...

Both videos were very interesting and brought up great points. For example, in the video “School Kills Creativity” the speaker says that one of the problems we have in today's schools is that the current education system is using outdated techniques conceived and designed for a different age.
I totally agree with this statement. Today's children are very different than children 30-50 years ago and we need to teach differently as well. What worked in the past, might not work for today's children. I think teachers need to think outside the box, make learning more interesting, and avoid distracting them with “boring stuff” (speaker’s words). We need to think about new ways to make teaching more stimulating and meaningful.

J. Shoults said...

The part of the video that I find the most disturbing is the "ADHD Epidemic." I agree that it is a "fictitious epidemic." Just today, I had a student write me an apology note (which I did not ask for) for being disrespectful. His note said, "the problem is that I forgot to take my ADD pill."

I really enjoyed the second video. It moved at a fast pace and kept my interest. However, I was able to watch it over and over until I felt I truly understood every aspect of it. This made me think, "What if I am moving too fast for my students?" I do believe you have to master Levels 1 and 2 before 4 and 5. This is a problem I have been facing since the beginning of school. Some of my students struggle on Level 1 and the rest struggle at Level 2. I know they are capable of reaching the higher levels. I feel I have to build their confidence first as well as making my lessons relevant! I will admit that I put too much pressure on myself to get them to levels 4 and 5 in such a small amount of time. When I am overwhelmed, I feel it overwhelms my students.

Kristi K. said...

I am increasing the rigor and relevance in my classroom by starting to use a Question of the Day each day. These are intended to invite my students to think on a deeper level and use their own creativity to predict outcomes or come up with solutions. I am eager to see all the ways that my students are developing their skills in divergent thinking!

Ellis Thomas said...

Wow! The second video had my head spinning at the end of it, but it made total sense. Kills mentions the "epidemic" of ADHD/ADD and even proposes the notion that it's fictional. It's definitely a touchy subject with many, but I have to say it is certainly something to think about. It provides students and parent with a crutch as to why their child is not behaving or learning as well as they should. This is certainly not to say there's not something going on in terms of ADHD, but maybe a bit over diagnosed. Kills' use of the the word "anesthetizing" was spot on.

Daggett's assertion about standardized testing was equally interesting. We should be teaching more level 4-5 skills, but are forced to focus on levels 1-2 because "it's what's on the test". The key is trying to figure out the most efficient and effective method of teaching those "1-2's" so that we can build up to those "4-5's" quicker. In many cases, however, we are just running out of time. I am certainly looking forward to learning more tomorrow.

Anonymous said...

October 31, 2011
comments: Debra Head
Since I am a visual learner, Sir Richard’s illustration is very effective. {I wish I had a copy.} His concepts about divergent thinking are quite poignant; and his emphasis about collaboration as real learning is one I truly implement. Dagget’s audience participation demonstration is reveling in the sense we educators are sometimes lost in the forest with the constant standardized testing. Plus, I like to be reminded about the levels of learning, so Hess’ rendition is another point made. Not falling for the basic – bottom line – question/answer mode will not move the students toward the future. And tying the lessons to the Core Standards is also a means of keeping the rigor.

Christie Karn said...

I was particularly interested in the information presented in "Schools Kill Creativity." I agree that much of the current system is doing our students a disservice by providing them with a "production-line" education. Much needs to be done to update our educational system and foster divergent thinking rather than to allow it to deteriorate. I am interested in working with others to figure out new and innovative ways to raise the rigor, raise the relevance, and harness the power of ever-changing stimulants such as technology.

Lyndsey Hill said...

I agree with Sir Richard in School Kills Creativity. When I we went to school, we thrived off the idea that if we went to school and made good grades that upon graduating college, that you would get a good job-guaranteed. This is not the case with today’s students. He also spoke about the “Plague of ADD”, and how students have new technology and creative outlets. Yet, people believe that education has a certain model to mirror. This includes: sitting still, not talking, and keeping hands in lap, etc. The students are being anaesthetized when they should be woken up!! Light the fire!

Donna M. said...

I really enjoyed the comments about divergent thinking. I get so frustrated when math departments insist their teachers all use the same method to teach a concept, or when math teachers require all students to use the same method to solve a problem. Especially in math, a student needs to explore different methods and maybe even devise his own method to solve a problem. Unfortunately, we don't have enough time in class for students to explore and create their own ways. To me, this time of exploration is the key that opens the door to higher level thinking.

Velvet said...

I agree that students learn skills and acquire knowledge more readily when they recognize their relevance, and can transfer that learning to new or more complex situations. It is essential to teach students "how" to apply the knowledge they learn to real world situations.

Lothrop said...

When I watched this video, the expected level of rigor and relevance in my classroom really stood out to me and how I implement it. With Social Studies it is important to show the student relevance to the content, and as the video stated using real world examples is key to understanding. I also attempt to increase their knowledge level though inquiry and application. I will use the textbook for a basic foundation (IE homework or mini activities), but then in class I offer primary resources through use of IPADS and hands-on activities to take the textbook information and have them build upon with higher level resources to get to the "Oh I get it, but why didn't they just..." point. This is where I use the creativity factor to allow them to use their own new learned information and their personal experiences to make themselves reach that higher Socratic level.

Gina Lyon said...

The part of the video that really caused me to think was the segment on how schools run like an industry. Why do we find it necessary to group our students by age (their manufacture date)? It seems like we might be able to have a more productive classroom if we did not group them this way. When schools were a one room schoolhouse, there were several different age groups in one room. Why not give that a try now?

Camille said...

Is education today killing creativity? During the 2nd video, I was shaking my head- yes, yes, yes, I agree. I walk into many classrooms today and it is perfectly quite, everyone is working hard on a worksheet, teacher is sitting at desk. Sounds like a great place to be? Maybe. Maybe not? Are they ever encouraged to create, talk with each other, or collaberate? Are they only allowed 10 minutes a day to share? Yet as adults, the first thing we do is talk with each other, collaberate, share creative ideas and build upon each others brainy ideas and we thrive on it. We need it. But we don't encourage it for our kids. Why? There is never just one way to get to the end.
The first video was short and sweet. I, too, have a teenage child and want her to be independent. Getting to step 4 and 5 comes from, unfortunately, her home environment. I would love to know that she was learning real world application at school everyday. I get the same old question every night (sorry Ms. Gainer) "when am I ever going to use this math (geometry)?" And for the most part, I don't have a good explanation for it. Yet, I am a teacher, too and I get caught in the same trap of let's keep moving... we have to go to the next lesson. It is a hard balance and constant struggle.

R Hendrickson said...

I'm always glad to have the opportunity to read articles and watch videos like the ones assigned for this session. While I firmly believe in the necessity of higher order questioning techniques and I try to devise ways for the students to interact with the material on a deeper level, hearing from the experts always brings it to the forefront of my thinking. Personally I think there have always been schools that focus on innovative methods and those that just meet the status quo. The same with teachers, there have always been excellent teachers right along with mediocre ones. Often the difference lies in the philosophy or climate of the school and/or the leaders. At North Bay Haven, I feel challenged to do everything I can to meet the needs of the students and to bring them as high as I possibly can in Webb’s DOK.

Brittany Massinger said...

As I sit back and try to process/digest the information that just flashed before my eyes (schools kill creativity), I am left with the haunting questions: Am I doing this? Am I really trying to mold children into what the educational system “says” they “should” be? Or am I engaging them and encouraging them to “break” the mold so they can truly reach their full potential? As an educator my job should be to strive for growth and success in each child I have the privilege of educating and not to make them conform to the status quo. In today’s classroom, as the video revealed, students are not encouraged to reach their full potential, but to reach the full potential of what the “educational system” says they can and should be. With outrageous numbers of ADHAD students emerging yearly, educators MUST stop and take a look at themselves and their teaching practices to make sure they are not the cause for the problem. Not to say that classroom settings or teachers are the root causes for ADHAD, but rather to say what can be done to stop this trend from flourishing. I can see areas of my routine and philosophy as an educator, that need to be shaken and changed; to make sure that I myself become an advocate for higher order thinking in students and not just a “right” answer seeker.

Daphne H. said...

I would love to begin the year with ALL of my kids coming to me as a level 4/5 from 1st grade. That's not going to happen when they are given 2 or more months to freely think of something other than school ! Use it or lose it applies to them also. I believe if we would agree to have school year round, we could move towards level 4/5 in their promoted grade much quicker. Yearly, we are in the re-teach mode at least one or two months before we can move into the current curriculum.

Wendy said...

After watching both videos and reading the article, I reflected upon my teaching style. I decided I needed to make some changes. I do not want to kill my students creativity nor make all of my students fit in the same box.

I carefully think about the lessons I teach and how my students respond to my lessons. When their answers are not what I had anticipated, I consider their background, learning style, and try to figure out the thought process they used to arrive at their answer. I believe this allows for greater creativity(which I do not want to kill).

I agree with so many of the comments posted on this blog about making a change to challenge students and for students to be able to apply knowledge to the real world. As the mother of a ninth grader, I want to be sure he is ready for living on his own when he goes to college!

Jennifer Klosterman said...

I just watched the video "Schools Kill Creativity," and was left reflecting on my own teaching in my classroom. I was left really reflecting on the bit about divergent thinking. Growing up I was told that I needed to think this one specific way which left me confused why I couldn't think the other way that made more sense to me. I am glad that education is taking the other direction where we recognize and encourage divergent thinking. I aspire to find opportunities in daily leaning to have more cooperative thinking so children have the opportunity to develop the skills to think and share all the ways to solve one problem! I never want to put my students thinking in a box. As a child I couldn't understood why adults did that to me growing up. I want to be one of those teachers to break that mold of teaching. One of my goals is to really find innovative ways to allow my students to problem solve and reflect with each others ideas in group settings.

Jennifer McArthur said...

I thought it was extremely interesting that our goal for rigor in our classrooms is on a 3-4 level but our test are tailored to more of a 1-2 level. This really made me analyze my own assessments that I give and I realized the importance of making sure that my testing matches the level of questioning happening within my teaching. I also was fascinated with the video on schools killing creativity. With our educational system being so focused on "testing" the students are not being given opportunities to think outside the box. This should occur on a daily basis especially for the higher order thinkers in classrooms. Thankfully we are at a school that allows this to take place. It is up to us as teachers to foster and encourage this thinking.

Christina Butler said...

The School Kills Creativity video was very interesting to me. It really got me thinking. It's shocking to think that a child in Kindergarten can score a 98% on Divergent Thinking. You would think the score would keep climbing as they learned more and were introduced to more activities/ideas. The more I thought about this the more sense it made. We are taught "one right way" or the "answer in the back." It's our responsibility to encourage our students to think about things in many ways. It will not only help them grow, but keep them interested in what they are learning.

Denae said...

Mr. Dagget's question that asked if students are able to use what they learn in one subject and apply it to another is one that really makes me think...I need to encourage more cross-curricular thinking in my classroom. Perhaps even explicitly teach how an idea in reading can be transferred to science, etc. I am challenged!

NBH KINDERGARTEN (Williams, Smith, Boles, Summerbell) said...

The information gleaned from viewing the videos and reading the articles was both positive and negative. We are concerned about the expectations demanded upon our students as a society that are not developmentally appropriate. We are in agreement that it is imperative that our students master the skills needed in each level taught before moving to the next level of learning. The Higher Order Thinking Skills have amazing activities but they should be more for exposure and not assuming that all students will be ready to understand them. Standardized Assessments kill Creativity.

NBH 5th Grade said...

The biggest struggle we see in 5th grade is that our students want answers immediately, and encouraging them to stop and think (especially through multi-step problems)is very challenging. They have become so used to having immediate answers due to the past lower-level standards and lack of higher-order thinking. We are required to retrain our students to think differently, which is difficult because they are in 5th grade and learning new methods and strategies to increase their own capacity. We do feel that we are moving in the right direction with the new CC and NGSSS, which will help our students scaffold the higher-order thinking skills required to become successful members of our ever-changing society.

Ellis Thomas said...

After reading these posts it certainly reminded me why we are different at North Bay Haven/Bay Haven. We are going further than "teaching to the tests". Students will not be taking standardized tests for the rests of their lives so it is imperative that we teach them how to apply their knowledge to more than a scan-tron answer sheet. I am trying to do this by incorporating more critical and logical thinking skills into my lessons. I have found that cause and effect questions are good ways to get kids to really think critically about a topic. Not only do they have to know the subject matter, but they also have to be able to articulate it onto paper. Of course, like Daggett says, we have to have the 1s and 2s to teach the 3s, 4s, and 5s. With that said, we must be teaching kids to think for themselves instead of doing the thinking for them.

A. Crum said...

I agree with Daggett's comments in the short film concerning levels of learning. We do teach and test at levels 1/2 while the real world requires thinking and problem solving at levels 4/5. Furthermore, the Rigor/Relevance Framework is an acceptable model to follow for direction concerning instruction, but the question I'm left with is, how can we implement frameworks such as this if we maintain the current educational infrastructure? I think implementation of this kind requires large scale CHANGE. While we all recognize the need for it, I don't see how we can do it while still running our schools as factories based on ideas from the industrial revolution. I believe in Rigor/Relevance, but it is hard for me to see the big picture right now!?

Debra J. Head said...

December 7, 2011
A thousand words could not capture the essence like the cartoon; the real world experience is the essay.
djh

Mary DeClercq said...

I can relate to this use it or lose it realization. A great example would be learning a foreign language since you really need to apply it in real life on a consistent basis or it eventually slips away. This goes with all subject areas. The goal of educating students shouldn't just stop with knowledge of the subject and acceptable test scores but rather turning it into how to get these students to apply and use this knowledge in real life situations now and in the future.

Kelley Adams said...

I agree with Sir Richard's statement of the production line, how we educate students. Unfortunately, current educators were taught in this same production line theory and until we are retrained to think differently we will not teach differently or "out of the box". Inside "the box" is safe and comfortable so why would we want to leave? Not to mention the state shoving an assessment down our throats that causes every teacher to fear their reputation as a quailified educator (so sad). I believe that this not only dampers a child's creativity but it henders the teacher's creativity as well. Why do we stand by and let this happen? Perhaps fear of job security?
This is all I hear all the time on how the education system needs to change, and all of these studies stating the obvious of how kids perform on low levels of knowledge. People can talk about what needs to happen until they are blue in the face, but nothing will come of this until this country becomes proactive. People are afraid of change, for the most part, so sadly I don't see any monumental changes taking charge. The only good thing I can say on this topic is I stongly feel that the teachers at North Bay Haven take on the stress of stepping out of the production line theory and take a chance on teaching to the higher levels. All while knowing it will not be measured by the state assessment, but will be measured one day by the students themselves as they transform into contrubting members of the society.

Unknown said...

So after reading the article and watching the videos, I feel as I have throughout my teaching career. As an educator, we want to enhance the minds of our students, we know they all think differently and have diffent likes/interests. We do, as teachers, feel like to a certain degree we have to "teach to the test", but I try hard to foster deeper thinking and give opportunities to the students for thtem to express their personality as much as possible. I will say it is a struggle, especially with such diverse groups of learning abilities.

Kim Cooley said...

So after reading the article and watching the videos, I feel as I have throughout my teaching career. As an educator, we want to enhance the minds of our students, we know they all think differently and have diffent likes/interests. We do, as teachers, feel like to a certain degree we have to "teach to the test", but I try hard to foster deeper thinking and give opportunities to the students for thtem to express their personality as much as possible. I will say it is a struggle, especially with such diverse groups of learning abilities.

Ashley Guy said...

This information reinforces what I already attempt to do in the classroom. Questions about text should go beyond simply comprehending. Students need learn to analyze and connect the text to what they already know and have experienced.

Ashley Guy said...

This information reinforces what I already attempt to do in the classroom. Questions about text should go beyond simply comprehending. Students need learn to analyze and connect the text to what they already know and have experienced.