iInstructors: Justin Reich (bjr795 at mail.harvard.edu), Greg Kulowiec, Meira Levinson, and Laurel Stolte
Course Days: Monday-Friday July 11-15 and 18-22
Course Time: 8:30-11:30
Course Location: John W. McCormack Middle School, room TBA



Course Description

This course is designed to support residents in creating the organizational and procedural structures that will support their teaching, and their students’ learning, over the course of the year. While it will be helpful for residents who know specifics about the schools in which they will be teaching, the work you do should apply to any school and any grade level, albeit with slight revisions. The products created in this class will focus on some of these questions:
v What does it mean to be a community of (writers and readers, historians, economists, political scientists) in my classroom?
v How will my philosophy of respect for all learners be sustained in my classroom?
v What does it mean to teach all students?
v Which rituals, routines and procedures will I need to set up in order to support my students’ learning?
v How do I plan to get to know my students as learners (readers, writers, historians)? How will they get to know each other?
v What kind of behavior is important for student learning in my classroom? Why kinds of behavior are not appropriate? How will I make this explicit?
v How and when will I communicate and engage with: parents, teachers, and students during the year?
v What do I expect from students? How will I communicate this?
v How will I assess my students? In the beginning of the year and throughout? What will my grading system look like?
v Which organization systems will help me keep me healthy and sane during the school year?
v How do I sustain myself as an educator during the year?

Course Expectations and Products

  • Your grade is pass/fail for the week based on: attendance, participation and completion of all products.
  • You are expected to be at every class unless your absence is excused by Justin ahead of time.
  • Products to be completed by Friday, July 22rd:
    • Classroom vision statement and logic model
    • Curriculum Calendar for the year including essential questions, summative assessments, unit calendars
    • Assessment Plan including baselines assessments, ongoing assessment plan, grading policy, gradebook
    • Family Partnership and Communication Plan including: first letter home, materials list, plan for ongoing communication, plan for logging communication
    • Syllabus
    • To-Do list for starting the year
    • Lesson Plans for Week One
      • In a sense, these Lesson Plans are the culmination of our two weeks of work together, and they should introduce students to at least some of the following elements:
      • Syllabus and Curriculum Outline
      • Classroom Space and Routines
      • Establishing Behavior Norms (and reviewing policies)
      • Interactive Notebooks
      • Grading and Assessment Policies
      • Baseline Assessments
    • Open house presentation for parents/families to be delivered on July 22 as a kind of summative assessment

The Agenda


Monday, 7/11

Visioning and Goal Setting
Instructor: Justin
Objective: Residents will develop a vision for their classroom and a logic model that articulates key strategies for realizing that vision

8:30-9:00- Catching up about your practicum year
9:00-9:30- Course Overview
9:30-9:45- Overview of Objectives and Assignment

9:45-10:00- Review of Backwards Planning Key Concepts
10:00-10:10- Break
10:10- 10:30 Collaboratively Develop a Taxonomy of Goals

10:30-10:45- Logic Models and Examples


10:45-10:55- Logic Modelling tools: PowerPoint, Prezi, Bubbl.us
10:55-11:10-For one goal, develop assessments and activities/routines
11:10-11:20- Share out
11:20-11:30- Exit Ticket: Ongoing Questions

Assignment:
Develop a Logic Model for your five most important teaching goals that visually explains what those goals/sub-goals are, how you will measure student progress towards those goals, and the activities and routines that will allow students to meet those goals

Post links or upload documents to the Logic Models page

Collect any planning documents that you can use for your courses next year, including materials from mentors, colleagues, BPS learning guides, etc. Some resources on the Curriculum Calendar and Syllabus page

Re-read:
Conflict and Identity, Using Contemporary Questions to Inspire Study of the Past

Tuesday, 7/12

Essential Questions, Throughlines, Curriculum Maps, and Calendars
Instructor: Justin
Objective:

8:30-9:00- Peer Feedback Session on Last Assignment
9:00-9:15- Overview of Objectives and Assignment
9:15-9:30- Pathways for designing a course
9:30-10:00- Examining Constraints
  • Calendar
  • Learning Standards
  • Weekly Schedule
  • Teaching/Course Teams

10:00-10:10- Break

10:10-10:30- Essential Questions

  • What makes a good essential question?
  • Brainstorming

10:30-10:45- Setting Goals
  • Literacy Goals
  • Writing Goals
  • Historical Thinking Goals
    • Primary source analysis
    • Visual evidence analysis
    • Mapping
    • Chart/Graph reading
  • Research Goals
  • Technology Goals
  • Other Goals
  • Goal Mapping

10:45-11:00 Populating units with goals and constraints in mind
  • Assessments
  • Lesson Summaries
  • Homework assignments

11:00-11:20 Looking at syllabi, How do students use syllabi? What is your goal?

11:20-11:30- Exit Ticket: Ongoing Questions


Assignment: (TBD- If most people don't have placements, we may reconsider)

1) Develop a curriculum calendar for your course(s) for next year.

Consider the following:
Essential Questions for the course
Essential or Framing Questions for each Unit
Summative Assessments for Units (including district assessments)
Course Calendar that:
- Accurately removes all non-teaching days
- Includes Units and exact tally of days/unit
- Includes Summative Assessments

2) Begin to Develop a Syllabus that includes parent/student-readable summaries of key information above. This syllabus will be added to over the course of the next two weeks

Alternative to 1&2: Course Philosophy Outline

For those applying for jobs, if there is another format (perhaps more general) that would let you prepare for interviews, I can be very flexible in this assignment. I could imagine creating a document that has goals/objectives, essential questions, and then some paragraph (bullet-point?) responses to questions that you would expect to be asked about your teaching philosophy.A big part of preparing for this might be researching standards and learning guides for the jobs that you are applying for.

3) Begin To-Do List for Starting the Year; include elements of Course Calendar/Syllabus that still need to be completed. This To-Do List will be added to over the course of the next two weeks

4) Reading on classroom space:

Wednesday, 7/13

Classroom Space, Grades, and Assessments
Instructor: Justin/Greg
Objective:

8:30-8:45- Introductions with Greg
8:45-9:10- Peer Feedback Session on Last Assignment
9:10-9:20- Overview of Objectives and Assignment
9:20-9:40- Discussion Question: What was the grading system like in your mentor teacher’s classroom this year? What did you like about the system? What were your concerns with the system?
9:40-9:50- Grading Policies and Gradebooks
9:50-10:05- Rubrics
10:05-10:15- Baseline Assessments

10:15-10:25- Break

10:25-11:20-- CLASSROOM SPACE WITH GREG

10:25-10:40 - Discussion Question: How was the classroom space organized and utilized in your mentor teacher's classroom this year? What were the benefits and constraints to this design?
10:40-11:00- Classroom Design Challenge Activity: Test, Video Clip, Discussion, Group Project, Debate, In class writing.
11:00-11:20- Classroom Organization:
11:20-11:30- Exit Ticket: Ongoing Questions


Assignment:
PART 1
  • Create an Ideal Classroom using one of the following online classroom design tools: Classroom Architect or Classroom Set up Tool(or drawing on a piece of paper and uploading a scan/photo).
    • Mac screen shot: Command + Shift + 4. Image size can be selected & will be saved to your desktop.
    • PC screen shot: Print Screen button for entire screen shot or use Alt + Print Screen to capture one window.
  • Add your screen shot to the Classroom Design page along with a summary explanation of your design based on the classroom discussion, Physical Environment reading from Scholastic and Chapter 4 of Tools for Teaching.
  • Add materials and tasks related to classroom set-up to your To-Do list
Part II
  • Develop Grading Policies and add to Syllabus
  • Develop Gradebook
  • Develop Baseline Assessments and create Lesson Plan modules for these Assessments
    • A lesson plan module might include time hacks for a lesson, lesson materials (handouts, etc.), powerpoint slides, and anything else you would need to teach students about your grading policies. This might only be a few minutes, it might be more extensive depending upon your style and your population. Use as few minutes as necessary.





Thursday, 7/14

Routines for an Efficient Classroom
Instructor: Greg
Objective: Residents will begin to identify specific classroom routines that when put in place will create an efficient classroom.

8:30-9:00- Peer Feedback Session on Last Assignment
9:00-9:15- Overview of Objectives and Assignment
9:15-9:40- Discussion of classroom routines observed in your mentor's classroom.

9:40-10:00- Identify the three stages of a typical class schedule: Opening, middle, conclusion
Opening: Brainstorm routines to begin class
Middle: Brainstorm routines to facilitate
Conclusion: Brainstorm routines to end class & check for student understanding

10:00-10:10- Break

10:10-10:30- Work / Homework Collection - Creating an efficient system to collect & return work.

Supplemental Homework Reading: Rethinking Homework, Alfie Kohn

10:30-10:50- Developing routines to check for understanding
  • Formative vs. Summative
  • Formative Strategies

Supplemental Reading: Well, Duh!, Alfie Kohn

10:50-11:20- Transition routines & strategies: class simulation

11:20-11:30- Exit Ticket: Ongoing Questions

Assignment:
PART I
Read: Best Practices in Classroom Management - Michigan State University

PART II
Read: Responding to Misbehavior

Post your individual notes from each of the two articles on the Classroom Management Page.
These notes will be used to facilitate discussion on Friday.

Friday, 7/15

Behavior Management
Instructor: Greg
Objective: Residents will be able to identify common classroom behaviors & how to respond effectively to maintain an efficient and productive classroom.

8:30-9:00- Chalk Talk: What can a teacher do when a student misbehaves?
9:00-9:15- Overview of Objectives and Assignment
9:15-9:45- Socratic Circle: Identifying classroom behaviors & appropriate responses - Based on the Michigan State reading

9:45-10:00- Activity: Worst Case Senario - What is your worst case scenario of conflict with a student or conflict in the classroom?
10:-10:10- Break
10:10-10:45- Based on the Responding to Misbehavior article
10:45-11:15- Develop a Student Code of Conduct / Classroom Code of Conduct

11:20-11:30- Exit Ticket: Ongoing Questions

THE FREAKIN' WEEKEND (Baby I'm about to have me some fun)

Monday, 7/18

Online Communication
Instructor: Greg
Objective: Residents will develop a strategy to create and maintain online communication with students and parents throughout the year.

8:30- 8:45- Overview of Objectives and Assignment
8:45 -9:00- Methods of Online Communication
  • Blog (Blogger / Posterous)
  • Web site (Google Sites)
  • Wiki (Wikispaces)

9:00- 9:15- Methods of using a Blog / Wiki

9:15-10:00- Begin to Create a Blog / Wiki / Website for classroom communication.
10:00-10:10- Break
10:10-10:20- Examine examples of online communication platforms. Examples are available on the Online Communication page.
10:20-10:50- Create a Parent & Student Questionare using Google Forms

(Supplemental Content)
To Facebook or not to Facebook

11:20-11:30- Exit Ticket: Ongoing Questions

Assignment:
PART I
Continue to edit and improve a blog, wiki or website that could be used as a platform for online communication throughout the school year.
Include:
  • Welcome Message
  • Updated Profile
  • Student Survey (Google Forms)
  • Parent Survey (Google Forms)
  • Description of the class curriculum (Create in Google Docs & link)
  • Description of your grading policy (Create in Google Docs & link)

Create a link to your online communication platform on the Online Communication page.

PART II
Read over at least some of the materials on the Interactive Notebook Page

Notice about class on Friday 7/22
On Friday everyone will have time to finalize and then present an open house presentation. Typically, during an open house / parent night each class is allocated 10-15 minutes. You may present the information from your open house in any method you are comfortable, but be sure to address a few critical points:
- Brief Background / Experience
- Class Curriculum
- Grading Policy
- Classroom Expectations
- Work / Late work policy
- Contact Information


Tuesday, 7/19

Interactive Notebooks
Instructor: Meira
Objective: Residents will be able to design and implement Interactive Notebooks in their classes in ways that enhance student learning by promoting content knowledge, skill development, and metacognition

8:30-8:45- Introductions with Meira
8:45-9:15- Partnered Peer Feedback Session on Last Assignment
9:15-9:30- Overview of Objectives and Assignment
9:30-10:00- Uses of Interactive Notebooks to promote students' knowledge acquisition, skill development, and metacognition, and to promote teachers' reflective planning.
10:00-10:10- Break
10:10-10:30- Discussion of on-line Interactive Notebook materials and of use of IN's in mentor teachers' classrooms.
10:30-10:50- Start working on IN lesson plan and design. Focus on some combination of:
  • setting goals for IN use in your classroom
  • creating a list of materials you need for your classroom and students need for home
  • figuring out nb design
  • planning classroom supports for INs: posted table of contents, filing of materials by page number, whether you'll keep up a model IN and if so how, color coding, etc.
  • creating a student-friendly IN guide
  • sketching out a lesson plan
10:50-11:20- Assessing INs/Assessing via INs. Discussion + work on building INs into assessment plans.
11:20-11:30- Exit Ticket: Ongoing Questions

Assignment:
PART I
  • Identify 2-5 goals you want to achieve with the IN, and use bullet points or full prose to indicate what structures, supports, and/or activities you will create to achieve each goal
  • Create a model Interactive Notebook, either in a notebook itself (if you know what/where you're teaching) or in digital form (doc, ppt, something) if modifications will be likely before the start of school. Make sure to include space for:
    • Title page
    • Copyright page
    • Table of Contents
    • Introductory materials (welcome letters, rules, tips for learning, "why history?", whatever else is on your list)
    • Syllabus
    • Essential Question and/or Unit pages
  • Write a lesson plan that teaches students about the IN, including how to set it up, why you're using it, and how they can use it to help their learning.

PART II
(Esp. the "Classroom-based Strategies for Engagement" and the local resource list)

Wednesday, 7/20

Parent and Family Communication
Instructor: Laurel
Objective: Residents will be able to develop strategies for regular communication and collaboration with the students’ families.

8:30-8:45- Introductions with Laurel
8:45-9:15- Peer Feedback Session on Last Assignment
9:15-9:30- Overview of Objectives and Assignment
9:30-10:10 Assessment of Past Experiences with Parental Involvement
10:10-10:20 Break
10:20-11:20 Parental Involvement Jigsaw and Discussion
11:20-11:30- Exit Ticket: Ongoing Questions

Assignment:
  • Family Partnership and Communication Plan including: first letter home, materials list, plan for ongoing communication, plan for logging communication
  • Read Ch. 14 "Classroom Climate" (p. 328-352) in The Skillful Teacher


Thursday, 7/21

Lesson Planning the First Days
Instructor: Laurel
Objective: Residents will be able to plan for building community, establishing routines, and motivating students over the first two days of the school year.

8:30-9:00- Peer Feedback Session on Last Assignment
9:00-9:15- Overview of Objectives and Assignment
9:15-9:45 Discussion: What attitudes and understandings form the “foundation” of student learning? What should our objectives be for the first days of school?
9:45-9:55 Break
9:55-11:00 Community-Building Activities
  • Quick Conversations
  • Ball Toss Name Game
  • World Map Challenge
11:00-11:20 Carousel Brainstorm: How have we seen our mentors and other teachers meet our objectives for the first days of school? What other ideas do we have?
11:20-11:30- Exit Ticket: Ongoing Questions




Assignment:

Part I:Lesson Plans for Week One

Part II: Open House Presentation - Please post your Open House Presentation in the Open House Page

Friday, 7/22

Final Lesson / Open House Presentations
Instructor: Greg
Objective: Students will create and present an open house / parent night presentation.

Key Points to Address in the Presentation (10-15 minutes)
- Brief Background / Experience
- Class Curriculum
- Grading Policy
- Classroom Expectations
- Work / Late work policy
- Contact Information

8:30-9:00- Peer Feedback Session on Last Assignment
9:00-9:30- Finalize open house presentations
9:30-10:00- Two presenters
10:00-10:10- Break
10:10-11:00- Four presenters