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ASSESSMENT ADVISOR
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The NEA encourages its members to use Assessment Advisor to rate the assessments they’ve used in their classrooms! 4,000 teachers in 40 states have checked out the site so far. Have you?

Read the NEA Today article.
MUST READS

Survey: Today’s teaching force is less experienced, more open to change
By Jackie Mader
Hechinger Report, October 23, 2012

Teacher-Leader Corps Helps Turn Around Schools
By Stephen Sawchuck
Education Week, April 20, 2011

New Teachers are the New Majority 
By Celine Coggins & Heather Peske
Education Week, January 19, 2011

Lesson Plan in Boston Schools: Don’t Go It Alone
By Mike Winerip
New York Times, August 8, 2010

 

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Join the C2 Initiative

Registration now open for Round 2 of Fall Semester C2 Courses!

 

Are you thinking about how to best prepare your students for the new PARCC assessment? Are you looking to connect with fellow teachers to understand how they are teaching successfully using the Common Core?  Are you excited about participating in professional development led by a current classroom teacher who has developed tested strategies for student success? If so, Teach Plus D.C. invites you to participate in the C2 Initiative, a teacher-led professional learning series that brings teachers together to collaboratively learn from each other about the Common Core. The Initiative was founded on the premise that empowering exceptional teachers, and leveraging their expertise in Common Core implementation, is integral to ensuring a smooth and successful transition for our nation. In the 2013-14 C2 Initiative pilot, 93% of teachers reported that their understanding of the Common Core improved and 97% of teachers said that they would recommend C2 to their colleagues! Participation in C2 offers –at no cost to you-

  • Collaboration with teachers from across D.C. and Maryland
  • Dinner
  • Up to 10 Professional Learning Units

This is a great professional learning opportunity to help increase your confidence and comfort with Common Core so you can help your students master the new standards and prepare for new assessments this spring. Course options include:

 

Date of the Event: First session is Wednesday, December 10

Registration: Starts at 4:45pm; dinner will be served

Course Content: Will begin at 5:25pm

Location:  Courses will be held at Next Step Charter School 3047 15th Street NW Washington DC . The school is located at the corner of 15th and Irving Street approximately 2 blocks from the Columbia Heights (Green/Yellow Line) Metro Station.

 

The Teach Plus C2 Initiative is open to all current classroom teachers from the D.C. Metropolitan area.  We encourage you to bring all your solutions-oriented colleagues.

 

Register here! 

Getting it Write on the PARCC

In this course, we will dive into the PARCC writing assessment by analyzing the literary analysis, narrative and research prompts and tasks, breaking down the rubric, and experimenting with different ways to help students practice the kind of writing which requires them synthesize multiple texts.    

Sessions will include:

  1. Breaking down the PARCC Writing Assessment and Rubric and creating tasks that align with PARCC assessments using current resources.
  2. Research Tasks
  3. Literary Analysis Tasks
  4. Narrative Tasks
  5. Feedback and student reflection on writing for improvement

 

Intentional and Powerful Talk: Using Oral Language to Build a Foundation for Reading and Writing in the Primary Grades (P-K through 2nd Grade)

All primary grade teachers can agree...our kids love to talk!  How can we use our students’ natural inclination to talk to transform them into more powerful readers and writers?  In this course, we will collaborate to analyze and improve the ways we are currently modeling, supporting, and practicing the CCSS Speaking and Listening Standards with our students.  Through filming student conversations in our classrooms, we will reflect and design lesson plans that will empower our students to become effective communicators.  In the second half of this course, we will consider ways to embed these skills into our reading and writing curriculum by studying unit and lesson plans collaboratively and inserting opportunities for structured, intentional conversation.  As we work together to develop habits in students’ oral language, we will expand their capacity to comprehend and write effectively. 

 

Math and Rigor in the 3rd-5th Classroom:  How All Learners Can Access the Common Core State Standards

With upcoming new PARCC mathematics assessments, students are being asked to problem solve and persevere through complex tasks the likes of which we have never seen on standardized assessments before. These tasks are multi-standard, require students to explain their reasoning, and analyze, interpret, and apply content knowledge in new and complex situations. These five courses will not only help expose teachers to the new question formats and skill requirements present on the PARCC for math, but also provide a toolkit of strategies for differentiating instruction to ensure that all learners in the third through fifth grade are able to develop the critical thinking skills necessary for success in a world where knowledge and application of math is becoming increasingly important.

  1. Unpacking the standards: What does the PARCC mean for how I should teach the Common Core to students every day, and what targeted skills do my students need to develop before they’ll be ready?
  2. Building fact fluency: How can I move beyond rote computation to more complex tasks while also building critical foundational skills?
  3. Asking the right questions: Where can I find tasks that mirror those that students will see on PARCC, and how can I build in higher order questioning into my everyday lessons that all students in my class can access?
  4. Inquiry and Assessment: How can I teach all of my students to problem solve through difficult situations, using the content we have already learned to approach challenges in new and creative ways?
  5. Building academic vocabulary: How do I incorporate reading, speaking, and writing in math to better help students analyze the tasks they are given, and use appropriate language in explaining their rationale or steps for solving a given problem?

 

Narrowing the Content Reading “Gap” for Older Students

As educators of older students, we hope when students arrive in our classrooms they  read at grade level and are ready to prepare for college. However, our students often come to us with reading deficits that are seemingly impossible to elevate to the point of standard mastery by the end of the school year. Are you an educator who is looking for more solutions to close this gap? If so, this course will provide information, resources, and collaborative opportunities that will help you use the Common Core Standards successfully with students who are not yet reading proficiently.  If you teach students who struggle with reading in high school or an alternative education program, this course is for you.

Course sessions will include:

  1. Teaching older students with content reading deficits
  2. Understanding Rigor in a Common Core Culture
  3. Critical thinking by way of Rigor
  4. Using the Speaking and Listening Standards to improve content reading
  5. Having our Way with Words: Teaching Vocabulary Across content areas

 

Stepping Up to the Core in ELA

This course will explore a variety of differentiation and scaffolding strategies to build both grit and investment in your students as they step up to the Common Core. Designed to prepare teachers with a toolkit of strategies to drive growth over the course of the year, we will begin with breaking down the standards, building question scaffolds, and by developing a data collection assessment. We will then move into learning strategies which you will develop into plans that you can utilize in your classroom, all while tracking student growth and progress throughout the five week course.  Additionally, each session will feature a PARCC Pointer, designed to help you translate the skills your students are acquiring, into practical preparation for the PARCC assessment. Ultimately, you will walk away with four to five new high leverage growth strategies to implement throughout the year and the tools you need to track, share, and celebrate the growth of your students as we step up to the Core.

 

If you have questions, please contact Candace Crawford, Executive Director Teach Plus D.C., ccrawford@teachplus.org.