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CO-TEACHING A Promising Practice Intended to Improve Learning Outcomes for All Students Presented by: Tracy Huckell Student Services Coordinator GSSD May.

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Presentation on theme: "CO-TEACHING A Promising Practice Intended to Improve Learning Outcomes for All Students Presented by: Tracy Huckell Student Services Coordinator GSSD May."— Presentation transcript:

1 CO-TEACHING A Promising Practice Intended to Improve Learning Outcomes for All Students Presented by: Tracy Huckell Student Services Coordinator GSSD May 2010 May 2010

2 Overview of Presentation What Co-Teaching Is What Co-Teaching Is Benefits Benefits Co-teaching Approaches Co-teaching Approaches The Teaching Partnership The Teaching Partnership Stages of Co-Teaching Stages of Co-Teaching Other Considerations Other Considerations Videos of Co-Teaching Partnerships Videos of Co-Teaching Partnerships

3 What is Co-Teaching? Involves two or more professionals delivering instruction to a diverse or blended group of students in a single physical space Involves two or more professionals delivering instruction to a diverse or blended group of students in a single physical space A sharing of teaching responsibilities A sharing of teaching responsibilities A service delivery model that is based on the philosophy of inclusion and supports collaborative practices among professionals. A service delivery model that is based on the philosophy of inclusion and supports collaborative practices among professionals.

4 Rationale for Co-Teaching “Co-teaching arrangements … are one promising option for meeting the learning needs of the many students who once spent a large part of the school day with special educators in separate classrooms.” Friend, 2007, p. 48

5 Rationale for Co-Teaching Promotes principles of inclusion and collaborative practice among teachers Promotes principles of inclusion and collaborative practice among teachers Provides a number of benefits for students, teachers, and organizations Provides a number of benefits for students, teachers, and organizations “ Educators must pull together by sharing their work through collaboration; too much knowledge and too many skills are needed for any single professional to keep up with and master all of them. ” Friend & Pope, 2005, p.59

6 Benefits to Students Access to general education curriculum and classroom teacher Access to general education curriculum and classroom teacher Increases individualized instruction and teacher attention Increases individualized instruction and teacher attention Enhances academic performance Enhances academic performance Reduces stigma associated with the “ pull-out ” model Reduces stigma associated with the “ pull-out ” model Stronger peer relationships and social skills Stronger peer relationships and social skills Better attitudes about themselves, academic performance and social skills Better attitudes about themselves, academic performance and social skills Increased participation of students with disabilities Increased participation of students with disabilities Continuity of instruction during teacher absence Continuity of instruction during teacher absence Students exposed to positive models of adult collaboration and team work Students exposed to positive models of adult collaboration and team work All students have the opportunity to gain an appreciation of diversity within their learning and social community All students have the opportunity to gain an appreciation of diversity within their learning and social community

7 Benefits to Teachers Opportunity for professional growth through the sharing of knowledge, skills, and resources ie. teaching strategies, styles, ways to differentiate Opportunity for professional growth through the sharing of knowledge, skills, and resources ie. teaching strategies, styles, ways to differentiate Increases job satisfaction and decreases feelings of isolation Increases job satisfaction and decreases feelings of isolation Reduces student-teacher ratio Reduces student-teacher ratio Student support teachers increase their understanding of general education curriculum and classroom expectations Student support teachers increase their understanding of general education curriculum and classroom expectations General educators increase their ability to adapt/modify lessons General educators increase their ability to adapt/modify lessons Improves communication between special and general education teachers Improves communication between special and general education teachers Ability to intensify instruction Ability to intensify instruction Second set of eyes valuable for difficult situations … extreme behavior, subtle bullying etc. Second set of eyes valuable for difficult situations … extreme behavior, subtle bullying etc.

8 Benefits to Schools and Divisions Promotes and sustains inclusive practices Promotes and sustains inclusive practices Enhances sense of community within general education classrooms when students with diverse needs are educated along side their non-disable peers Enhances sense of community within general education classrooms when students with diverse needs are educated along side their non-disable peers Fewer referrals for special education services … needs are better addressed in the classroom Fewer referrals for special education services … needs are better addressed in the classroom Parent satisfaction Parent satisfaction Staff more united … greater appreciation for the knowledge & expertise of others Staff more united … greater appreciation for the knowledge & expertise of others

9 Co-Teaching Approaches SupportiveTeaching One teacher leads and the other observes or offers assistance ParallelTeaching Teachers work with groups and present the same information. ComplementaryTeaching A teacher enhances the instruction provided by the other teacher (i.e., mini lesson) TeamTeaching Both teachers share the planning and the instruction in a coordinated fashion.

10 Supportive Co-teaching One teacher leads the instruction and the other observes or assists students…similar to teacher/EA partnership One teacher leads the instruction and the other observes or assists students…similar to teacher/EA partnership Often overused as it requires the least amount of change Often overused as it requires the least amount of change Does not capitalize on the expertise and talents of both teachers Does not capitalize on the expertise and talents of both teachers It is important that the supportive teacher not become ‘velcroed’ to individual students It is important that the supportive teacher not become ‘velcroed’ to individual students Should take place most often in the classroom, but may have short periods of time with a child or group outside the classroom if necessary Should take place most often in the classroom, but may have short periods of time with a child or group outside the classroom if necessary

11 Parallel Co-teaching Involves co-teachers presenting the same or different content to groups of students. Involves co-teachers presenting the same or different content to groups of students. In one variation, called “Station Teaching”, co- teachers presents different content to small groups of students. Students rotate through the classroom stations. One of the stations may require students to work independently. In one variation, called “Station Teaching”, co- teachers presents different content to small groups of students. Students rotate through the classroom stations. One of the stations may require students to work independently. This approach provides more individualized support and allows students to receive content from two different teachers using different strategies. (ie. same concept introduced in different ways in order to reinforce) This approach provides more individualized support and allows students to receive content from two different teachers using different strategies. (ie. same concept introduced in different ways in order to reinforce)

12 Complementary Co-teaching One teacher enhances the instruction of another. This can be accomplished by performing a demonstration or providing a mini-lesson within a lesson. One teacher enhances the instruction of another. This can be accomplished by performing a demonstration or providing a mini-lesson within a lesson. Capitalizes on the teaching strengths of both teachers, but requires more planning time, more flexibility, and a higher degree of trust than the first two approaches. Capitalizes on the teaching strengths of both teachers, but requires more planning time, more flexibility, and a higher degree of trust than the first two approaches. A variation of this approach is what is called “alternative teaching” where one teacher teaches the whole class, while the other pre-teaches, re-teaches, or enriches the lesson to a small group of students. This approach can provide greater individualized instruction. A variation of this approach is what is called “alternative teaching” where one teacher teaches the whole class, while the other pre-teaches, re-teaches, or enriches the lesson to a small group of students. This approach can provide greater individualized instruction.

13 Team Teaching Co-teaching Involves both teachers sharing in the planning and the delivery of the instruction in a coordinated fashion. Involves both teachers sharing in the planning and the delivery of the instruction in a coordinated fashion. Lessons could be divided based on each teacher’s strengths or both teachers could instruct simultaneously in an almost conversational manner. Lessons could be divided based on each teacher’s strengths or both teachers could instruct simultaneously in an almost conversational manner. This approach requires a good working relationship between the teachers and a high level of trust. This approach requires a good working relationship between the teachers and a high level of trust.

14 Things to Consider Each co-teaching approach is a valid option Each co-teaching approach is a valid option Some partners evolve through the ‘stages’ and others try all approaches within a few weeks of working together Some partners evolve through the ‘stages’ and others try all approaches within a few weeks of working together The best way to learn to co-teach is to co- teach and learn by doing The best way to learn to co-teach is to co- teach and learn by doing

15 Implementation Considerations for Teachers involved in Co-Teaching The teaching partnership The teaching partnership Pre-planning Pre-planning Selecting & scheduling teachers Selecting & scheduling teachers Co-teaching approaches Co-teaching approaches Professional development Professional development Common planning time Common planning time Assessment Assessment Administrative support Administrative support

16 The Teaching Partnership “Partners much establish trust, develop and work on communication, share the chores, celebrate, work together creatively to overcome the inevitable challenges and problems, and anticipate conflict and handle it in a constructive way.” Villa, Thousand, & Nevin, 2004, p. 3

17 Factors in Building and Maintaining Positive Relationships Trust and respect Trust and respect Commitment to team goals Commitment to team goals Effective interpersonal, collaborative, and conflict resolution skills Effective interpersonal, collaborative, and conflict resolution skills Understanding of self and partner Understanding of self and partner Continuous investment of time Continuous investment of time

18 Stages to Co-Teaching Beginning Stage Beginning Stage Compromising Stage Compromising Stage Collaborative Stage Collaborative Stage

19 Beginning Stage Communication may be guarded Communication may be guarded Often one teacher teaches and the other assists Often one teacher teaches and the other assists One teacher is typically designated the behavior manager One teacher is typically designated the behavior manager

20 Compromising Stage Communication is more open and interactive Communication is more open and interactive Planning is shared Planning is shared Both teachers are involved in the instruction through mini-lessons Both teachers are involved in the instruction through mini-lessons There is a mutual development of rules and routines for students There is a mutual development of rules and routines for students

21 Collaborative Stage Effective communication is modeled for students Effective communication is modeled for students Planning is continual both outside and during instruction Planning is continual both outside and during instruction Both teachers participate simultaneously in presenting the lesson Both teachers participate simultaneously in presenting the lesson The teachers have a co-developed classroom management system that includes individual behavior plans The teachers have a co-developed classroom management system that includes individual behavior plans

22 Obstacles/Barriers Fear of conflict Fear of conflict Dealing poorly with frustration Dealing poorly with frustration Lack of a shared vision or an inability to work with colleagues possessing different personalities or philosophies Lack of a shared vision or an inability to work with colleagues possessing different personalities or philosophies Poor communication among partners Poor communication among partners Low self-esteem or a lack of PD – train as partners Low self-esteem or a lack of PD – train as partners Lack of teacher knowledge & skill in classroom management, research-based instruction & high quality assessment methods Lack of teacher knowledge & skill in classroom management, research-based instruction & high quality assessment methods Lack of willingness to invest the time or effort Lack of willingness to invest the time or effort Reluctance to ‘ lose ’ control of the classroom Reluctance to ‘ lose ’ control of the classroom Lack of administrative support or understanding Lack of administrative support or understanding

23 Roles and Responsibilities “ The biggest challenge for educators is in deciding to share the role that has traditionally been individual: to share the goals, decisions, classroom instruction, responsibility for students, assessment of student learning, problem solving, and classroom management. The teachers must begin to think of it as our class. ” Ripley, in Cramer, 2006, p.13

24 Key to Successful Co-Teaching The three ‘C’s of Co-teaching are: The three ‘C’s of Co-teaching are: Communicate Communicate Communicate in a different way Communicate in a different way Communicate again! Communicate again! “Do you see what I mean?” “Does that sound right to you?” “Can you share your thoughts about how we should do this?”

25 Pre-Planning – 8 Components 1. Interpersonal communication 2. Physical arrangement 3. Familiarity with the curriculum 4. Curriculum goals and modifications 5. Instructional planning 6. Instructional presentation 7. Classroom management 8. Assessment

26 Scheduling Co-teaching can be used with any grade level - preschool to high school. Co-teaching can be used with any grade level - preschool to high school. Co-teaching can be used with any subject area, although the literature refers most often to language arts and mathematics. Co-teaching can be used with any subject area, although the literature refers most often to language arts and mathematics.

27 Common Planning Time Schedule co-teachers prep time together Schedule co-teachers prep time together Provide substitute coverage a few times during the year Provide substitute coverage a few times during the year Use school-wide activity days Use school-wide activity days Plan before and after school Plan before and after school Combine two classes and release teacher Combine two classes and release teacher Release teachers from some committee responsibilities Release teachers from some committee responsibilities Administration cover classes from time to time Administration cover classes from time to time

28 Changing the Way We Think “The real issue is not just about adding or manipulating time, but changing the fundamental way that teachers do business when they do sit down face- to-face to plan.” Villa, Thousand, & Nevin, 2004, p. 80

29 Professional Development Should Include: An understanding of co-teaching An understanding of co-teaching Development of interpersonal, collaborative, and conflict resolution skills Development of interpersonal, collaborative, and conflict resolution skills Instructional strategies Instructional strategies Knowledge and skills for differentiating instruction Knowledge and skills for differentiating instruction Characteristics of learners with different learning needs Characteristics of learners with different learning needs

30 What a Better Way to Teach “The practice of co-teaching has the potential to be a wonderful strategy for meeting the needs of all students. Working in partnership with another teacher, bouncing ideas off of one another, planning and orchestrating the perfect lesson, having two pair of eyes and four hands, creating something that is better than that which each partner brings alone…what better way to teach?” Kohler-Evans, 2006, p. 3

31 Closing Thought “All students benefit when their teachers share ideas, work cooperatively, and contribute to one another’s learning. There is a growing research base to support this claim.” Villa, Thousand & Nevin, 2004, xiii


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