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Co-Teaching 101: A Beginning

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1 Co-Teaching 101: A Beginning
Presented by Janice Putman and Maureen Rauscher Improvement Consultants

2 Participants should be able to:
Define co-teaching and distinguish it from other concepts related to inclusive practices; Explain the rationale for co-teaching, the benefits and pitfalls;

3 Participants should be able to:
Discuss how collaboration enhances co-teaching and outline strategies for developing a collaborative co-teaching relationship; Clarify the personal, pedagogical and discipline-specific qualities and skills that co-teachers need to possess;

4 Participants should be able to:
Apply six approaches for co-teaching to classroom practice and outline issues that co-teachers should periodically discuss to monitor and enhance their practice. Know how to evaluate and improve their co-teaching practices.

5 Research-Based Practice
Material presented today will be based on research by: Co-teaching Marilyn Friend Change Margaret Wheatley Interpersonal Styles Anita DeBoer Co-planning Lisa A. Dieker Marilyn Friend - Her particular areas of interest include skills for collaboration, co-teaching, inclusive school practices, team building, shared problem solving, interpersonal communication, conflict and controversy, and home-school communication. Margaret Wheatley – Leadership and the New Science Anita DeBoer – Working Together, and Interpersonal Styles – Lisa A. Dieker – Co - Planning

6 What is co-teaching? ACTIVITY – Table tents or turn to partner

7 Defining Co-Teaching Co-teaching occurs when two or more professionals jointly deliver substantive instruction to a diverse, or blended, group of students in a single physical space. Cook and Friend, 1995 Go over handout 1 (H1): “Co-Teaching, What it IS, what it is NOT.” This handout is shown on the next slide to help participants locate it in their packets. Allow 5 minutes to discuss this handout. Interestingly, co-teaching originated in the field of general education and has only recently been applied as a way to provide services to students with disabilities.

8 What is co-teaching? Co-teaching is first and foremost an approach for meeting the educational needs of students with diverse learning abilities. Cook & Friend, 1995

9 What is co-teaching? Co-teaching is a service delivery option for providing special education or related services to students with disabilities or other special needs while they remain in their general education classes. Friend & Cook 2007

10 What is co-teaching? Co-teaching occurs when two or more teachers, one general educator and the other a special service provider (e.g. special education, related services, ELL, reading) share physical space in order to actively instruct a blended group of students, including students with disabilities. Share physical space

11 What’s the difference? Co-teaching Class-within-a-class Collaboration
Paraprofessional Assigned to Class Handout done, Think-Pair-Share

12 Co-teaching Vs. Other Delivery Options
Who plans the lessons? Who provides the instruction to all students? Do both teachers interact with all parents, or are students divided into groups (yours and mine)? Who determines grades for all students? Who makes adaptations and does follow up?

13 Co-teaching is a service delivery system, in which:
Two (or more) professionally credentialed staff Share instructional responsibility For a single group of students Primarily in a single classroom or workspace

14 Co-teaching Definition (continued)
To teach required curriculum With mutual ownership, pooled resources, and joint accountability Although each individual’s level of participation may vary. Marilyn Friend (2007)

15 Co-teaching is not: An extra set of hands in the classroom;
The general education teacher providing instruction as if she or he was teaching alone while the special educator roams; Two individuals taking turns teaching;

16 Co-teaching is not: An individual pulling a small group of students aside to deliver instruction completely separate from that being provided to the rest of the class. Shoring up incompetent staff.

17 Co-teaching will not resolve issues of incompetent staff…

18 Why co-teach? Teachers with different specialties, e.g. general and special education, can better meet the needs of a diverse population of students. “Co-teaching should result in direct instructional and social benefits for students who have IEPs.” Friend and Cook, 2007

19 Why co-teach? Special educators have developed a tendency to “own” students on IEPs which decreases participation of general ed teachers in collaborative problem solving General educators have more ownership when they have background knowledge and a chance to participate in the decisions

20 Pros of Co-Teaching All children learn from each other
Typical children become more accepting of individual differences Improved self-esteem for special needs students All students exposed to a variety of teaching styles and strategies Students have role models

21 Pros of Co-Teaching Provides for highly qualified teachers in the least restrictive environment Provides a “strategies expert” for ALL students who are having difficulty Students become active learners through frequent interaction and feedback.

22 Student Benefits of Co-Teaching
Cohesive programming occurs when connections are made between students’ individual needs and the regular classroom curriculum. Individualization of instruction increases.

23 Student Benefits of Co-Teaching
Research indicates that special education students score higher on achievement tests when they are exposed to content knowledge in a regular education classroom.

24 Why co-teaching? Why now?
IDEA and NCLB requirements Gives students access to highly qualified subject- matter teachers (HQT) Least Restrictive Environment (LRE) Access to general education curriculum Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP)

25 Why co-teaching? Why now?
Wider range of instructional alternatives for all students Reduces fragmentation of learning Enhances the participation of students with special needs as full classroom members

26 Why co-teaching? Why now?
Creates conditions in which students with disabilities and other groups can make AYP Provides powerful support for the professionals who teach Reduces stigma for students

27 It’s not about us (the educators); it’s about them (the students).

28 Think of special education as a service, not a place.

29 Inclusive Schools. . . Don’t ask, “How does this student have to change in order to be in this class?” But rather, “How do we have to change in order to offer full membership to our students with disabilities?”

30 How can co-teaching help meet students’ needs?
Can any one teacher meet the educational, social and physical needs of all students?

31 Benefits of Co-Teaching
Shared responsibility for educating all students Shared understanding and use of common assessment data Shared ownership for programming and interventions Share the following: Working together can be very exciting. For as much as we may acquire high levels of knowledge and experience on our own, increasing the interaction with others within and across education creates opportunities for learning beyond these traditional boundaries and encourages learning as a system. Instead of “what can each of us do for OUR kids,” it becomes “what can we do together for ALL kids.”

32 Benefits of Co-Teaching
Creating common understanding Teachers learn from each other Collegial relationships are created along with professional development

33 Benefits of Co-Teaching
Resources are shared Management strategies are more consistent with frequent feedback Individualization of instruction is fostered with multiple views of the students

34 Challenges Must provide team planning time
High ratios of students-teachers People’s perceptions and expectations Speed of curriculum Behavior Scheduling issues

35 Building Bridges Walking across the bridge, leaving the familiar ground of working alone, is the first act of collaboration. All parties are on neutral territory, with the security of knowing they can return to land better, stronger and changed. And perhaps they will return to the same side of the bridge even though they started from opposite sides. Teaching is a very isolated profession. We can shut our classroom doors and make it our own safe haven. To open your door is the first step, and an important one that should be recognized and valued. It takes some courage to be willing and open to the possibility of sharing your classroom with another professional. Also, ground rules must be in place. To feel safe walking out the door and onto the bridge, we have to know that the bridge is safe territory. It has to be clear that no one is going to try to shake us off or to force us to retreat, nor will we do that to anyone who joins us on the bridge. And if it doesn’t work out or if it’s just not comfortable, we can always go back to safe ground—no harm done. But hopefully we can get both parties to the same side of the bridge and to work together. Steele, Bell, & George, 2005

36 Points to Ponder What has been your experience with co-teaching?
What role is co-teaching playing in your schools’ efforts to address the requirements of NCLB and IDEA? When you think about co-teaching, what are the concerns or questions you have?

37 Examples of Co-Teaching

38 Co –teaching Approaches
One Teach, One Observe Station Teaching Parallel Teaching Alternative Teaching Team Teaching One Teach, One Assist There are 5 teaching models in co-teaching. Interactive Teaching Lead & Support Station Teaching Parallel Teaching Alternative Teaching


40 Take a look at co-teaching…

41 One Teach, One Observe One teacher teaches and the other systematically collects data on a student, group of students or entire class on behaviors the professionals have previously agreed upon.

42 One Teach One Observe

43 One Teach, One Observe Benefits:
Opportunity for observation of students and data collection Jointly decided specifics to observe and analyze in advance Both professionals should discuss the results of the observations Deepen understanding of each other’s teaching styles Requires little joint planning

44 One Teach, One Observe Drawbacks, if used to excess:
Special service provider is relegated to the role of assistant Students do not see teachers as having equivalent responsibility and authority Recommended Use: Periodic (5-10%)

45 Station Teaching Students in groups of three or more rotate to various teacher-led and independent work stations where new instruction, review, and/or practice is provided. Students may work at all stations during the rotation

46 Teacher 2 Group 2 Teacher 1 Computer center Silent reading Project table Assessment table Group 3 Group 1 Students move rotating to each group

47 Station Teaching Benefits: Involves both educators in instruction
Enables a clear division of labor for planning and teaching Allows for different teaching styles Students benefit from a lower teacher-pupil ratio Students with disabilities are integrated into groups, rather than singled out

48 Station Teaching Drawbacks: Noise and movement within the classroom
Teachers or students may be distracted by two teachers talking in the classroom at the same time. Teachers need to think about how to divide instruction. Hierarchical material cannot be presented using this approach. Lessons must be timed so groups can move as scheduled. Recommended Use: Frequent (30-40%)

49 Parallel Teaching Students are divided into two heterogeneous groups. Each partner teaches a group essentially the same material.

50 Teacher 1 Both teachers teach the same content in the same room simultaneously Teacher 2

51 Parallel Teaching Benefits:
Lowers the teacher-student ratio, while insuring diversity in each group; Is good for review, drill-and-practice activities, topics needing student discussion, or projects needing close teacher supervision.

52 Parallel Teaching Drawbacks:
Cannot be used for initial instruction unless both educators are qualified to teach the material (primarily at the high school level) Noise and activity levels need to be monitored; Teachers need to pace instruction similarly Requires that both teachers are familiar with content and how to teach it Recommended Use: Frequent (30-40%)

53 Alternative Teaching One teacher works with a small group of students, while the other instructs the large group in some content or activity that the small group can afford to miss.

54 Teacher 2 Whole group Pre-teaching Reviewing Enrichment Special interest Small group Teacher 1

55 Alternative Teaching Benefits: Provides highly intensive instruction;
Ensures that all students get to interact with a teacher in a small group; May assist with reducing behavior problems with some students;

56 Alternative Teaching Drawbacks:
Students with disabilities may be stigmatized by being grouped repeatedly for preteaching or re-teaching Each teacher must take turns working with the small group or may be viewed as an assistant The same students must not repeatedly selected for the small group. Documentation must be kept so all students may participate Recommended Use: Occasional (20-30%)

57 Team Teaching Partners plan and share instruction of all students, whether it occurs in a large group, in monitoring students working independently, or in facilitating groups of students working on shared projects. Marilyn Friend


59 Teaming Benefits: Shared planning and instruction by both teachers for the large group Allows teachers to play off one another Can be energizing and entertaining

60 Teaming Drawbacks: Loss of the valuable instructional technique of grouping; May not be comfortable for new partnerships of teachers. Recommended Use: Occasional (20-30%)

61 One Teach, One Assist One teaches while the other supports the instructional process by assisting students who need redirection or who have questions.

62 Teacher 1 Teacher 2

63 One Teach, One Assist Benefits:
Allows for individual and classroom support during a lesson Allows for more effective and efficient instruction while one can check student responses and carry out management tasks such as distributing materials

64 One Teach, One Assist Drawbacks:
Has the greatest potential to be over-used and abused, with little benefit to the students over a traditional, one-teacher classroom May distract students from attending to the teacher during instruction Recommended Use: Seldom (<20%, <10% is better)

65 Concerns to Expect Special ed teacher is intimidated by the content and protective of students with IEPs Content teacher is intimidated by wider range of students’ needs or over turf issues

66 Concerns to Expect Philosophical differences between teachers
Lack of enough planning time Questions from parents

67 Sources of Failure Failing to distinguish clearly among the roles of the various adults who might be in the classroom---teachers, related service providers, paraprofessionals, student teachers, volunteers. Basing co-teaching on the preferences of the staff rather than on clear standards, expectations and the needs of the students.

68 Sources of Failure Teachers lack personal prerequisites, e.g. ability to give up control. Teachers lack pedagogical prerequisites, e.g. failure to understand the educational process and culture. Teachers lack professional prerequisites, e.g. expertise in their discipline.

69 Sources of Failure Teachers lack a collaborative relationship
There are no specific plans for accomplishing their goals. Lack of planning/designing instruction Failure to implement instruction and co-teaching with fidelity

70 Selecting A Co-Teaching Approach
Student characteristics and needs Teacher characteristics and needs Curriculum, including content and instructional strategies Pragmatic considerations Page 16 of MF handout 2007

71 Co-teaching Models Which of the 6 co-teaching models do you see yourself using within the next month? What lesson(s) would be most effective for utilizing the selected co-teaching model? What needs to happen prior to using this model with students? How are you going to evaluate the effectiveness of the lesson and model?

72 Periods of Change Are Not Easy. . .
Requires commitment to alter practice No change is completely orderly Requires a period of “chaos” from which the new practices evolve Strive for “planned change” Margaret Wheatley Leadership and the New Science

73 We can’t do what we’ve always done and expect better results.
To improve, you must change what you are currently doing. Get rid of some old habits Learn some new strategies To have all students LEARN, we must change what we do in education.

74 Change is about RESULTS
Webster defines “results” as “a measurable success”

75 If you want different results…
Start with the END GOAL What do you want the end results to be? Ask, “What steps are needed to reach our goal?”

76 To get different results
Must have a shift in thinking Must do something different Results are about CHANGE Definition of Insanity Doing what you’ve always done and expecting different results. Albert Einstein

77 Fundamental change is. . . Giving up some of the past which results in a new way of doing our work—a change in performance. “If you continue to think the way you’ve always thought, you’ll continue to get what you’ve always gotten.” Unknown

78 Changes with co-teaching
As you embark on co-teaching, what changes do you anticipate that you will need to make? What are your personal concerns? What steps can you take to be proactive in resolving these concerns with your co-teacher(s)?

79 What makes a successful team?
Individual Prerequisites: Can work effectively with another adult Sense of humor Willingness to set aside differences Set of common knowledge and skills Discipline-specific knowledge and skills

80 What makes a successful team?
Shared philosophy/core beliefs The professional relationship is based on: Parity Communication Respect Trust

81 What makes a successful team?
Co-teachers make a commitment to building and maintaining their professional relationship.

82 What are some of your beliefs?
Compare ideas about management strategies. How are you alike and how are you different? Consider items such as: Noise level Movement in the classroom Use of whiteboards and other resources Compare ideas on: Assignments Homework Teaching methods Teaching strategies etc. Grading

83 Common beliefs Consider factors which will influence the co-teaching experience. Which beliefs would enhance or impede the co-teaching process? If you and your partner differ, how are you going to work together to make co-teaching work?

84 Co-teachers thought the following were critical:
Teachers should have a voice in choosing their teaching partners; Teachers’ ability to get along was a critical factor in co-teaching success. Keefe, Moore & Duff Study (2004)

85 Effective Co-Planning
Mention the following points: • Adequate planning time is among the top concerns for co-teaching teams. • This is an additional concern for special educators who work with more than one general educator. • The need for planning time is a systemic barrier, requiring administrative action at the school and/or district level.

86 Planning for Instruction
Teachers need shared planning time, macro and on-going. Always have an agenda for shared planning meetings. Realize there will never be “enough” time.

87 Planning for Instruction
This is where the alignment of special, ELL and general education occurs Make this time as focused as possible Take turns taking the lead in planning and facilitating Share the following: As we talk about pre-planning and planning, I realize that it may cause some stress or anxiety in terms of how to fit it all in. However, although it may be some extra work at the beginning, if you do it, it WILL make your life easier down the road. Planning is essential. Planning should center on determining which instructional techniques are going to be the most effective in helping students meet content standards. • The general educator can provide an overview of the content, curriculum, and standards to be addressed before the planning meeting. • The special educator should provide an overview of any student IEP goals, objectives, and needed accommodations or modifications that have to be incorporated into the lessons. • Planning sessions should focus on what is going to be taught (the content) and how it will be taught. Student-specific concerns should be saved for the end of the planning session. • Several pre-made co-teaching plan books are commercially available and may be helpful to structure lessons. • Include days when the special educator will take the lead in planning.

88 Provide Weekly Scheduled Co- Planning Time
Co-Teaching teams should have a minimum of one scheduling/planning period (45 – 60 min/week). Experienced teams should spend 10 minutes to plan each lesson. Dieker,2001;Walther-Thomas,Bryant,& Land 1996

89 Weekly Co-Planning Effective weekly co-planning is based on regularly scheduled meetings, rather than “fitting it in”. Important to stay focused Review content in advance of meeting

90 Weekly Co-Planning Guide the session with the following fundamental issues: What are the content goals? Who are the learners? How can we teach most effectively?

91 Agenda for Planning Meetings
The general education teacher should prepare a brief overview of curricular concepts to be addressed. The co-teachers should decide how they will address the content using co-teaching approaches.

92 Agenda for Planning Meetings
Teachers should determine the challenges for students and brainstorm ideas for differentiating instruction. The last topic on the agenda concerns individual students. Friend and Cook, 2007

93 Make a Plan Draw 4 columns on your paper. Label each as follows:
What do we need to do? Who will do it? By when will it be done? What’s the product or outcome? With your co-teacher, begin the planning process.

94 Considerations Eliminate or change titles, e.g. both are “teachers” or use neutral language such as “generalist” and “interventionist” Eliminate divisive language, e.g. your kids, my kids or “my room” Get both teachers’ names on the report cards, letters home and other correspondence Vary who gives instructions or takes the lead Be aware of seating and grouping arrangements

95 Definition of Collaboration
Collaboration is a style for interaction between equal parties voluntarily engaged in shared decision making as they work toward a common goal.

96 Col labor ation Collaboration means. . .
Two equal participants who labor together Col labor ation

97 Be a collaborator. . . Believe in the benefits of co-teaching
Work together as a team Use each other’s strengths

98 Defining Characteristics
Mutual trust Mutual respect Establishment of a sense of community Contributions are equally valued Equal power in decision making Shared responsibility, accountability, and resources

99 What Song Defines Your Co-Teaching Relationship?

100 What’s your next step?

101 Resources

102 A thought in closing. . . Quality is never an accident; it is always the result of high intention, sincere effort, intelligent direction and skillful execution; it represents the wise choice of many alternatives. New York Times Ad, 1939

103 Evaluation of Workshop


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