Presentation on theme: "Overcoming Challenges in Implementing a School-Wide Approach (A Divine Comedy: Dantes Inferno) Robin Williams Adams Elementary Logan, Utah"— Presentation transcript:
Overcoming Challenges in Implementing a School-Wide Approach (A Divine Comedy: Dantes Inferno) Robin Williams Adams Elementary Logan, Utah
Key Points: Establish a Felt Need Find Your Anchors Build Capacity My sincerest apology to English teachers for my use of Dante.
Establishing A Felt Need (Limbo, the Home of the Innocent) Demographics of school changed rapidly. New principal, and 8/23 teachers non- tenured. (7 in first year) Learned helplessness. Its not my problem. The kids/parents dont care.
Establishing A Felt Need (City of Dis; Heretics) High stakes testing (AYP and State Test) New State Language Arts Core New District Literacy Model Very low scores-close to failing. Passed by the hair of our chinny, chin, chins. To come later: use the crisis……..
Cultural Contradictions (The Lustful and The Gluttonous) Kingdoms had been built that didnt make sense. - -Why did the librarian make all of the decisions? -Why did tenured teachers have all of the good kids. -Why did one aide make all of the scheduling decisions according to whom she liked? Isolation-hoarding of materials-sometimes even hazardous room conditions.
Cultural Contradictions (The River Styx: The Wrathful, Slothful, and the Sullen) 23 disjointed curriculums, with most needy receiving up to four different curriculums in a day. Its not my job to……. No school connections Resource not connected Speech not connected ESL not connected
Chaos (The Violent and The Fraudulent) Poor teaching in many classrooms. Good teachers that felt unappreciated- Why bother? Most at-risk were sent to paraprofessionals for interventions-with little progress. Discipline was considered out of control by parents-fights were common.
Anchors Used State Core and District Literacy Model as our anchor. –Began study groups reading research and books related to teaching reading, and teaching children of poverty. –Curriculum mapping-horizontal and vertical, including ESL and Resource. –Agreement on what we knew needed to be done and what the barriers were.
Building Capacity New Culture –We are here to help each other. –We know our target-we need to know how to have laser-like precision to meet the needs of every child. –We need to have wrap-around, consistent horizontal and vertical instruction. Bad cop/Good Cop-Use of coach. Weekly literacy team meetings. Created opportunity by connecting staff development with connected homework and assignments for teachers that demonstrated skills, and required working with the coach.
Building Capacity-be strategic Data discussions-use of assessments such as DIBELS, DRA, running records, etc. (What do these data mean, what have we tried, what makes sense? Movement from summative helplessness to formative problem- solving.) Commitment to differentiated, small group guided reading hour. The most at-risk have one hour of differentiated interventions with certified staff. (All hands on deck) Staff learned about best practice, explicit teaching, Guided Reading, Words their Way, interventions, and yes, research.
Building Capacity-be strategic Classroom Environment-Helping each other –Horizontal and Vertical agreement on: Classroom setup and strategy posters Routines Schedules Basal adoption Use of resources Class library-organization
Practicalities-be strategic Swimming pool example- We are all learners All hands on deck and working together. Put egos aside. Everyone is in the pool. Coach and lifeguard-not interventionist. –Coach builds teacher capacity versus taking the hard kids. –Coach builds paraprofessional capacity. This is now embedded in our culture, humor, and analogies. (The Traitors)
Practicalities-be strategic Anticipation of teacher perceptions –BUILD CAPACITY Be willing to label the non-negotiables after using opportunity for collaboration. This is non-negotiable. What do you need to get there? –Celebrate those that are reaching and succeeding-in every possible public arena-news, newsletters, nominations, meetings, notes, etc.
Practicalities-be strategic External crisis can be your friend. Create crisis by using observation and withheld evaluation technique. Open classrooms at times-be everywhere with everyone-bring dignitaries, school board, parents, principals, guests, the mailman, any excuse to open doors. If they gripe in Mrs. Meanies room, visit often. NO CLOSED ROOMS!
Practicalities-be strategic Be willing to schedule times, aides, lunches, ESL, Resource, differentiated instruction, etc. (All of those things that are considered barriers.) Protected literacy block with wrap-around, connected instruction. We can make it work-just tell me what is most important to you-as a team. Recognize how hard they are working.
Empower, dont Enfeeble! DO NOT CULTIVATE VICTIMS AS THEY WILL TURN ON YOU! –Never say, Do it because research says. –Never say, We have to do it because the Feds, the State, or the district says we have to. Come back to, Is this best for kids? –Use crisis to move to a better place. –Play, Be World Class, Be there, Make their day! (Fish Philosophy) –Reinforce, support, frame, do, find, build confidence.
Pitfalls-Be Strategic Teachers melt down in arenas that are unexpected. Your course is to be out there and available. Tell them you are there for them, or nudge them, It is hard, are you sure you are up to this? Be the positive cheerleader-it will reinforce those that need and deserve it, and drive the others crazy enough they might leave of their own accord.
Pitfalls-Be Strategic Anticipate/Be Strategic. Help teachers build their brick house. Talk to your best and worst teachers-ask their perceptions-use these conversations to maneuver. Be everywhere-be strategic. Use specific feedback-learn how to label bad behavior. Label unacceptable practices. I know you want to…..
Dantes Paridiso First Sphere. The sphere is that of souls who abandoned their vows. (The freedom of the will, and the inviolability of sacred vows.) Second Sphere. The sphere is that of souls who did good out of a desire for fame. Third Sphere. The sphere is that of souls who did good out of love. Fourth Sphere. The sphere is that of souls of the wise. Fifth Sphere. The sphere of souls who fought and are notable warrior souls. Sixth Sphere. The sphere is that of souls who personified justice. Seventh Sphere. The sphere is that of the contemplative. Eighth Sphere. The sphere is the abode of all the blessed. Ninth Sphere. The is the abode of angels.
Inferno or Paridiso? Adams has moved to Paridiso levels of Four-Seven: with a few approaching the abode of angels.
Adams Elementary Academic Excellence and Growth for All Peter Afflerbach, You do not get the kind of results Adams Elementary has had with programs, you get that from hard- working, focused relationships. UCIRA- November 2006
Key Points: Establish a Felt Need Find Your Anchors Build Capacity –EMPOWER, dont enfeeble Time, focus, continuity