Saturday, November 22, 2014

Oregon Presentation : Redefining Rigor: Creating a Rigorous and Engaging Classroom

I:  As a Common Core Coach I have given trainings to all teachers of my school to model some lessons that make the kids think, provide rigor, but a level of rigor that student success is attainable, not frustration.

Self-Discovery:  That "Ah Hahhh" moment.

Someone once told me that my job was to put a firm hand on the back shoulder of my fellow teachers and push them into creating more effective, rigorous and engaging lessons.

My thinking is that, if I am going to be a good coach, my hand shouldn't be on the person's back, my arm should be around his shoulder.  Going into this new thing together.  Experiencing,  Trying new things, failing sometimes, evaluating, and improving.

II:  My rules in my classroom:  "Read, Think, Write"

III:  Changing Ways in Teaching:  Kids want the answer given to them, and the old way of teaching, that is what we did.  We lectured, they took notes, and we gave them the answers that we are going to look for on the test.  The kids put the notes away, and forgot about them until the night before the test.

Monte Cristo Example:

My Class the old way: In a lecture:
  1. Tell the kids that Dantes' escape is a symbol of a "Baptism."
  2. Tell them the 6 characteristics of a traditional Baptism.
  3. Tell them how Dantes' escape met each requirement.
My class the new way:  Self/Group Discovery
  1. Gave the kids a non-fiction article on Baptism.  What it is and why people do it.
  2. Had the kids read it and find out the 6 characteristics of a Baptism.
  3. Then I asked.... "Why did I make you read that?
  4. Silence.  Then discussion in their groups.
  5. Then someone asked... "Does this have something to do with Monte Cristo?
  6. Then.... the "Ahhh  Hahhh"  Moment!

IV:  Sample Classroom Activity:  "Nothing Man"