Posts Tagged: proficiency-based learning

What’s new in the iLab?

Happy first birthday to the Winooski iLab! As we enter our second year of offering students personalized and proficiency-based learning, we are building on our strengths from last year and making adjustments to increase the value of independently-driven learning.

Newcomer Orientation

 

          Our names are Inge White and Nellie Maley. We are partner teachers for the ELL program at Winooski High School. Together we are facilitating a group of 17 Newcomers from Nepal, Iraq, Somalia, Ethiopia, and the Congo. Read more.

Adversity by Design

I had the chance to take a workshop on Adversity by Design with ninth grade physics teacher Scott Swaaley at the original High Tech High. Scott is a former engineer who’s been teaching at High Tech High for two years. His approach to adversity intrigued me. Embracing and seeking adversity seemed an interesting approach. The philosophy at High Tech High is that students and teachers must be taken to an uncomfortable place or they will check out and not be challenged. Students participate in semester long interdisciplinary projects. Projects by design need to be perceived as difficult in order for students to develop tangible skills. Projects should not be “dumpster” projects, meaning posters or disposable products. Projects should have a sense of permanence or sustainability that can be displayed or shared. Scott runs what he calls the GRIT Lab: Growth, Resilience, Intensity and Tenacity.

Piloting Virtual Environments and the Flipped Classroom

The traditional foreign language classroom made up of repetitive textbook exercises and oral recitation has evolved in many schools across our country. Madame Drpich is one of the most innovative foreign language teachers using technology in Vermont. She is one of a handful of teachers from the United States involved in VIA: Virtual Intercultural Avenues, a collaborative portal for virtual communication between five schools in the United States, Belgium and France. This is a virtual portal developed by an educator at Essex High School where students and teachers within the participating schools can collaborate on lesson planning, curriculum development, classroom discussions and projects via videoconferencing, email, social media, film and other online communication.

Proficiency-Based Learning and the Growth Mindset: A Classroom Example

In the last couple of weeks, I’ve had a number of conversations with teachers about proficiency-based learning, the growth mindset, and student engagement. The work of Greg Van Houten, a physics teacher I worked with at Prospect Hill Academy, is a great example of how to bring these to life in the classroom.

Introducing The Winooski iLab

Winooski Middle/High School has created its first ever personalized and proficiency-based classroom that looks modern, feels comfortable, and is changing the way we look at the learning process.

New Youth Leadership and Engagement Fellow Alert!

Hello educators, colleagues, students, activists, and lifelong leaners! My name is Will Andrews and I will be the Youth Leadership and Engagement fellow for the 2013-2014 school year...

Depth? Richness? Relevance? YES!

Burlington High School is piloting a new school calendar, one that opens up rich opportunities for authentic learning. In this 2012-13 year, first-semester ends before December Break, and second-semester is over before Memorial Day weekend. The “Year End Studies” program (inspired by a similar model at Rutland High School) takes place during the last two-and-a-half weeks of the year.

What’s Working: NY Performance Standards Consortium Data Report

One of the most exciting and inspiring things that I’ve found in my research so far has been the Data Report from the New York Performance Standards Consortium.  As a science teacher, I am someone who may find data more “exciting” and “inspiring” than the average person, but I think even those Humanities folks will be excited by these numbers! Read more.