Creating #KidEdchat for Sharing, Comparing and Collaborating

Like many Twiducators, I have participated in many #Edchats and have found the topics,images (3) conversations and discussions engaging and very insightful, not to mention the ideas and resources that are shared.

However, I have found that there are times when, as an educator I am seeking, not only information but ideas or suggestions. Ideas relating to a specific grade level or grade focus area, such as:

How to integrate technology

Current Pedagogy

Professional Development

Classroom Ideas

Literacy ideas and innovations

. . . to bulletin board examples

For this reason and thanks to the help of amazing mentors and colleagues @shellterrel @shannonmmiller @courosa and @gcouros I have arrived at the hashtag #KidEdchat

It is my hope that #KidEdchat will facilitate all the areas that I have mentioned as well as conversations specifically directed to teachers from grades 3-6, which will occur every Thursday at 8 pm Easter and 5 pm on the West coast.

By no means is this a new concept or idea, thanks to @shellterrell (Shelly Terrell ), @web20classroom (Steven Anderson) and @tomwhitby (Tom Whitby), the creators of #Edchat, educators around the globe have been given a forum to discuss and focus on topics that are affecting educators. Topics such as current teaching trends, transforming teaching practice, as well as education policy and education reform.

#KidEdchat is not something to replace #Edchat, that is not the intent, nor would it be possible. It is simply a sharing, collaborating and learning location for teachers that work with students from grades 3-6. For the first #KidEdchat, on July 12th There will not be a specific topic.  I will leave it as an open format Meet and Tweet where educators can connect and share some ideas. Following #KidEdchats will be determine by polling all that have participated and shown interested.

Please pass this on to all the educators that you know would be interested and that could benefit from the connecting. It would be greatly appreciated.

I look forward to connecting with numerous educators. Remember to share with #KidEdchat and we shall tweet with you on Thursday evening.

 

Data, what does one do with all that Data?

To say that the world of education has data, is to put it mildly. I would not say that education is data driven, but I would say that it, combined with 20140516_144322reflections, Data is highly important. Data can be used to determine best practice, it tells people what is working and what is not working.

Nancy Love writes:

“Without a systemic process for using the data effectively and collaboratively, many school, particularly those” serving low economic “student will languish in chronic low performance in mathematics, science and other content areas – no matter what the pressures for accountability”. (Using Data to Improve Learning for All)

I am sure we can all agree that data has many positives, these positives can guide practice, facilitate change and all one has to do is openly and honestly read the data. During my short time as administrator of a school, I noticed that there was a significant issue in the area of literacy for my school. The question is how do I improve literacy, not what is wrong, or who is not doing what they are supposed, or even why can’t the students learn.

After significant conversation and communication with other administrators and colleagues that I knew that had a back ground in literacy. I decided to create some change in how Literacy was rolled out, delivered and practiced with the students at Seba Beach school.

As we looked at constantly using the data and ensuring that everyone had access to the data to drive educational decisions, a need for a tracking and intervention model became apparent. We needed a system or method that would not only allow for the data to be used, we needed a system that would represent all of the data. A special thanks needs to be given to George Couros. George, in his work came across an idea that he thought I should look into as it would fit my need. George presented me with “Putting Data to Faces“. After having read the book, I made a connection that combining “Response to Intervention” and the data wall from “Putting Data to Faces” would be the most successful and beneficial to my students.

The results were more positive than were expected. The data collected after only five months of the program being implemented showed growth in students in the majority of areas. Going through and comparing other data that was collected throughout the year , it was decided that the program should be implemented in the next school year and that it should be integrated as part of the daily routine of the students and that it would be implemented for all grade levels. After some detailed and tough conversations with teachers and educational staff it was determined that a similar concept but related to Numeracy would also be very beneficial to our students.

images (2)Staff and I worked through combining the two systems and came up with a great system

co1180that uses student data tchanging quarterly with the interventions that are needed whether they are universal or targeted. I am glad to say to ensure the best programming for each individual student it was amazing. I look forward to consistently using the system and watching it evolve and change for each individual student. .

If you would like some information in terms of the process and the implementation, please feel free to contact me or if you have ideas that could be used to modify and improve the concept.

Music in the West

I must start by being clear that this is not a complaining or venting post.

A large and complex struggle that occurs for rural schools, in my opinion is the access to the same level of community resources as our urban sister schools can. To be frank, the majority of activities that city schools are able to participate in, we out in Seba Beach cant and this is primarily due to distance and well cost. A great example of this happened two weeks ago when the majority of my grade 5-9 students travelled to see the theatrical presentation of The Pirates of Penzance, put on by one of our schools. The play was student acted and directed, which is wonderful the only draw back is that the students at my school had to travel roughly 45min one direction to watch the presentation and the drive the 45min to get back to school. Therefore a one and half hour presentation turned into roughly a four-hour escapade. Was it worth it? Of course, the students at my school were able to see their peers in a performance and were also able to go to a theater. This however is not something that can occur even on a every term basis, the amount of time lost and transportation cost makes it difficult.

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On Behalf of Seba Beach Summer Village – Sgt. Young

The purpose for this post is to relay a wonderful opportunity that allowed for community resources to come to us. I was very pleased and excited when, late last month my divisions Resiliency Coordinator contacted me about the possibility of having an artist come out to the school to do a concert I was EXCITED. Felicia was able to coordinate her resources and work her magic, as always and was able to secure a morning concert to be played at Seba Beach School by Ridley Bent. With the ball now rolling and in play I was able to quickly coordinate with some of my other area schools and ensure that they would be able to attend.

So today, with a HUGE Thanks to The Summer Village of Seba Beach and Music Center Canada in Spruce Grove, AB the students of Seba Beach School, Entwistle School and Wabamun School were able to spend a morning not only listening to Ridley Bent and Chris Dunn play music, but were also able to interact with these two great artists. After SGT. Young presented Ridley with a token of appreciation on behalf of the Summer Village of Seba Beach, the students were presented with some great information about learning to play musical instruments like the guitar. The students were advised about opportunities and a number of programs and packages that would suit their schedule, lifestyle, and musical goals. During the concert it was wonderful to see the artists interacting between songs with the students, answering questions and over having a great time. The students clapped, tapped, cheered and danced to the music and were dancing out of the gym and back to class at the end of the concert.

Through some great work and collaboration on the part of Felicia O, The Summer Village of Seba Beach and Music Center Canada, our students were given an experience that they do not readily receive and were also given memories that they can always look back on. Therefore I would like to thank:

Felicia O., Sgt Young and The Summer Village of Seba Beach, Music Center Canada for allowing this event to occur.

Ridley Bent and Chris Dunn for their talented and marvelous music.

Mrs. Jonsson and Mr. Leadbetter for joining us from our division office.

Mr. Worthington (Entwistle) and Mr. Sydora (Wabamun) for bring their students and joining us at Seba Beach.

As well as all of the staff and students of all three schools for making this a great memory and a great experience. I hope that we are able to do this again in the future.