Did you know…
The Rhode Island Department of Education (RIDE) expects that every educator who completes a RI educator preparation will be classroom and school ready on Day 1. RIDE supports continuous improvement through reporting on the performance of educator preparation program completers in the Rhode Island Educator Preparation Index, reviewing new and continuing programs through the PREP-RI process, and providing technical assistance to preparation providers. In addition, RIDE will soon need to create a new State Report Card in response to Higher Education Act regulations. RI is in a good position to make strong, thoughtful, and strategic decisions related to the new educator preparation State Report Card it must create… but we need your help!
Please join #edchatri on December 18th at 8 pm to share your thoughts on what information related to preparation programs is most relevant to you and share your ideas about how we can collaborate to improve educator preparation in RI.
When you think about an educator’s career from its early beginnings of entering the profession to achieving the status of “seasoned veteran,” what components are in place to support him/her throughout? Together and as a state, we need to flesh out the details of a high-quality talent management system – the lifecycle of an educator – and would love your input as we wrestle with the best, most efficacious way to support our educator workforce each step of the way. Currently, we’ve identified these five “buckets” as the right pieces to comprise this talent management system:
Attract: Pathways into the Profession & Elevating the Status of the Profession
Prepare: Initial Certification and Licensure & Program Approval and Accreditation
Recruit/Hire: Recruitment, Selection, and Hiring (to a district and into a position)
Develop/Support/Grow: Induction and Mentoring, Evaluation and Professional Learning, and Career Advancement
Retain: Educator Environment, Assignment and Transfer, Compensation, and Career Advancement
Please join us on December 4, 2016 as we delve deeply into imagining a high-quality talent management system for Rhode Island’s educators that both supports and nurtures educators and ultimately, the students they serve.
“Personalizing education might sound revolutionary, but this revolution is not new” (p. 254). It is a revolution that will take time; it is one that we should pay attention to.
Ken Robinson is one of the world’s most influential voices in education, and his 2006 TED Talk on the subject is the most viewed in the organization’s history…He argues for an end to our outmoded industrial educational system and proposes a highly personalized, organic approach that draws on today’s unprecedented technological and professional resources to engage all students, develop their love of learning, and enable them to face the real challenges of the twenty-first century. Filled with anecdotes, observations and recommendations from professionals on the front line of transformative education, case histories, and groundbreaking research—and written with Robinson’s trademark wit and engaging style--Creative Schools will inspire teachers, parents, and policy makers alike to rethink the real nature and purpose of education.*
Join @AlanTenreiro Sunday night at 8 on #EdChatRI as we take a look at ways to build creativity in our schools.
In the United States: the state of California has a population of 39.144.818 (Census Gov. 2015), and over 24% of the school-age population is classified as an ELL (National Center of Immigrant Integration Policy, 2015).
In Canada: the province of Ontario has a population of 13,982,984 (Ontario Fin. Gov. 2015), over 25% of students are identified as English language learners (Statistics Canada), and the numbers will continue to increase in years to come.
Two neighboring countries that address English language learning differently. Yet, the majority of US-born ELLs and Canada-born ELLs are falling behind academically with respect to both their English-language peers and immigrant students.
Join Flavia Baker (@FlaviaBakerCHS) this Sunday at 8 on #EdChatRI to discuss the many ways we could improve supports for immigrants and ELLs in our education system.
Recently, my colleague Shayna Fox-Norwitz described her reflections during a visit to one of our Summit personalized learning cohort schools in a blog post, Notes from the Classroom…Critical Thinking in our Schools. She noticed a student sitting out in the hallway, preparing herself to retake a failed content assessment (online post-test). In engaging the student in deeper inquiry, the student left the exchange, partly victorious and confident in her own critical thinking thought process and partly grateful for having an educator engage her in such a level of deep academic conversation. So often, the everyday routines prevent us from engaging in reflection and deeper levels of critical inquiry.
We will pose the following essential questions for discussion:
Q1: What is critical thinking?
Q2: How do we cultivate critical thinkers in our classrooms?
Q3: How do you, your colleagues and/or school celebrate and capitalize on evidence of critical thinking?
Q3: What are the challenges to fostering critical thinking?
Q4: What else can teachers do to celebrate critical thinking?
Q5: What else can school leaders and administrators do to celebrate critical thinking?
Q6: How have you integrated current events in your efforts to foster critical thinking?
Q7: What will you do next week to foster critical thinking?
Join Wendy Espinoza Cotta (@edtech2innovate) and others Sunday night at 8 PM to take a closer look at Critical Thinking in our Schools.
Plyer v. Doe was ruled 34 years ago, yet schools are still engaged in the search for best practices to implement learning in classrooms with a quickly growing population of multicultural and multilingual students. Our educational system has been under recent regulatory changes and experienced various applications of blended learning. Yet, educators feel like they are not reaching out enough to all students. High dropout rates are still a concern of many districts. Immigrants and refugee families remain in the margins of education.
What can we do to help change this situation and how can we better prepare our students and ourselves to address this need. Join @RITELL_ESL and @FlaviaBakerCHS this Sunday 10/16 at 8 pm on #EdChatRI to find out.
Gone are the days where literacy is a mysterious gift from the English teachers. Today we know that literacy belongs to all of us. Every educator has a stake in student literacy. However with the hectic days in our classrooms, are we doing enough to foster literacy, and encourage reading? How can schools create a culture of literacy beyond the ELA rooms? Is social media and technology hindering this important matter?
Join @MrsMcLoudRI Sunday night at 8pm on #EdChatRI as we discuss this important conversation that affects us inside and outside the classroom.
In today's climate of personalized instruction, the classroom space needs to be conductive to learning. The design of our classrooms need to support collaboration, flexible grouping, station rotation, and preferential seating in order to optimize on teaching and learning.
Join Amanda Grundel (@agrundel) this Sunday night (9/25/16) to discuss ways to design a classroom that is conducive to collaboration and learning.
The last few years has seen tremendous changes in the educational landscape and technology has been at the epicenter of most of that movement. There are more schools today that have laptops or tablets in the hands of their students. Many schools have been able to move to a completely 1:1 initiative and some states, led by Maine have done this throughout the entire state. The initial reaction to this would be that it will have an entirely positive impact, but is that really the case. Are all educators, schools and districts embracing this shift and preparing themselves properly to be sure that if technology is in the hands of their students, are they utilizing it properly and effectively.
With this infusion of technology, their must be changes in pedagogy and terms like Blending Learning and Flipped classroom are often heard. What exactly does that mean and who is doing it well. I must tip my hat to my friends at the Highlander Institute and all of the ground breaking work they are doing with teachers throughout the state, known as #FuseFellows. These teachers and administrators are being trained on cutting edge Blended learning strategies and techniques and then taking that knowledge back to districts throughout the state and sharing this knowledge with their colleagues to help support our statewide growth towards fully embracing and implementing the opportunities that technology and a blended learning approach offers our students.
This past year we saw our state, under the leadership of Governor Raimondo, fully embrace a movement toward computer science for all, a initiative known at #CS4RI. The goal of this initiative is to see every high school offer computer science by December of 2017. The statistics show that there are plenty of jobs out there in the field of computer science, but not enough qualified talent. The goals of this initiative are admirable and we are hopeful as a state to get there. One of the biggest underlying issues that comes along with is not only producing the talent, through computer science instruction, it is properly preparing the teachers to be able to teach the computer science courses. The state through the Office of Innovation has designed a planned and rolled out a number of unique offerings and opportunities and our higher educational institutions will be called on to join in this effort.
Finally, our students, know as Generation Z, also know as Digital Natives, have been growing up with technology all around them, in their hands or at their finger tips. What are we doing as educators to embrace this reality, or are we still just saying no, shutting off access, or making students turn off and put away their technology upon entry to our schools or classrooms. I would argue that we can no longer, as educators ignore that technology must become part of the instructional process in our schools. I would also point out that terms like Digital Citizens and Digital Footprint need to become part of our vocabulary and we need to both understand them and implement plans to address them. In today's times all students must be taught what it means to be a digital citizen and how they need to be aware of and positively design their digital footprint. Once again statistics show that colleges and careers are looking and through their digital footprint, students are making a first impression, whether they like it or not. Let's help them to make sure that it is a positive first impression.
Join us Sunday night at 8 PM on #EdChatRI as we kick off our 2016-17 school year with this very important conversation that is impacting all of us.
For the past 20 years I have worked in the field of Public Education, first as a teacher in both upstate NY and RI, then as an assistant principal at both the Middle and High School levels and finally as a principal for a Transformation High School in Pawtucket, RI, Shea High School for the last 4 years. At each step along my journey I was pushed by a desire to improve the lives of the students I worked with. I wanted to make sure that because of the time they spent with me, these students would have a better opportunity for success in life, whether it was through our social interaction, or the knowledge that I was able to impart on them. That is largely why I moved from the classroom to administration at the age of 29. My hope was that in each new role I might be able to impact a larger group of students. Instead of impacting the 120 or so students that I had in my classes, I was now working with the 1000 or so students in my school.
About 5 years ago I became what many of us in education call a Connected Educator. By using the power of the internet and social media, first Twitter and now LinkedIn, I expanded my influence and benefited greatly from the knowledge of others. I have been able to learn an immense amount in short period of time. At one point a few years ago, I tweeted that "I have learned more in 18 months, than I did in the last 18 years, because of Twitter". For someone who is not connected that may seem like a ridiculous statement, however it was best explained by Todd Nesloney (@TechNinjaTodd), a colleague who I have been digitally connected with for about five years, but only met for the first time at the 2016 Model Schools conference last month. He said, "connecting on social media is like going to Disney World…it is difficult to describe to people who have never experienced it”. The experience of being a Connected Educator at Model Schools was best captured in a recent blog post The Magic of Being Connected, by another friend Chuck Gardner (@charleswgardner), who I also originally connected with virtually, but finally met face to face at Model Schools.
I have always believed that relationships are the key to everything that we do in life and certainly in the field of education. The reality is that relationships today are in many ways much different than they were when we were younger or even five years ago. Today, many relationship start online and often never result in face to face interaction. However, it is the conversations, the learning and the networking that occurs across states, countries and even the world, that helps us improve ourselves and in turn, those around us, including our teachers and students. Having experienced the growth as a Connected Educator for the last five years, I believe that we have an obligation now to our students to help teach them how to become Connected Learners. In doing so, we also have an obligation to teach them how to become successful and appropriate digital citizens, because although the internet and social media can be a tremendous tool to use in personal growth, it can also be a place where people, students in particular, create a negative impression of themselves, know as their digital footprint. This footprint, can stay with them for life and it can impact them as they apply to colleges and eventually careers. Research shows that colleges and employers are looking and using the information they find to make determinations about acceptance to schools and/or hiring of employees.
Although schools have a major focus on content knowledge, specifically in the areas of ELA, Math and now STEM, it is clear that the soft skills, such as problem solving, critical thinking, public speaking and networking are going to be vital to their success in life, so we need to make sure that as educators we are supporting our students with the tools and knowledge to grow in these areas as well. Knowledge is changing and doubling so fast. In his article for Industry Tap, David Russell Shilling, examines how prior to 1900 human knowledge doubled approximately every century. By the end of WWII knowledge was doubling every 25 years, compared today, where it is doubling every 13 months and according to IBM, the build out of the “internet of things” will lead to the doubling of knowledge every 12 hours. Since we are preparing our students in many cases for jobs that do not yet exist, let's make sure that we teach them these soft life skills to better prepare them for any workforce setting.
As I’ve myself experienced the value of networking and benefited from the many connections I have made over the last 5 years, I am excited to now be in a position to impart these lessons onto many students. I’ve recently taken on a position as VP of Education Innovation at GoEnnounce. I am very passionate about the award winning learner profile platform GoEnnounce has created which helps students develop, grow and understand the value of a Personal Learning Network (PLN). Continued use of GoEnnounce teaches students these important people skills and empowers them to be connected learners. I believe that with continued use of GoEnnounce students will learn these important people skills and be empowered to grow their own network that will ultimately be able to do the same for them as it did for me.
Don Miller -