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As the 9th largest school district in the state of Ohio, the Hilliard City School District serves more than 15,500 students in grades K-12, through three high schools, three middle schools, two sixth-grade schools and 14 elementary schools.

Monday, September 5, 2011

September 6, 2011

The Flip

My selection this week comes from the blog of a high school teacher who periodically “flips” her classroom to create deeper learning experiences for her students.

“The point of the flip is to capture more of the time when teacher and students are together for deeper learning — to create more opportunities to apply knowledge and skills to challenging in-class assignments. Bottom line: it’s not always the right instructional choice, it’s only one tool in our educational repertoire. But it can be a powerful one.”

In the same spirit as the Khan Academy, this teacher’s approach does make us think about truly shifting classroom instruction into 21st century learning experiences!

The Flip

International No Office Day

As many of you indicated in your Professional Goals & Objectives at our Administrative Retreat, making time for Walkthroughs are something we all strive to improve on.  In that spirit, the article I've selected for the week suggests a "No Office Day."  A day in which we spend our entire school day out in the classrooms of our teachers, alongside our students, to get a true sense of the learning environments that have been created in our buildings.

"So why a whole day? Every administrator spends time in classrooms… every one that I know wishes they could spend more time doing it. Permitting yourself to spend the whole day in classes is cathartic. It is a battery charger like no other, and let’s face it, everyone needs a burst of enthusiasm in mid September."

Within the article you will see links to anecdotes by a number of school administrators that have utilized a No Office Day.  Enjoy the read, and more importantly enjoy your day alongside your teachers and students.

International No Office Day

The Power of "Leverage"

Author Mike Schmoker believes, "Perhaps the greatest current impediment to better schools is our meager understanding of the most high-leverage actions and elements that ensure large, swift improvements to learning. If implemented, they would have an immediate effect on student learning and on college and career preparation."  A recent post on The ASCD Community Blog speaks to three "grossly under-implemented levers."

The Power of "Leverage"

The Takeaway Tips for Replicating Project-Based Learning

The first article I posted on this site was about debunking five myths surrounding Project Based Learning (PBL).  I decided to provide additional information about PBL after reviewing a PowerPoint that Dr. Stan Heffner, the new Superintendent of Public Instruction, recently used in a message he delivered to Ohio School District Superintendents.  In his address, Dr. Heffner referred to a New ODE, one that is committed to High Quality Instruction reflective of a change in practice.  The High Quality Instruction he described included Problem Solving, Inquiry Based Instruction, and Project Based Learning.  I think we are “right on track” with our desire to build capacity across the district with PBL.

“Ten Takeaway Tips for Replicating Project- Based Learning” provides some key lessons on how to tackle the challenges of implementing PBL school-wide.  Fostering collaboration, allowing for flexibility, and helping teachers to feel comfortable taking risks are tips that are offered.  In addition, the two short videos that can be accessed as part of this article provide useful insights into building trust and educating parents about PBL.

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