Our Faculty Handbook is designed to set priorities for our school. It provides focus and direction. These are the ideas, tools and practices that provide students with the greatest chances for success in their classes.
Goals for our Students
ACCESS to Obligations and Opportunities
Intentionally opening doors to relationships and responsibilities, academic habits and opportunities for student development.
ADVOCACY for Themselves and Others
Feel capable of recognizing struggle, acknowledging a need for help - and to do the same for others.
ACADEMIC Skills that Cross Curricular and Content Lines
Providing students core academic skills that will serve them in any academic, college or career environment.
By intentionally building access and advocacy for all students, we dramatically increase the predictability that students will succeed in our classes and in our school. This is equity in action.
TOOLKIT FOR TEXT
Literacy is the single greatest lever for academic success - regardless of course or content. Text needs to be on the table as we build prediction, summary and inferencing skills.
V IS FOR VOCABULARY
Without a foundation for the words that create meaning in your content, students are locked out of learning. The key is to be clear and intentional with those words.
TEACHING THE TRIANGLE
Students have to navigate more information than any other generation. We need to help them make sense of it by helping them decode various forms of detail.
ART OF ARGUMENT
Evidence is at the heart of a good argument. This means providing students opportunities to navigate perspective and point of view.
MADE TO MEASURE
By revisiting essential skills at intervals throughout the year, students can see growth and better understand it.
- Time management & organization
- Engagement and participation
- Working collaboratively in groups
- Note taking and annotation
- Study habits and preparation
- Advocating in-person
When classrooms become communities, they thrive. It takes intentional work to create a sense of belonging for each student. This is equity in action.
This is no mystery, and it is something we do well. We will always have room to grow when it comes to students who struggle with their own relationships.
Creating community within a classroom builds trust. When conflict or disagreement arise - and we know it can and will - we all want a foundation of trust that gives both sides the connection and strength to reflect and recover.
How can we embed and extend relationship work beyond the introductions we do to start the year? How do we plan each week to take time to build relationships and connections?
Consistency is key.
The elephant in the room: TIME. We control it more than we think. We often surrender it to things that we think are beyond our control, like curriculum. Yet, we know if we prioritize something, students will sense that and respond.
Just as we can use more with our students, we need more with each other. More time for sharing, more time for dialogue, more time to develop and experiment with new ideas.
Lunch n' Learns
We will be experimenting with slightly different formats that reflect the feedback from faculty and Chairs. Look for a Lunch n’ Learn BLOCK in September and Lunch ‘n Learn Unplugged in October.
Throughout the year, we will be releasing course teams so they can collaborate on professional goals that they define. This can include cross-curricular work and skill-focused goals.
We will be creating some time to incentivize going and watching a peer teach. You have shared that doing so is empowering and rewarding.
During the last several years, Lunch 'n Learns have focused on building healthy academic habits with our students.
Click on each image to revisit these resources.
Click on each image to revisit these resources.
Teachers need to help students "unlock" the barriers that deter them from accessing and utilizing various resources. Explicit instruction and effective modeling can help students find success in the classroom.
Students need to be prompted and given opportunities to reflect on their strengths and weaknesses. This, paired with time and a safe place to ask questions, allows students the chance to seek the support they need.
Our Toolkit for Text provides a clear path for how to help students engage with text in the classroom. Opportunities to comprehend, synthesize, create arguments, and reflect are an essential part of this process.
SEL can be tricky to address in the classroom; however, developing relationships with our students and providing opportunities for them to connect with their peers will increase engagement in the classroom. Once they are invested, their effort and ownership will increase.
Small shifts in instructional practices can lead to radical results. Students need access and coaching as they learn how to organize, plan, and process. Graphic organizers and daily reminders about how to utilize resources will go a long way when modeling these strategies for our students.
CRISS is an oldie but goodie that puts student ownership at the core of effective teaching and learning. Giving students time to discuss, share, write, and organize helps engage them in the learning process. Once engaged, learning and ownership will follow. Dust off those old CRISS books...