Tag Archives: SMART goals

Lyrics and Improv – creating a flexible base

How many songs do we sing without reading and confirming the lyrics? How often have our lyrics been a source of enjoyment for others?

Be sure to make your instructional goals clear to your students.(Lehman and Roberts, 17 pag.)

Learning targets increase students’ independence by bringing the standards to life, shifting ownership of meeting them from just the teacher to both the teacher and the student. (Berger, 23 pag.)

It is not enough that the teacher knows where students are headed; the students must also know where they are headed, and both the teacher and the students must be moving in the same direction.  (Conzemius and O’Neill,  66 pag.)

Is it that, sometimes, what we hear isn’t really what is being said?

How often do we embrace improvisation?

While this may be a lesson introducing the steps of reading closely for text evidence, show [learners] how it can help them develop new ideas, like understanding their characters in deeper ways.  (Lehman and Roberts, 17 pag.)

Expectations that begin with the word “understand” are often especially good opportunities to connect the practices to the content. Students who lack understanding of a topic may rely on procedures too heavily. Without a flexible base from which to work, they may be less likely to consider analogous problems, represent problems coherently, justify conclusions, apply the mathematics to practical situations, use technology mindfully to work with the mathematics, explain the mathematics accurately to other students, step back for an overview, or deviate from a known procedure to find a shortcut. In short, a lack of understanding effectively prevents a student from engaging in the mathematical practices. (CCSS SMP)

How might we create a flexible base where we are moving in the same direction, singing the same tune, and confident enough to improvise?


Berger, Ron, Leah Rugen, and Libby Woodfin. Leaders of Their Own Learning: Transforming Schools through Student-engaged Assessment. N.p.: n.p., n.d. Print.

Conzemius, Anne; O’Neill, Jan. The Power of SMART Goals: Using Goals to Improve Student Learning. Bloomington, IN: Solution Tree, 2006. Print.

Lehman, Christopher, and Kate Roberts. Falling in Love with Close Reading: Lessons for Analyzing Texts and Life. N.p.: n.p., n.d. Print.

Standards for Mathematical Practice.” Standards for Mathematical Practice. N.p., n.d. Web. 15 Dec. 2014.

 

Goals and Self-Assessment – Reflecting on My Learning as of February 9, 2014

I submitted a goal on April 8 which I updated on September 3October 3, and November 10, 2013.   Have I made progress on my goal through the action steps?  What will I learn if I review my intentions and collect evidence that supports my goal? If I take the time to check in and self-assess, will I be able to determine if I’m on a good path?

My Goal:

To purposefully act to forward Trinity School’s mission, faculty-learners and student-learners will grow significantly in their use of reflection and the formative, diagnostic, and self-assessment knowledge that come from such an approach to learning.

Action Steps:

  • Intentionally reflect and question to grow and learn. Publicly publish my reflections at Experiments in Learning by Doing. Connect with others by broadcasting each post via Twitter.
  • Reflect on learning by keeping a running record in an e-portfolio. Encourage and provide opportunities and support for others to develop professional portfolios that document learning, growth and reflections.
  • Support reflection, questioning, and growth of learners by designing and engaging in professional development opportunities for teacher-learners to learn by doing. Examples:
    • MyLearningEDU 1.5  for teacher-learners to model and experience My Learning from the student perspective.
    • Twitter for Learning  for teacher-learners to foster and develop connections with other educators and experts.
    • Leading Learners to Level Up  for teacher-learner teams to design and implement formative assessment that diagnoses and differentiates while leading learning.
    • (Added in November) Observation of Practice takes on the task of seeking and gaining perspective.  How might we help teachers focus on what is happening in classrooms in a systematic, purposeful and focused way? How might we model and embrace formative assessment of our practice? How might we leverage peer-to-peer assessment and feedback?

Shelley Paul (@lottascales) and I have facilitated two more rounds of Leading Learners to Level Up (#LL2LU) for The English Connection at Woodward and for Kindergarten-9th grade math teachers at Trinity, Walker, Woodward, Westminster, and Mount Vernon.  We also hosted a conversation at EduCon on writing learning progressions.  Our EduCon session was in collaboration with the Martin Institute and was broadcast to seven cities in the US with a total of approximately 140 participants.

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Broadcasting to multiple sites was a great learning experience.  Our site facilitators offered feedback on several areas.

Jill’s session was excellent. I’ve had great feedback from Renbrook teachers, especially US teachers from 3 different departments-English, World Language, and Science, who said they can see immediate application of the concept. They felt the presentation was a good blend of instruction and opportunity for collaborative practice. They plan on sharing this concept at department meetings this week. The Lower School teachers who attended will present the concept at a meeting in the near future.

_______________

Although we got behind schedule given the tech issues, the most informative moment was when our group was working on the creation of examples of LL2LU.  Although we thought the task would be simple as we set out to do our work, it actually was more difficult than we imagined.  Hence, the “I like,”  “I wonder,” and “What if” was very effective.  We weren’t able to post many examples given we were behind schedule, but viewing the myriad of postings on Flickr was equally exciting.  The group continually shared various findings as they were clicking around the sites.  Additionally, we collectively appreciated the “I can” and scaffolded approach to reaching a learning goal.  Much to think about here ….

_______________

Overall we got good feedback from this session.  We lost the feed a few times and it was hard to know exactly what was happening at times, but all of the preplanning that Jill and Shelley had done paid off – the lesson plan, agenda, etc helped keep us on track and we were able to continue the conversation even when we lost the feed.

There is a new team at Trinity piloting Observation of Practice this month, and I’ve shared the learning plan with interested teams at Westminster and Woodward.

Twitter for Learning had a plus this month too.  Karen Boykins (@K_Boykins) has requested the next course in the Twitter for Learning series.  Karen and Samantha Steinberg (@spsteinberg) collaborated with me to develop a list of essential outcomes for the second course in this series. How exciting to have learners ask for new learning experiences and challenges!

I like what I’ve done so far.  I continue to see products of my action steps in our Faculty’s #TrinityLearns tweets and with #LL2LU participants. I love this tweet from Kato – a nice mashup of assessment, feedback, and assessment.

feedback_tweet_kato

I wish I could interest and inspire more faculty to participate in MyLearningEDU 1.5. I wonder if I should design MyLearningEDU1.0 as a simpler first step.

My to-do list now includes developing and securing PLU credit for Connections and Furthering PLNs in the Twitter for Learning series and developing MyLearningEDU1.0.

Have I made small course corrections when needed?  What additional action steps need to be added?

_________________________

To see the development of this goal, see iterations

Goals and Self-Assessment – Reflecting on My Learning as of November 10, 2013

I submitted a goal on April 8 which I updated on September 3, 2013 and reviewed on October 3, 2013. Another month has gone by. Have I made progress on my goal through the action steps?  If I take the time to check in and self-assess, will I be able to determine if I’m on a good path? Will I be able to make a small course correction if I’ve gotten distracted along the way because of the busyness of school? What if I review my intentions and collect evidence now that supports my goal? What if I hold myself accountable for making small progress in just one month?

My Goal:

To purposefully act to forward Trinity School’s mission, faculty-learners and student-learners will grow significantly in their use of reflection and the formative, diagnostic, and self-assessment knowledge that come from such an approach to learning.

Action Steps:

  • Intentionally reflect and question to grow and learn. Publicly publish my reflections at Experiments in Learning by Doing using the tag #MyLearningEdu. Connect with others by broadcasting each post via Twitter.
  • Reflect on learning by keeping a running record in an e-portfolio. Encourage and provide opportunities and support for others to develop professional portfolios that document learning, growth and reflections.
  • Support reflection, questioning, and growth of learners by designing and engaging in professional development opportunities for teacher-learners to learn by doing. Examples:
    • MyLearningEDU 1.5  for teacher-learners to model and experience My Learning from the student perspective.
    • Twitter for Learning  for teacher-learners to foster and develop connections with other educators and experts.
    • Leading Learners to Level Up  for teacher-learner teams to design and implement formative assessment that diagnoses and differentiates while leading learning.

I continue to blog at least once a week. I’ve decided not to use #MyLearningEdu as a category or tag.  It doesn’t seem to make sense to me right now to use this tag.  I still owe Maggie Berthiaume a couple of comments and tweets.

Shelley Paul (@lottascales) and I have facilitated a complete 1-PLU course round of Leading Learners to Level Up (#LL2LU) for The English Connection at Woodward and for math teachers at Trinity and Mount Vernon.  We are planning another round of each during the winter.  I offered a Leading Learners to Level Up session on learning progressions at Trinity’s October 30 Faculty/Staff Forum.

I like what I’ve done so far.  I’ve seen products of my action steps in our Faculty’s #TrinityLearns tweets, Kathy and Maggie’s reflections on their blogs, and with the #LL2LU participants.

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See PD in Action for more stories of application of learning progressions and formative assessment.

I’ve also written a new 1-PLU course, Observation of Practice, for our teachers based on the comments of Arleen and Laura after reading my reflection of the class we taught together.  They both commented on how helpful it was to see their class from another perspective. Observation of Practice will integrate formative assessment and reflection with peer observation by having each team member reflect.

    • As a result of this observation of practice and feedback loop, which aspects of my teaching do I feel are bright spots?
    • As a result of this observation of practice and feedback loop, what questions do I have about my own teaching?
    • As a result of this observation of practice and feedback loop, what new ideas do I have?

I have to say that I find it helpful and motivating to check on my progress each month.  Am I intentionally working on my goal? Am I making progress? Have I made small course corrections to get back on track when I find myself distracted by other important work?

I’d love your feedback on any part of this process. Your questions and comments will help me learn and grow.

_________________________

To see the development of this goal, see iterations

Goals and Self-Assessment – Reflecting on My Learning as of October 3, 2013

I submitted a goal on April 8 which I updated on September 3, 2013. Another month has gone by. Have I made progress on my goal through the action steps?  If I take the time to check in and self-assess, will I be able to determine if I’m on a good path? Will I be able to make a small course correction if I’ve gotten distracted along the way because of the busyness of school? What if I review my intentions and collect evidence now that supports my goal? What if I hold myself accountable for making small progress in just one month?

My Goal:

To purposefully act to forward Trinity School’s mission, faculty-learners and student-learners will grow significantly in their use of reflection and the formative, diagnostic, and self-assessment knowledge that come from such an approach to learning.

Action Steps:

  • Intentionally reflect and question to grow and learn. Publicly publish my reflections at Experiments in Learning by Doing using the tag #MyLearningEdu. Connect with others by broadcasting each post via Twitter.
  • Reflect on learning by keeping a running record in an e-portfolio. Encourage and provide opportunities and support for others to develop professional portfolios that document learning, growth and reflections.
  • Support reflection, questioning, and growth of learners by designing and engaging in professional development opportunities for teacher-learners to learn by doing. Examples:
    • MyLearningEDU 1.5  for teacher-learners to model and experience My Learning from the student perspective.
    • Twitter for Learning  for teacher-learners to foster and develop connections with other educators and experts.
    • Leading Learners to Level Up  for teacher-learner teams to design and implement formative assessment that diagnoses and differentiates while leading learning.

Well, I have been blogging at least once a week, but I have not been using #MyLearningEdu as a category or tag.  I wonder if I want to go back and tag my blog posts or revise my action step.  It doesn’t seem to make sense to me right now to use this tag.  Hmm…

There are two teacher-learners working through the MyLearningEDU 1.5 course. I might need to step up my game on commenting on their posts.  I have commented on and tweeted out Kathy Bruyn’s posts, but I owe Maggie Berthiaume a couple of comments and tweets.  Their blogs are awesome if you have not looked at them. These blogs are very different, and I learn from both.

There are 20 teacher-learners officially participating in Twitter for Learning with many more participating unofficially.  Evidence of their reflection and learning can be found at #TrinityLearns, #WALearns, #WalkerLearns, and #CDSLearns.  Mark Silberberg (@SilberbergMark) and his team are also participating using #LREILearns.

Shelley Paul (@lottascales) and I have facilitated Leading Learners to Level Up (#LL2LU) for The English Connection at Woodward and for math teachers at Trinity and Mount Vernon.  Kate Burton and I have tinkered with #LL2LU for risk-taking and persistence and tenacity. I am using #LL2LU as a tag for these posts.

I like what I’ve done so far.  I wonder if I’ve done enough to encourage and motivate  others to develop professional portfolios that document learning, growth and reflections. I wish I could make this seem easier. What if I become more intentional about modeling the #LL2LU method of formative assessment by applying the leveled self-assessment rubric for Twitter for Learning?

I’d love your feedback on any part of this process. Your questions and comments will help me learn and grow.

_________________________

To see the development of this goal, see iterations Goals and Self-Assessment – Updated September 2013Goals and Self-Assessment April, 2013 and Developing a goal, a SMART Goal – learner outcomes and action steps.

Goals and Self-Assessment – Updated September 2013

I know more now than I did in April and I find that it is necessary to revisit and revise my goal.  I submitted a goal on April 8 which I’ve now updated (as of September 3, 2013).

The above shows how I submitted my goal; the design and images are important to me.  The hyperlinks are now active in the document above, which was not the case in April.

My Goal:

To purposefully act to forward Trinity School’s mission, faculty-learners and student-learners will grow significantly in their use of reflection and the formative, diagnostic, and self-assessment knowledge that come from such an approach to learning.

Strategic: Publishing a minimum of one reflection per week will model and practice reflective teaching practices that mirror the reflective learning practices we expect from My Learning student portfolios.

Measurable: Success will be measured in several ways.  Will we publish meaningful reflections every week? Will we enhance others learning by commenting on reflections and/or by sharing the reflections with others? Will faculty-learners embrace the My Learning philosophy and model reflective practices for student-learners?

Attainable: Every journey begins with a first step.  Reflection on practices occurs every day.  Publishing reflections every week is the target.  If  a stumble occurs (a missed week), there is always the next week to recover and try again. It is an iterative process.

Results-oriented: Portfolios support a growth mindset by allowing learners to track their learning and growth over time and offer opportunities to modeling networked learning and develop community partners.

Time-bound:  We expect our student-learners to reflection on their learning periodically throughout the entire school year; therefore, the goal is to publish at least one reflection every week during the 2014-2015 academic year.

Action Steps:

  • Intentionally reflect and question to grow and learn. Publicly publish my reflections at Experiments in Learning by Doing using the tag #MyLearningEdu. Connect with others by broadcasting each post via Twitter.
  • Reflect on learning by keeping a running record in an e-portfolio. Encourage and provide opportunities and support for others to develop professional portfolios that document learning, growth and reflections.
  • Support reflection, questioning, and growth of learners by designing and engaging in professional development opportunities for teacher-learners to learn by doing. Examples:
    • MyLearningEDU 1.5  for teacher-learners to model and experience My Learning from the student perspective.
    • Twitter for Learning  for teacher-learners to foster and develop connections with other educators and experts.
    • Leading Learners to Level Up  for teacher-learner teams to design and implement formative assessment that diagnoses and differentiates while leading learning.

_________________________

To see the development of this goal, see previous iterations Goals and Self-Assessment April, 2013 and Developing a goal, a SMART Goal – learner outcomes and action steps.

#MICON13: Leading Learners to Level Up – or Ask; Don’t Tell

How might we design assessments that teach, support questioning, and motivate learning?  How might we bright spot or highlight what learners know rather than what they do not know? What if we design and transform assessments, non-graded assessments, to offer learners a path to “level up” in their learning?

#MICON13: Leading Learners to Level Up – or Ask; Don’t Tell

“Questions are the way points on the path of wisdom.” ~ Grant Lichtman. This session will focus on the art of questioning as a formative assessment tool. Work on becoming a falconer…leading your learners to level up through questions rather than lectures. Come prepared to develop formative assessment strategies and documents to share with learners to help them calibrate their understanding and decode their struggles. Be prepared to share your assessments with others for feedback and suggestions.

Foundational ideas:

By learning to insert feedback loops into our thought, questioning, and decision-making process, we increase the chance of staying on our desired path. Or, if the path needs to be modified, our midcourse corrections become less dramatic and disruptive. (Lichtman, 49 pag.)

But there are many more subtle barriers to communication as well, and if we cannot, or do not chose to overcome these barriers, we will encounter life decisions and try to solve problems and do a lot of falconing all by ourselves with little, if any, success. Even in the briefest of communications, people develop and share common models that allow them to communicate effectively.  If you don’t share the model, you can’t communicate. If you can’t communicate, you can’t teach, learn, lead, or follow.  (Lichtman, 32 pag.)

If we want to support students in learning, and we believe that learning is a product of thinking, then we need to be clear about what we are trying to support. (Ritchhart, Church, and Morrison, 5 pag.)

In order to engage in high-quality assessment, teachers need to first identify specific learning targets and then to know whether the targets are asking students to demonstrate their knowledge, reasoning skills, performance skills, or ability to create a quality product.   The teacher must also understand what it will take for students to become masters of the learning targets.  It is not enough that the teacher knows where students are headed; the students must also know where they are headed, and both the teacher and the students must be moving in the same direction.  (Conzemius and O’Neill,  66 pag.)

If you are a teacher in a district with conventional report cards, you can still use the two grading principles that honor the commitment to learning: (1) assign grades that reflect student achievement of intended learning outcomes, and (2) adopt grading policies that support and motivate student effort and learning.  You can do this by clearly communicating your ‘standards’ (in the sense of expectations for work quality) to students and grading on that basis. (Brookhart, 23 pag.)

The idea of using formative assessment for practice work and not taking a summative grade until students have had the opportunity to learn the knowledge and skills for which you are holding them accountable can be applied directly to your classroom assessments in a traditional grading context. (Brookhart, 24 pag.)

We want more students to experience the burst of energy that comes from asking questions that lead to making new connections, feel a greater sense of urgency to seek answers to questions on their own, and reap the satisfaction of actually understanding more deeply the subject matter as a result of the questions they asked.  (Rothstein and Santana, 151 pag.)

The excitement of learning, the compelling personal drive to take one more step on the path towards wisdom, comes when we try to solve a problem we want to solve, when we want to solve, when we see a challenge and say yes, I can meet it.  Great teachers lead us just far enough down a path so we can challenge for ourselves. They provide us just enough insight so we can work toward a solution that makes us, makes me want to jump up and shout out the solution to the world, makes me want to step to the next higher level. Great teachers somehow make us want to ask the questions that they want us to answer, overcome the challenge that they, because they are our teacher, believe we need to overcome. (Lichtman, 20 pag.)

Session structure (120 minutes):

15 mins      Introductions – who we are, what if we explore and prototype
15 mins      Ignite (ish) and challenge
30 mins     Ideation and prototype 1
15 mins      Small group feedback with Q&A
20 mins     Prototype 2 refined from feedback
20 mins     Share session
05 mins     Wrap up and conclusions

Examples of works in progress:

_________________________

Resources cited:

Brookhart, Susan M. Grading and Learning: Practices That Support Student Achievement. Bloomington, IN: Solution Tree, 2011. Print

Conzemius, Anne; O’Neill, Jan. The Power of SMART Goals: Using Goals to Improve Student Learning. Bloomington, IN: Solution Tree, 2006. Print.

Lichtman, Grant, and Sunzi. The Falconer: What We Wish We Had Learned in School. New York: IUniverse, 2008. Print.

Ritchhart, Ron, Mark Church, and Karin Morrison. Making Thinking Visible: How to Promote Engagement, Understanding, and Independence for All Learners. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass, 2011. Print.

Rothstein, Dan, and Luz Santana. Make Just One Change: Teach Students to Ask Their Own Questions. Cambridge, MA: Harvard Education, 2011. Print.

Goals and Self-Assessment – April 2013

Submitted on April 8, 2013.

The above shows how I submitted my goal; the design and images are important to me.  The hyperlinks are not active in the document above, so I’ve included all text below.

When asked what I do, I either say that I serve as connective tissue or that I am an idea girl.  I am intentional about serving as a bridge.  I am also committed to modeling what we want to see in our school.  Actions speak so much louder than words. I think (and hope) that I succeed more than I fail.  To that end, I have set out to model using our learning spaces to engage faculty in learning experiences that are active, hands-on, and use technology in adaptive and transformative ways. I work to model seeking feedback, sharing feedback, and using feedback to learn and grow.   Serving as connective tissue gives me great joy.  If our schools believe communication and collaboration are important, how are we modeling this for our community? Being an idea girl soothes and feeds me as a teacher-learner.   I want to risk, struggle, learn, and belong.  As evidence of this bridge work, connective work, and idea work, please see the following stories and reflections of my learning.

Connecting within Trinity:

Connecting outside Trinity:

Modeling feedback loops:

My Goal:

To purposefully act to forward Trinity School’s mission, faculty-learners and student-learners will grow significantly in their use of reflection and the formative, diagnostic, and self-assessment knowledge that come from such an approach to learning.

Strategic: Publishing a minimum of one reflection per week will model and practice reflective teaching practices that mirror the reflective learning practices we expect from My Learning student portfolios.

Measurable: Success will be measured in several ways.  Will we publish meaningful reflections every week? Will we enhance others learning by commenting on reflections and/or by sharing the reflections with others? Will faculty-learners embrace the My Learning philosophy and model reflective practices for student-learners?

Attainable: Every journey begins with a first step.  Reflection on practices occurs every day.  Publishing a reflections every week is the target.  If  a stumble occurs (a missed week), there is always the next week to recover and try again. It is an iterative process.

Results-oriented: Portfolios support a growth mindset by allowing learners to track their learning and growth over time and offer opportunities to modeling networked learning and develop community partners.

Time-bound:  We expect our student-learners to reflection on their learning periodically throughout the entire school year; therefore, the goal is to publish at least one reflection every week during the 2014-2015 academic year.

Action Steps:

  • Intentionally reflect and question to grow and learn. Publicly publish my reflections at Experiments in Learning by Doing using the tag #MyLearning. Connect with others by broadcasting each post via Twitter.
  • Reflect on learning by keeping a running record in an e-portfolio. Encourage and provide opportunities and support for others to develop professional portfolios that document learning, growth and reflections.
  • Support reflection, questioning, and growth of learners by designing and engaging in professional development opportunities for teacher-learners to learn by doing. Examples:
    • PLuGIn: SynergyEDU 1.0 for teacher-learners to experience collaborative problem-finding and problem-solving.
    • MyLearningEDU 1.5 for teacher-learners to model and experience My Learning from the student perspective.

_________________________

To see the development of this goal, see my previous blog post.