Sunday, November 30, 2014

ISTE Coaching Academy Series - Course 1 Reflection

I started the ISTE Coaching Academy Series several weeks ago and am just finishing the first of six courses.  The course is aligned with the ISTE Standards for Coaches, which include six standards involving (1) Visionary Leadership, (2) Teaching, Learning, and Assessments, (3) Digital Age Learning Environments, (4) Professional Development and Program Evaluation, (5) Digital Citizenship, and (6) Content Knowledge and Professional Growth.  You can see the full description of the ISTE Standards for Coaches here.  You can see all of the ISTE standards (for teachers, students, adminstrators, and computer science educators) here.

Before I even got started with the course, I re-read through the ISTE Coaching Whitepaper, which you can download for free here.  I originally came across this Whitepaper when I was applying for my current position back in May.  This really helped me to wrap my head around the purpose of the coaching role and the benefits it has for teaching and learning. (You can see another great article on the benefits of coaching from Tech & Learning here). The authors lay out a clear "Situation, Problem, Solution, Result" that succinctly summarizes why coaching is one of the most effective types of professional development that a district or school can invest in.  There is so much good stuff - please download the article and read it in it's entirety.  The "Content Highlights" as stated on the ISTE website are: 

  • Introduction to three coaching models that provide highly effective professional development
  • 10 tips for leveraging technology, coaching, and community** [definitely read this part!]
  • 5 key benefits that result from the integration of technology, coaching and community
  • Introduction to the ISTE Standards for Coaches
Here is a portion of the executive summary that really stuck out to me along with a couple of comments.
Situation: Effective use of technology is essential for learning and teaching in a global, digital age.
We must leverage technology to provide engaging and powerful learning experiences for our students!  This includes assessment resources and ways to measure student achievement using technology.  If we want students to be productive digital-age citizens and be able to compete in a global, digital workplace, we must integrate technology effectively into all aspects of education! 
Problem: Many teachers do not know how to design and support technology-rich learning environments
"Just giving a teacher a technology tool and expecting him or her to maximize its learning potential is a strategy destined for failure" - How often does this happen?  Way too much... 
Solution: Coaching, combined with communities of learning, is a highly effective job-embedded professional development model
PD must be intensive, ongoing, focused on the classroom, and occurring during the teacher's workday.  We also have to allow teachers to collaborate with their colleagues to solve problems and share ideas. 
Result: Teachers experience technology as an effective tool for professional learning and develop the skills to powerfully use technology to improve student learning. 
Indicator of successful PD?  Teachers are implementing what they've learned.  Coaching allows there to be a scaffold of ongoing support and growth that allows for a lot of low-risk practice and feedback.  Quote from one of my fellows: "I'm more willing to try things this year because I know you'll be here to help me when I fail!"  Coach is customizable and personal to the teacher being coached. 
WhitePaper Citation:
Beglau, Monica, Jana Craig-Hare, Les Foltos, Kara Gann, Jayne James, Holly Jobe, Jim Knight, and Ben Smith. Technology, Coaching and Community: Power Partners for Improved Professional Development in Primary and Secondary Education. N.p.: ISTE, 2011. PDF.

    Let's jump in to my reflections and learning from Course 1.  The focus of this course was on Standards 1 (Visionary Leadership) and 4  (Professional Development and Program Evaluation).  This course was really helpful in thinking through my coaching plan (even though I'm already in the middle of the year and a lot of my plan was pre-planned before I took the position), goals, and the vision for my role in managing the change process across my site.  It also helped me to evaluate my professional development experiences so far (both as participant and leader) and think about how to make them more effective in actually making change in the classroom.

    We were able to explore the characteristics of effective professional development, which is defined as professional development that actually changes the way teachers teach.  We were given some stats - if teachers are just given Theory and Practice, there is a 5-15% classroom application rate.  However, if you add to those two Coaching, Study Teams, and Peer Visits, there is an 80-90% classroom application rate.  It is clear that PD needs to be so much more than "sit and get, come to the monthly requirement and have no follow up training, support or accountability, have a nice day!" sort of thing that I think way too many of us have experienced.  It's important to note that Coaching, Study Teams, and Peer Visits are all things that encourage collaboration and reflection - and that is key in any form of teacher growth.  

    If I think of what helped me to grow and change as a teacher, it was exactly that.  Before I started blogging myself, I was reading other teacher's blogs and gleaning from them.  I was in my Master's program doing an Action Research Project that required a lot of data collection but also reflection and analysis.  Then, I began implementing the flipped classroom model with a lot of research and reading.  When I started actually publishing my reflections on this blog, it really allowed me to think through the things I was trying and what I was doing to help my students grow.  Blogging, Twitter, and just the online PLN that has been developed from those two things has been huge in my professional growth and development.  It has given me a space to learn and try new things, but then receive feedback and suggestions for changes or improvements - that ever-so-valuable collaboration piece!

    So how does this apply to the teachers I work with?  Not every teacher is comfortable or ready to get out there and blog or get on twitter to connect and reflect with educators outside of their comfort zone.  This is where coaching comes in, giving those teachers the safe space to reflect as well as the guidance needed, since reflection does take time and focus.  They can receive training on a certain thing, be given time to play with it in a "safe" and "I'll be here when you fail" space, receive follow-up support and encouragement, and a structure, safe way to implement new practices via co-teaching and model lessons. 

    We also looked at the qualities of a good coach.  A few that stuck out to me (this is not all-inclusive) were:

    • Ability to build trust with peers - this is huge.  I actually really liked the fact that I started this position in a brand new school and district as it eliminated the need to "transfer" relationships from colleague to coach.  While many teachers know about my blog or follow me on Twitter, I try to keep a low profile in terms of "my expertise" and focus on meeting them where they are and helping to meet their needs.  Trust is critical because we are challenging our fellows and pushing their thinking.  We can't come across as a 'know-it-all' or someone who is judging them.  They must know that we are here to support them and that they can trust us to keep a level of confidentiality.  The course gave six building blocks of trust: Compassion, Communication, Commitment, Collaboration, Ability, and Integrity.  I hope that I model of of these aspects to my teachers, and I have definitely seen their confidence and willingness to try new things grow as our relationship has grown.
    • Communicates well and listens to teachers.  This ties in to building trust.  If a teacher knows that you care about what they are experiencing and what they are thinking, that helps them to build confidence and trust in you.  I strive to be a good communicator who listens to teacher needs and finds ways to meet them where they are and take their next step, wherever it may be.
    • Can show teachers how to replace what they are doing with something better, not just present technology as an add-on. Teachers already have so much on their plate.  Add all the new Common Core stuff, and then throw laptops at all their students, and they are overwhelmed.  One of my focuses (foci ;)) this year has been to present technology as a solution to a problem they have - something they want to do or are already doing non-digitally and show them how to make it more efficient or effective with a technology tool.  When I did some workshops a few weeks ago on Google Forms, Doctopus, Socrative, and Online Annotation Tools, they were all advertised in terms are "Are you looking for a way to..." - it didn't mention the tech tool, it presented a solution.
    • Provides a safe, risk-taking environment and is non-threatening, non-judgmental, and accepting.  If the teachers don't feel safe, they won't be willing to try.  It's the same for our students.  I was thinking yesterday about my collegiate basketball experience as an analogy for risk-taking and growth.  I only played for 1 year due to multiple injuries (torn meniscus, ruptured achilles tendon, and herniated disc in my back), but it was such a different experience than my high school playing years... and it was all based on the coach.  My high school coach was encouraging, even during failure.  He inspired us to take risks, try new skills, and was always looking for improvement, not perfection.  I felt free to play, learn, grow, and enjoy the sport.  When I got to the collegiate level, after just a few weeks, I felt strapped down. I felt anxious.  I was always worried about the anger and disappointment that would ensue if I made a mistake. I was not able to take risks because it might be "wrong".  I was afraid to try because the eyes were always looking for the failure, not the improvement or successes.  In a situation where I could have continued to grow and flourish, I shut down.  I want to be like my high school coach to the fellows I work with.  I want to "inspire them to take risks, try new skills, and look for improvement, not perfection".  I want them to "feel free to play, learn, grow, and enjoy teaching and learning with technology".
    While I am far from the perfect coach, these are a few of the qualities I am continuing to work on as I grow professionally.  Seeing the list of qualities and reflecting on each of them really gave me a goal of different areas of strength I need to keep nurturing and different areas of weakness to focus on improving in.

    Another area we looked at in this course was the Coaching Cycle.  We use a three-stage Prebrief-Implementation-Debrief cycle, but I really liked some of the areas that were included in this cycle.  They started with Assess and Set Goals.  I think this is something I can do a better job of next year when I start working with my teachers.  Assessing means not only evaluating their technology skills but also their instructional strategies.  This may mean starting off by just being in the teacher's classroom and debriefing on the instructional strategies they are already using, and identifying goals and areas for growth.  I think this approach would help us to begin with a focus on instruction and less on the technology.  Once we have set some initial instructional goals, then we can assess the teacher's technological readiness, areas of strength, and areas of weakness.  From those two pieces of data, we can set goals that marry the instructional and technological together.  Some goals will be more instructionally focused, others will be "learn the tech tool" focused, and others will coincide so seamlessly you may not even realize it.

    After these two starting phases of the cycle, which I think are important to revisit 3-4 times throughout the year, the model was similar to the three-stage cycle we use.  They called it "Prepare, Implement, Reflect", but it was the same idea.  In the prepare stage, you may be planning an activity or project, you may be sharing lessons and resources, you may be creating or adapting materials, or you may just be reviewing or learning tech skills (or any combo of those).  Throughout the prepare phase, it is the role of the coach to ask probing questions that will help the teacher to make their learning activities more innovative and technologically-rich (all with the goal of greater student understanding and engagement).  The implementation phase can be modeling, co-teaching, or just cognitive (coach observing), but it is important to bring up areas that may need to be adjusted throughout the lesson and have a way to assess student learning, even if it is just one lesson.  Lastly, the Reflect phase is all about determining the effectiveness of the lesson implementation and setting the stage for the next cycle.  In the last few weeks, I have been modifying the prompts in my coaching journal to include more goal setting and reflection on effectiveness of the lesson.  As I've written before in one of my last reflections, the two debriefs I've done with these prompts have gone very well and I felt they were effective tools for reflection.

    The next section talked about creating coaching norms.  The whole purpose of norms is to help teams or groups work together more efficiently.  We were able to see a lot of different examples of norms and were asked to come up with 3-5 for our coaching.  Here is what I came up with:

    • Start and End on Time - be respectful of both coach and fellow's schedule.  If something comes up, communicate in a timely manner before meeting time.  Be committed to the schedule and block off the time on your calendar.
    • Limit Distractions - Meetings are for planning and debriefing.  Schedule other times for "venting".
    • Hold yourself personally accountable and accept ownership for your own learning - I am there to coach, facilitate, and teacher, but it is up to my fellows to work with me and help carry out the mission.
    • We will discuss issues, not people - Our overarching goal is to focus on student learning and how to improve or deepen the learning currently happening in the classroom with the support of technology.  Stay focused on this "third point"

    Our culminating assignment was to develop a coaching plan and give feedback on other's submitted coaching plans.  We also were given a reflection guide, but heck - I'm a blogger... it was much easier to synthesize and reflect on here - then I have the added benefit of sharing my learning with others and receiving feedback, thoughts, and experiences from you (please comment and share!) 

    Thanks for reading!

    See all of my ISTE Coaching Academy Course Reflections here:
    Course 1 Reflections 
    Course 2 Reflections,
    Course 3 Reflections
    Course 4 Reflections

    Course 5 Reflections

    Course 6 Reflections

    Friday, November 28, 2014

    Desmos implementation and use ideas - worth missing a nap opportunity for...

    I could have spent the last 3+ hours taking a much needed nap on this Thanksgiving Break.  Instead, I got caught up looking up awesome Desmos and Math Lesson / Activity Ideas.  It's times like these I wish I had a classroom to implement these into right away.  Well, in a way, I do - I don't have my own classroom, but I do have 5 math fellows to try new things out in!  My brain is flooding with ideas of ways to use it in both little bits (lesson intros, aids, etc) and big bits (whole-class period exploration and inquiry activities).  So, even though I don't teach this course anymore, I am going through my Math Analysis (PreCal) concept list and writing down ways Desmos can be used as a tool to help students discover and explore math concepts and/or aid in providing a visual or model for the math concept.  

    As I'm going through my  Math Analysis Unit Map and almost every single concept could have been explored (think discovery / inquiry) and/or reinforced with the visuals and modeling provided through using Desmos.  
    (To see all the resources I have aligned with these concepts already, as well as video lessons for every concept, please see my student site at

    Oh, and don't forget about the awesome activities at or  What a world of opportunity!  Life. Is. Changed.

    Here are my thoughts - there are some concepts I don't have notes by but I left them in there so you can see the whole unit picture. If you have ideas (or activities already designed and are willing to share!!!) for any of these, please comment and share. The document linked below is "commentable", so please feel free to comment there or on this post.

    This is just a list for one of the courses I taught for the last 5 years.  I know there are a lot more things Desmos can do that is outside the scope of this course, so I added an "other" section at the very end for other "cool stuff I don't want to forget" but that doesn't align with what my brain has been wrapped around for so long.  There are also a lot of concepts in this list that are "review" for Math Analysis and thus are originally taught in Algebra 1, Geometry, or Algebra 2.

    One of the things that sticks out to me so much is that these visuals and models of the math would have helped SO many of my students do more than just memorize procedures and formulas.  They would have been able to "see" it and thus (hopefully) make more sense of it.  While I can't go back and change the past, I can help to change the future!!

    To go directly to this document and add comments or suggestions, please click here

    Tuesday, November 25, 2014

    EdCafes: Student Voice with Choice [Guest Blog Post]

    Dawn Lam is an English Teacher at Beckman High School and one of my amazing fellows this school year. After attending #EdCampUCLACenterX a few weeks ago, she came back with the idea of doing an EdCamp-Style discussion called an EdCafe. I can't take any credit for her planning or implementation because she just took the idea and ran with it (which I LOVE!) - thankfully, I was able to sit in and be a part of one of her class periods during the EdCafe to see the awesomeness that unfolded. I asked her to write a guest blog post here at Flipping with Kirch to share how she came about the idea of an EdCafe, describe her process, and reflect on the implementation and impact on student learning. You can follow Dawn on Twitter @MrsLamBHS

    Thank you, Crystal for allowing me to be a guest blogger! Working with Crystal has been such an awesome learning experience and I feel so fortunate to have her as a coach/mentor.

    I came across the Edcafe model after attending an Edcamp earlier in the month. I tweeted about my experience and a response mentioned that I should check out the student version, Edcafes at As soon as I read through Katrina’s site, I knew I wanted to try out this discussion model in my English classroom.

    Essentially in an Edcafe, 4 students act as facilitators and lead a discussion centered on a topic of their choosing in each corner of the classroom. The rest of the class gets to decide which of the 4 discussions they’d like to attend based on in their interest in the topic. After the allotted time (I allowed 7 minutes for the discussion), 4 new facilitators lead discussions in the classroom corners. Therefore, a participant has the choice to attend 2 different discussions during the Edcafe. It’s a great way to offer students choice during class discussions.

    Here is a video montage of EdCafes in action:

    My students were examining the DBQ: What Caused the Dust Bowl? to provide some historical background to the novel, To Kill a Mockingbird, and as a way to help provide them skills necessary for future AP History courses. The students were examining historical documents in groups and beginning to hypothesize the causes in preparation for an essay. To be honest, I just added the Edcafe to the lesson plans immediately, without too much planning and luckily, I was very happy with the results.

    I created Google sheets for each period and handpicked my facilitators (4 per session: 2 sessions). I posted the sheets on my Haiku page and asked the facilitators to fill out the sheet with their chosen topics by the evening before the Edcafe.   

    Here are the questions they came up with:

    Two days before the Edcafe, I showed each class the Edcamp  video and posted it to my Haiku site. I orally explained my own experience as a participant at an Edcamp and ran through the main parts: facilitator introductions, discussions, and takeaways. Ideally, I would have shown them the Edcafe video, but I did not come across this until the day of our Edcafes.

    The day of Edcafes, I began with a brief overview via Google slides. 

    Each facilitator stood up and presented their topics and classroom locations, while I had the Google sheet projected on the screen. Students had 1 minute to get to their corners and discussions began. During the first session, I noticed some facilitators had notes, research and/or questions prepared. Others informally held a discussion, posing questions to keep the discourse continuing. I put 7 minutes on the timer and as an observer, circulated the room, taking notes of what was being said and who was speaking in each corner. Once the timer went off, I again allowed 1 minute for transition to session 2.

    After session 2, students went back to whole class seating and had 2 minutes to write a takeaway on a post-it for my exit board. One by one, each facilitator stood up and shared a takeaway from the Edcafe discussion he/she hosted.

    The "Exit Board".  Each student has a number
    and posts their sticky note on their number.

    So...what did I learn? 

    First of all, the Edcafe allows for student choice, which immediately makes the discussions more engaging. 

    Secondly, the session topics need to be posted and made available as soon as possible, so students have an opportunity to think about which discussion they’d like to attend. After researching Edcafes in more detail after our first try, I noticed I need to encourage facilitators to prepare a catchy name for their session and present a more engaging introduction to help them “sell” their session to the class. 

    Finally, depending on the dynamics of the class, it would be super helpful to provide facilitators a sheet to complete in order to prepare for their discussions. I came across this one and plan to adapt it to fit my students’ needs. Check out Ms. Fillingham’s site for more help!

    Here are some results:

    After 2 Edcafes, I created a survey via Google forms to get my students’ feedback. My goal was to find out what students thought about the model, measure whether I was meeting my class objectives, and also learn from students the best way to adapt the Edcafes to meet their needs.

    Thanks Dawn for sharing your EdCafe experience. Don't forget to follow Dawn @MrsLamBHS and let us know how your EdCafe experience goes!

    Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!

    Friday, November 21, 2014

    Coaching Reflections - Take 3 (lots of great ideas, lots of encouragement)

    This was another really positive week with a lot of progress.  I was able to meet with all my fellows, go to half of a Discovery Education Common Core Training, and then actually make it to see my fellow DLCs on Wednesday, which was much much needed.  You can't underestimate the value of collaboration and community!

    One of the best parts of the week was when I was heading back to my office to grab my keys before heading home on Friday.  I ran into a teacher and said the friendly, "Have a great weekend", and he replied by saying, "I just want to thank you for being a ray of sunshine on our campus this year for tech support."  That was after a different teacher popped his head into my office on Thursday and told me what a positive difference I was making on the campus not only for him, but for so many people.  He mentioned specifically it was the fact that people felt they could come to me with any type of tech question and not feel stupid.  Comments like those are really meaningful, especially when I consider the leap of faith I took in leaving the comfort of the only position/school/district I'd known to become a Digital Learning Coach.  Every day it's that much more clear to me that God has opened the doors to bring me to the place He wants me to be...and I'm absolutely loving it!

    Here are some reflections on what we are doing and the progress we are making in finding ways to integrate technology into the curriculum in ways that will improve and deepen student learning and/or make teaching and learning more efficient or effective.

    Fellow #1
    This fellow had seen Padlet and had talked with some of her colleagues who were using it and wanted to use it as a different type of class opener.  She has been using Google Forms and Infuse Learning to ask students questions about previous or upcoming concepts, get feedback on the homework, etc.  We had a great discussion about how she really feels like this integration of technology has her students more engaged in class and how she is able to really see what her students know and don't know much more clearly.  I asked her if she thought the students were more engaged because everything was still so "new" and exciting, and she said that she wasn't sure, but it would be interesting to see how things panned out as the year went on.  So, we decided to try out Padlet for a similar learning goal, but to "mix it up" for her students.  When students entered class, they went on Haiku, where she has a "Interactive in Class" page that everything is posted on for class openers or class activities.  The Padlet posed a question in the title of the wall and students answered to the best of their ability.  Both me and the teacher were able to walk around and ask students about their response, and help them to dig a little deeper.  Students are able to edit their own response, so many went back and added or modified their original response.

    They started going over homework, which was on graphing absolute value functions, and I decided to plug the functions into Desmos to check a few things out I wasn't sure about.  After a few minutes, I had the opportunity to show my fellow the graphs and we decided to project them on the screen and have a class discussion.  So, this was totally impromptu and in no way planned, but it turned out to be an awesome learning experience for me, my fellow, and her students!

    Afterwards, I was inspired to put together an "absolute value graph discovery activity" for Desmos, which you can see here... This has not yet been implemented in any classes, so I would appreciate any thoughts and feedback you have for it.

    Fellow #2
    This fellow planned a Thinglink activity for his students.  They have to choose four pictures that represent the time period / event they are studying and then "annotate" them using the Thinglink tags.  They can use text, other images, or videos as their tags.  They will be working in their study groups on this, but they can't "divide and conquer" - they must work together and collaborate on all four of them.

    We also we able to talk about digital citizenship in terms of choosing images that are "labeled for non-commercial re-use" and citing the images with the image URL.  While this does narrow the available pictures, it helps teach an important lesson to students that everything on the internet is not free to use.  By embedding it into the lesson, there is immediate, practical application of this aspect of online ethics.

    Funny enough, when I was going through my feedly yesterday, I came across an article titled "How to Attribute Creative Commons Photos".  Check it out as a great resource.

    Implementation:  I visited one class period of the students working on the Thinglink activity.  They were highly engaged in analyzing the images, picking out different things they noticed and connecting it to what they had learned.  The teacher gave students the first image, and then gave them 3 topics of which they had to find their own image to annotate.  They embedded the Thinglinks into a Haiku Wikiproject.  I am looking forward to seeing the finished project and analyzing the use of Thinglink to help meet the learning objectives of this activity.

    Fellow #3
    We co-planned a lesson last week that embedded Socrative questions within the lesson.  This teacher does a great job of calling on all students throughout the class period but we wanted to be able to collect feedback from the entire class at certain points throughout the lesson.  I co-taught with her during 1st period and helped her navigate the Teacher-Paced questions throughout the lesson.  We weren't super happy with it; it stopped the flow of the class too much.  So, for 2nd period, I suggested using the Student-Paced questions, and just telling the students how many questions to answer at a time.  For example, it may have asked them what "m" was, then was "b" was, and then what the whole equation was (for y=mx+b).  That way, students could answer all 3 of those questions at their pace and get immediate feedback after each step.  The teacher could see the student responses on a nice grid as they came in and they were marked "red" or "green" right away.  The visual was just a lot nicer for the student-paced.  We had a great debrief and agreed that even though it was clunky and a little difficult, it did help to meet the learning goals of collecting better feedback from students throughout the lesson.  So, we are going to continue to give it a try and work through the weird parts.  Great lessons learned, and I'm glad we were able to do it together!

    Fellow #4
    With this fellow, we just practiced with some tech.  We went over Google Forms again and I showed her "summary of responses" for a form she created for one of her classes last week.  I also showed her some features of her Epson Interactive Whiteboard to get her mind thinking of ways she may be able to use that.  We also talked about the Socrative Exit Ticket  and she is really excited to use that in her unit starting after Thanksgiving Break.  She thought she wanted to do a Google Form for it, but that would mean she would have to create a new one for each day.  With the Exit Ticket, it is pre-made, and all she has to do is orally tell the students what to respond to for the third question and it will not require as much pre-planning on her part.  This will be fun!

    Fellow #5 
    This fellow developed a set of "I Can" statements for her current unit and then put them on a Google Form for the students to self-evaluate where they were at.  Keep in mind this was not prompted or guided by me at all! (Yay - our mission is to develop technologically self-sufficient teachers and they are definitely getting to that point!).  We were able to discuss how powerful having those statements are not only for the teacher in terms of planning, but for the student in terms of monitoring their own learning.  I hope to build on this to help the math department as a whole have "I Can" statements for each of their courses.

    Fellow #6
    We finally had the chance to debrief all of our Socrative activities from last week, and it was really good.  I did some searching online for some different prebrief and debrief questioning prompts, and I like what I found - I've done 2 debriefs talking through these questions and they have gone well.  I'm still looking to improve it, so please give me feedback!  (see below this section)

    We gave a student feedback survey on Google Forms and my fellow was able to see how helpful it was to gather student feedback and get student opinion on class activities.  Most of them enjoyed the "Space Race" activity the most, but they also enjoyed the other two types (teacher-paced and student-paced).  They gave some great suggestions in terms of having time to review the PDF results during class time where they could ask more questions rather than that just being the homework the night after the activity.  We are excited to continue using it.

    We set four clear goals for this fellow that we will be focusing on over the next several months:
    1. Collecting student notes and posting a picture each day on Haiku as examples for both students and teachers.  We set up Dropbox Camera Upload so she can snap a picture with her iPhone and it syncs automatically to her computer for easy upload to Haiku
    2. Start using a timer in class to help with transitioning to different activities and monitoring the length of different activities in class.
    3. Start playing around with the room arrangement (currently in rows) to see what we could do if we had partners, groups of 3, etc.  And, how instruction could change to take advantage of the collaboration.
    4. Continue to use Socrative. We are starting by planning a 2-5 question warmup for each day.  However, we would like to expand to using the Exit Ticket, Live within the Lesson, and then continue doing a review activity on Socrative.

    PREBRIEF REFLECTION (complete before lesson implementation)
    What are the learning goals/objectives?  What outcomes are you hoping to see?  
    How will you know if students have met these goals / objectives / outcomes?
    What activities, problems, tasks, or questions are going to help you achieve those goals?
    Is this lesson introducing new knowledge or is it practicing / reviewing /  applying knowledge already taught?

    • What do you want me to look for?
    • What do you want me to listen for?
    • What do you want me to do? (Model, Co-Teach, Cognitive)


    Lesson Notes & Observations from Crystal:
    Lesson Reflections and Ideas for the future (from fellow & coach)
    Reflection from Fellow (complete after lesson. We will discuss these questions during our debrief):
    • Did you enjoy the lesson? Why or why not?
    • Did the students enjoy the lesson? Why or why not?  What evidence do you have?
    • Was the lesson effective at meeting the lesson goals / student outcomes? Why or why not?  What evidence do you have?
    • If you taught this lesson or used this tool again, what would you keep the same? Why?
    • If you taught this lesson or used this tool again, what would you refine, change or disband? Why?
    • What did you learn from teaching this lesson or using this tool about yourself, your students, or your content area?
    • What problems or issues did you have along the way (in planning or implementation) that you had to address or solve?  How did you do this?
    • What would you like to learn more about? (teaching strategy, tech tool, etc).  What should our next Coaching Cycle be about?


    Notes from Debrief (in addition to Lesson Reflections above)

    Fellow #7
    We just practiced with some tech today, mainly uploading files to Google Drive, sharing to "everyone with the link" and then hyperlinking the Google Document in a mass email to parents through the grading system... too many steps than are needed for a "simple" task, but it was the only way to accomplish it.  We also sent out our "live" Google Sheet for signups for an upcoming music concert/assembly and watched as people logged on within minutes of sending out the emails and signed up their names.  That was fun :)

    Fellow #8
    We did a lot of brainstorming today, mainly with figuring out the settings for Haiku assessments that would allow students to view the results only when the teacher wanted them to (i.e. after everyone had finished the assessments).  You can do that by setting a "password" for taking and then a "password" for reviewing.
    We also were trying to figure out a way to have students sign up for the bi-weekly (Tues/Thurs) tutorial period in an online way.  Right now, every teacher just has a signup sheet.  We thought through the process of having students sign up on a Google Form.  I told her about FormLimiter, but that would mean that students couldn't "erase" their name once they had signed up and she would need to make a new form for every session (twice a week).  So, I showed her how you can turn a form "off", and how you can "hide" rows on the response spreadsheet, so she could continue to use the same form/spreadsheet, turn it "off" once the max number of students had signed up (around 30), and then turn it back on for the next tutorial period.  Sort of clunky work flow, but we'll see if it will work.

    Fellow #9
    This fellow had seen my tweet about Thinglink so wanted to explore it.  We ended up exploring Thinglink and as tools for students to annotate/take notes on both images (Thinglink) and Videos (  She is going to have them do an activity when we get back from Thanksgiving with Thinglink and still exploring options for using, possibly as a tool for a video they watch and take notes on at home.  It's always exciting meeting with this fellow and I love the ideas we are able to collaborate on!

    Other Teachers:
    We had a great PD session for the Late Start day where one of the teachers shared with the staff a few "Gradual Release of Responsibility" strategies and activities he uses in his class to help create a more student-centered classroom.  I was only able to stay for 2 of the 3 activities, but they were so great and I asked if I could come in to observe his class and even video tape the activities to be able to share privately with the staff on our Haiku page.  He was very open to that, so I look forward to the next time he uses one of the activities.

    One of the activities was called "Bellringers", where basically you give the students a topic (a piece of text, a math problem, etc) and students go up front in groups of 3-10 and have a certain amount of time (2-5 minutes) have a discussion about the concept/idea/passage/problem in front of the class.  The teacher sits at the back with a bell, and when he/she hears something really profound, something the teacher "would have said", or something "you should definitely have in your notes", he rings the bell.  He keeps track of who he rings the bell for as a part of their participation grade, so students up front are striving to really participate and add meaning to the conversation, whereas students in the audience are listening closely and paying attention to when the bell is rung for really key ideas.

    The other activity was a Vocabulary one (I don't remember the exact name) where students are given a list of up to 30-40 words some time in advance. Then, multiple strips of paper (probably 10-15 sets) are created, each with 10 random words from the list of 30-40.  All the strips are put in a bucket and the students grab a strip one at a time and go up front.  They have exactly 1 minute to use at least 5 of the words in context of answer a certain question/problem/concept.  Each of the strips is labeled w/ a letter so the teacher knows which list of words they are working off of.  He gets through an entire class in one period because it is literally one minute... the next student grabs their slip when the previous student begins so they have a minute to prep, and so on.
    One of the key points is that the teacher always goes first, before any student(s) do these tasks.  I am very excited to see these in action!

    Another great idea that was shared today was having some sessions during the tutorial period (Tues/Thurs for 30 minutes for all students) for "Basic Tech Proficiencies" for students (but not calling them basic...) such as sending an email, adding an attachment, typing in Google Docs, etc.  There are a lot of students, especially our EL/Transitional ones, who do not have experience with that and then "feel dumb" when they can't do it in class.  So, we want this to be positive, supportive, in small groups, and helpful.  I'm looking forward to being able to get this launched.

    I have started meeting consistently with a non-fellow new teacher to help her with some different things.  She is actually doing some pretty awesome stuff already with VideoScribe, Prezi, Kahoot, Haiku Deck,and other stuff.  On Friday, we met for an hour and brainstormed organization for her Haiku pages and started adding content.  We are going to meet again next Tuesday to continue working on her Haiku pages, but also start talking about collaboration with Google Docs, Voice recording with either Google Voice, YouTube, or something else (still need to research), and see how else we can help make her first year teacher life more efficient.  I am really enjoying meeting with this new teacher!

    I also met with a few random teachers to work on Google Drive (some just basic organization, others using Doctopus), getting Apple TV connected, and other small stuff

    In other news, the math department got a site license for Kuta!  I'll be doing an overview/training for them on an upcoming late start just to make sure they are able to take full advantage of the features the software provides.  Wahoo!

    Student Tech Team:
    We had our second lunch meeting this week and continued to talk through our plans for the year.  I do have a great group of students and I'm looking forward to building our team together.

    I met with a student who just transferred to our school from up north who was actually a part of a student tech team for a 1-to-1 iPad rollout.  We got to chat for about 30 minutes about how they did things and how things worked.  They were lucky enough to be able to actually have a class period "Technology Internship" so students were on duty during their actual class period and were getting credit for the time they were spending on it.

    I also met with two of my seniors who are on the team to talk about leadership and to brainstorm ideas in a smaller group.  It was really positive and helped us to get on the same page with the goals and vision for the team.  I am looking forward to meeting again on Monday and then launching the team the week after Thanksgiving.

    I hope you all have a fabulous Thanksgiving Week!

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