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Pebble Creek Labs
Who Dat! PDF E-mail
Monday, 08 February 2010 12:04

It is Super Bowl Sunday and the game has not yet been played, thus I don’t know the outcome. Regardless, the city of New Orleans is a treasure for America, and has “done good” by Pebble Creek as well. New Orleans is a unit in our ninth grade curriculum, and it’s been a student fav and game changer for hundreds of high school classrooms. It is typically taught as the second unit of the year. The first unit has changed over the years, and regardless of its topic, is always a difficult task. Students come to high school fighting school and literacy work. Yet, when the New Orleans unit comes around, inevitably things turn. Routines and procedures are kicking in, teachers are finding their stride with strategies and curriculum design, and kids are starting to become students. It is a great thing, and has been a savior unit for many a classroom.

 

 
Concept Attainment PDF E-mail
Friday, 29 January 2010 00:00

I just returned from Travis High School in Austin, TX where I work with their Science and Social Science teachers. I introduced one of my favorite instructional strategies, Concept Attainment. I was reminded, in preparing for the training and conducting it, how much fun it is for the learner and teacher. I was also reminded that the hardest aspect of teaching this strategy is understanding what a “concept” truly is.

Props to the Travis teachers for jumping on this strategy. By day’s end each department had created minimally three common CA lessons to teach. That’s implementation!

This work serves as a reminder to me that all schools, of all stripes, need teachers with a rich repertoire of high-yield strategies; and that, teachers, like kids, want variety and choices when instructing.

 
Last Week in Texas PDF E-mail
Wednesday, 20 January 2010 11:24

Just returned from a week in Texas, providing training and classroom coaching at our projects in Austin and Houston.

In both cases we conducted Academic Conferences with the teachers, a new structure for them this year. It is fun to participate in… teachers reflecting on practice, studying data, setting goals.

All important professional practices that we often don’t find the time for unless a structure like Academic Conference is created and implemented.

 
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