Each month, educators from participating school districts (Banks, Clatskanie, Gaston, Knappa, Neah-Kah-Nie, Nestucca Valley, Scappoose/Sauvie Island, Seaside,St. Helens, Tillamook, Vernonia) will attend four, 90-minute synchronous sessions (also recorded) complemented by customized team coaching. They will have access to virtual meetups to discuss challenges and share ideas with other educators in the region.
The series topics will help educators become effective virtual teachers, promote strong relationships with students and their families, and embed critical teaching strategies in a virtual setting (Universal Design for Learning, Sheltered Instruction, Differentiated Instruction, Trauma-Informed Approach, etc). Specific topics include:
Culturally Responsive-Sustaining Pedagogies: Using Zaretta Hammond’s Ready For Rigor Framework, learn how to honor student voice in lesson choices and assignments.
Student Engagement Strategies: Employ universal design to meet the needs of all learners and set conditions for independent learning.
Home-to-School Connections: Understand each student’s home life and use that knowledge to build stronger partnerships with students and their families/guardians.
Foundations of Online Learning: Attend the Strong Start Academy to confidently launch the school year in a virtual learning environment.
All professional learning activities will be offered two times per week. The Friday training is a repeat of the Wednesday training. October: Building Relationships with Students to Support Successful Learning Partnerships Course Description: The 2020-2021 school year will start a little different this year. Students (and their families, depending on the age of the student) will be required to attend and participate in school at set times online through a mix of video recordings or live lectures supplemented with readings and assessments. Though online courses offer many benefits, they are not right for every student. This session will share strategies and promising practices on how to build meaningful relationships with each student (and their families). Teachers will receive culturally sustaining tools and techniques they can use in planning and delivering lessons.
Learning Outcomes: Educators will learn a breadth of culturally sustaining strategies: How to develop relationships and rapport with each student that focuses on growth mindset; how to establish partnerships with students and their families/guardians for successful online learning; promising practices for self-care; trauma-informed promising practices on engaging students in an online space. We will also set the stage for using Zaretta Hammond’s Ready for Rigor Framework in a virtual setting.
November: Universal Design for Learning: From Design to Delivery Course Description: The design and delivery of virtual lessons are critical to student engagement and academic success. Educators will learn how the Universal Design for Learning UDL framework can improve and optimize teaching and learning for all students. Grounded in science and how children learn, this framework has the ability to develop learners who are purposeful, motivated, resourceful, knowledgeable, strategic, and goal-oriented.
Learning Outcomes: Educators learn how to boost student engagement through Universal Design for Learning. They will deepen their knowledge and use of Zaretta Hammond's Ready for Rigor Framework. They will also explore conditions for engaging dependent learners in online learning and differentiated instruction that meets each student's needs.
December: Fostering Safe, Nurturing and Engaging Distance Learning Spaces Course Description: There is no greater time to create safe, nurturing, and engaging distance learning spaces in order to set the conditions for independent learning, than right now. Using practices from Culturally Responsive Teaching & the Brain to guide our understanding, we will learn about and discuss giving quality equitable feedback to students, the importance of choosing and using culturally-sustaining learning materials, and formative assessment strategies to guide our lesson planning process.
Learning Outcomes: Educators will understand the concepts of upstairs/downstairs brain in relation to creating a safe, nurturing, and engaging learning spaces. They will apply advanced features of Zaretta Hammond's Ready for Rigor Framework to their own practice. They will also discuss how to plan culturally sustaining lessons and projects that honor student voice.
September: Leveraging Educational Technology to Create Positive Virtual Learning Environments Course Description: The first few weeks of school are a critical time for developing positive relationships with students, and establishing strong connections between home and school. While a distance learning setting can provide unique opportunities to engage with students and families differently, it also presents some interesting challenges. Join us as we explore ways to use educational technology to support the creation of a virtual learning environment where students and families will feel safe, connected, supported, and valued.
Learning Outcomes: Educators will develop and strengthen their knowledge of virtual learning environments to support the creation of online spaces where students and families will feel safe, connected, supported and valued. Educators will practice and become more proficient with Canvas, Acellus, Zoom, Google Meet and Google Classroom.