Council for Character Development: Council

 
 
 
Council
Students In Action
 
 
Students In Action
 
 
 
Academic Culture

Council for Character Development

Every Friday we meet to discuss a topic around character development and 21st century skills. This is a vital classroom practice in my class. Because blended learning is so high paced and intense, students need support as not only learners but people as well. Students transition from their seats to prepare to watch videos or form a circle around the perimeter of our carpet. Our council pieces are brought out. Council pieces are small items that both the students and I have brought which hold major meaning to us. Once we meet, the only person who can speak is the one holding the council piece. We begin by making a dedication to someone in our life or someone we have beeng thinking about. At the end of the dedications, we begin our council. The talking piece is passed around and all students share their thoughts or may pass. Sometimes we will bring an on-demand journal to share, or students may respond to a posed question.  


Strategy Resources (2)
Students In Action
 
 
 
Presentation
 
 
We normally start council by reflecting on a topic we are discussing or that is relevant to what students need for motivation and focus.Students respond to the prompt on the bottom of the slide using their interactive journals. Once they have all had enough time to respond in their interactive journals, they music-pair-share what they have written. We then meet on the carpet to share out our thoughts. We have a whole group discussion using the sentence stems students were given with the prompt or students may freely respond to our topic.
 
Students In Action
 
 
Presentation
 
 
We normally start council by reflecting on a topic we are discussing or that is relevant to what students need for motivation and focus.Students respond to the prompt on the bottom of the slide using their interactive journals. Once they have all had enough time to respond in their interactive journals, they music-pair-share what they have written. We then meet on the carpet to share out our thoughts. We have a whole group discussion using the sentence stems students were given with the prompt or students may freely respond to our topic.
Freddy Esparza
Aspire Titan Academy
Los Angeles, CA


 

About this strategy

Prep Time:
Long
Subject:
Math
Grade:
Third grade
Similar Strategies
Assessment & Data
Multiple Sources of Data

Since we use a preselected curriculum for math, the majority of data is collected and analyzed using the highlighted resources. Being a blended learning school we know it's important to look at multiple sources of data and consider where our students are at at that time whether at the start, midpoint, or end of a unit. Using each assessment as a snapshot of where students are at in order to plan/prioritize for both online and offline instructional strategies/steps is my main focus. (See screencast for further information) 

 
Stakeholder Collaboration
Freddy's Approach to Collaboration & Communication

Communicating and collaborating with both colleagues and students' families is crucial in a blended environment. This is especially true if a teacher is doing something that looks very different from other teachers at his school. Check out how Freddy communicates and collaborates with both her colleagues at school and his students' families and how his methods of communication and collaboration have evolved over time.

 
Blended Learning Model Overviews
Rotational Model with Two Groups

We began to pilot blended learning three years ago starting with K-2. So our 3rd grade students have had three years of blended learning and we have a solidified understanding of what works. At Aspire Titan Academy, we use a rotational model in both math and ELA, which provides students 90 to 120 minutes of individual computer time daily. In both math and ELA, students are divided into two group, each spending half their time in teacher-led instruction and the remainder of working on the computers. While they’re on the computers, students use either DreamBox Learning (math), i-Ready or myON (reading), or an enrichment program, such as a typing software program.

Number of Students: 26 students

Number of Adults: one teacher; various other adults support during specific times (e.g., Blended Learning Coordinator, Special Education Teachers, etc.)

Length of Class Period/Learning Time: 120 minutes (Reading and Writing Block)

Digital Content/Ed Tech Tools Used on a Regular Basis: MyOn; i-Ready

Hardware Used on a Regular Basis: Lenovo ThinkPads (1:2 ratio); SMARTboard; Document Camera; iPad (for teacher)

Key Features: station rotation; student agency

 
 
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