Using PearDeck in a proficiency-based environment

Looking at tech tools for formative assessment

Chrome apps and extensions for differentiationIn a proficiency-based learning environment, frequent, flexible, and transparent assessments become cornerstones of the practice. The importance of formative assessment can’t be understated, and these tech tools make it so much easier.

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Having the hard conversations in Southern Vermont

It takes a village to talk about substance abuse with students

The 21st Century Classroom podcastLondonderry, VT-based non-profit The Collaborative is in its 14th year of “Refuse to Use”, a substance abuse-prevention program that creates community conversations about alcohol, tobacco and drugs.

They base their curriculum off hyper-regional data and depend on community members — parents, educators and students — telling them what to talk about next.

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Are you a “Learning Maximizer”?

How getting to know our students powers up personalization

How do you maximize student learning? What are the ways we can do this, and how might our roles and labels get in the way of helping all students?

Words matter. Job titles, given labels, justly or not, can affect how we feel about ourselves and our jobs. They can affect our we are perceived by our students, and how our students perceive themselves.

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The rise of the project-based PLP

A new recipe for Personalized Learning Plans

Crossett Brook PLPsRather than trying to get students to care about existing PLPs, some schools are revamping their PLP process to start with what students care about. They are asking students to pursue their passions by crafting projects based on their personal interests and deepest curiosities.

The new recipe that is emerging: start with a cool personalized project and then build the PLP around it.

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What flexible seating looks like in action

Physical aspects of a student-centered classroom

flexible classroomsSometimes what seems like a little change can make a big difference. That’s what two Proctor Elementary School teachers recently confirmed when they decided to incorporate flexible seating into their classrooms.

It’s been such a success that now every classroom in their school features some sort of flexible seating options for students.

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New year? Time for a reset

The Developmental Designs remix

Ever notice how for some kids Mondays are a lot tougher than Wednesdays? Any time there’s a break in the school routine, some kids are likely to fall out of sync. Similarly, after the long December break, crisp classroom routines can seem like a foggy memory.

After any break, students and teachers are often eager to dive back into learning. But in the heady rush of a new calendar year, it can be easy to breeze over re-establishing clear and explicit classroom routines and expectations.

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Our 2017 Holiday Reading Guide

A very happy holidays and good reading for all

There’s nothing like relaxing with a good book for the holidays. And if you find yourself with a little quiet time and are looking for some reading recommendations, we, as always, are here to help.

Here’s what we’re reading for the holidays.

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Looking at proficiency-based assessment for students with disabilities

Making sure Proficiency work includes all students

practice for proficiencyRecently, I was in a middle school team meeting walking folks through some proficiencyb-based learning scenarios and one teacher said “I have a student who is performing at a 4th grade level, what do I do?”

Sound familiar?

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Introducing “Cabot Leads”

Use service learning to grow your community

a model for service learning

What do you do when you’re a 5th-through-8th middle school housed in two separate buildings?

If your 7th-and-8th graders are with the high school, and 5th and 6th graders are off on their own, how can you provide an opportunity all middle graders to feel involved in the middle school? How do you promote leadership and engagement, and connect students to their communities?

For the Cabot School, service learning is the answer.

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Self-care for educators

4 ways to stay well and focused heading into the holidays

@ThisIsVTEDIt’s that time of the year again: you’re almost to the halfway point, almost to the big holiday break. This time of year can be demanding: everyone’s looking forward to vacation, and it’s hard to stay focused on the classroom.

More than that, you’ve been working incredibly hard for and with your students. You’re so very ready for that break. There’s just one more week to go. So let’s talk a little self-care for educators.

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