Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Co-teaching and co-planning for optimal student learning!

Co-teaching and co-planning

Summer time is a laid back time where co-teachers can think about, design and plan for the upcoming school year without the rush of the school day, school week and after school activities.  In my district staff members are given time to collaborate and work on classroom lessons, projects and assessments for co-taught classes. This co-planning time is valued and valuable. It is a good opportunity for co-teachers to share and teach each other the content and how best to differentiate materials for students.

Roadmap to planning

Choose materials and share with co-planners.
Review the course syllabus and match to the school calendar, be sure to include holidays, school activities, school vacations and plan to give major assessments at optimal times.
Design a course calendar with variations in instructional delivery, variations in projects, provide student choice and provide differentiated levels to meet the needs of all learners.
Design a course calendar and include  homework assignments, projects, video materials, with links available where possible to foster student independence and to simulate online learning.
Look at materials used from previous lessons and tweak and add accommodations.
Cull the Internet for best practices and awesome materials that others have built and shared. Be sure to acknowledge all their work! Share your awesome materials with others, leave a trail so that others can acknowledge your work, too.
Check individual education plans and 504 plans for more specific details on how you may accommodate the learning objectives and learning materials for your students.

Reflect and review

Plan time to reflect and review your plans and how the students are managing the materials and your instruction. Time is the biggest excuse we use and it is the one thing we have control over. Make time to make explicit changes based on  your shared discussions and shared decision making.

Ask your students

 Lastly, remember to ask your students what changes will help them, what projects they liked, what helped them learn the material best!