Learning, Talking and Creating Change: Different Formats for Conversations About Practice

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Presentation from the 2006 National Resource Center for Paraprofessionals Conference …

Presentation from the 2006 National Resource Center for Paraprofessionals Conference
http://www.nrcpara.org/

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  • 1. Learning, Talking and Creating Change: Different formats for conversations about practice Mary Fisher and Brooke Baker Indiana Paraeducator Support Project Indiana University at IUPUI Wanda Hubbard Indianapolis Public Schools “ Building the Future- One Student at a Time” National Resource Center for Paraprofessionals Minneapolis, May 11, 2006
  • 2. This afternoon
    • IPSP?!?
    • Issues in preparation and inservice professional development across IN
    • Our response
      • Format
      • Content
      • Connection between our learning and K-12 student learning
  • 3. The folks at home today
  • 4. What is IPSP anyway…
    • 2002 survey
    • 2006 follow-up (partial findings)
    • Major issues around preparation
      • Availability
      • Format
      • Content
      • Impact
  • 5. Your thoughts on these issues
    • Availability
      • __________________
    • Format
      • __________________
    • Content
      • __________________
    • Impact
    • 1 day preservice?
    • 1-4 days inservice?
      • _______________
    • Drive by?
    • Other? _______________
    • District driven?
    • Your choice?
    • _______________
    • Session evaluations?
    • Follow-up on the job?
  • 6. Our response
    • The usual
    • Study groups
    • Book clubs
    • Team coaching conversations
    • Individual coaching conversations
  • 7. Study Groups
    • Who
      • 6-8 participants and 1 facilitator
    • What
      • Group decides – Doyle, French, Compilation
    • When
      • During school day or after school
    • Where
      • Conference room
    • Paraview
    • I like the way we shared different ideas about discipline and how to work with the children.
    • In our weekly meetings with a facilitator we have learned to really focus on the positive aspects of our job, not just see the negative parts. We brainstorm, exchange ideas, and we do a lot of reflection on what we are doing in the classroom. This is really important and helpful.
    • Supports
    • Administrative – director, principal
    • Teacher -- classroom
  • 8. Example Agenda
    • New and good
    • Thoughts on the reading
      • “Save the last word”
    • Problem solving about one child
      • Share, clarify, brainstorm, select solution and set a goal for next meeting
    • Share log sheets
    • Agenda for next time
  • 9. Book Club
    • Who
      • 8-10 participants and 1 facilitator
    • What
      • Group decides among 2 or 3 possibles – Paley & Gossins
    • When
      • Any time
    • Where
      • On line
    • Paraview
    • I can enjoy reading and then be stimulated by others’ comments.
    • The time is open. I don’t have to be somewhere. There are people in Indianapolis and southern IN I can “meet” with!
    • I can talk with paraeducators in a non-supervisory role!
    • Supports
    • Access to a computer
    • Books provided (at this time) by IPSP
    The books…
  • 10. Sample Questions
    • “You can’t say you can’t play”
    • By Vivian Gussen Paley
    • Children whom you know who may experience rejection? Commonalities with Paley’s picture?
    • In what ways is the rule fair or unfair?
    • How would you present this rule to your students?
    • Is it easier to open the door?
    • Other ideas for giving children a voice?
  • 11. Team Coaching
    • Who
      • 3-5 team members and 1 facilitator
    • What
      • A child who worries the team
    • When
      • During work hours
    • Where
      • Conference room or classroom
    • Paraview
    • It has been very helpful to meet regularly. We had tried some of these ideas before but we let them fall by the wayside.
    • It is important to have the outside person. She comes without the history. She is not so likely to be discouraged. Her enthusiasm helps us be more willing to try again.
    • She asks us questions that we don’t ask ourselves.
    • Supports
    • Outsider willing to be a critical friend
    • Team investment in the conversation and solutions
  • 12. Individual Coaching Conversation
    • Who
      • 1 coachee and 1 coach
    • What
      • A child who worries the coachee or a new strategy
    • When
      • During work hours
    • Where
      • Classroom
    • Paraview
    • I can’t believe that someone is interested in my work!
    • It works for me when there is a strategy I need to work on so that I can ask my coach for feedback on something specific.
    • Supports
    • Outsider willing to be a critical friend/coach and ask thoughtfully worded questions
    • Teacher support for content/strategy acquired!
  • 13. Why conversation
    • Improve our own practice
    • Generate change for children/youth
    • Energize each of us
    • Identify common interests/concerns
  • 14. Prerequisite for group membership
    • Sincere desire to work with colleagues to improve teaching and learning
  • 15. Changing perceptions about our profession
    • Isolation no longer the norm
    • Knowledge coming from the classroom/schools rather than the outside
    • Educators as the quality controllers …
  • 16. Criteria for our work together
    • The topic chosen for study must concern the teaching/learning process
    • The topic must be within our scope of influence
  • 17. Your thoughts District? Appeal? Coaching Book clubs Study groups Usual
  • 18. Why friendship?
    • The literature and our survey data
    • My experience
    • Bryan’s experience
    • And all the other children
  • 19. The friendship why
    • Need for belonging
    • Significant to families
    • Consortium findings (Meyer, et al, 1998)
  • 20. Frames of Friendship
    • Ghost or guest
    • The inclusion kid
    • “ I’ll help!!”
    • Just another kid
    • A regular friend
    • “ Friends forever”
  • 21. The classroom
    • An instructional environment
      • academics
    • Social environment
      • social rules of human interaction
  • 22. Children benefit from having friends
    • enhanced development and positive self-esteem (Newcomb & Bagewell, 1996).
    • peers can sometimes be better teachers than adults
      • Piaget's "just manageable disequilibrium”
      • Vygotsky's "zone of proximal development"
  • 23. Adult caregivers, including teachers, are responsible for
    • children's well-being and sociopersonal development as well as
    • children’s academic and intellectual development.
  • 24. Consortium Work
    • Based in participatory research
    • Constituents are involved in every step of the research process -- from the question through the method, results, analysis, to the interpretation.
  • 25. Interventions
    • Doable in context
    • With available resources
    • Sustainable over time
    • Constituency owned and operated
    • Culturally inclusive
    • Intuitively appealing
  • 26. Making Connections between our learning and the children’s learning
    • A log sheet
    • An outsider for specified periods of time
    • Teacher interviews
    • Paraeducator interviews
    • Principal interviews
  • 27. Individual goals
    • Learn how to promote independence
    • Avoid being a barrier to interaction
    • Teach student how to respond to teasing
    • Be creative in providing support to my student
  • 28. Student Outcomes
    • changes in proximity
      • Maria, Jasmine, Aaron, and Harry
    • changes in whole class
      • Peter -- prosocial curriculum
      • Maria -- yellow pages and tea party
      • Room 106 and the Garden Project
    • new “strategy”
      • Patrick -- social story
      • Jenny – reading aloud
      • Sara – letters and sounds and concepts about print
    • new activities
      • Isaac --summer camp
  • 29. Outcomes related to paraeducators’ role
    • Copy of IEP objectives
    • Development of an IEP/Activity matrix
    • New vocabulary
    • Access to resources
      • web sites
      • MAAP conference tapes
      • MAS (Durand & Crimmins, 1985)
      • Interactive style questionnaire (Ayers & Hedeen, 1997)
  • 30. How to initiate a conversation
    • Books
      • “ Text”
      • Trade
    • An article
    • Solving a problem
    • Sharing ways to facilitate interaction
      • Like singing together
  • 31. For example, Collecting Text Sets
    • Consider qualities that make a picture book “good” to Read Aloud with children.
      • A TEXT SET of 5-7 books using AUTHOR, GENRE or TOPIC as the common element across the books is an excellent start. For organizing it is helpful to create a “catalogue sheet” that identifies the TITLE, AUTHOR and PUBLISHING information for each book, identifies the age/grade for your text set, gives a brief intro to the books, and provides specific learning engagements – ideas or how you would use the books.
    • Avoid using “holiday”, “dinosaur”, “all about me”, or series books (Clifford, Frog and Toad, Dora, Magic School Bus…).
      • These are great, however, this is an opportunity to help children think about other important issues such as friendship or bullying or loosing someone you love; science concepts like gardening or rocks.
    • This is an opportunity for your VOICE!
  • 32. Thank you!
    • Indiana Paraeducator Support Project IPSP
    • [email_address]
    • [email_address]
    • (317) 274-3326
    • 902 West New York Street
    • Indianapolis, IN 46208
  • 33. Keep on dancing! Keep on...