2018-2019 is over.
Time to REFLECT!
Ferndale Middle School implemented Opportunity Culture MultiClassroom Leaders for Math, ELA and Science (my subject specialty). Thanks also to Public Impact for being a part of this implementation as well. I was able to assist 10 science/social studies teachers in our building by co-planning, co-teaching, modeling, observing, coaching, and more as a MultiClassroom Leader II. I was also able to impact the ~750 scholars in our building. Big jump from the 100 I worked with while my classroom at Allen Jay Prep. There were several challenges throughout the year, but let’s break it down …
What we did … Quizlet & Visual Vocabulary.
I’ve read several articles & books plus attented numerous professional development workshops regarding vocabulary. From the pile of these possibilities came two epic strategies – Quizlet & Visual Vocabulary!
The moment I found Quizlet was the moment I freed up a ton of instructional time in and out of the classroom. I let go of the creation of vocabulary flashcard lists that took hours to create and were often lost, misplaced or never done. If you’re a North Carolina Science Teacher, then enjoy our created lists here.
I started creating Visual Vocabulary Powerpoints roughly three years ago. I realized that scholars truly couldn’t “see” information we had listened to, read or interacted with. They needed to fill in the blanks of their imagination with something concrete. Words on a flashcard or page can have little cognitive value, but pictures can unlock a full understanding. Every vocabulary word in our Quizlet came with a beautiful picture! Let the creativity flow and the visualization will follow! If you’re a North Carolina Science Teacher, then enjoy our created powerpoints for 6th, 7th and 8th grade Science.
Why we did … Quizlet & Visual Vocabulary.
The NC Grade 6 /7 Final Exams and the NC Grade 8 End-of-Grade Test are basically reading assessments with few visuals. Here is a released assessment from 2015. If our scholars could not bring key words to life, then they would be at a disadvantage to show competency. Attempting to answer the question below becomes daunting if critical words (like Upwelling) cannot pop off the page.
1 It Improves Reading Comprehension. Research has shown that kids need to understand 98% of the words they read to understand what they are reading. Improving vocabulary skills will improve their understanding of novels and textbooks.
2 It’s Important to Language Development. Children who develop a rich vocabulary tend to be deeper thinkers, express themselves better and read more. Improving language and literacy skills early in life will help them be more successful academically and communicatively.
3 Communicating Ideas. Successful communication or “saying what you mean” is dependent upon a good vocabulary base. Using the right words when talking, makes you a more effective communicator.
4 Expressing Yourself in Writing. Having a good vocabulary to draw from can help you write more effectively. Students need to use a more formal tone when writing – not conversational language – and to do that, they need a richer vocabulary to tap into those words we don’t use when we speak.
5 Occupational Success. Researcher Johnson O’Connor found that “a person’s vocabulary level is the best single predictor of occupational success.”* Success in the business place depends on your communication skills.
How we did … Quizlet & Visual Vocabulary.
QUIZLET – In the room, this kept from the mundane task of copying information and allowed us to interact individually (Flashcards, Learning, Writing, Spelling, Testing), in small groups (Matching & Playing Gravity) and as a whole class (Via the “Live” Game). Out of the room, those supporting scholars knew exactly what was being learned by accessing these lists digitally.
VISUAL VOCAB PPT’s – Some teachers gave access to families & scholars. Some used a whole class interactive game. Some utilized these in 1-on-1 or small group interactions with scholars. Some even created interactive bulletin boards!
Results from … Learning Environment / Classroom Decoration.
GROWTH! Scholars & Teachers utilized their learning environment / classroom decoration to maintain connection to the learning process & scholar personal interest. We believe this lead to high scholar engagement compared to 2017-2018. The data below shows a substantial decrease in Level 1’s with growth in Levels 2-5. Our scholars were inspired by teachers to perform their best because we gave them our best all year long.
If you or your school are interested in knowing more, then feel free to comment below or reach out to me personally. Thanks for tuning in!