During the week of tense Common Core forums on Long Island and a call from NYSUT and UFT, Commissioner John B. King, Jr. released a statement Thursday, November 14 to the media here calling for a ban on standardized testing for PreK-2 grades and throwing the responsibility back to districts to make the decision on how to assess students in PreK-2 grades. They do not recommend giving “bubble” tests such as what has happened is some districts using Pearson tests in first grade as attested by Carol Burris here. Luckily, our district chose not to go this way with standardized testing at the PreK-2 level. We even made the decision to “cut back” on giving so many checkpoints and “probes” to our younger students via AIMSweb testing because it is taking too much time away from instruction.
We still need to be cognizant of how we are approaching assessments, not only PreK-2 but throughout all grade levels. Good teaching is good teaching, including giving assessments. Our staff embeds assessments and we include “checkpoints” to see how students are achieving what is being taught. What we need to be careful with is “test prep”, how we are doing it and how we expose our kids to testing. Unfortunately, we are in an era where the standardized tests count, something that is being pushed back from parents, educators, students, staff and citizens around New York State. Just look at the Long Island forums about Common Core. “The mommies are awake!”
It should be interesting to see what happens in the months ahead. NYSUT, UFT and SAANYS have asked for a three year moratorium on high stakes consequences for teachers and principals and using the NYS 3-8 exams. This is due to the ineffective manner of how the CCLS and curricula have been rolled out in school districts. And unfortunately, the answer should not be “go to EngageNY for professional development”. It sure is an interesting time in education. Have a great week!
- Bus Duty for Nov. 18 – Dec. 6 Team 6: Connie Tubbs, Kelly Ayen, Bev PhelpsUpcoming bus duty Dec 9 – Dec 20 Team 7: Paula Bates, Marcie Tyler, Sarah Pawananon
- I had to change our staff meeting date to Nov. 19th. Please make sure that you sign-up on MLP before it goes off. The topic of this meeting will be dedicated to watching and having a discussion about the movie, Including Samuel, and inclusive classrooms. Kim Hayes will join us.
- Please make sure you are enrolling for the Fall offerings of Professional Development on MLP soon!
- Long Island Forums on CCSS get heated. Speaker to Senator Flanagan: “Because you have awoken the mommies, you are in trouble.”
- Peter DeWitt writes about NYSED banning standardized tests PreK-2.
- US Secretary of Education Arne Duncan states, “White suburban moms’ are upset that the Common Core shows their kids aren’t brilliant.”
- The NYPTA call for a yearlong delay on Common Core testing.
- Please check the East Side Announcement page for updated dates, announcements etc. Lisa is updating this continually! http://gouverneurcentralschool.org/esannounce/
- What are the five things you are grateful for? Make a list daily. It does wonders!
- Be the change agent for kids! Be a champion for kids. Every kid deserves a champion!
Other Items of Interest
Here is some good advice for responding when students say “I can’t do this.” We want all of our students to have the habit of perseverance, or, as it is popularly called these days, grit.
We all make lots of presentations. This short post reminds us that every presentation we give is about making change. We should keep that in mind and use this acknowledgement to evaluate every slide we show in every presentation.
This RSAanimate about The Power of Time has many connections to education and schooling.
Thinking about a 1:1 initiative? Watch this recording of Patrick Larkin from the recent TALKS session. He did it!
Pre-K | ELA | Comprehension
First we take you to a classroom where Ms. Davis uses repetition through an interactive read-aloud to help students practice and develop their vocabulary.
Pre-K | ELA | Art
Let’s stay with Ms. Davis for another inspired lesson where she helps students connect the pictures they’ve drawn to words on the page.
Pre-K | ELA | Empathy
Ms. Hawkins uses a read aloud to get students identifying and describing feelings. Students continue to develop emotional literacy by creating images and magnet boards to build faces that show different emotions.