We thought, who in the world wants to come listen to us? Well, it turns out, they all did. Seldom did any of them miss a day of Math Cohort. One of the most valuable lessons we learned from the three years of Math Cohort was that math teachers were hungry to discuss professional practice, read professional literature, and watch other teachers in action. The highlight of each meeting was a live demonstration lesson in a K-5 classroom and a debrief.
At the end of three years, the county made the recommendation that this training be provided to all Duval’s elementary schools. The Chets team, which added a couple new players along the way, agreed to merge with district math coaches to offer the training to a larger audience. The Math Cohort became known as the Academy of Mathematics and over a hundred schools were invited to attend. The location changed to the Schultz Center for Teaching and Learning but the basis of development stayed the same. Each agenda would include a live demonstration lesson and debrief. To accomplish this we turned to videostreaming.
The math presenters from Schultz asked her to reflect on her lesson. Then, the presenters opened the discussion to the audience. They asked her questions; How did you plan for this lesson? Did you group your students according to data? Did you teach this lesson any differently this year than you did last year? How did you choose students for closing session? They also complemented Melissa on her tedious planning, impeccable rituals and routines, and use of technology in the lesson. They told her they were going to take her visual best practices during closing and implement them in their classrooms.
Changing other teacher’s classroom practice based on best practices they’ve observed, can it really get any better than that? Kudos to the coaching spilling over!