Monday, September 27, 2010

Curriculum Council Meetings

Each Wednesday, a dedicated group of content lead teachers meet in the Administrative Conference Room from 8:30 am to 10:00 am. The representatives consist of one classroom teacher from each grade level K-5 plus an ESE representative. They join me to have in depth vertical conversation in a content area. The schedule accommodates Math Council one week, ELA Council the next, and Science Council the week after that, and continues on a rotating basis.

The representatives are an essential part of our school's distributed leadership model because they offer professional development through weekly Teacher Meetings to their grade level colleagues. Without their vision, planning, follow through, and leadership our school design could not accommodate the level of professional learning or horizontal consistency we expect.

As the school's instructional coach, I hold the responsibility of carrying the global picture and helping each content lead as they guide learning at their grade level. I plan and deliver each Council's agenda keeping the school's long term mission and short term goals in mind. I analyze data, focus walk grade levels, work in beginning teacher's classrooms, observe model teachers in action, and have discussions with lead teachers to make sure I stay on target. The vertical discussions focus on standards, curriculum, instructional practices, student work, assessments, and professional learning.

We've just completed our first round of Council meetings and spent the majority of our time concentrating on dissecting the FCAT Specifications. This has been our focus because we are implementing our states newly adopted Math, ELA, and Science standards. Our FCAT Math and Reading assessment will also change this year, so adjusting to the new standards quickly is essential. In order for the leads and their colleagues to plan and deliver aligned instruction, they first have to know the standards and the end assessment. Once these two elements are clearly understood, then they can select curriculum tools and implement instruction to reach their desired results. I've already witnessed changes occurring within instruction based on the learning happening through Council Meetings and subsequently through Teacher Meetings.

Stay tuned for our progress...

No comments: