Coach’s Corner (posted 5/27/18)

Coach’s Corner (Updates from our CHS Instructional Coach, Ms. Cammarata)
The past few months have been an especially busy time as we tackle the continuous task of studying the quality of our instructional practices at our school and supporting the professional development of our teachers. In March, I attended the NYS Next Generation Standards Conference in Rochester, NY. At the conference, we learned about the upcoming changes to the NYS Learning Standards, how these standards relate to the current standards, and a timeline for implementation. I’ve had the opportunity to share this with administrators and some teachers during common planning time. I will be sharing more information in this regard as we get closer to implementation dates. Right now the state is in the Phase I – “Raising Awareness” of implementation, with Phase III – “Full Implementation” of the new standards happening in September 2020.

The school’s first educational book club met last month and we discussed a chapter from A More Beautiful Question: The Power of Inquiry to Spark Breakthrough Ideas. This book was referenced multiple times at an MYP conference I attended, and we focused on the chapter dealing with students and building questioning skills in the classroom. Teachers who attended the book club received one hour of CTLE credit toward their certification requirements.

Quill, Schoology, and BPS Instructional Priorities have been the main focus of coaching with teachers during the 3rd and 4th quarters. Quill is a literacy/writing improvement program that all teachers, grades 5-12, have access to and can assign supplemental activities. I had specialized training sessions with the ELA Dept and grades 5/6 to introduce Quill and how our students can benefit from it. Since then, many teachers have signed up and Grade 5 has been completing hundreds of activities! Schoology is a Learning Management System that allows teachers to upload classroom work and create/grade assignments/activities all in one place…it is an exciting glimpse into the future of education. On the last Early Release Day, I had a the opportunity to walk through Schoology with every single teacher, in addition to Office 365 and eDoctrina, which will continue to be useful as our school expands to full 1-1 technology implementation. Our City Honors Schoology group has 80 members consisting of teachers, administrators, and teacher assistants/aides. I use this group to communicate initiatives (like the BPS Instructional Priorities), helpful resources, and it is a one-stop shop for all of our data/assessment information. I have also been meeting bi-weekly with our building’s district technology liaison to help answer questions and learn new programs which I can turn-key to teache

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