CTECH is the result of true collaboration with community, higher education, and our public schools. While we continue to develop our programs, we have great learning opportunities for students happening each day on our campus. Students are able to engage with professionals, post-secondary faculty and students, and learn in a lab setting that resembles a work environment. Our “professionals in training” rise to the standards of a college or work setting by connecting learning to their future goals and passions.
We’ve created a video to showcase our partnerships and experiences, as well as to invite other learners to join us here!
This post brought to you by Erin Broviak, APOSA overseeing Career and Technical Education
Every February and March I have teachers ask me “What is WIDA and ACCESS? Are they one and the same?" Good questions! ACCESS and WIDA are two very different things and are used for two different reasons in the EL world.
WIDA is a consortium of 36 states and Minnesota is one of its member states. WIDA’s mission is “Wida advances academic language development and academic achievement for children and youth who are culturally and linguistically diverse through high quality standards, assessments, research, and professional learning for educators.” WIDA has developed standards and assessments that assist English Learners in developing their academic language.
EL teachers use WIDA’s English Language Development Standards to increase English language development and academic language. Some of the essential pieces within the English Language Development Standards are:
Now you know a little bit about WIDA, but what is ACCESS? ACCESS for ELLs 2.0 is the standardized assessment to monitor students’ growth in academic language and English language development. It assesses ELs each year during the months of February and March. Every student in kindergarten through twelfth grade who has been identified as an English Learner must take this assessment. The results provide teachers a language level. The language levels are:
If you are wanting to know about your English Learner’s levels and their needs, please seek out the EL teacher at your building or myself. We are happy to help you meet the needs of the ELs in your classroom. If you would like to know more about WIDA or the ACCESS for ELLs 2.0 assessment, please see the WIDA website.
This post brought to you by Katie Miller, K-12 EL Implementation Associate
Last summer the physical education department worked together to redesign our high school class offerings. In the past, all students took the same introductory physical education course in high school but now there is more choice for our students. Students can choose from any of the following courses:
This choice has been embraced by students! Those who are interested in the traditional physical education courses have continued to enroll in Foundations of Fitness but those who are more interested in Yoga, Zumba, and Pilates have enrolled in individual movement and fitness, and those with an interest in weight training also have this option for a course.
Later on, student are able to choose some additional courses that focus on careers in physical education and exercise science. These are represented below:
Students enrolled in exercise science career track internship and careers in health promotion are able to learn about various careers through various guest speakers and field experiences. It is exciting that we were able to redesign our course offerings to meet student interests and provide more real world learning experiences! A huge thank you goes out to the physical education department who reimagined these courses and had the courage to make these changes for students.
This post brought to you by Heather Willman, APOSA overseeing Secondary Curriculum and Instructional Coaching
I don’t know where to start…
I know I read that somewhere, but I can’t recall which source I found that in…
I can’t do this: I don’t remember how to write an essay…
Have you heard these excuses before? I know I have. In fact, I have been hearing them a lot this week. As one of John Marshall’s Speech Team coaches I am currently navigating the hardest part of our season: the part where our students begin to craft their speeches. Our speakers struggle with getting started, they struggle with tracking their research, and they struggle with how to structure their final pieces.
However, although the struggle is real, it can be simplified. Recently, the website Write Well was shared with me. This easy to use, free (with very few exceptions), and comprehensive writing website guides students in all things writing. Once students create a free account, they select the type of essay they are working on and the site will guide them in creating an outline, help them organize their research (when applicable), and assit them in crafting each draft of their writing/speech. Students are also provided with tips and general guidelines as they work on each section of their essay, speech, or creative work. Should students still be stuck or find themselves with a question, they can use the chat feature at the bottom of each composition page and a Write Well staff member will reply with advice or clarification within a few hours. With Write Well, many of the common writing pitfalls are mitigated in an instance.
View this short Write Well tutorial to see it all for yourself!
Writing has proven itself to be a great way to assess student knowledge, not to mention all the learning that is gleaned as students follow the writing process. However, with 30+ students in a class it’s hard to get to each student and supply each with answers to his/her unique questions. A tool like Write Well makes it easier for students to get started with less help from the instructor, ensuring that all students have the basics, and thereby frees up the instructor so that s/he can address the more complex questions.
Should you have any questions about how to incorporate Write Well into your instruction, please reach out to one of our Instructional Technologists or me. We would love to help you get started.
This post brought to you by Heather Lyke, Secondary Implementation Associate
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