Airport Elementary PLCs

Click on the Inquiry Question links below to see the full survey response and learn what each PLC group is exploring.

2015-2016

  1. How can we incorporate the virtue values of mandate in Airport Elementary? (*See VirtuesProject.com)
  2. In what ways will AFL (Assessment for Learning) strategies increase student engagement and performance?

2014-2015

  1. Does the use of iPads and educational apps increase student engagement towards learning and increase completion of academic assignments for students with learning challenges?
  2. Will the “Daily Five” be beneficial to the students in my class?
  3. How can we improve both student attitudes towards writing, and student achievement in writing?
  4. How does trauma and neglect affect childrens’ learning in school? (Bruce Perry)
  5. Will the Daily 5 help to create independent fluent readers and writers?

 

2013-2014

Will the Daily Five increase achievement and independence in Language Arts? This is being implemented in Grades 1/2, 2/3, and 3/4 classrooms.

In an effort to improve their student’s Language Arts skills, three teachers at Airport are implementing this new program. At the beginning of each section an “I” chart (Independence) is  created so that the children know what is expected. The whole purpose of this program is to make the children more independent for longer periods of time so that the teacher is free from having to discipline children and can work more one on one with those who are struggling. The change for teachers is that they specifically build stamina in children by starting at a short interval and working up to 20-25 minutes where the children will work on task for the entire time. Another difference is that children get to choose which one they will be working on each day, however if they have chosen the same one for 3 straight days the teacher will redirect them to another component.

Will an outdoor learning program assist in children becoming more engaged and increase their appreciation of the environment around them?

The purpose of this PLC is to implement a mentoring partnership between two classes. One class is a K/1 and the other is a 4/5. Each week the classes get together for a lesson in the classroom followed by an outdoor activity. This program has spanned the curriculum and incorporated art, PE, Socials, Math, Language Arts, Science, Drama and even Service for the community. The projects so far have been making mandala’s, outdoor patterning, leaf man project, winter  solstice, cutting invasive holly and selling it as a fund raiser to purchase a well in India, Bears, and making kites. The change in teaching has been that these two classes are having lessons together and getting outside much more than normal. Outcomes are being met for the curriculum at both levels during the lessons.

Describe in relation to the work of the PLC teams in your building, how this work is having a real life impact on student achievement.

The biggest noticeable difference is that the children are far more accountable for their time and they are actually on task for longer periods of time, doing what they are supposedto be doing. Benchmarks in all children have risen by at least 2 levels, even in the lowest students. Oral reading to teachers has improved as their fluency levels are improving. All three teachers note that the level of on task behaviour has improved significantly, reducing the time spent disciplining or redirecting students. Most of the children, when going to the library are choosing “good fit” books. These are books that theycan actually read, versus just looking at the pictures. All teachers note that this had significantly improved since September.

The immediate impact on children, the teachers have noted is that there are no behaviourial issues when these two classes are together, both inside and outdoors. Students with attentional issues are far more engaged and the students want to get outside more. Overall, all students are more engaged in their work. One of the biggest spinoff effects is that the teacher of the older classes is greatly impressed with the mentorship of the older students and how they are trying to be good role models for the younger ones. I, as the principal notice the older children seeking the younger ones out at recess and lunch to play with them.