<![CDATA[Betsy Madison, NBCT - Blog]]>Mon, 22 Feb 2016 01:28:38 -0800Weebly<![CDATA[Success Criteria]]>Thu, 18 Feb 2016 21:46:16 GMThttp://www.betsymadison.com/blog/success-criteriaPicture
If you are participating in the Thinking Strategies coaching with me, you have been asked the following questions at our post-observation/reflection conferences:

                Did your students meet the target? What is your evidence?
            How do your students know if they met the target?

The answer to the first question often is, “I think they did and I’ll know when I score their work.”
The answer to the second question is almost always, “They know they met it if they score 80% or better on their assignment or assessment.” OR “They know when I tell them.”
I’ve been trying to dig a little deeper on that second question and have asked some of you how your students would know if you weren’t there to tell them. How would they know when they walked out of your classroom at the end of the class period without a score or feedback from you?
That takes us to Success Criteria.  What is Success Criteria? How is it connected to my learning goal?

A learning goal is the specific curriculum expectation (from the Kentucky Academic Standards or other standards for your subject matter) re-phrased in student friendly language. One cannot assume that students understand this goal because you wrote it in student friendly language. Displaying the goal on the board and/or stating it aloud to the class are not enough. Ask a few students to tell the class what it means. Correct any misconceptions.

Tips for Using Learning Goals Effectively:
-Start small
-Separate the learning goal from the activity instructions (WALT=We Are Learning To…)
-Tell pupils why they are learning it (TMB=This Matters Because)
-Use child-friendly language
-Ensure that students understand the language used
-Make it visible in the classroom—ensure that it is displayed throughout the learning
-Allow time for discussion of the goal with students
Success criteria are specific, concrete, measurable statements that describe what success looks like when the learning goal is reached. Students should be able to compare their work to these statements and know if they have met the goal/target for the lesson.

Effective Success Criteria…
-Are linked to the learning goal
-Are specific to an activity
-Are discussed and agreed upon with students prior to undertaking the activity (WALF—We Are Looking For…)
-Provide a scaffold and focus for students while engaged in the activity
-Are used as the basis for feedback and peer/self-assessment
Why are Success Criteria Important?
-Improve understanding
-Empower students
-Encourage independent learning
-Enable accurate feedback
-Enable students to be accountable for their learning
Benefits of clear Learning Goals & Success Criteria:
-Success can be achieved by all students
-Students are able to discuss their work with others
-Empowers students to become more independent learners
-Sharing learning goals and success criteria at the beginning of the lesson results in teachers and students working toward a common goal

Examples: (There is a Success Criteria board on my Pinterest for more Anchor Charts)

<![CDATA[December 28th, 2015]]>Mon, 28 Dec 2015 20:04:52 GMThttp://www.betsymadison.com/blog/december-28th-2015When you ask your students to Annotate a piece of text does it end up looking like highlighter hemorrhaged all over the paper? That's a sure sign they don't know how to Determine what's Important in the text.

If you've been a part of our Thinking Strategies training, you've done an activity using a piece of text called, 
The House.  In this activity, we ask you to read the text and underline what's important. Then we ask you to read the text again, pretending you are the parent in the situation--box in what's important. Next, you read the text as if you were a Real Estate agent getting ready to list the home--star what's important. Finally, you read the text as if you were a burglar, casing the joint--highlight what's important. This activity always drives home the point. How do you know what's important if you don't know your purpose for the reading?

Start small with your students, with a single purpose. For example, highlight any vocabulary you aren't sure of or highlight any place you are confused and write a question.  Eventually, your students will be able to annotate for a couple purposes at a time.  

Start with your purpose phrased in the form of a question. The brain always seeks patterns and what's the pattern to a question being asked of us? We try to find an answer. If your students are reading with your question(s) in mind; they will read to find the answer(s).

Model, model, model at the beginning. Our students don't come to us hard-wired to do this. We not only need to show them how to Determine what's Important in the Text, we also have to show them what our expectation is for the completed process.  What's your Success Criteria?  If your students had to rely solely on themselves (no input from you), would they know they had done a good job of annotating when they are finished?

I'm linking a great video from Teaching Channel that shows a Question being used to set the purpose for determining what's most important in the piece of text the students are working with.  It's called Keep It or Junk It.

Also linked are attachments to two different rubrics that are good starting points for your success criteria for annotating to determine importance.

Next, there is an article on how to teach annotating to your students.

Finally, there is a link to an excellent lesson on Determining Importance from the Engage NY lessons.

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<![CDATA[Discussion Stems for students to talk about the Thinking Strategies]]>Wed, 09 Sep 2015 19:58:25 GMThttp://www.betsymadison.com/blog/discussion-stems-for-students-to-talk-about-the-thinking-strategies]]><![CDATA[Great Blog Post]]>Tue, 28 Jul 2015 13:18:55 GMThttp://www.betsymadison.com/blog/great-blog-postAttached you will find a very good article about teaching and using strategies in your instruction.  Jennifer Serravallo has also recently released a book titled The Reading Strategies Book:  Your Everything Guide to Developing Skilled Readers. 
Serravallo offers 20+ strategies for each of the following reading goals:
Supporting Pre-Emergent and Emergent Readers
Teaching Reading Engagement:  Focus, Stamina, and Building a Reading Life
Supporting Print Work:  Increasing Accuracy and Integrating Sources of Information
Teaching Fluency:  Reading with Phrasing, Intonation, and Automaticity
Supporting Comprehension in Fiction:  Understanding Plot and Setting
Supporting Comprehension in Fiction:  Thinking About Characters
Supporting Comprehension in Fiction:  Understanding Themes and Ideas
Supporting Comprehension in Nonfiction:  Determining Main Topic and Ideas
Supporting Comprehension in Nonfiction:  Determining Key Details
Supporting Comprehension in Nonfiction:  Getting the Most from Text Features
Improving Comprehension in Fiction and Nonfiction:  Understanding Vocabulary and Figurative Language
Supporting Students' Conversations:  Speaking, Listening, and Deepening Comprehension
Improving Writing About Reading
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<![CDATA[Graphic Organizers to Support Strategy Instruction in Elementary]]>Fri, 19 Jun 2015 19:48:17 GMThttp://www.betsymadison.com/blog/graphic-organizers-to-support-strategy-instruction-in-elementary
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<![CDATA[Thinking Strategies in other Content Areas]]>Fri, 19 Jun 2015 18:35:10 GMThttp://www.betsymadison.com/blog/thinking-strategies-in-other-content-areas
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<![CDATA[Ellin Keene Resources]]>Fri, 19 Jun 2015 18:26:11 GMThttp://www.betsymadison.com/blog/ellin-keene-resourcesEllin Oliver Keene has been a classroom teacher, staff developer, non-profit director and adjunct professor of reading and writing. For sixteen years she directed staff development initiatives at the Denver-based Public Education & Business Coalition. She served as Deputy Director and Director of Literacy and Staff Development for the Cornerstone Project at the University of Pennsylvania for 4 years. Ellin currently serves as Director of Research and Development for the PEBC, as senior advisor to Heinemann Professional Development and works with schools and districts throughout the country and abroad.
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<![CDATA[Writing to Learn Activities for the Thinking Strategies]]>Fri, 19 Jun 2015 16:41:41 GMThttp://www.betsymadison.com/blog/writing-to-learn-activities-for-the-thinking-strategies
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<![CDATA[Rubric for Annotating Text]]>Fri, 19 Jun 2015 16:39:51 GMThttp://www.betsymadison.com/blog/rubric-for-annotating-text
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<![CDATA[7 Thinking Strategies Definition Pages]]>Fri, 19 Jun 2015 15:45:58 GMThttp://www.betsymadison.com/blog/7-thinking-strategies-definition-pages
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This packet also includes the language  of each strategy--sentence/question stems and starters AND examples of what student proficiency in the strategy looks like at both the text and word level in different content areas.