Monthly Archives: March 2015

Across District Classroom Learning Lab – Middle School Social Studies – GRR with Academic Conversations

Please join us for this wonderful learning opportunity.  Marie Davis, 7th & 8th grade Social Studies Teacher is opening her classroom for a day of Across District Learning Labs this Friday, March 27, 2015.  The specifics are in the information below.  Please e-mail me ASAP if you desire to attend.  We have a limited amount of spots and they will be filled on a first come basis.  e-mail .  This is a half day opportunity so list your first choice for time and your e-mail so that I can get back to you. Nelli

This is a great opportunity to engage in conversations and learning around the Gradual Release Instructional Framework and Academic Conversations.

WHAT: Marie Davis, 7th & 8th Grade Social Studies Teacher will be hosting a Classroom Learning Lab. Marie’s teaching is framed within the Gradual Release of Responsibility with content, social and language goals framing the instruction. Marie believes that teaching students the tools to engage with any content will engage and motivate all students.
WHEN: Friday, March 27, 2015 (May only attend one session) 7 participants each sessionSchedule: AM Session – Meet in 7:15 to 7:45 AM   Pre-brief7:50 to 8:49 Observation in Marie’s Room -US History-88:49 to 9:00 Break

9:00 to 10:15 Debrief

10:15 to 10:45 – Open Conversation/Questions/Lunch

Schedule: PM Session – Meet in

11:00 to 11:30 Pre-brief

11:38 to 12:37   Observation in Marie’s Room – Social Studies – 7

12:37 to 12:45 Break

12:45 to 2:00 Debrief

2:00 to 2:30 – Open Conversation/Questions

WHERE: Kent City Middle School285 North Main Street, Kent City 49330Principal: Bill Crane
WHO May Attend 10 – Educators who are interested in growing their teaching practice around the Gradual Release of Responsibility, Social Studies instructional practices, Purposeful Talk and/or educators interested in exploring Classroom Learning Labs as a form of professional learning. Sign up on a first come basis.
WHY: Networking and growing our learning builds everyone’s capacity. We value supporting student achievement and teacher learning.


Blogging Strategies and Tips

In our last Blogging in the Classroom breakout meeting, we dug into some of the preparation and strategies teachers need to consider when using blogging with their students. The group collaborated on three documents that address the topics of student freedom, creating blogging time, and strategies for moderating blogs. See the links below to see what we created.

Student Freedom

Time for Blogging

Moderating/Responding to Blogs

If you are considering implementing blogging in your school or classroom, these resources will help you get ready for success. If you are already using blogging, they will help you refine your practice.

Reading, Writing, & Math Workshop K-12 – Theory and Practice – February 2015

Our last meeting was full of fantastic conversation.  The opening 4 corner activity had some great conversation going on around “Workshop” instruction in our buildings and classrooms.

After that we quickly reviewed workshop structures and had a VERY brief overview of the Universal Design for Learning (UDL) looking at the UDL Guidelines and main website for UDL information.

Then we dove headfirst into videos showing workshop in action and then reflecting on how we could see, Common Core, UDL, and other workshop components in action.
Math Workshop in Action
ELA Workshop in Action

Don’t forget you can the access the presentation at

Homework for next Session: Please come prepared to continue on how “workshop” is working in your classroom and read the following:

Math Sense – Chapter 3 p. 33-43
Not This But That: No More Independent Reading without Support – Section III

Across District Purposeful Talk Classroom Learning Lab Opportunity

Classroom Learning Labs Across-Districts    Tuesday, March 31, 2015     Sign up – limited spots available

Tracy Horodyski, third grade teacher from Zinser Elementary, Kenowa Hills Public Schools will be hosting a Classroom Learning Lab focused on Purposeful Talk within Writing Workshop. The writing instruction will include weaving science instruction/concepts into the informational writing unit.

8 – Educators who are interested in growing their teaching practice around Purposeful Talk & Writing Workshop(informational writing unit) and/or educators interested in exploring Classroom Learning Labs as a form of professional learning. Sign up on a first come basis: e-mail me:  These slots will be opened up to others after Friday, March 13, 2015.

AM Session:  8:15 to 11:30 – 4 slots

PM Session:  12:30 to 3:40 – 4 slots

Zinser Elementary   1234 Kinney NW, Grand Rapids, 49534   Principal: Ross Willick