Virtual School Meanderings

June 27, 2015

McREL e-News June 2015 || Take the guesswork out of school improvement

From Thursday’s inbox…

Improve educational outcomes. McREL e-News online.

June 2015

Research Roundup

Effective digital learning games blend the virtual and the real, study finds  

Education Week
  

Researchers from Carnegie Mellon University have found that interactive, mixed-reality digital learning games that blend real physics principles with virtual, simulated elements offered through the games are more effective for younger learners than flat-screen or simple-control versions.

Five social disadvantages that depress student performance: Why schools alone can’t close achievement gaps

Economic Policy Institute
A recent report from the Economic Policy Institute identifies five specific social and economic factors that affect student achievement: parenting practices, single parenthood, irregular work schedules for parents, lack of access to health care, and lead exposure. It suggests that, in addition to school and teacher incentive programs, amelioration of these disadvantages through school improvement initiatives could lead to better student outcomes.

Events and Opportunities

Destination Denver: McREL’s summer professional development

 

Our summer professional development is underway in Denver! Register now for our workshops and institutes to gain insights and learn best-practice strategies you can apply right away. You’ll leave knowing how to make changes in teaching, leading, and learning that result in better outcomes.

 

Bring your colleagues: Groups of three or more people from the same district receive a 10% discount on registration.

 

Classroom Instruction That Works

July 13-15

Classroom Instruction That Works–Facilitator Training 

July 13-17

Balanced Leadership Institute for School-Level Leaders

July 20-25

If you are unable to register for the entire six-day institute, you can also register for these individual Balanced Leadership sessions:

Balanced Leadership Overview, July 20

Developing a Purposeful Community, July 21-22

Managing Change, July 23-24

 

Classroom Instruction That Works with English-Language Learners

July 27-28

Using Technology with Classroom Instruction That Works 

July 29-30

 

Upcoming conferences

 

Visit with our researchers and consultants at the following conferences to hear the latest insights and discoveries we’ve made:

ASCD Conference on Teaching Excellence in Nashville, Tenn., June 26-28.

McREL sessions:

Friday, June 26, “Creating the Environment for Learning: Implementing a New Instruction Planning Framework,” presented by Howard Pitler

Friday, June 26, “Using AWSM to Improve Formative Assessment Practices,” presented by Kathleen Dempsey and Anne Tweed

Saturday, June 27, “Academic Language Learning for ALLs and ELLs,” presented by Jane Hill

National Association of Elementary School Principals Annual Conference in Long Beach, Calif., June 30-July 2.

McREL institutes and sessions:

Monday, June 29, pre-conference institute on creating purposeful school communities with Matt Seebaum from McREL and Carol Riley from NAESP

Tuesday, June 30, “Using McREL’s Balanced Leadership Framework as a Lens for Mentoring and Coaching,” presented by Matt Seebaum

Tuesday, June 30, NAESP Mentor Reunion and Reception (mentors only)—-evening reception sponsored by McREL

Wednesday, July 1, NAESP and McREL Balanced Leadership and Mentor Program Focus Group

Perspectives

Educational Leadership, Summer 2015 | Getting Unstuck
When your school hits a performance plateau during an improvement initiative, do you find yourself doubling down on your efforts? In the summer edition of ASCD’s Educational Leadershipmagazine, Bryan Goodwin, McREL’s CEO and president, suggests suggests leaders take an inside-out approach to improvement, including the creation of rapid, iterative improvement cycles, and peer and observation coaching that lead to better insights into a school’s challenges.

McREL Blog | How to make excitement for learning contagious

 

In a new blog post from McREL consultant Cheryl Abla, enthusiasm and humor in the classroom are front and center as she describes their important roles in learning. Read herpost on the McREL blog.

McREL Blog | Look before you launch: 6 questions to ask before you add more tech to your school

  

Howard Pitler, McREL’s executive director of digital solutions, offers advice on six important questions to ask—-and answer—-before making any major technology purchase for your school in a new poston the McREL blog.

Headlines

Dr. Stephanie Stoll Dalton joins McREL as new director of Regional Educational Laboratory (REL) Pacific

 

Dr. Stephanie Stoll Dalton will serve as the new director of REL Pacific beginning July 1. She comes to McREL from the U.S. Department of Education where, for the last 10 years, she has been director of the Higher Education Act Title II Teacher Preparation and State Credentialing Accountability Program. In her earlier years of service at the Department of Education, she was director of the Teacher Quality Enhancement Grants Program and was a program officer within the REL program, specifically serving the REL Pacific from 2001 to 2003.

 

REL Pacific, which McREL operates from its regional office in Honolulu, Hawaii, is one of 10 federal regional educational laboratories administered by the U.S. Department of Education’s Institute of Education Sciences.

 

Read our complete press release.

NASA’s Dawn Mission orbits dwarf planet Ceres
After seven years of cruising at stunning speeds, NASA’s Dawn Mission went into orbit for the first time around the dwarf planet Ceres on March 6. On May 9, the California Institute of Technology hosted a Space Science Festival for families to celebrate this achievement, which included a unique set of streamed presentations: Small Worlds 101, To Boldly Go…Well, You Know: NASA’s Dawn Mission to the Asteroid Belt, and Exploring New Worlds in Our Solar System.
McREL has supported the Dawn Mission’s education and communications team since before launch in 2007 through professional development, curriculum, web and multimedia design, and social media. Follow Dawn news, view spectacular images, and explore videos and education materials on theDawn Mission website or join the Dawn newsletter mailing list.
In This Issue

Connect with Us on Social Media

    

For the latest in professional development opportunities, education news, research, and McREL employment opportunities, follow us on our social media channels.

 

Like us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter View our profile on LinkedIn

 

Find us on Google+ View our videos on YouTube Visit our blog

REL Pacific on Twitter 

Follow @RELPacific on Twitter for the latest on education research, the National Center for Education Evaluation and Regional Assistance, and Institute of Education Sciences projects in the Pacific region, plus engaging infographics, videos, and more.

 

North Central Comprehensive Center on Twitter

 

Follow@NorthCentralCC on Twitter for updates on work with state education agencies in Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wyoming.

McREL International | 1.800.858.6830 | Fax 303.337.3005
4601 DTC Blvd., Suite 500
Denver, CO 80237
Forward to a friend
This email was sent to mkbarbour@gmail.com by news@mcrel.org | Privacy Policy.
 
McREL International | 4601 DTC Blvd., Suite 500 | Denver | CO | 80237

June 6, 2015

REL Southeast Director’s Email – June 2015

From Wednesday’s inbox…

The latest news and updates from the REL Southeast
at Florida State University
View this email in your browser
REL Southeast Email Header

Greetings from the Regional Educational Laboratory Southeast!

As we transition into the summer months, now is a wonderful time to explore the many offerings available on the REL Southeastwebsite. We’ve highlighted some of our most popular resources below, but we encourage you to explore the site further and discover the engaging work of our research alliances and the numerous research products we’ve developed. Thank you for continuing to improve education in the southeast.

Barbara Foorman, Ph.D.
Director, REL Southeast

Ask A REL

Ask A REL is a reference desk service available to those of you interested in accessing additional research-based information to guide your practice. The archive of Ask A RELs can be found by following this link: http://rel-se.fcrr.org/resources/ask-a-rel_responses.aspx. Here, you will find previously-answered Ask A RELs arranged by categories such as curriculum and instruction, effective leaders, literacy, and school climate.

Archived Events

The REL Southeast maintains a comprehensive archive of past events, including recorded webinars. Explore our available content by following this link: http://rel-se.fcrr.org/events/archived_events.aspx, or click the event below to watch our latest presentation.Preschool Dual Language Learners Intervention Practices
Recorded Monday, March 2, 2015
Online Webinar

Contact Us

REL Southeast at Florida State University
http://rel-se.fsu.edu
2010 Levy Avenue
Suite 100
Tallahassee, FL 32310
This Director’s Email was developed by REL Southeast under Contract ED-IES-12-C-0011 from the U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences.  The content does not necessarily reflect the views or policies of IES or the U.S. Department of Education, nor does mention of trade names, commercial products, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. government.

June 5, 2015

Early Care and Education, Professional Learning in Science, Math and Literacy, The Value of Higher Education

Another item from Wednesday’s inbox…

June 2015WestEd.org | Email to a Friend | View in browser | View Past Issues   WestEd on FacebookWestEd on TwitterWestEd on Google+WestEd LinkedIn
WestEd
E-Bulletin
Welcome to the WestEd E-Bulletin, presenting this month’s picks of the latest research-based projects and services, innovative new resources, and upcoming professional development events—all designed to help learners succeed in school and career.
R&D Alert Online
R&D ALERT ONLINE

Helping Early Childhood Educators Address Challenging Behavior

How can we help early childhood educators proactively respond to challenging student behavior?

Empowering educators to implement strategies that engage all students helps them create more inclusive classrooms that enable infants and young children with behavioral problems, special needs, and/or disabilities to thrive alongside their peers.

Read the latest R&D Alert article to learn more about this approach and the California Inclusion and Behavior Consultation Network’s role in working with early childhood educators to help all children succeed.

Note: Please see related article below about the Developmental and Behavioral Screening Guide for Early Care and Education Providers.

Measuring the Value of Higher Education: Two New ReportsNEW RESEARCH

Measuring the Value of Higher Education: Two New Reports

From College to Jobs: Making Sense of Labor Market Returns to Higher Educationexplores the value of postsecondary education by looking at two key measures: the rate of employment and accompanying earnings of college graduates. Download today.

Moving the Needle: Data, Success, and Accountability for Workforce Programs identifies key considerations and challenges for measuring the success of career and technical education in California community colleges. Download today.

Math Pathways & Pitfalls Implementation Institutes Aligned With New StandardsPROFESSIONAL LEARNING

Math Pathways & Pitfalls Implementation Institutes Aligned With New Standards

Register for Math Pathways & Pitfalls Implementation Institutes and Trainers’ Institutes.

You’ll learn how to help your students overcome common math pitfalls, understand key math standards, and develop academic language. And, you’ll gain crucial strategies for working with diverse learners, including English learners.

Classroom lessons that incorporate WestEd’s Math Pathways & Pitfalls strategies can have a positive impact on learning for diverse students, according to findings from rigorous studies. Learn more and register today!

 

Data-Driven Decision Making in the Classroom and in PolicyNEW RESEARCH

Data-Driven Decision Making in the Classroom and in Policy

WestEd’s Data for Decisions Initiativehelps educators, policymakers, and researchers increase understanding and capacity to use data for continuous improvement.

As part of the Initiative’s effort, WestEd researchers contributed 6 of 11 articles to a special issue of the Teachers College Record dedicated to the use of data in education.

Ellen Mandinach, Senior Research Scientist at WestEd, and Edith Gummer, former WestEd staff member, edited the volume and co-wrote several articles. WestEd’s Martin Orland, Nancy Gerzon, and Candice Bocala, in addition to former WestEd staff Jeremy Friedman, also wrote or co-wrote articles.

Read this WestEd.org blog post for the Teachers College Record list of WestEd staff articles.

Note: Subscription is required to access full articles.

Developmental and Behavioral Screening Guide for Early Care and Education Providers graphicNEW RESOURCE

Developmental and Behavioral Screening Guide for Early Care and Education Providers

Developmental and behavioral screening plays an important role in early identification and facilitates referrals for access to appropriate supports for young children who might be experiencing delays for any number of reasons.

Download this reference guide, which provides early care and education providers with information on screening; services and supports; and resources that are available for California’s young children and their families.

Making Sense of SCIENCE: Genes & Traits for Teachers of Grades 5-12 graphicNEW RESOURCE

Making Sense of SCIENCE: Genes & Traits for Teachers of Grades 5-12

Proven through rigorous research to positively impact teacher and student performance, Making Sense of SCIENCE’s comprehensive professional learning courses for science teachers provide all the necessary ingredients for building a scientific way of thinking in both teachers and students.

This new resource supports the learning of key concepts related to genetics — from the origins of traits to the many factors that influence gene expression.

The concepts covered in these materials are central to the Next Generation Science Standards and aligned with Common Core State Standards in literacy, but will complement any curriculum.

Read more about Making Sense of SCIENCE: Genes & Traits for Teachers of Grades 5-12Facilitator Bundle and Teacher Book.

Reading Apprenticeship graphicPROFESSIONAL LEARNING

Reading Apprenticeship: Improving the Academic Literacy of Middle School, High School, and College Students

Reading Apprenticeship professional learning is designed for middle and high school teachers, community college faculty members, and instructional leaders interested in learning how to deepen literacy and content area instruction in their classrooms.

Ongoing Reading Apprenticeship professional learning opportunities include:

Teaching and Learning with Infants and Toddlers graphic
RESOURCE SPOTLIGHT

Teaching and Learning with Infants and Toddlers:
20% Discount

“Building on key research from infant development, psychology, and neuroscience, Maguire-Fong invites reflection on what it means to teach and to learn when working with infants and toddlers.” —J. Ronald Lally, Co-Director, Center for Child & Family Studies, WestEd

Purchase your copy.

WestEd Justice & Prevention Research CenterWestEd Justice & Prevention Research Center: New Key Initiative

The WestEd Justice & Prevention Research Center works to advance knowledge about:

  • Preventing crime and violence, and other high-risk behaviors
  • Improving the adult and juvenile justice systems
  • Increasing the safety of children, adults, schools, and communities

Center researchers conduct policy-relevant and methodologically sound research studies for key decisionmakers, including policymakers, faculty members, researchers, and practitioners.

Visit the WestEd Justice & Prevention Research Center web page to learn more, including its suite of research and evaluation studies.

June 2015

WestEd.org | Email to a Friend | Subscribe WestEd FacebookWestEd TwitterWestEd Google +WestEd LinkedIn

Copyright © 2015 WestEd. All rights reserved.
Our mailing address is:

WestEd

730 Harrison Street

San Francisco, CA 94107

Add us to your address book

May 22, 2015

Improve Teaching, Leading, And Learning Outcomes || McREL e-News May 2015

Also from yesterday’s inbox…

Improve teaching, leading, and learning outcomes Open in web browser

May 2015

May is Teacher Appreciation Month!  

  

We’d like to acknowledge the hard work

of all teachers who are making a difference

in the lives of students each day. Thank you!

Research Roundup

Review of international research on factors underlying teacher absenteeism  

REL Pacific and the Institute for Education Sciences
  

A new report from REL Pacific and the Institute for Education Sciences examines international research on teacher absenteeism and identifies five key factors, in contexts comparable to the Pacific Region, that relate to the causes of teacher absenteeism: pay structure, management, working conditions, community conditions, and social and cultural responsibilities.

The exposure advantage: Early exposure to a multilingual environment promotes effective communication

University of Chicago
Researchers at the University of Chicago have found that children who were either bilingual or regularly exposed to a multilingual environment were better able to interpret a speaker’s perspective and intended meaning than those who were monolingual, suggesting that exposure to second languages can improve the accuracy of perceptions and communication.

Key to vocabulary gap is quality of conversation, not dearth of words

Education Week
Expanding on findings from a 20-year-old study that coined the phrase “30 million word gap” to describe the disparity in the size of vocabulary between children of college-educated parents and those of high school dropouts, new studies have shown that what matters more for closing achievement gaps is the quality of interactions between parents and children—-using complex, conceptual language and words of encouragement—-rather than the quantity of words children hear.

The effect of stand-biased desks on academic engagement: An exploratory study

International Journal of Health Promotion and Education
In a recent study from Texas A&M University, researchers found that elementary school students who used standing desks in classrooms demonstrated higher levels of academic engagement than students from the control group who were sitting. Standing students were more likely to raise their hands, answer questions, and participate in classroom discussions, and were less likely to exhibit disruptive behavior than seated students.

Events and Opportunities

Destination Denver: McREL’s summer professional development

 

Denver is your destination for high-quality professional development this summer! Register now for McREL’s summer PD workshops and institutes held at our headquarters in sunny Denver. Our sessions present analytic insights and best-practice strategies blended with practical school experience. You’ll leave knowing how to make changes in teaching, leading, and learning that result in better outcomes.

 

Bring your colleagues: Groups of three or more people from the same district receive a 10% discount on registration.

 

GreenSTEM: Inspiring and Empowering Learners to Change the World

June 11-12

The 12 Touchstones of Good Teaching

June 22-23

Balanced Leadership Institute for District-Level Leaders

June 24-26

Classroom Instruction That Works

July 13-15

Classroom Instruction That Works—-Facilitator Training 

July 13-17

Balanced Leadership Institute for School-Level Leaders

July 20-25

Classroom Instruction That Works with English-Language Learners

July 27-28

Using Technology with Classroom Instruction That Works 

July 29-30

 

Upcoming conferences

 

Visit with our researchers and consultants at the following conferences to hear the latest insights and discoveries we’ve made:

ASCD Conference on Teaching Excellence in Nashville, Tenn., June 26-28.

McREL sessions:

Friday, June 26, “Creating the Environment for Learning: Implementing a New Instruction Planning Framework,” presented by Howard Pitler

Friday, June 26, “Using AWSM to Improve Formative Assessment Practices,” presented by Kathleen Dempsey and Anne Tweed

Saturday, June 27, “Academic Language Learning for ALLs and ELLs,” presented by Jane Hill

Arizona School Administrators Summer Conference in Tucson, Ariz., June 14-16.

McREL exhibit:
Visit with Dr. Kent Davis at the McREL table in the vendor hall to learn about our leadership development and instructional strategies work in Arizona.

National Association of Elementary School Principals Annual Conference in Long Beach, Calif., June 30-July 2.

McREL institutes and sessions:

Monday, June 29, pre-conference institute on creating purposeful school communities with Jim Eck from McREL and Carol Riley from NAESP

Tuesday, June 30, “Using McREL’s Balanced Leadership Framework as a Lens for Mentoring and Coaching,” presented by Jim Eck

Tuesday, June 30, NAESP Mentor Reunion and Reception (mentors only)—-evening reception sponsored by McREL

Wednesday, July 1, NAESP and McREL Balanced Leadership and Mentor Program Focus Group with Jim Eck

WELS National School Leadership Conference in Pewaukee, Wis., June 15-18.

McREL sessions:

Tuesday, June 16, “Classroom Instruction That Works,” presented by Howard Pitler

Tuesday, June 16, “Power Walkthrough Classroom Observations,” presented by Howard Pitler

Perspectives

Changing Schools, Spring 2015 | Focus on Diverse Learners
As U.S. schools usher in a new demographic majority, our spring issue of Changing Schools looks at how to better support diverse learners and improve their odds of success. Articles focus on closing the academic language gap; how the Common Core’s text complexity model helps match diverse learners with relevant reading; the role of critical self-reflection for teachers; how a sense of community is helping Cree Nation students and teachers engage in school improvement; and “stereotype threat” and how it affects achievement.

McREL Policy Brief | Curriculum-Embedded Performance Assessments: Policy considerations for meaningful accountability

 

McREL’s latest policy brief examines the possibilities for states in using Curriculum-Embedded Performance Assessments (CEPAs) as a way to promote deeper learning in K-12 environments. The brief gives an overview of CEPAs (which can be used for both formative and summative purposes), includes examples of successful CEPA applications, and suggests ways that CEPAs can improve policy-driven outcomes.

Research Says | Mobile Devices: Driving Us to Distraction?
What does the research say about how digital devices in the classroom affect learning? Bryan Goodwin, McREL’s president and CEO, finds that, while we know some educators are doing great things with mobile device technology in the classroom, such approaches are too new to have been subjected to rigorous study. The limited research we have warns of increased distraction; however, Goodwin suggests ways for teachers and students to fend off such distractions. Read more in the latest Research Says column in ASCD’s Educational Leadership magazine.

McREL Blog | Sometimes the best technology is no technology  

In a new blog post, “Sometimes the best technology is no technology,” Howard Pitler, McREL’s executive director of digital solutions, suggests that knowing when and how to use technology to enhance classroom learning is an important consideration for teachers, and, sometimes, it’s best to encourage students to “unplug and engage” with each other.

Headlines

AWSM featured in new NCTM Annual Perspectives in Math yearbook  McREL authors contributed a chapter, “Authentic Work Samples Support Formative Assessment in Middle School,” to the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics’ (NCTM) 2015 yearbook, Annual Perspectives in Mathematics Education: Assessment to Enhance Learning and Teaching. The chapter details a formative assessment model—-AWSM, shorthand for Learning to Use Formative Assessment with the Assessment Work Sample Method—-for middle school math, developed by McREL math and assessment specialists for an Institute of Education Sciences (IES) study.

McREL and Habele making a difference for students affected by super typhoon Maysak in Micronesia
VIDEO: 
Through our Pacific Center for Changing the Odds—-REL Pacific office in Honolulu, the relief effort continues for those affected by super typhoon Maysak. McREL staff members in Denver assembled and delivered more than 450 New Beginnings Kits for affected students in the Outer Islands, using supplies donated by McREL staff members and area schools. This work was featured on ABC’s local affiliate, KITV4, in Hawai’i.

McREL and the Habele education fund have partnered to establish direct links between students and educators in the U.S. looking to help our neighbors in Micronesia by assembling New Beginnings Kits for students in need. Read more about all the ways you can help on Habele’s blog.

In This Issue

Featured Content


REL Pacific on Twitter 

Follow @RELPacific on Twitter for the latest on education research, the National Center for Education Evaluation and Regional Assistance, and Institute of Education Sciences projects in the Pacific region, plus engaging infographics, videos, and more.

Connect with Us on Social Media

    

For the latest in professional development opportunities, education news, research, and McREL employment opportunities, follow us on our social media channels.

 

Like us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter View our profile on LinkedIn

 

Find us on Google+ View our videos on YouTube Visit our blog

McREL International | 1.800.858.6830 | Fax 303.337.3005
4601 DTC Blvd., Suite 500
Denver, CO 80237
Forward to a friend
This email was sent to mkbarbour@gmail.com by news@mcrel.org |  Privacy Policy.
 
McREL International | 4601 DTC Blvd., Suite 500 | Denver | CO | 80237

May 10, 2015

Changing Schools | Focus On Diverse Learners | Vol. 73/Spring 2015

From yesterday’s inbox…

Having trouble viewing this email? View it online here.

Focus on diverse learners 
As diverse learners become the majority in America’s schools, the need to ensure a high-quality education for all students and overcome achievement gaps is greater than ever. In this issue of Changing Schools, we look at some of the issues surrounding the education of diverse learners and offer insight into ways to improve their odds of success.
Follow McREL International on social media.

Follow us on Twitter  View our profile on LinkedIn  Like us on Facebook  Find us on Google+  View our videos on YouTube  Visit our blog
Join Our Mailing List
Forward this email
This email was sent to mkbarbour@gmail.com by news@mcrel.org |  Privacy Policy.
 
McREL International | 4601 DTC Blvd., Suite 500 | Denver | CO | 80237
Next Page »

The Rubric Theme. Blog at WordPress.com.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 2,862 other followers