Saturday, March 11, 2017


Something we have been spending a lot in our region this time of year doing are learning walks.  We take a group of teachers to neighboring districts to watch classes throughout the day with a overview in the morning and a debrief at the end. With so many districts and teachers that we cover as facilitators, we get a chance to not only facilitate the discussion for the teachers participating but we also get to visit numerous teachers in our region in one day.

The most exciting part is when I step in to observe with a group of teachers and I see implementation of a technique or tool that I know a teacher just saw or heard about at a training or conference.  Just this week we visited a middle school ELA teacher, Eric Gustavson, that had taken something he saw at IETA in Boise with a great presenter Abbey Futrell in February and had it up and going in his classroom.

Do you spot it?  Mr. Gustavson attached Plickers to his numbered chromebooks in his 1:1 classroom with velcro.  Students had finished reading Newsela articles and took the quizzes, Plickers were then used to facilitate a discussion around the questions - not "what was the right answer to..."  This encouraged the students to analyze the questions and pick one where the answers fit one of the following categories:

A - Seemed Obvious
B - Two Good Choices
C - Confused You
D - Tricky Trick

Mr. Gustavson used the answers he collected from his students to call on and have them share the question they were thinking of from the quiz.  They were expected to be ready and the class held a 25 minute discussion around the questions they encountered.

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