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Monday, August 27, 2012

Meet the SIOP Soldiers! Day 1

The Few, the Proud, the  SIOP TRAINED!

General Delk with her crew of dedicated educators- Ritchey, Jackson, Ross, and Hawkins- ready and willing to go the distance to make sure all of their students are prepared for the real world!

But wait. What is SIOP you ask? That's a good question. In fact, I asked that same question just this morning.
And the answer is....

S- Sheltered
I- Instruction
O- Observation
P- Protocol

In other words, preparing our students that are considered 'EL', English Learners, for the world ahead. This training is 3 days long and highly intensive. Educators are learning how to tweak their lessons to include more of a range of learners. To be quite honest, I'm finding that all of my students will benefit from this training!

I can't share everything that was covered today, there's just not enough time tonight, but I can cover some highlights!

We opened by splitting into groups based on our favorite season. (This was a way to randomly split the group) First we were asked why we chose the season we chose as an ice breaker. After we shared our answers, we were then asked to list concerns that we have found in our school when it comes to ESL students.

 I need to explain the "everything dies" comment- the teacher who said that was a sufferer of allergies. She liked that fall was the beginning of no more allergies!

This 4-Seasons technique can be used in different ways in the classroom as well. Educators can use different categories to split their class into random groups. (example- animals, shapes, landforms, vocabulary words) Once in groups, students can brainstorm ideas, create diagrams, share knowledge of the category, etc.

Here are some more Instructional Techniques we covered today:

Carousel- Chart paper posted around the room with small groups of students rotating to each chart. This technique can be used for brainstorming on a topic, accessing prior knowledge, used in math as a way to show different ways to solve problems, science and social studies vocabulary (picture or written vocab), etc.
Here is how we used this technique: There were 8 posters around the room, one for each factor that affects second language acquisition. In small groups, we went around the room and wrote why we thought these factors were important.

This was a good activity to get the group moving and thinking. In a classroom, this would also be helpful for students who might be shyer than others. This allows students to feel like part of a group, as a valued member, instead of feeling like he/ she is in the spotlight.

Jigsaw- This strategy is used when faced with a long passage of information, or multiple chapters to read. You'll see this strategy used with book clubs a lot. Using Jigsaw, a passage will be broken down into smaller parts, each part assigned to individuals or small groups. The individual or group will then be responsible for sharing the information from the passage.
This strategy is good for students who might not be the best readers, but are good at listening for important details. Students get to play to their strengths with this strategy and they get to feel what it's like on the other side of the desk, as the educator. :)

Inside/ Outside Circle- Students are numbered off into 2 groups. One group makes a circle and faces outside of the circle. The second group makes a circle around group 1 and faces inside the circle. (so everyone has a partner) Each person takes a turn sharing information or asking a question, then it is the other person's turn to reply.
Clifton Hills has used this technique during the first of the year activities to get to know new teachers. We used this technique today to share lesson ideas for how to include Content and Language Standards. (Think of Common Core or State Standards, but with Bloom's Taxonomy thrown in for good measure) It was interesting to hear what my partners shared!

Mind Pictures- Just what it sounds like, making pictures from what you see in your mind. Our presenter used this technique to show that everyone's minds work differently. She began with having us close our eyes while she talked us through a "walk through the woods". At the end of our "walk" she asked what we "saw". Many saw a meadow, or a waterfall, or a stream. I however, "saw" my car. (I'm not really an outdoorsy person, so after a walk through the woods, I'd be ready to go home.)

This technique in the classroom could be done with poetry, a song with specific lyrics (geared toward your lesson), a story retell, or character development. Even math equations would work with this strategy since students solve equations differently when using their imaginations!

Even if this was the only thing I walked out with today, I would have been happy. I got to see techniques in action (some I knew, some I didn't) but I learned how to apply them more towards the students who could use them the most. The techniques are all-encompassing for the class, but can be more focused when needed.

More tomorrow!

Check out other days!

Day 2- Objectives and Techniques

Day 2 Components and Features

Day 3

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