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FIP in Action: ELA Grade 5 Opinion Writing

FIP in Action: ELA Grade 5 Opinion Writing

Infants as young as 4 months old are able to show us if they feel happy, or indicate that they want a particular toy that’s just out of reach. (Center for Disease Control and Prevention) In elementary school, children learn to express preferences over reading materials, favorite colors, and interests in activities. This skill of expression is incredibly important as they grow up and learn to voice their opinions as young adults in school and in the workplace. Over the course of many years, our students will grow from a simple “I do/don’t like” to eventually writing full-length essays supporting their opinions on research projects and college entrance examinations.

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FIP for Pre-Service Teachers: Kent State University, Stark

FIP for Pre-Service Teachers: Kent State University, Stark

FIP isn’t just for practicing teachers. Pre-Service teachers are getting an accelerated look at the same materials that districts across the state are using, preparing them for their own classrooms in the near future.  As a part of this month’s focus on FIP and pre-service teachers, we spoke with Claudia Khourey-Bowers, Ph.D. professor at Kent State University, Stark. Although many higher education faculty members hear about formative instructional practices exclusively through education conferences, Claudia found out that Plain Local, a partner school district, had adopted FIP training for their teachers and leaders. Her KSU pre-service teachers were hearing about formative assessment in their extended-teaching experiences with the district.

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Deconstructing the Teacher-Based Team 5-Step Process

Deconstructing the Teacher-Based Team 5-Step Process

This post was written by Barbara Israel, School Improvement Specialist at Battelle for Kids.

“Real reform occurs when teachers convene, trade ideas, implement and refine them in their classrooms, and become sounding boards and resources for one another.” —Diana Lam

To me, that quote reinforces the idea that the most important education improvement work is happening in teacher-based teams (TBTs). I recently had the opportunity to wear my teacher hat once again. (Picture me smiling!) I facilitated the learning for two very different groups who were grappling with the same concern: how to marry the best of formative instructional practices to the 5-Step Teacher-Based Team process. One group was made up of teachers from a high-performing suburban district, and the other included teachers and administrators from a large urban district. 

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Q&A: Clear Learning Targets and Effective Feedback

Q&A: Clear Learning Targets and Effective Feedback

This blog post was written by Neil Roseberry. Neil is a FIP Specialist for the Northeast Region, a part of a regional support system available to help your LEA advance the use of formative instructional practices. 

How do teachers use formative instructional practices to raise student achievement? What does FIP look like in your classroom? What successes have occurred? These questions, and others, were asked of Michelle LaGruth, 3rd grade teacher at Falls-Lenox Primary School in the Olmsted Falls City Schools.

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Deconstructing Standards at Mound Street Academy

This blog post was written by Mary Wolf. Mary is a FIP Specialist for the Southwest Region, a part of a regional support system available to help your LEA advance the use of formative instructional practices. 

This year, I had an opportunity to visit Mound Street Academy in Dayton, Ohio.  The principal and FIP lead, George Herbanek, gave me a tour of their school.  They primarily use online learning with their students, coupled with face-to-face flexible group instruction based upon student needs.  During our conversation, George mentioned they had worked on deconstructing in the fall to find the gaps.  He said it was a real eye-opener for everyone and was time well-spent.  Here is a paragraph written by Ralph Grant, a Science teacher at the school.

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"The staff at Mound Street Academy determined that in order to improve the academic instruction of our students, we needed to deconstruct the academic content standards.  The staff had two intensive days working in academic teams to find gaps in the curriculum.  It was challenging at times, but we were able to pinpoint areas that needed improvement.  The staff used what we learned and incorporated it into our GAIN (Get Academic Instruction Now) period to strengthen our academics and to prepare students for the OGT.  We have also used FIP to guide all of our teaching.  All teachers are using learning targets to provide our students with a GPS to know where they are going; and the teachers know what was learned.  It enables the student to have ownership in what they are learning."

If you are interested in learning more about FIP, check out our State Level Support page to see our FIP Specialists by region as well as information on training for your LEA's.