The cool fall weather brings a sense of relief for many reasons, but for an educator, it signals that October is finally here and with it a time that allows teachers and students a chance to settle in and set goals.

Classroom routines and expectations have been established, everyone has had a chance to get to know each other, and strengths and areas for growth have begun to emerge. Teachers and students have an opportunity to reflect on what is working well and what needs to be improved in order to have the most successful year possible.

Just as classroom teachers have been meeting with students to reflect on their progress this year and set goals for moving forward, Assistant Head of Lower School Marianne Stapleton and I have been meeting with all Lower School faculty members to gauge how their school year has started off and discuss their professional growth plans for the year ahead.

I have really enjoyed spending time individually with our faculty members. I feel grateful and honored to work alongside colleagues who are so dedicated to their own professional growth and who are continuously looking for ways to improve.

As a follow up to an earlier post sharing our Lower School goals, I thought I would share how individual teachers and grade-level teams are working toward achieving the goals related to technology and classroom instruction:

  • Develop interactive SMART Board and SMART Table activities to engage students in the learning process;
  • Video tape lessons and self-evaluate to improve instructional techniques;
  • Begin work on a Master’s degree;
  • Use Google Docs in real time for student editing and collaboration and for collaboration on shared documents with colleagues;
  • Implement the use of a blog for teacher, parent, and student communications;
  • Develop formative assessments to guide instruction;
  • Investigate SAS Curriculum Pathways as a writing revision support resource;
  • Create clicker activities to engage students in the learning and assessment process;
  • Participate in school-wide committees;
  • Learn how to use Prezi to enhance presentation skills;
  • Integrate technology in the classroom using smartphones, Twitter, and Dropbox;
  • Improve math instruction by using a workshop model to differentiate instruction;
  • Explore the use of Skype to connect with schools from other countries;
  • Visit other independent schools and attend local and national conferences.

It is exciting to know that our already talented Ravenscroft faculty is striving to get better and that their efforts directly impact the experience your children will have here at school.

As we come to the end of the first quarter of the school year, I hope you will take the time to sit with your child and reflect on how things are going at school and discuss ways to make it even better!

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