There is a cognitive understanding that it is impossible to “Unring the Bell.” Meaning that once you know something, it is very difficult to remember what it was like to not know it. Because I have been involved in the use of common 3-week checkpoints since the early 2000’s, it has been a long time since I first heard the bell ring. This year I have been working with a lot of campuses that are new to the process. As I have sat with teams of teachers as they have begun the structured assessment / analysis / adjustment process for the first time, I have had the privilege of seeing teachers unpeel the layers of deeper understanding.
Here have been the top “A-ha” moments I have observed. This list applies universally in Grades 3-12 classrooms, regardless of content area.
1. If the teacher did not teach it, the students do not know it.
2. The teacher talking and telling does not mean that students are learning.
3. Stay in concrete modes of delivery and learning for significantly longer periods of time.
4. Significantly increase the amount of purposeful talk and critical writing that occurs in class.
5. Significantly increase the amount of time working of multi-step process questions.
6. Students need to draw the problem, highlight key words and information, and/or show their work.
7. Knowing which distracter the students picked highlights both student misunderstandings and instructional breakdowns.
8. Even a bad question can provide useful instructional information.
9. The “Deepest Hole” re-teaching strategy works.
10. Growth is good, Baby!!!
Think. Work. Achieve.
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