A Reader Shares… A Fundamental 5 Success Story

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A LYS Principal shares the following:

SC,


I have a great Fundamental 5 success story for you to share with the LYS Nation.  The back-story is important so let me apologize now for the length of this post but I promise it is worth the read.

My husband and I are both 2nd year principals.  He is at HS and I am at MS.  We both felt strongly about the instructional benefits of the Fundamental 5 and introduced them to our campuses last year.  We have continued to work to reflect, revisit, and refine our staff’s understanding and use of the Fundamental 5 this year through on-going training for our staff.

This week, we were reviewing elements of our classroom observation tool.  As we began to talk about the Fundamental 5’s role in a classroom observation, two of my teachers shared amazing stories. 

When we introduced the Fundamental 5 to our staff last year, we used a graphic and arm motions to represent each of the five practices.  We review the arm motions each time we are together as a staff and at all Fundamental 5 trainings. The graphic symbols we use in written communication to our staff, such as our weekly bulletin.  This year, as we expected broader and more effective use of the Fundamental 5 in all classrooms, we quantified our pictorial representations (which is what I have attached).  It is a reminder for teachers to be sure to plan during each class period two opportunities for students to write critically, refer to the lesson frame at least three times, etc.   My staff is required to have this graphic on their lesson plan template and I even made posters for all of my teachers to put in their room.

During the walk-through training one of my teachers shared that her students had asked her about the signs, what they meant, and why they were in all the rooms.  She took the time to share what each symbol and number meant and how I had been teaching them about the Fundamental 5 and expected teachers to use them in the classroom.  They couldn’t believe that teachers had “rules” to follow to about teaching.  Now they remind her if she forgets to do something!  She said students are always holding up the symbol for lesson frame if she starts class without talking about it! 

Another teacher in the training laughed and said her students are doing the same thing.  If she has been talking too long they start holding up the symbol for FSGPT, and they rate her on her use of the Fundamental 5 at the end of each class period.  She noted that her student frequently comment about how fast class goes by when she does “everything she is supposed to do”!!!! 

WOW!  Kids actually guiding teachers to use great instructional tools and feeling empowered about their own learning!  Exciting stuff is happening at our school!

Thanks for all you do to help teachers provide kids with the best learning opportunities possible!



SC Response Wow!  Thanks for sharing. Keep it up and keep send me some more updates.

Think. Work. Achieve. Your turn…

  • Call Jo at (832) 477-LEAD to order your campus set of “The Fundamental 5: The Formula for Quality Instruction.” Individual copies available on Amazon.com!  http://tinyurl.com/Fundamental5 
  • Call Jo at (832) 477-LEAD to order your campus set of “Look at Me: A Cautionary School Leadership Tale” Individual copies available on Amazon.com!  http://tinyurl.com/lookatmebook 
  • Now at the Apple App Store: Fun 5 Plans (Fundamental 5 Lesson Plan Tool); PW Lite (Basic PowerWalks Tool); PW Pro (Mid-level PowerWalks Tool) 
  • Upcoming Presentations: TASSP Summer Conference (Multiple Presentations); NEASP National Conference; The Fundamental 5 National Summit (Keynote Presentation) 
  • Follow Sean Cain and LYS on www.Twitter.com/LYSNation  and like Lead Your School on Facebook
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