Sunday, February 14, 2010

The Gallery Walk 2009: Learning Targets

Last year our principal had a "Gallery Walk." It was done on a Thursday morning when we have our 90 minute school planning time in the morning (late arrival for students). I did a trifold board presentation on the Assessment for Learning principle: Setting Targets with Unit Plans.

Here is the posting I did on that day on my own personal blog:
Today we did a school "Gallery Walk." Teachers used presentation poster boards and highlighted new ideas that they have been trying for Assessment for Learning and other new initiatives. At first, I was worried I'd be one of a handful of teachers to participate. But, we had over 30 people. It was really great to see all of the cool ideas people had and what they were doing in their classes.

This is my poster board:
You can see the poster board more clearly by clicking on it.

My topic was "Target Sheets." The basics behind them is that it is a "unit plan" or "game plan" for what we will learn in each chapter. I pass them out on the first day of the chapter and on the sheets they have objectives (targets), vocabulary words, "big ideas," quotes to understand and possible essay questions on them. I also include the 10 questions from the chapter that are due for homework.

Students have liked them because they have a clear plan on the first day about what they are learning. It gives them a chance to see the "whole" before we put the parts together. I have seen some students achieve a higher level of with them this year. At first, I was sure it would be too much work for me to do. But, I was wrong. It really didn't take that much more time.

Now I have them for next year as well and I'll be able to tweak and change them and hopefully make them better. The presentation went over pretty well and I also had my laptop there while I played our fall video for World History. It highlighted all the cool projects we did (like the castle project, rock art project, and religion

During the morning we had tons of people walk through the library and check things out, including our superintendents. As I walked around I was really proud of my school and all the effort the faculty has undertaken to improve instruction and learning at our school. I am really lucky to work there.

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