I have recently spent some time looking over my Tripod survey results, and based on student feedback, I need to work on the area of consolidation. In this area, I received a score of 270, which is generally low. I scored a low response for “I learn a lot every day” and “my teacher takes time to summarize what we learn each day” (I received medium for “my teacher asks questions to be sure we are following along”). It’s not a nice feeling to see this because it really strikes to the heart of what teaching is all about! I spoke with other HS design teachers about this and some of us felt that their responses could be partly explained by the nature of HS design courses – typically students are working on projects, and it isn’t unusual to go a full lesson (or even a sequence of lessons) without having discrete “lessons” once student projects have been established. So where a student might have a lot of new learning at the beginning of a project, they may then feel that they are not acquiring new skills and knowledge as readily once they are working more independently.
So how can teachers of project-based courses such as mine ensure students feel like they are learning all the time and that their learning is summarized each day? I think the answer to this is for me to use COLOs. This is good news because last weekend I finally began my C6 (SIOP) training! 🙂 I have attempted to use COLOs before but it felt inauthentic without having the training. The breakthrough I had while doing the training was that even though people see COLOs as a tool for language learning, they are actually just a great tool for learning. By establishing clear content and language objectives at the beginning of each lesson, I’m not only setting the objectives for the lesson, I’m also creating a point of reflection (aka summary) for the end of the lesson.
Long story short, I’m going to use COLOs from now on.
Below is a summary of the rest of my remaining “Cs”.
Thanks for reading,
Care: 324 (Medium)
I’m satisfied with this score, but of course, I would like students to think I care about them to a higher level. I wonder if some of this response is due to me still being relatively new to the HS – it will be interesting to see how this score might change next year.
Confer: 348 (High)
I’m happy with this score because for a long time I have tried to encourage students to share their ideas and feedback, in class, DX discussions and blogs.
Captivate: 336 (Medium)
Positive feedback with some room for growth. Students seem to enjoy the way they learn in my class but I want to do better here!
Clarify: 348 (Medium-High)
I’m happy with this score because I am conscious of how I explain and clarify concepts in class, especially with ESL students. This year I have been more intentional about how I use DX for lessons and assessments, so I wonder how this has affected students’ understanding.
Challenge: 324 (High)
It’s is good to see that students recognize that I want them to try their hardest and they are accountable for their learning.
Class Management: 368 (High)
I’m happy with this score but I also wonder about whether luck and subject area play a role here. Students in my classes are typically selecting the courses because they enjoy design and making. So there is often a level of intrinsic interest they bring with them.