The Tecumseh Local District Leadership Team (DLT) recently conducted the first of three curriculum visits of the school year. The DLT is comprised of all district administrators, school psychologists, and several teachers from each building. During a curriculum visit, the team looks for evidence of specific teaching components necessary to promote maximum student learning and growth. A district-designed rubric is used to determine if the following teaching elements are included in each classroom visited:
- Clear learning targets routinely used and posted to keep the learning target a focus for each student. This helps students to know exactly what they are supposed to be learning during the lesson.
- Evidence of differentiation of instructional planning to meet all students where they are academically. This includes evidence of varying modes of lesson delivery approaches, assessments and assignments, and planning to meet the needs of variances in student learning styles, preferences, and interests for maximum learning to occur.
- Evidence of PBIS (Positive Behavior Improvement System) techniques routinely used within the classroom.
- Effective technology use by the teacher and the students to enhance learning.
- The utilization of higher level questioning techniques to “stretch” the students’ understanding and growth of learning concepts.
The curriculum visit includes a student interview component as well. Questions are asked to groups of students from each grade level to gain specific information. Students are asked about the classroom and overall school learning environment. Responses to these questions help to determine strengths and areas of needed growth from the student’s perspective.
The District Leadership Team spends the afternoon of the curriculum visit day(s) analyzing the data from the morning classroom visits and student interviews. This data is used to determine if personnel are progressing toward the attainment of the three goals on the District’s Improvement Plan.
By Paula Crew