Sunday, December 2, 2007

Tips From the Outside... (Cheryl Dillard)

Question to Cheryl: You have taught very successfully in another high performing school. As you have come to Chets Creek, what things do you notice that we do really well? Is there an idea that you think we should borrow from your previous experience? dayle

There are so many things that Chets Creek does really well, that I thought I would make a list.

1. Constant celebrating

  • The teachers are always being celebrated, from a note in the weekly memo to the the Tinkerbell book/necklace to a lunch provided by PTA. Teachers are noticed for all the hard work they do.

  • The first day back to school for both teachers and the students is amazing. My daughter has never been so excited for a first day of school and to find out our school theme (I kept it a secret from her).

  • The team building that takes place over the summer to welcome new teachers is amazing. It is like Chets Creek 101 and really helps prepare you for the school year. It is a week full of info followed by a social gathering with your mentor

2. Good use of time

  • The weekly memo fills us in on the upcoming events so that we don't have to hear it all in a faculty meeting.

  • Meetings are held in the morning which keeps them short and sweet. WOW days are well planned, organized, entertaining.

3. Amazing coaches (and I'm not just saying that because you passed the book to me!)

  • The coaches are an excellent resource. They are always available and help to lighten the work load instead of add to it.

4. Resource and planning time with your team

  • Wow! - enough said!

5. Bulletin boards

  • I can actually walk through the halls at Chets Creek and learn from them. The bulletin boards aren't cookie cutter and they give you a look at what is taking place in the classroom. thinking outside of the box is encouraged!

6. Book of the Month

  • I have thoroughly enjoyed introduction to the book of the month. It is obvious that they are well thought out and chosen for a reason. The ideas that are presented with them are a wonderful resource.

I have thought all week about what you could borrow from my previous experience and I had a hard time coming up with anything. The one thing that helped me as a teacher at my last school was the dining room management plan. I know that is the one place that many students have a hard time following the rules. Each teacher had the same sheet (called the Golden Paw) and on it was a list of the expectations and a place for the student names. Each day the whole class could earn a 5, 4, 3, 2, or 1 according to the five expectations that were listed. Classes that earned a 5 each day for a week would get a golden paw sticker on a chart that was displayed in the cafeteria. If received all 5's and only one 4, you receive a silver paw. classes that received a Gold or Silver Paw for the week were announced on the morning news on Monday and Had a chance to earn a stuffed tiger in their room for a week. It was helpful to me because I could look at the sheets and see which students had problems at lunch and how my class did overall. If they did not clean up after themselves then that would be marked on the paper. I know this seems like a lot, it actually ran very smoothly and helped me to reinforce good behavior and correct inappropriate behavior in the dinning room.


dayle said...

Cheryl, I think you really nailed some of the things that we do well. I do think we make good use of our time and try to make the job easier instead of piling up paperwork. I LOVE what we're doing with bulletin boards. I think we do take the time to celebrate and I think Susan's Books of the Month are something we anticipate every month. You also nailed the thing that needs improvement. Now that we finally have enough help in the Dining Room, it's time to tackle a more civil environment. Who's ready to take that on? dayle

Suzanne said...

I'm not signing up to take on the dining room... everyone knows that is a monster to tackle, but I love Cheryl's suggestion. I think it would allow teachers an avenue that would help everyone hold students accountable no matter where they were in the building.