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SD Department of Education May 2016  

Summer Learning Opportunities

teacher TEACHER FEATURE: One answer, multiple paths

Mona McClure likes math because problems have one right answer. “It’s cut and dry. There’s a number or solution everybody needs to get to,” says the Eagle Butte 7th grade math teacher.

While everybody is headed to the same place, not everyone will use the same path. McClure likes that, too, and she knows she’s not the only one in the room with a map. Students can provide each other a lot of guidance.

McClure regularly has students work in pairs or groups. “I tell them, it’s not cheating,” she says. “Look at your classmate’s paper. Does it look like yours? Do you have the same answers? If not, why? You need to be talking about that.”

And when students are talking about those differences, they don’t need to sound like McClure. Hers is adult language, grounded in years of experience teaching math, but a student also benefits from hearing something explained in the language of a peer.

For example, in one lesson, McClure defined a regular polygon as one in which all the sides have the same length and all the angles have the same measure. As she listened to her students discuss the topic, she consistently heard them define a regular polygon this way: the sides are equal and the angles are equal.

“It’s the same thing I’m saying, but that was their way of saying it, after they looked at the definition and they looked at the pictures,” McClure says.

A number of Eagle Butte teachers are participating in the South Dakota Counts program, which is intended to build broad-based expertise and leadership for improving math instruction in grades 4-8. The program provides teachers an opportunity to deepen their content knowledge, improve instructional practices and develop data-use skills to support student learning.

McClure says they often have conversations about how they were taught math. “We were essentially told, this is how you do it, so memorize it and do it,” she says. “Now we’re learning to equip students with a variety of ways to solve problems, so they develop deeper understanding.”

McClure also tries to make sure hers isn’t the only voice students hear introduce a topic. “One of the things I’m thinking right now, is that I talk too much,” McClure says. “So I’ll use videos to let them hear someone else explain. I also try to give them the information with as few words as possible, or I give them the problem and let them talk in their groups right away.”

In giving up ownership of some of the talk time, McClure hopes her students take more ownership of the learning. Most importantly, she wants them to learn perseverance when things get difficult. “My favorite thing is when I hear students say, ‘I always thought this was hard, but it’s really not hard,’” she says. “And I think to myself, yes! They’ve got it!”

Big summer ahead for content standards review

State content standards are up for review in several areas this summer:

    • Math
    • English language arts
    • Oceti Sakowin Essential Understandings and standards
    • Health education
    • Six career and technical education career clusters

Work groups made up of K-12 and postsecondary educators, business and industry representatives and parents will begin meeting in June.

“This is a great opportunity to bring individuals together to discuss what’s working well with standards, where the challenges are and what changes can be made to address concerns,” said Becky Nelson, director of learning and instruction for the South Dakota Department of Education.

In the areas of math, English language arts, health education and OSEU, work groups will draft proposed standards this summer, then take feedback from school districts throughout the 2016-17 school year. The work groups will meet again in summer 2017 to consider feedback before preparing a final draft of proposed standards to bring before the state Board of Education in fall 2017. The standards will then have four public hearings over the course of the 2017-18 school year.

“We’re reviewing math and English language arts standards at the same time, but it’s important to remember implementation will be staggered,” Nelson said. “Teachers will be expected to be teaching to the revised English language arts standards in fall 2019 and to the revised math standards in fall 2020.”

This is the first time the Oceti Sakowin Essential Understandings and standards have been incorporated into the review cycle.

“It’s especially timely to add these standards to the review cycle with this year’s passage of legislation based on the work of the Native American Student Achievement Advisory Council,” said Mato Standing High, director of the office of Indian education. “There is great momentum for improving how we teach Native American history and culture not only to our state’s Native students, but to all students.”

In spring 2016, updated standards were adopted in several career and technical education career clusters. Work groups will examine standards in additional career clusters this summer, with four public hearings planned throughout the 2016-17 school year.

Follow the progress of this important work on the Department of Education website [http://www.doe.sd.gov/ContentStandards/review.aspx].

Two South Dakota educators honored by President Obama

On May 3, state teachers of the year, including South Dakota’s Sarah Lutz, were honored in Washington, D.C. For the first time, Head Start educators were also celebrated at this annual event. Jodi Berscheid of Pierre was one of three Head Start honorees from across the country.

President Obama
South Dakota Teacher of the Year Sarah Lutz (2nd row, far right) among teachers honored by President Obama
View video at http://abcnews.go.com/US/video/president-obama-honors-teachers-white-house-38855083

Head Start honorees (l to r): Jodi Berscheid (Pierre), Vicki Wolfe (Tulsa, Okla.) and Killotta Tartt-Wall (Flint, Mich.); Tommy Sheridan, Director of Government Affairs for the National Head Start Association.

SD Indian Education logo
New format planned for 2016 Indian Education Summit

This year’s sessions will be two hours long, with the second hour designated for attendees to work together in small groups to develop action plans based on the information presented. The summit will be organized into four strands:
   • Attendance
   • Culture/Language
   • Recruiting/Retaining Qualified Teachers
   • Innovation

Read more at http://indianeducation.sd.gov/summit.aspx


South Dakota Ag in the Classroom announces Teacher of the Year

South Dakota Ag in the Classroom has named Michael Burke, a 4th grade teacher at Valley View Elementary in Rapid City as its 2016 Teacher of the Year. Burke has been teaching for 23 years and was chosen to receive the award because of the work he does to promote agriculture literacy among his students.

Read more at http://news.sd.gov/newsitem.aspx?id=20257.

Dyslexia work group to meet this summer

A work group will meet this summer to examine strategies for providing South Dakota educators and pre-service teachers with tools to help identify and serve students with dyslexia. The group will also update South Dakota’s Dyslexia Handbook. The group’s first meeting will be June 14 in Pierre.

Two SD students named U.S. Presidential Scholars

Shelby Riggs (Mitchell) and Austin Lentsch (Pierre) have been named among 160 U.S. Presidential Scholars [http://www2.ed.gov/programs/psp/2016/scholars.pdf]. Eleven South Dakota students were semifinalists for this distinction [http://www2.ed.gov/programs/psp/2016/semifinalists.pdf]. Congratulations to all of these outstanding young men and women!

Summer Job
Summer jobs help prepare students for college, career and life

Many students are finalizing their summer plans. These plans should include a visit to their local Department of Labor and Regulation office, which offers a wide array of employment services for young adults. Work experience can help young adults learn new skills and prepare for the workforce.

Read more at http://www.sdjobs.org/news/releases16/nr050516_young_adults.aspx.

Upcoming Events

A complete listing of events is available at http://southdakota.gosignmeup.com/.

SLO Refresher Trainings for Teachers
May-June, various locations statewide

SLO Refresher Trainings are for all teachers, whether or not they’ve attended an SLO training in the past. Learn about updates and SLO best practices from trainers who have worked with SLOs for several years and have assisted hundreds of teachers across South Dakota in developing, revising and editing SLOs in all content areas and grade levels.

Participants will discover the power of analyzing baseline data and how this frequently missed step can drive creation of a truly meaningful SLO. Trainers will share strategies and promising practices for SLO goal setting, which can be one of the most challenging parts of the SLO. Participants are encouraged to bring a current SLO or other materials and assessments to get a jump start on developing a great SLO for 2016-17.

Learn more with this shareable flyer [http://doe.sd.gov/documents/16-SLOTrn.pdf]. Teachers who attended the first training share their feedback in this video [https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Biwv_90Jlhs].

Board of Education
May 16, Aberdeen

The South Dakota Board of Education will meet at 9 a.m. CDT in the Northern State University Student Center, 1200 South Jay St., in Aberdeen. The final of four public hearings will be held on proposed career and technical education standards in several career clusters. An agenda is posted on the Boards and Commissions portal [http://boardsandcommissions.sd.gov/Meetings.aspx?BoardID=32].

Advanced Data Use Skills for Educators
May 30-July 13, online

Since summer 2013, the Department of Education has offered courses to train educators on how to use data. These courses provided training on fundamental skills.

Building upon skills taught in the prerequisite “Fundamentals of Using Data for Educators,” this online course applies the fundamental skills to an individual project that uses data. Participants will complete required readings, participate in online discussions and complete a data project with the goal of using data to answer important questions to drive positive change in their district, school or classroom.

Find registration information and more at https://southdakota.gosignmeup.com/. Search by course title.

MVPA Maximized! (for physical education/physical activity educators)
June 1, Pierre
June 2, Oacoma

The School Health program in the South Dakota Departments of Education and Health will host professional development for physical education/physical activity educators at two locations this summer. The MVPA Maximized! workshop will be held from 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m. CDT.

MVPA (moderate to vigorous physical activity) is an essential component of a quality physical education program. The MVPA Maximized! workshop will show K-12 physical education/physical activity educators how to increase MVPA during physical education classes and in other environments.

Registration deadline: May 25.

Participants will be reimbursed at state rates for meals, mileage and lodging. Find registration information and more on this shareable flyer [http://doe.sd.gov/schoolhealth/documents/MVPA-MAXED.pdf].

Questions? Contact Karen Keyser, Health and Physical Education Specialist, South Dakota Department of Education, at karen.keyser@state.sd.us or (605) 220-6453.

2016 Summer Education Conference
June 28-29, Chamberlain

This year’s conference will focus on explicit instruction with keynote speaker Dr. Anita Archer. Read more about Dr. Archer and find registration information on this shareable flyer [http://doe.sd.gov/pressroom/educationonline/2016/March/documents/MTSS-Conf.pdf].

Fundamentals of Using Data for Educators
July 5-Aug. 19, online (and one face-to-face workshop)

This fundamentals course provides educators with the skills they need to analyze and use data in order to answer important questions. Scheduled from July 5-Aug. 19, this course requires online work, and participants must attend in-person at one of the following locations, 9 a.m-5 p.m., local time:
  • July 18, Rapid City
  • July 20, Aberdeen
  • July 21, Mitchell

Find more information at https://southdakota.gosignmeup.com/ Search by course title.

Top 20 Training
July 18-19, Rapid City
July 20-21, Sioux Falls

Top 20 Training is back in South Dakota, and it’s free. This is a one-of-a-kind professional development opportunity that will be a difference maker for educators and students. Top 20 Training is geared to help educators, no matter the grade level of their students. Concepts help teachers and students build better relationships and experiences in the classroom.

Find more information at https://southdakota.gosignmeup.com/. Search by course title.

Boot Camp 2016: Primary Sources in the 21st Century School Library
July 18-21, Pierre

What is a primary source? Where can I find primary sources to use with my students? How do I integrate primary sources into my lessons?

Find the answers to these questions and more at the State Library in Pierre from July 18-21, during Boot Camp 2016. Students will explore Primary Sources in the 21st Century School Library with an emphasis on integrating research and social studies standards. Class time will include activities at the Cultural Heritage Center Museum and Archives, a tour of the Oahe Dam and a visit with a Lewis and Clark expert.

All educators, certified and paraprofessional, are welcome! Find registration information and more on the State Library website [http://library.sd.gov/LIB/DEV/training/bootcamp/index.aspx].

Registration closes June 1.

Questions? Contact Joan Upell [joan.upell@state.sd.us] or Kathleen Slocum [kathleen.slocum@state.sd.us] with the State Library.

Social Studies Standards Implementation
July 19 June 15, Sioux Falls
July 20 June 16, Rapid City

A one-day training will be offered this summer for K-12 social studies teachers, focusing on implementation of the new social studies content standards.

Five hours toward a CEU will be available. Each training will run from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. local time.

How does this fit with the other social studies trainings offered in the 2015-16 school year?
It is not a prerequisite to have gone through the previous social studies trainings conducted throughout the 2015-16 school year. The summer 2016 one-day training is designed for all teachers and administrators at any level of preparedness for the new South Dakota social studies content standards. Participants from the fall 2015 and spring 2016 trainings will experience new learning and get useful tools and strategies to bring back to their classrooms and districts.

Find more information at https://southdakota.gosignmeup.com/. Search by course title.

Title Conference
Aug. 1-2, Oacoma

This conference is focused on current issues in education and is the primary conference for Title I schools. It emphasizes the critical nature of doing what is right and what is needed to help every child succeed.

Join other South Dakota educators for this important professional development opportunity. All South Dakota education professionals are invited to attend.

Find registration information and more on this shareable flyer [http://www.doe.sd.gov/oess/documents/16-TitleI.pdf].

CORE/Foundational Reading Skills
Aug. 21, Sept. 21-22 (3-day training), Pierre

The CORE/Foundational Reading skills training will focus on the five main literacy skills: phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary and reading comprehension. The training will include both a research-informed knowledge base and practical sample lesson models. The training skills and materials will be used for actual implementation into teaching practices during the school year.

Find more information at https://southdakota.gosignmeup.com/. Search by course title.

New format in 2016! Indian Education Summit
Sept. 25-27, Pierre
Read details at http://indianeducation.sd.gov/summit.aspx.

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