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The Continuing Educator
53 minutes | Oct 19, 2021
How culturally responsive teaching enables student agency, with Benjie Howard and Lindsay Prendergast (Season 2, Ep 3)
Setting the conditions within which an environment of student agency is possible is not something that happens by accident. This episode will explore elements of culturally responsive teaching, supportive environments, and the actions that educators and leaders can take to create a space where students belong, feel valued, and thereby are more likely to take risks, make mistakes, and build a sense of self-efficacy that will serve them well in their academic journeys and in their lives beyond school. Our guests: Benjie Howard is Benjie Howard is the executive director of New Wilderness Project, an outdoor education program focused on developing youth leadership for equity and land justice, and he is the co-founder of Youth Equity Stewardship (YES!). Lindsay Prendergast is a former principal, guidance counselor, and special ed teacher who is now at school improvement coach at NWEA.
51 minutes | Oct 12, 2021
Giving students a say, with Myron Dueck and Brooke Mabry (Season 2, Ep 2)
At the heart of student agency is engaging students directly in their learning in ways that provide them choice points, skill in navigating formative learning cycles, and increasing levels of expertise to assess, as Royce Sadler famously coined, “Where Am I Now?,” “Where Am I Going?”, and “How Will I Get There?” This session examines elements of student ‘voice and choice’ as critical enabling elements needed to build in students that kind of self-efficacy that will help them thrive and meet their full potential as learners. The conversation centers on practices and routines that are applicable to a number of scenarios and classroom contexts. Our guests are Myron Dueck, author of Giving Students a Say and Grading Smarter, Not Harder; and Brooke Mabry, Strategic Content Design Manager at NWEA.
54 minutes | Oct 5, 2021
What is student agency? With Sarah Brown Wessling & Anthony Swann (Season 2, Ep 1)
Welcome to season 2 of The Continuing Educator! Teachers have tremendously complex jobs and a constantly shifting ecosystem of expectations, yet despite shifts across so many other areas of educational practice, building student agency remains a key desired classroom outcome that educators generally recognize as an area of need. This conversation will give teacher voice to the importance of student agency, varied practitioner views on the opportunities and challenges related to building student agency, and a frame for the season that will prepare listeners to hear about topics ranging from supportive environments and goal setting to meeting the unique needs of students with disabilities and emergent bilinguals.
52 minutes | Jun 1, 2021
Tools for success: Get started with grading for learning with Heather McClure and Roberto D’Erizans (Ep. 6)
Shifting to grading for learning can have a powerful impact on your students, and whether you’re just beginning or you’re digging deeper into practices, your persistence will pay off! All students deserve to receive clear, meaningful, growth-focused measures of their learning and, with an aligned purpose you’ll be ready to deliver on this goal. The strategies and ideas shared by the experts in this podcast will equip you with the tools for success!
45 minutes | May 24, 2021
What's in your gradebook? with David Woodward and Katie Budrow (Ep. 5)
Since the advent of online gradebooks, we’ve put the tools in students’ and parents’ hands to regularly view their learning progress. But what happens when those systems work against our grading practices focused on learning, as is often the case? Designing reporting methods that uphold the clear communication around best, most recent evidence and also distinguish between achievement and behavior shouldn’t require sophisticated methods. Consider ideas for organizing gradebooks and communicating with students and parents that keep the focus on the learning, not the points!
59 minutes | May 17, 2021
Giving students a do-over with Ken O’Connor and VaShawn Smith (Ep. 4)
Grading for learning requires reconsideration of several practices deeply entrenched in tradition, and one of those is the opportunity for students to reassess, or redo a learning activity. If we truly believe our goal as educators is for every student to learn, not to sort, rank or exclude anyone from that opportunity, it’s time to recognize why reassessments should be the norm, not the exception. Ken O’Connor and Dr. VaShawn Smith share why this is fundamental for student learning and how to make it work in the everyday classroom.
44 minutes | May 10, 2021
The problem with grading behavior, with Matt Townsley and Chris Thoms (Ep. 3)
Traditional grading practices typically incorporate non-learning measures such as behavior and effort into an average. Yet by mixing achievement and behavior, we miscommunicate on both accounts. Students and parents still need information on both, but the critical step is to separate reporting, and Dr. Matt Townsley and NWEA User Experience Designer Chris Thoms will share with us both why this is crucial for equity, and how teachers can put it into action.
60 minutes | May 3, 2021
What is "Grading for Learning?" with Myron Dueck and Brooke Mabry (Ep. 2)
To successfully create the conditions where grading for learning practices may thrive, consider first the importance of ensuring student-centered assessment processes. Hear from experts on how the practices of formative assessment are crucial to cultivating a growth-mindset in a safe, respectful classroom environment. By engaging students as co-pilots in the assessment and feedback cycle rather than passengers, we empower learners and learning, which positively impacts student motivation, well-being, self-efficacy, and achievement.
57 minutes | Apr 20, 2021
Why do we grade? with Thomas Guskey and Chase Nordengren (Ep. 1)
Let's begin our journey towards better grading practices! Grades have remained a fundamental component of our education system for over a century. Yet despite shifts across so many other areas of educational practice, grading practices have seen little, if any, change to match the demands of modern pedagogy. The pandemic revealed stark flaws in traditional grading protocols and simultaneously presented a profound opportunity for actual change. What should educators, families, and society in general consider around why change is needed and where to begin?
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