Monday, December 14, 2015

A Day of "Rich" Experiences at Rich Acres Elementary: Superintendent's Office Hours

Reading to Preschool Class at RAE
Last week, I spent a full day at Rich Acres Elementary as a part of my "Superintendent's Office Hours" that have been scheduled for each of our 14 schools throughout the school year.  As I continue to spend time in our schools, I am impressed by the exciting things going on each and every day.  I also continue to be grateful for the hard work and dedication that our educational professionals exhibit on a daily basis.  Certainly, it was a busy and productive day.  The list below includes some examples of my activities:

  • Read with a 4th grader who is making great progress in reading this year.  I hope to read again with her in the spring.
  • Read to a class of Pre-K students who were excited to hear about the adventures of the "Gingerbread Baby."
  • Met with the principal, Mrs. Scott, to discuss student achievement data and instructional initiatives that have been put in place at RAE.
  • Visited several classrooms with Mrs. Scott and Mr. Bullins, Assistant Superintendent,  to observe effective teaching and learning in action.
  • Worked with a 3rd grade student who was working on solving word problems in mathematics.
  • Joined a group of 2nd and 3rd grade students at lunch. 
  • Had a great time reading to a special education class.  The students were excited and eager to participate.  I hope to visit them again this year!
  • Observed kindergarten students learning all about shapes, and identifying examples of triangles, squares, circles, and rectangles in the classroom.  
Overall, it was a great day at Rich Acres Elementary.  It is clear that the teachers have high expectations for students, and the students are working hard to master essential skills.  I also saw several examples of differentiated instruction and personalized learning for students.  The teachers at RAE are focused on teaching for mastery. Students are expected to learn from their mistakes, make necessary corrections, and demonstrate mastery before moving on to new concepts.  Certainly, this requires a great deal of planning and organization on the part of the teacher.  It is well worth the effort, however.  When you watch the students working at RAE, it is clear that they have taken ownership of their learning.  

It was a great day at RAE!  I look forward to future visits in the Spring.
Working with a Student on Problem-Solving in Mathematics