Teachers Day 3 v2x

T210X DAY 3
JANUARY 13, 2014
What are the
characteristics of quality
teaching, specifically in
urban schools? Why?
• How does this video affirm, contradict, or
complicate your thoughts about the characteristics
of effective teaching in urban schools?
• How does this video affirm, contradict, or
complicate the readings we have done—both for
today and for previous classes—about effective
teaching in urban schools?
North Star Academy Middle School 5th Grade Words
of Inspiration and Oral Drill
• How does teacher quality in urban district schools
compare to teacher quality in other settings (suburban,
rural, charter, parochial)?
• What does teacher quality even mean, and how does
one measure it?
• Assuming it can be measured, should low teacher
quality in urban schools be addressed by changing who
teachers, or how they learn to teach, or by making
schooling teacher proof?
• How do institutions such as unions, charters, education
schools and district bureaucracies promote or impede
the recruitment, training, and retention of high-quality
teachers in urban areas?
• Activating Prior Knowledge (Videos,
Readings, E-lecture)
• Simulation
• Debrief
For your assigned text:
• What does teacher quality mean, and how does this author
suggest we measure it?
• Given this approach to measurement, how does teacher
quality in urban districts compare to teacher quality in other
• What are the biggest impediments to improving teacher
quality in urban schools?
• What are the highest-leverage opportunities for improving
teacher quality in urban schools?
What does teacher [teaching] quality mean, and how does this author suggest
we measure it?
It means the actions of the teachers, and the outputs that result, not the inputs, nor the characteristics of the
person. (It’s the characteristics of the action: teaching, not teachers)—Heather Hill
Quality needs to be measured by more than standardized test scores. Also need to include student
engagement, student retention (not dropping out), connection to and relationships with students
Goldstein, JDA: How a teacher interacts with students as humans (physically, emotionally) matters.
Right now high quality teaching requires extraordinary people. It shouldn’t, but at the moment it does.
Goldstein: Teaching should have replicable, testable, scalable practices. Need to have contextualized transfer,
pillars of actions of good teaching. Should not have to reinvent the wheel the whole time.
Goldstein: Important to think about prioritization of action and effort.
Payne: Disconnect between complexity of practices, layering of initiatives, and the simple notions of what
teachers are supposed to be doing.
Payne: Hard to define the roles of a teacher, especially in urban systems. Is “going beyond” the measure of
teacher quality, or should urban teachers in fact fulfill fewer roles better?
JDA: From my own class, students prioritize transferability of knowledge and purpose.
Payne: Need to think about teacher-teacher relationships, collaboration w/other adults, receptiveness to new
ideas. Not all about the teacher-student relationship.
Payne: What it means to be a good urban teacher is not all about the actions of the teacher him/herself. A lot of
it is in the context of the school: the political construction of urban schools influences the construction of effective
urban teaching.
The job of teaching may vary depending on how we’ve organized schools. When we select urban teachers, we
need to select for the job description of urban teaching, rather than just teaching in general.
Good teachers help students learn—questionable whether this is captured by test scores.
Payne: Many political impediments. See last
paragraph. No single high-value levers—and
looking for one is counter-productive.
Institutional impediments to change: unions,
local gov’t, federal gov’t, antiquated school
Goldstein: Difficulty of conducting high-quality
research: cost, skepticism, culture of nice
Payne: Teacher skepticism of outsiders, nonteachers
Hill: Principal observation often low-quality, filling
out checklist, lack of knowledge
Hill: observation instruments low quality, not
aligned with characteristics of good teaching
E-lecture: Teaching is not an attractive
profession to a diverse, well-educated, and
capable group
Payne, e-lecture, JDA: Focus and reliance on
superhero teacher—this is a bar that cannot be
overcome at scale
E-lecture: Education schools—problem with
connecting theory and practice, recruiting
high-quality candidates, not held accountable
Focus on teachers as the leverage point. If
system is failing, why blame primarily the frontline workers?
Hard to collaborate with difficult or ineffective
colleagues, including non-teaching staff (nurse,
counselor, etc.)
Payne: Multiple approaches simultaneously.
Consistency, intensity, sustainability.
Goldstein: Research in education sector through
universities (randomized, controlled trials in
classroom context of teacher moves)
Hill: Observations by trained outsiders
Hill: Create observation instruments that are
reliable and valid and aligned
Hill: Align PD w/better observation instruments
Goldstein (and hence overcoming Payne
impediment): Teacher researchers, and true
teacher-research collaboration, can overcome
skepticism and create useable knowledge
We spend ½ trillion $ per year on education;
money doesn’t need to be found, just
reallocated toward R&D
E-lecture: Some unions heading new
observation and evaluation practices
Wide variety of innovations in teacher
recruitment and preparation routes
Potential for collaboration expands impact from
individual to collective
Consider the perspective of the author you’ve focused on
as you answer the following questions:
• How do these teachers exemplify characteristics of
effective educators in urban settings?
• What teacher moves/relational aspects do you notice?
• How does this instruction match with your definition of
teacher quality?
Tucson High School Magical Realism Ethnic Studies Lesson
Houston (106)
Michael Rubenstein
Shari Campbell
Amanda Palffy
Tessa Hamilton
Lindsey Graham
Jonathan Hasak
Atlanta (214)
Cristobal Madero
Sarah Groh
Krista Sergi
Andrea Lemahieu
Annalise Kontras
Natalia Cuadra-Saez
New York (214)
Stacy Tell
Brandon Gill
Rebecca Zofsnass
Allison White
Jesse Rothman
Audrey Harris
New Orleans (106)
Alida Maravi
Sarah Robb
Christopher McCoy
Andrew Hodges
Carla Mike
Rachel Foran
Carolina Brito
Denver (214)
Alison Fessler
Alec Barrett
Eddy Perez
Yvette Dubinsky
Christina Grayson
Marie-Sophie Guntram
Detroit (106)
Joshua Delaney
Erin Carroll
Anna Rafalovich
Joanna Wood
Arjun Gupta
Ellen Viser
Boston (G06)
John Dubinsky
Shannon Moran
Emily Srisarajivakul
Annie Leavitt
Paul Perry
Laura Chrisco
Chicago (214)
Erin Wattles
Audrianna Archibald
Joey Waddy
Hongyang Zhao
Caitlin Campbell
Christina Moran
Los Angeles (106)
Jignasha Patel
David Tropin
Tori Winters
Ellen Lathrop
Simon Rodberg
Jason Lee
• What made this hard or easy?
• What were the topics over which you had
• How confident are you that the ideas you came up
with will make a difference at IMHS?
As you watch these videos, consider:
• How do these teachers exemplify characteristics of effective
educators in urban settings?
• What teacher moves/relational aspects do you notice?
• How does this instruction match with your definition of teacher
Kindergarten-led Parent Conference -- Expeditionary Learning
School Kansas City
Small group meetings in Martha Andrews' 5th grade class in the
• Reminder
• The final exam is now posted on the iSite. Please read over
it so that we can answer questions in class tomorrow.

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