So, Slicer Friends, we are excited that this IS going to be a repeat . . . but we are hoping for different outcomes this time! I am filled with JOY (#OLW) and so proud of my Iowa Teams!
It’s NCAA BASKETBALL TIME!
IOWA has 3 TEAMS!
If this sounds vaguely familiar, here’s how it looked last year during the March Challenge!
Our capital city, Des Moines, Iowa, is the site of first round NCAA Men’s Basketball Regional Games for the first time. “Some of the biggest teams including Kansas, Kentucky, and UConn are headed to Iowa.” Alas, no Iowa teams are playing in Iowa. (Only ISU is considered the home team, but neither UNI nor the Hawkeyes are there!)
Three teams from Iowa dancing. March Madness. ISU, #4 seed, is headed to Denver. UNI, #11 seed is headed to Oklahoma City. And the Hawkeyes, #7 seed are headed to Brooklyn!
Most recently both Iowa and ISU were out early in their conference championships but UNI went the distance. What will be the NCAA results this year? How far will each team go? How far will your bracket go?
If you don’t have basketball brackets, what about book brackets?
These brackets are courtesy of Dana and Sonja, AKA @litlearnact, and you can read about them here.
Or what about these instructional strategy brackets from Dyan last year?
You can learn more about Instructional Strategies Brackets here.
What work can you organize with brackets?
Where will you consider using brackets?
Process: I watched the brackets tonight as well as a statistics professor on the news breaking down the odds of winning (1 in 76 billion chance of winning with a perfect bracket). The idea was still swirling in my head during the Sunday night “hour long” local news. Fresh new ideas this year: Des Moines to host Regionals and connecting both Book Brackets and Strategies Brackets. I went to look for book brackets and immediately found Dana and Sonja’s bracket post from January and then the post from last March about Dyan’s strategies. I decided to add “Joy” (my #OLW) and then I had my title and focus for the article. Time to draft. Revise, edit, preview, tag, grab the photos for the 3 Iowa schools, and “Voila”! (2nd day in a row that I searched for my photos while still drafting in my head. Depending on photo/visual selection – narrative could vary so why write until selected?) Post drafted during the last half of the news. Eureka – post early (after 11 pm CDT)!
Thank you, Anna, Betsy, Beth, Dana, Deb, Kathleen, Stacey, and Tara. Check out the writers, readers and teachers here. It’s the March Slice of Life Challenge so be ready to read DAILY posts!
Check out the writers, readers and teachers here. Thanks to Stacey, Anna, Beth, Tara, Dana and Betsy at “Two Writing Teachers” for creating a place for us to share our work.
Last week one of my literacy team members had the opportunity to see and hear Dave Burgess, Teach Like a Pirate, with teachers in a district she serves. Dyan shared this idea and then went on to use it yesterday in our professional development session. (“Novel idea, use the information gained from PD!”)
- What strategies are in place in your building?
- Have all teachers “revisited” the strategies that may have been a part of previous training?
- What would teachers say right now?
- What would that discussion sound like in a faculty meeting?
- What would be used as the “winning criteria”?
- How rich would these conversations be?
This bracket was begun with two ideas already included: Think-Pair-Share and Question Answer Relationships (QAR). Both of those have been included in work from the Iowa DE Academies in previous years. You could easily give teachers one that was completely blank at this time of year when brackets are in play for state athletics and March Madness!
What if the principal / instructional leader in the building took the teachers’ strategies from the brackets and tallied or charted a status of the building based on the frequency of “seeing those strategies” in action in classrooms? What if the principal reported his/her findings back to staff? What if that data became a part of planning for future PD sessions?
Teachers using strategies could “partner up” and lead a short session for peers about the strategy and how they use it. A quick review of the purpose, theory, and research could benefit all learners. Teachers could then have the opportunity to plan how they would use the strategy themselves. Relevant PD led by peers! Collaborative teacher leadership in action!
OR consider how you review strategies from previous year’s PD sessions. Which strategies should teachers be using? How can they be reviewed in a FUN and yet engaging, useful way as an example for classroom use!