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Nuts and Bolts of Teaching, Observing, and Tutoring


Tutors with Vision, 'TV' began with a vision and spark between veteran teachers. ... facts and realities (at least superficially), and basics on relating to students, ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Nuts and Bolts of Teaching, Observing, and Tutoring

Nuts and Bolts of Teaching, Observing, and
  • Abel Villarreal
  • Sharon Duncan
  • Center for Teacher Certification
  • Austin Community College

Part 1 Teaching 101
TV Training
  • Tutors with Vision, TV began with a vision
    and spark between veteran teachers. Knowing that
    all students have special needs and a need a
    personal touch, we birthed a unique tutoring
    program with Bedichek Middle School in Austin,
    TX. Many thanks to Abel Villarreal, Gail Belcher,
    and Nancy Shaer for their enthusiasm, commitment,
    and vision.
  • Sharon Duncan
  • Director, Teacher Certification

TV Specifics
  • Tutors interested in teaching come from Austin
    Community College Teacher Certification program,
    Associates of Arts in Teaching, or Middle School
    Math courses.
  • Tutors agree to train using online TV training
    materials and a face-to-face session.
  • Tutors agree to work with Ms. Shaers 8th grade
    math students. Ms. Shaer will first assess
    student abilities, and along with last years
    TAKS scores disaggregated data, specific math
    questions (and answers) for specific objectives
    will be given to each tutor.
  • Tutors will work with students for at least 16
    hours during the semester (or as many times as

Why do you want to be a teacher?
  • Summer vacation
  • Holidays off
  • Its an easy job
  • More time with my family
  • Instant gratification
  • Teaching is an 800-400 job

  • WRONG!
  • All of these answers are myths!

Another Myth
  • Those who can, DO those who cant, TEACH!

Teaching is a gift and a calling. Not everyone
can teach. Most teachers agree that teaching is
their most challenging job.
What we see in the media sways our view of
  • Rent or view one teacher movie from the
    following, put your feet upwatch with these
    thoughts in mind

  • Determine
  • Name two student perceptions that are imagined or
  • Name two real student perceptions that the movie
    failed to portray.
  • How you could blend the best qualities of the
    teacher movies with the best qualities of a real
    classroom teacher without losing sight of

Blackboard Jungle, 1955
  • Juvenile delinquents synonymous with violent
    thugs teacher is the go-between for students and
    outside world law and order era where
    delinquents eventually go to jail.

To Sir, With Love, 1967
  • English youth on verge of delinquency time of
    long hair, Beatles, hippies confrontation
    between teacher and students begins real
    education of youth. Teacher allowed to throw out
    curriculum and teach survival skills to students
    issues of trust and respect played key role in
    student turnaround.

Conrack, 1974
  • Young teacher seen as Peace Corp volunteer in
    deep, isolated South Carolina island students
    have had little or no contact with outside world.
    Rote learning as a basis of communication
    teacher respect is a given what was learned is
    not as important as HOW it is taught (dignity,
    integrity, respect, etc.)

Stand and Deliver, 1988
  • First good guy Hispanic role model works
    with hard core Hispanic delinquent students
    tough love teaching with a twist of humor
    connects outside world with real world examples
    deep understanding of mathematics is key to
    passing in AP calculus exam and college
    opportunities dedication, lots of extra hours in
    classroom, trust and respect keys to student

Lean on Me, 1989
  • African American version of Stand and Deliver
    good guy character is school principal with very
    unforgiving streak of tough love and little
    humor no excuse achievement expels all students
    who are dangerous influences on student body.

Dangerous Minds, 1995
  • First female in role of hero teacher middle
    class teacher values meets ghetto culture and
    exchange experiences required curriculum ignored
    for similar learning experiences curiosity and
    prizes key elements in teacher success again,
    trust and respect key building blocks for student

October Sky, 1999
  • Unshakable teacher trusts in her students
    abilities and dreams aspires teenage boys to
    become rocketeers teaches boys to see and dream
    beyond the coal mines and cultural boundaries
    that would hinder them.

Boston Public
  • The lives of 10 faculty members at a high
    school in Boston, Mass. weave in and out of
    dealing with trouble-makers, having a personal
    life, and keeping sanity.
  • Television show featuring inner city students
    and problems with zealous teachers who go way
    beyond to help students. Especially interesting
    is ambient lighting, free time, lack of bells and
    interruptions, and students who usually see the
    light. (Limited run.)

Freedom Writers, 2007
  • Ghetto kids write their way out of failure
    once teacher established trust and respect with
    hard core academic failures, everyone invested
    more time after school, evenings to catch up on
    writing skills needed to better express their
    thoughts about their lives and their
    surroundings. Teacher worked tirelessly and
    sacrificed much to advocate, support, teach her
    students. The ultimate goal was to have their
    stories published (available in bookstores now!)

Chalk, 2007
  • Movie filmed in Austin, TX
  • In the comedic style of The Office and
    the films of Christopher Guest, CHALK is a
    spirited portrait of life in the trenches of that
    most honorable and frustrating profession...teachi
  • Its the start of a memorable new year at
    Harrison High. The self conscious Mr. Stroope is
    convinced that his time has come, this year he
    will be furnished with the golden title of
    Teacher of the Year. If his smarter students
    would just stop using words that are longer than
    his own.
  • Peek into Mr. Lowreys History class and
    youll see that hes struggling to even call
    himself a teacher. Woefully inept due to a
    complete lack of experience and social skills, he
    earnestly stutters his way through class. The
    only interaction his students offer him is when
    they steal his chalk.
  • Men arent much interested in the spunky
    and officious Coach Webb but not all P.E.
    teachers are gay and she pines for some romantic
    company. Her once best friend, the newly
    appointed assistant principal, Mrs. Reddell,
    doesnt seem to have time for her either as her
    new power post is all-consuming battling egos,
    enduring teacher conferences and her lighthouse
    obsessed boss. Coach Webb wonders if her former
    confidante has forgotten just how hard teaching
    really is.

Fact versus Fiction
  • How will your classroom experience differ from
    those in the movies?
  • Will you experience situations like those you see
    and hear through the media?
  • Why are you seriously considering teaching?
  • What are the facts that you will encounter?

Teacher Realities
  • 10 to 12-hour days.
  • wearing many hats daily.
  • the average class has a majority of students
    with low level academic skills, but students are
    expected to accomplish high academic goals.
  • balancing self esteem and self worth with
    real academic success.
  • earning low wages/held to a high standard of
    morals and ethics.
  • held accountable for student state
    standardized test results (TAKS).

Long Days and Nights
  • teach a full load of classes, 3 to 4 lesson
  • attend numerous meetings.
  • complete all kinds of forms, reports, etc.
  • perform hall duty, fire drills, homeroom checks.
  • answer emails, phone calls
  • grade papers almost every night.
  • write/edit lessons and handouts.
  • call parents.

Master Juggler
  • balance classroom operations and safety
    procedures with administrative directives.
  • balance personal life, family with school life
    and responsibilities.
  • balance academic needs of a student with the
    academic needs of a whole class.
  • find a working/productive balance between
    lecturing and student-lead instruction.
  • find a productive, consistent, and flexible
    criteria for assigning passing and failing grades.

Teacher Jargon
  • Trust The act of believing or having faith in
    someone. Teacher-student interaction foundation
    from which all learning is based. A teacher word
    or promise has great impact in the classroom.
  • Respect The act of recognizing ones authority
    and integrity. Foundation from which both
    students and teacher will build bridges into the
  • Principles of Learning Teaching model used by
    AISD to evaluate/revise student responses and
  • Accountable talk One of the elements in the
    Principles of Learning that focuses on students
    interacting with each other and using the
    vocabulary, key concepts and ideas of a given
  • IPG (Instructional Planning Guide) A detailed
    interwoven matrix of teacher resources, lesson
    objectives, 6-weeks timetable, and TAKS
  • TAKS (Texas Assessment of Knowledge Skills)
    Examination The state of Texas required
    examination for students from Grade 3 through 12.
    Presently, there are 4 exit level exams
    (English, Social Studies, Mathematics, Science),
  • NCLB (No Child Left Behind) President G.W.
    Bushs education initiative to improve education
    for everyone. The initiative has a good number
    of provisions, goals, and mandates that affect
    every classroom across the country.

Required Communication
  • Voice tones are intonations added to your voice
    to express happiness, excitement, sadness,
    disappointment, etc. Positive tones of voice are
    generally excitement over what your teaching.
    Usually, a soft spoken voice is used to convey
    calm, concern, respect, and objectivity. A calm
    and soft-spoken voice is effective in parent
    conferences, student/teacher conferences, calling
    parents on the phone.
  • A stern voice demands attention, but use this
    voice ONLY as needed. You can wear out its
    effectiveness over time and constant use.
  • An excited voice usually communicates attention
    and interest, but like other voice types use it
    sparingly and in a good context.
  • Speak matter of fact when it comes to grades,
    student progress, and goals. This type of voice
    communicates objectivity and fairness. Use this
    voice often when referring to a particular
    outcome of a lesson or activity.

Effective Body Language Eye Contact
  • Body language - Use the 8 tips from Tips for
    Positive Body Language from Performance Learning
    PLUS 25.
  • Do several simulated body language expressions
    and see if others can guess what they are and
    whether they are positive or negative
    suggest/discuss more positive alternate body
    language actions.
  • Eye Contact - Mean what you say with proper
    voice, eye contact and body language. Use
    highlights of The Importance of Eye Contact in
    the Classroom
  • http//
  • Complete several simulated eye contact examples
    and see if others can guess whether the eye
    contacts are positive, negative, or neither.

Why are Trust and Respect Important?
  • Without trust and respect, a teacher has no
    credibility and no functional authority to teach
    anything. Just because the teacher has automatic
    administrative and legal authority in a classroom
    does NOT mean learning will automatically take
    place. Trust and respect are the bedrock upon
    which students and teachers build academic
    connections and relationships.

How does a teacher earn trust and respect from
  • Be consistent in word, deed, and action.
  • Be truthful and upfront
  • Be respectful of student experiences and
    background, whether you agree or not.
  • Keep the promises you make, no matter how
    trivial they may be.
  • Remember student birthdays and family
    connections as often as possible.
  • Be available to help students in areas outside
    your expertise or specialty.

Teaching 201
  • Now that you know the myths, facts and realities
    (at least superficially), and basics on relating
    to students, are you ready to walk into a
    classroom and face students?
  • Will you be successful on the first day?

Remember that students
  • want success
  • need attention
  • are more than numbers and statistics
  • need consistency
  • So start with data, point A

Standardized Testing Data
  • Opposing viewpoints and opinions about
    standardized testing and scores have vigorously
    wrestled with each other for decades. This
    training is not to debate further, but rather to
    learn HOW TO USE standardized test data to build
    student academic profiles.
  • Academic profiles are used to pinpoint student
    academic weaknesses and deficiencies and
    formulate an efficient and positive action plan
    to remedy those deficiencies. Texas school
    districts are doing exactly this.

  • Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills
    state-mandated exam that covers the four core
    areas (science, mathematics, English, social
    studies). Each grade has a specific set of
    objectives and skills to master.

Math objectives are similar from Kindergarten
through 8th grade
Other Data Benchmark testing
  • Beginning of Year, BoY,
  • Middle of Year, MoY,
  • End of Year, EoY exams have been in effect for
    several years now. The tests are
    district-written annual practice TAKS
    examinations. The rationale for benchmark
    testing is to simulate TAKS test items at
    different grade levels and use the data to get
    insight into specific grade levels, areas or
    objectives where students are weak.

  • Due to the inconsistency of the data gathering
    process, benchmark data may, in some cases, be
    incomplete and out of date. Use standardized
    testing data sparingly and in conjunction with
    other forms of data.

Report Cards
  • Six or nine week report cards present a more
    detailed and consistent record of academic
    progress. It also contains valuable information
    about attendance, teacher comments, academic
    consistency, and credits earned. Information
    found here can help parents, teachers, and
    counselors decide if the student is capable or
    ready to tackle pre-AP (honors) level classes.

Attendance Reports
  • Though class attendance is shown on report
    cards, it may become necessary to generate one or
    more attendance reports from your class rosters
    or attendance office BEFORE the end of the
    grading period. Poor attendance MAY (but not
    necessarily) be a primary reason for the lack of
    academic progress, low grades, or poor attitude.

Progress Reports
  • Most school districts require teachers to
    submit progress reports every 3 weeks. Most
    teachers usually mark borderline or failing
    and do not bother to mark other relevant comments
    (respectful, excellent achievement, lack of
    effort, etc.) However, these other comments shed
    light on student behavior and general well being.

Special Education/504 modifications
  • In the course of normal classroom operating
    procedure and routine, you will have students who
    are classified special education (Special Ed) or
    have specific medical, physical, or mental
    circumstances (504) that warrant a revised
    teaching mode, accommodation, or specific
    alterations to the normal routine. The goal of
    data is to formulate a feasible and productive
    solution to unproductive student academic
    performance. Do not formulate a strategy or plan
    WITHOUT checking a students Special Ed or 504

Disciplinary Referral Data
  • If a student has several disciplinary
    referrals for short attention span and boredom,
    the last thing you want to do is formulate a
    remediation plan that requires the student to
    stay focused and seated for long periods of time.

Teacher and Student Interactions
  • determine what kind of interactions worked best
    with students (as low key tutor, as substitute
    teacher, as mentor/tutor, etc.)
  • build on successful interactions and
    expand/enhance them toward more of a teacher type
  • repeat, improve, and streamline the lesson
    rewriting process. The goal is to make the
    process into a normal teacher routine.

  • Intrinsic rewards refer to praising the inner
    self with positive complements and respect and
    motivating it to do more good work.
  • Extrinsic rewards refer to concrete payoffs for a
    job well done (pizza party, movie passes, etc.)
  • A balance must be struck between the two types of
    rewards, and a teacher will feel his/her way
    toward that happy balance. Be very careful when
    using rewards, as they can get out of control and
    make or break student success. You can also
    spend money needlessly.

Praise and Reward Student Success
  • Ask classroom teacher to recognize student
  • Give genuine praise and respect to student for
  • Ask classroom teacher to call home with a good
    report on success.
  • Recognize student accomplishment in front of
    students peers.

What are your expectations?
  • To build a relationship with students
  • To make math more concrete and less abstract
  • To teach based on student data and needs
  • To reach students who can succeed, with your help.

  • Jot down your questions to ask at the training.

Do you still want to be a teacher?
  • If you have separated fact from reality,
    understood data and student needs and still hear
    a calling, then you are ready for spending time
    with real students who need your help.
  • You are ready to tutorwith vision.
  • Sign up for face-to-face training, date TBA.

Keeping track of field experiences
  • Refer to the ACC Observation/Field Experience
    packet and complete 16 hours of service in the
  • Contact Sharon Duncan or Abel Villarreal about
    tutoring, volunteering, and training.
  • When you visit schools, be a fly on the wall
    and thank teachers and school secretaries for the
    opportunity to visit their school. Networking
    this way will help increase your chances of
    employment and help you focus on the campuses
    where you feel most comfortable.