kitchen table math, the sequel: the high school vanishes

Sunday, March 29, 2009

the high school vanishes

It took 5 years for my school district to reach this point.


Cheryl van Tilburg said...

I especially enjoyed the paragraph describing the "best practices" component of the "DI" initiative. A staff meeting devoted to showing teachers how to spot handwriting forgery? As Barry G. would say, "Sound of vomiting."

CassyT said...

Am I missing something? Since when did DI become about "choices"? From the Principal's Desk:

· Choice of what type of review problems to do when reviewing for a test, based on what is needed for each student
· Problems given to students individually, based on what that student needs
· Choices of how to solve problems (algebraically multiple algebraic options, graphically) when possible
· Pre-assessments done when introducing a unit
· Real life based projects instead of traditional tests
· Students shown other ways to learn without having to memorize theories or formulas

The National Institute of Direct Instruction explicitly states on its home page:
"The popular valuing of teacher creativity and autonomy as high priorities must give way to a willingness to follow certain carefully prescribed instructional practices."
"NIFDI schools use a single program sequence for all students, and all students in that sequence receive instruction at the same time."

Barry Garelick said...


DI in this case doesn't mean "direct instruction". It means "differentiated instruction" which is all about choices. Let the students pick what level of difficulty problems to do, etc etc. Assessments have to be authentic which can mean anything.

Paul B said...

Yikes! That's right out of a hippie encounter group. Are you anywhere near Woodstock?

CassyT said...

It means "differentiated instruction"

Oh Duh! (smacking forehead)
THAT makes more sense. Well, at least for the Principal's letter, if not IRL.

CassyT said...

* In Real Life
I read the letter too fast and only saw the acronyms.

Catherine Johnson said...

staff meeting devoted to showing teachers how to spot handwriting forgery

one hears that morale is low....

this is one of those rumors I'm inclined to believe

Catherine Johnson said...

I'm partial to the learning stations AND to the idea that everyone gets to choose his own form of assessment.

Seeing as how we have serious grading problems at the high school (haven't gotten around to posting anything on that yet), I'm very interested to see how that one goes.

If I had a kid in the high school I'd let them know now that he will need to be evaluated in whatever manner gives him an A+ on every assignment from here on in.