Project Based Learning

Instructional Support • Onondaga-Cortland-Madison BOCES

March 2017

Spring: A Time for Reflection & New Growth

Written by Holly Baldwin
Teacher Trainer & Instructional Coach

As we spring forward, let’s remember to look back.  Reflective practices provide valuable information as we plan for the future.  One way that OCM BOCES is facilitating that process is with Instructional Rounds.  Instructional Rounds in Education is intended to help education leaders and teachers develop a shared understanding of what high-quality instruction looks like and how they can support it within their school.

Instructional Rounds in PBL Schools

Instructional Rounds in PBL Schools
On Staff Development Day, OCM BOCES Instructional Coaches, Randi Downs and Joanne Keim, guided both Seven Valleys New Tech Academy (SVNTA) and Innovation Tech staff in Instructional Rounds within their respective buildings. Then, in the afternoon there was a STEM/Humanities Meeting with both teams at SVNTA. Based on the data review and the identification of next steps in the process, this picture emulates a "next step". The teachers discussed including students when staff members complete critical friends sessions as they are planning projects. This picture was from the next morning and it includes Heather Decker and Mitchell Elston planning with some of the SVNTA facilitators. It's exciting to see all of the work being accomplished in the STEM/ Humanities Meetings and with both teams! Way to go Renae, Gretchen, Joanne, Randi and both teams!

Seven Valleys New Tech Academy Open House

Seven Valleys New Tech Academy Open House
On March 23rd, Seven Valleys New Tech Academy held an open house for prospective students.   Visitors had the opportunity to tour the building, meet and talk with the staff and hear from current students about their experience at Seven Valleys.  There were over 60 prospective students who attended the open house.  There are more than 130 New Tech schools across the country, Seven Valleys is the second school in CNY!  For more information please visit their website.  You can also follow them on Facebook and Twitter @7_Valleys_NT.

Problem Based Learning (PrBL)
Earlier this month, we provided a revamped version of PrBL for Science teachers.  OCM BOCES Science Coordinator, Jessica Hehl, joined us in the morning to facilitate a three-dimensional learning experience where teachers became the students.  Teachers had the opportunity to build a better understanding of the Next Generation Science Standards and the newly adopted New York State Science Learning Standards.  Applying the new standards with three dimensional learning, teachers were able to begin planning a PrBL experience for their students while collaborating with other educators.  Check out what some of our participating teachers had to say about their experience:

Students working on project

“Got me re-energized to dig into good modeling practices!”
-Physics & Engineering Teacher

“Opened up ideas of beginning with a phenomenon first!”
-Biology Teacher

Students working on project

“I appreciated discussion around the changing standards.”
-7th/8th Grade Science Teacher

“An overview of problem based, student centered activities that really engage students with authentic learning”
-8th Grade Science Teacher

Upcoming Opportunities
Register through MLP

3/31/17 – Problem Based Learning for Math Educators

4/27/17 – PBL 201 Managing the Project Calendar

5/10, 5/11, 5/17, 5/18 – PBL 101 for K-12 Educators at Seven Valleys New Tech Academy

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© 2017 OCM BOCES Instructional Support. For more info, please contact Lynn Radicello