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Wormeli: Metaphors & Analogies

Metaphors & Analogies:  Power Tools for Teaching any Subject

Rick Wormeli

Some Highlights:

About every 27 words is an analygoty and/or metaphor.  It is embedded in all we do.
This is very powerfully important.  It should be taught to student teachers. 

Many children don’t know what we are talking about because they don’t know how to make meaning of the metaphors that are used in everyday speech.  It is the meaning making that goes in the long term memory.  

If we’re doing our job, every subsequent generation would be superior to last.

It’s not an answer chase.  It’s a question journey.

Post up a display of collected metaphor samples, and encourage students to read and comment on them.

Good metaphors give us new information, not the same information.  They don’t restatethe obvious: cars are like automobies.  To be useful, they must provide fresh perspective.

Here’s the entire pdf from the presentation:

Ashbaker & Morgan: Supervising Paras

Text:  Teacher’s Guide to Working with Para Educators

Sergiovanni & Starrat (1993):  Face-to-face contact with teachers with the intent of improving instruction and icnreasing professional grwoth. When used correctly, can create powerful results in improving instruction.  This is Instructional Supervision.

Trautman (2005)
“managing” rather than supervising.

The supervisor’s responsibilities include:
  1. Create a list of duties and responsibilities
  2. Develop a schedule
  3. Plan the activities
  4. Prepare for the absences
  5. Conduct meetings on a regular basis
  6. Evaluate the work of the paraprofessional
  7. Teaching paraprofessionals what they are supposed to be doing

A paraprofessional words under the direct supervision of a teacher if:
  1. the teacher prpares the lessons and plans the instructional support activities the paraprofessional carries out, and evaluates the achievement of the students.
  2. the paraprofessional works in a close frequent proximity with the teacher.
Types of programs not permitted under NCLB:
  1. Staffed entirely by paras
  2. paras provide instruction support, teacher visits once or twice a week
  3. Para works with a group of students in another location (not close and frequent proximity)
Effective Instructional Supervision:
  1. Prerequisite Skills
  2. Present New Content
  3. Guided Practice
  4. Independent Practice
  5. Review

The above concepts are vital for the paraprofessionals to understand before they begin working in the classrooms.  Typically these elements are the work of the teacher but it needs to be transferred over to the paras.  Give explicit directions just as the teacher gives them to the students. The concepts that are being taught to the students need to be taught to the paraprofessionals.  

Teachers must raise the profession.  

Effective Classroom Practice:
  1. Initial assessment for planning teaching content
  2. Varied teaching styles to better suit all learns’ needs
  3. Differentiated curriculum 

Formative Supervision:
  1. Knowing what the paras already can do and figuring out where to go next
  2. We supervise them in order to provide them with the professional development that they need

Training Paraprofessional:  8 Essential Questions  (Morgan & Hofmeister, 1997)
  1. Does the training address confidentiality and other sensitive issues? (teacher)
  2. Does training content relate directly to the skills required by the paraprofessional in her assigned role? (t)
  3. Does the training provide quick integration into instructional roles? (t)
  4. Does the training offer facilitation through progressively complex assignments? (t)
  5. Is the training linked to current staff evaluation procedures? (administrators)
  6. Will this training reduce staff turnover? (a)
  7. Does this training integrate with and support the total staff development process? (a)
  8. Does the training reduce legal vulnerability? (a)
**Wisconsin, Minnesota, California have more structured procedures for the paraprofessionals.

Teachers Should:
  1. Share with the paras the restriction of duties that should be placed on your paraprofessionals.
  2. Document how you are supervising.
  3. Document para training that you do.

Resources: (Utah state office of education)
  • Utah Paraeducator handbook
  • Matrix for Para-educators and teacher teams
  • Selfevaluation checklist for teachers

Tomlinson – Differentiation and the Brain

Positive learning environment actually releases (increases release of) endorphins in the bloodstream.

Students need to have positive and caring relationships with the teacher.  

Differentiation should not take more time.  The processing time for the kids and the time for practice should take more time.

Nature of good curriculum:
  • Very clear learning goals
  • Precisely what they should know, understand, and be able to do as a result of this week, this month, and this quarter.
  • Needs things that call for their attention
  • Needs to challenge kids
    • To cause them to think
    • All kids should be doing high-level thinking

    Brain Reasearch Says:
    • Curriculum races are not brain friendly. Working memory is limited.  Time for practice and reflection are necessary for learning to take place.
    • More information thrown at students decreases long-term-storage ability of the brain.
    • Brain likes patterns
    • The students should be able to answer: 
    • Does it make sense to me? (must teach for understanding)
    • Is it relevant to me?
  • Middle school kids are likely to remember 7-10 of all the things that we teach them
  • We need to build more neural networks.  THis is how you do it:
    • less is more
    • shorter is better
    • keep is relevant
    Test our curriculum against these conditions.

    Gallager – Let Them Read Trash (rough notes)

    Wilhelm: Let them read trash
    Findings:  Motivation & Engagement

    Depth Psychology and Archetypal Energies.

    Do not assign harder texts.
    How do you prepare them to be successful at the levels they should be reading at? You start where they are at.

    What is most motivating is giving visible signs to students of them developing competence.  

    Kids embrace reading when it helps them with TODAY.
    Kids can conceived narratives as arguments such as Hunger Games.
    “Common Core is completely procedural”
    Kids saw games as narratives they were living through.
    We control the conditions of the classroom.  When the kids are not motivated than what are we doing about it?
    Oftentimes, violence in vidoe games and books is not valorized; it is often there to be critiqued.  

    Is Hunger Games a marginalized text?

    Possible Prompt for Students:  Think of something you really love to do (something you would rather be doing right now instead of being in class).
    Describe what it is? What do you like about it/why do you like it?

    • Hunger Games EQ that the students came up with (this gives me the idea of having students create the essential questions at the beginning of the year).
    • Whose interest does the world work? How can we make the world more fair?
    • What is the power of an individual to affect change in the world? Larger world?
    • How can we survive? How can we fight injustice?
    • What is the effect of witnessing other people’s suffering?
    • How do we collude in and encourage violence? On you on youth violence?
    • When is it unjustifiable to revolt against established norms/rules?
    What can we do?
    • Take the gaming and reading of marginalized texts more seriously
    • Help student process their reading and the gaming
    • tell them what we are worried about
    • Encourage conversation
    • books and games can be transitional objects (helping students transition from one stay to next)
    • Allow kids to do free reading
    • Reward free (give them points, etc.) reading but don’t grade it
    • Provide them opportunities for reading
    • 10,000 hours for expertise and 3000 hours for competence are needed 
    • Allow students to talk about the reading and connect it to themselves and the outside world
    • Model the kind of reader and person you want students to be (model critical thinking, interacting with the reading, build connections)
    • Sustained silent reading is great but teachers start to let go of the modeling part that should be including in that period
    • We can start each unit with children’s books before going into the primary text/content
    • Make a bookshelf that says (READ ONLY WITH PARENTAL PERMISSION – these are the books you want to read)
    • Chester Brown Graphic novels

    Jay Maqsood
    Special Education / Humanities 
    University Neighborhood Middle School
    220 Henry Street, Room 303
    New York, NY 11756

    Follow me on Twitter @MrMaxood

    Materials: Slavery

    Girls who are promised decent jobs abroad return to their mothers in coffins. While the men are left stranded, homeless, in foreign countries.

    This video is less than 7 minutes long and tells the stories of trafficking in Nepal, which is regarded as the modern form of human slavery. Many men, women, and children forced to take desperate measure to improve their condition are abused.