As part of an effort to support a growth mindset in our classroom, Andrew Protz and I started today's Modern World History class with a game, The Towers of Hanoi. Included in the resources from Learning and the Adolescent Mind by The Charles A Dana Center at UT Austin, this puzzle encouraged students to engage in a productive struggle. Innovations' scholars were soon adding rings to their towers, seeing how few moves they could solve the puzzle in, and helping one another to complete each tower. It was a wonderful way to frame a discussion around the importance of learning from mistakes and the power of persistence.
Options Area science educators gathered this morning for their first session of 'Focusing on the Core for All' , the Options NVACS professional learning cycle for the 2015-2016 school year. This group includes teachers from Options Area schools, Implementation Specialists from MTSS and Student Support Services departments, Student Support Services area administrators, and Options Area school site principals, each of whom has chosen a content focus for the year (English Language Arts, History-Social Studies, Science, or Mathematics). The professional learning cycle for this year builds on that of past years (namely, the High School Core Task Project and Shifting Instruction to the Core ) and is focused on supporting teachers, implementation specialists, and administrators in the Options Area to expand and deepen alignment of instruction, materials, and programs Common Core Standards and Instructional Shifts so that all students are prepared for college and career.