Monday, August 31, 2009

Summer's Over- Professional Development Day

Teachers and administrators throughout the district convened today for the start of the 2009-2010 academic school year. Kindergarten teachers participated in a day long "Tools of the Mind" workshop in Brandt School while a majority of district teachers and administrators met at Hoboken High School for an extended introduction to the new curriculum and curricula resources. 

Members of the Curriculum Committee led small groups based on either grade level (for elementary schools) or content domain/discipline subject area (high school) for the entire morning. Groups met to discuss technical aspects of using the Curriculum CD, reviewed the curriculum mapping for their individual grade levels, discussed lesson plans and unit planners, and planned out initial lessons for the school year (full agenda below). 

The morning concluded around 11:35 AM where teachers left for lunch and then reconvened in each of their respective schools for principal led and planned afternoon activities.


Opening Day Agenda


9:00-9:15 Welcome Remarks/Overview

9:15 Break to Individual Meeting Rooms

9:15-10:30 Individual Group


Map Overview: Look at the curriculum map and discuss what the map

represents/time frames/topics on the map (as an attempt to keep grade

levels/content material consistent among teachers and schools)/

importance of pacing/flexibility with testing schedules


UBD/Unit Planner Overview: Look at the sample provided and discuss

each section. Discuss MYP role of planner and the Areas of Interaction as

part of the unit.


Sample Planners: Distribute and discuss existing units in content areas.

Assessments: Distribute and discuss district assessments as well as

teacher assessments in the classroom.


FAQ: Have colleagues complete frequently asked question form and

collect. If time allows discuss. If time does not allow save discussion until

the next session.


10:30—10:45 Break


10:45 11:15 Resume Group Meeting


Practical Use: Discuss FAQ if necessary. Have colleagues begin planning

their first couple days of school. How will they take the existing

curriculum/planners and make them their own?


11:15-11:30 Full group reconvenes to share questions or comments to be addressed at

future professional development.



Picture: Teacher working on curriculum implementation- August 31, 2009

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Curriculum Committee Summer 2009- Final Costs

The 2009 Summer Curriculum Committee officially came to an end in mid August. The budget for the 2009 Summer Curriculum Committee was approved on June 30, 2009 by the Hoboken Board of Education. The summer project was not to exceed $ 47,784. for salary, plus $3656 (FICA) Funding through Title I, Part A - 20-231-100-100-18-1012-000 8763 pending approval of the 2008-09 NCLB Amendment by OGM. The Committee began meeting on July 13, 2009. The committee was convened to help develop district wide assessments in all disciplines, finalize Understanding by Design principles into Unit Planners, assist in implementation planning for 2009-2010, and edit and review the "Big Ideas" and "Essential Questions" aspects of the curriculum.

The final costs for the summer activities was actually under $39,000 indicating a savings of roughly 20% from the allocated resources.

Friday, August 28, 2009

2009-2010 Curriculum and Professional Development Implementation Plan

Here is the final version of the 2009-2010 Curriculum and Professional Development Implementation plan. This document was created over most of the summer and includes such things as professional development for Tools of the Mind, LitLife, Understanding by Design, as well as lesson plan formats, curriculum guides and answers to some common questions concerning the curriculum. Finally, the original 2007 Curriculum Audit by the State Department of Education is included as a supplement as well as a commissioned critique by the Liberty Science Center on the district's science curriculum. -Dr. Petrosino


Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Meeting with Principals and Administrators- August 24th

On Monday, August 24th Dr. Petrosino met with district principals and administrators to review implementation of the new curriculum. The meeting took place from 1:30-3:00pm in the Board of Education offices. Topics included first day activities for instructional staff, discussion of utilization of the curriculum committee, observational tools to track implementation, resource documents and anticipated Frequently Asked Questions by faculty, parents and students. There was also extensive information about professional development Dr. Petrosino coordinated for the 2009-2010 school year with such programs as Tools of the Mind, LitLife, Read180/SRI, and ASCD/Understanding by Design. Dr. Petrosino solicited advise and feedback from the group and will incorporate the administrators comments in the final implementation document. 

Monday, August 24, 2009

Tools of the Mind PreK Workshop at Wallace

On Monday, August 24th over 125 PreK teachers, assistants, and project directors participated in an all day workshop for the implementation of the PreK/K curriculum entitled Tools of the Mind. This is the beginning of the second year of implementation for the PreK students in our district. The workshop was led by Ms. Amy Hornbeck and topics included theoretical underpinnings of Tools of the Mind, implementation strategies, setting up the classroom learning environment, discussion of self regulated activity, and reflection of last year's successes and challenges. The workshop was coordinated by Early Childhood Supervisor Jessica Peters and Administrative Assistant Ms. Nellie Moyeno. The gathering was originally to be held at Brandt School but due to the excessive heat was moved to the Wallace Gym. Thanks for all those who made the quick move possible.  -Dr. Petrosino

Picture: Tools of the Mind workshop at Wallace School, August 24, 2009

Friday, August 21, 2009

The Curriculum is Off to the Printers!


On Thursday, August 20, the Hoboken Curriculum and related materials were sent out to be professionally mass duplicated. The process will take a few days. The disc will include the full curriculum, planning guides, curriculum maps, discipline summaries and many other tools to assist in the implementation of the new curriculum for the upcoming school year.

Picture (top)- actual CD master sent to the duplicators
Picture (bottom)- artist proof of CD label

PISA Workshop at Stevens for Elementary Science Teachers

Today marked the conclusion of the second 2 week workshop for Hoboken elementary school teachers involved in the PISA program. PISA (Partnership to Improve Student Learning) is an ongoing partnership with 50 teachers from 22 schools from the districts of Bayonne, Hoboken, Jersey City, Newark, Piscataway, Weehawken, and four non-public schools, together with Stevens Institute of Technology, Montclair State University, and Liberty Science Center, are providing teachers with deeper science content knowledge, research-based professional development, and experience with innovative science and engineering curricula and materials for Grades 3-5. Teachers participate in a dynamic and supportive learning community designed to address topics in key content areas in Grades 3-5 science, engineering, and technology education. Now in its 3rd year, activities will focus on New Jersey Core Curriculum Content Standards 5.7 (physical science) and 8.2 (technology education).

Hoboken teachers involved in PISA include: Mr. Fagan (Wallace), Ms. Killen (Wallace), Ms. DeGennaro (Connors), Ms. Mitsakos (Wallace), Ms. Ramos (Connors), Ms. Sogluizzo (Connors), Ms. Wingert (Wallace), Ms. Yu (Connors), Ms. Temple (Wallace), and Ms. Phalen (Wallace).

An intensive, two-week summer institute involves teachers in collaborative learning through engagement in problem based learning (PBL), science inquiry, engineering design, foundational learning in core science topics, and the development of a teacher portfolio that uses the PBL framework.

Three professional development days during the school year and monthly classroom visits support teachers as they implement content and materials during the school year.

Assessment of student and teacher learning take place, within participating classrooms and in comparison classrooms.

The Project Director and Principal Investigator for PISA is Ms. Beth McGrath and the Co-Principal Investigator and Project Co-Director is Ms. Mercedes McKay.


Picture: (L-R) Ms. Veronica Ramos, Dr. Anthony Petrosino, Ms. Kelly Sogluizzo, Ms. Francine Yu, Mr. Donald Fagan, Ms. Vanessa Phalen, Ms. Carol Shields (Project Coordinator/Curriculum & Professional Development Specialist) and Mr. Augusto Macalalag (Project Coordinator/Curriculum & Professional Development Specialist)

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Online Education Beats the Classroom- Recent Study Holds Interesting Results

A potential landmark study was just completed by SRI International for the Department of Education. Steve Lohr of the New York Times summarizes the results and findings in his article entitled "Study Finds That Online Education Beats the Classroom" published on August 19. -Dr. Petrosino

A recent 93-page report on online education, conducted by SRI International for the Department of Education, has a starchy academic title, but a most intriguing conclusion: “On average, students in online learning conditions performed better than those receiving face-to-face instruction.”

The report examined the comparative research on online versus traditional classroom teaching from 1996 to 2008. Some of it was in K-12 settings, but most of the comparative studies were done in colleges and adult continuing-education programs of various kinds, from medical training to the military.

Over the 12-year span, the report found 99 studies in which there were quantitative comparisons of online and classroom performance for the same courses. The analysis for the Department of Education found that, on average, students doing some or all of the course online would rank in the 59th percentile in tested performance, compared with the average classroom student scoring in the 50th percentile. That is a modest but statistically meaningful difference.

“The study’s major significance lies in demonstrating that online learning today is not just better than nothing — it actually tends to be better than conventional instruction,” said Barbara Means, the study’s lead author and an educational psychologist at SRI International.

This hardly means that we’ll be saying good-bye to classrooms. But the report does suggest that online education could be set to expand sharply over the next few years, as evidence mounts of its value.

Read the full article HERE.


Sunday, August 16, 2009

It Was 40 Years Ago This Weekend-- Woodstock

Woodstock Music & Art Fair (informally, Woodstock or The Woodstock Festival) was a music festival, billed as "An AquarianMax Yasgur's 600 acre (2.4 km²; 240 ha, 0.94 mi²) dairy farm in the rural town of Bethel, New York from August 15 to August 18, 1969. Bethel, in Sullivan County, is 43 miles (69 km) southwest of the town of Woodstock, New York, in adjoining Ulster County. Exposition: 3 Days of Peace & Music", held at

During the sometimes rainy weekend, thirty-two acts performed outdoors in front of nearly half a million concert-goers[citation needed]. It is widely regarded as one of the greatest and most pivotal moments in popular music history and was listed on Rolling Stone's 50 Moments That Changed the History of Rock and Roll.[2]. However; the three top acts of the 1960s, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, and Bob Dylan, all declined to appear at the festival.

The event was captured in the successful 1970 documentary movie Woodstock, an accompanying soundtrack album, and Joni Mitchell's song "Woodstock" which commemorated the event and became a major hit for Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young.


Picture: Bobbi Kelly and Nick Ercoline were girlfriend and boyfriend, 20 years old. Bobbi lived in Pine Bush, N.Y., and worked at a bank. Nick lived in Middletown, N.Y., and worked two jobs while going to college. Married two years after Woodstock, they now have children ages 28 and 30. They live in Pine Bush, TX.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Information on Curriculum Progress - BoE Meeting 8/11/09

During the Board of Education meeting held on Tuesday August 11 a comment from a citizen in the audience during the public comment section of the meeting prompted this post. The initial statement by the person centered on the conjecture that citizens have been left in the dark about the curriculum- supposedly no one knows when it will be finished and it is yet another thing that gets talked about but never acted upon. Clearly, some communication on the topic is probably needed. Specifically, an objective response to the concern centering around the curriculum would include the following information:

1) As stated in public meetings to the Board of Education and to the public on at least 5 different occasions, the curriculum was and is scheduled to be completed and implemented in September of 2009 and used during the 2009-2010 academic school year.

2) Pilot testing of some of the curriculum took place in classrooms during this past school year.

3) All Board of Education members, all district administrators and all district teachers were given a draft of the final curriculum for their review and consideration in June. Detailed Powerpoint presentations with handouts were also made to each of these groups.

4) Via this blog, over 300 posts have been made centering on the progress of the curriculum. Hoboken Curriculum Project.com has been viewed 2, 732 times by Hoboken citizens and 4, 238 times by people working or living in New York City since it's inception in early 2008. The process has been open and transparent from the onset. Information about the curriculum has been disseminated and is both archived and readily available.

Hopefully, this will shed some additional light on the subject and provide detail to questions that some people may have. -Dr. Petrosino

Picture: Board of Education meeting- August 11, 2009






Wednesday, August 12, 2009

US Federal Deficit As Percent Of GDP- Data, Statistics, and Inference in Argumentation

There's been a great deal of discussion recently about the national deficit. Of course, in real dollars, the deficit is as high as it has ever been (see top graph). But, because of inflation, that is sometimes misleading. Rather, a better measure (bottom graph) would be the deficit as a percentage of the Gross National Product (GNP). It is the use of data and it's application that is very important in developing critical thinking skills. This has very important consequences in terms of how we think of curriculum and how we want children to reason, debate, and present an argument.

Picture: U.S. debt from 1940 to 2008. Red lines indicate the public debt and black lines indicate the gross debt, the difference being that the gross debt includes funds held by the government (e.g. the Social Security Trust Fund). The second chart shows debt as a percentage of U.S. GDP or dollar value of economic production per year. Data from U.S. Budget historical tables at whitehouse.gov/omb.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

News Release:Updated Federal Guidelines for 2009 H1N1 Influenza in Schools Offer Many Options

The following press release contains important information concerning the H1N1 influenza and the anticipated flu season of Fall 2009-Spring 2010. -Dr. Petrosino

Updated federal guidelines offer state and local public health and school officials a range of options for responding to 2009 H1N1 influenza in schools, depending on how severe the flu may be in their communities. The guidance says officials should balance the risk of flu in their communities with the disruption that school dismissals will cause in education and the wider community.

The guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) was announced today at a joint news conference by Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, Education Secretary Arne Duncan, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, and CDC Director Thomas R. Frieden, M.D., M.P.H.

The school guidance is a part of a broader national framework to respond to novel H1N1 influenza, which includes encouraging people to be vaccinated against the virus and to take other actions to avoid infection. The CDC anticipates more illness after the school year starts, because flu typically is transmitted more easily in the fall and winter.

``We’re going to continue to do everything possible to keep our children – and all Americans – healthy and safe this fall,’’ Secretary Sebelius said. ``But all Americans also have a part to play. The best way to prevent the spread of flu is vaccination. A seasonal flu vaccine is ready to go, and we should have one for the 2009 H1N1 flu by mid-October.’’

“The federal government continues to coordinate closely with state and local governments, school districts and the private sector on H1N1 preparation as we head into the fall flu season—and the upcoming school year,” said Secretary Napolitano. “Readiness for H1N1 is a shared responsibility, and the guidance released today provides communities with the tools they need to protect the health of their students and teachers.”

For an outbreak similar in severity to the spring 2009 H1N1 infection, the guidelines recommend basic good hygiene, such as hand washing. In addition, students or staff members with flu-like illness (showing symptoms of flu) should stay home at least 24 hours after fever symptoms have ended.

“We can all work to keep our children healthy now by practicing prevention, close monitoring, and using common sense,” Secretary Duncan said. “We hope no schools have to close. But if they do, we need to make sure that children keep learning.”

The guidelines also recommend schools have plans in place to deal with possible infection. For instance, people with flu-like illness should be sent to a room away from other people until they can be sent home. Schools should have plans for continuing the education of students who are at home, through phone calls, homework packets, Internet lessons and other approaches. And schools should have contingency plans to fill important positions such as school nurses.

If H1N1 flu causes higher rates of severe illness, hospitalizations and deaths, school officials could add to or intensify their responses, the guidelines say. Under these conditions, the guidelines advise parents to check their children every morning for illness, and keep the children home if they have a fever.

In addition, schools could begin actively screening students upon arrival and sending ill students home immediately. If one family member is ill, students should stay home for five days from the day the illness develops, the guidelines say.

“Influenza can be unpredictable, so preparation and planning are key,” said Dr. Frieden. “We can't stop the tide of flu, but we can reduce the number of people who become very ill by preparing well and acting effectively.”

For more information visit http://www.flu.gov/.

Minnesota Department of Education releases AYP results


Print
Monday, 10 August 2009
by T.W. Budig ECM Capitol reporter About half of 2,300 Minnesota schools made average yearly progress under the federal No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) this year, according to the Minnesota Department of Education today (Monday, Aug. 10). Some 1,066 schools made average yearly progress (AYP), while 1,048 schools did not. The percent of schools making AYP increased by about eight percent, but the education department ascribes to hike to the addition of schools to the count. “Bottom line we have about half of our schools that have made AYP and half that have not,” said Commissioner of Education Alice Seagren, who expressed no surprise over the numbers. The commissioner explained that because of how the department interprets federal law, this year it added specialized schools, such as special education centers and K-2 schools, to the broader AYP count. This was done so, Seagren said, out of a desire for accountability. Some 189 Minnesota schools were not included in the AYP calculation, having insufficient data, according to the department. One possible reason for having insufficient data, Seagren explained, could be having too small subgroup or “cell” sizes. Total efficiency by 2014 Under the federal law, AYP measures not only the school but subgroups within — racial, ethnic, the poor — against increasing academic standards with the idea of achieving total efficiency by 2014. NCLB has always had its critics. Charles Kyte, of the Minnesota Association of School Administration, opined NCLB has been “significantly damaging” to the reputation of Minnesota schools by casting a false light. “You sort of hit a plateau,” said Kyte of the number of schools achieving AYP. “And I think we did,” he said. One bright spot Seagren sees in the new numbers is that 30 more high schools made AYP than last year. But of 283 schools on the list of schools needing improvement, while 31 made AYP this year, 252 did not. Seagren believes over time more of these schools will be successful. “I think we are seeing that. But it’s hard work,” she said. NCLB to be put on steroids Seagren expects Congress to make changes to NCLB when it up the initiative. “I kind of call it that No Child Left Behind is going to be put on steroids,” she said. In deciphering signals out of Washington and in talking with commissioners in other states, Seagren expects Congress to focus the law even tighter on closing the achievement gap, among other changes Minnesota has some of the most glaring gaps between white students and students of color in the country. The philosophy behind NCLB is exactly right, said Seagren, but its implementation is flawed. “Does it need to be fixed — yes,” she said. Wants NCLB more rewards based Kyte hopes for a NCLB that is more rewards based than punitive, providing more flexibility, better funding. Kyte said state educators plan to meet with Rep. John Kline, R-Lakeville, Republican ranking member on the House Education and Workforce Committee, and Sen. Al Franken, D-Minneapolis, who also serves on an education committee, to discuss NCLB. Although Kline was unavailable for comment, his office issued a statement: “While its overall goal of ensuring children are not systematically left behind in our nation’s schools is right on target, the heavy-handed involvement of the federal government in administering the program has tied the hands of local schools and districts and prevented them from making the targeted decisions necessary to address their specific challenges,” said Kline. Kline does not expect the education committee to take up NCLB this year. In addition to reexamining NCLB, Kline calls for improving school leadership, better teacher training, the implementation of a teacher performance-pay system. “The point is that there is no single, one-size-fits-all strategy,” said Kline. “What works in Lakeville, Minnesota may not work in Los Angeles, California or Louisville, Kentucky,” he said. Bar gets higher each year In 2008, some  937 Minnesota schools failed to make AYP - the bar gets higher each year under NCLB - while 983 schools cleared the hurl. The year before some 729 Minnesota schools failed to meet AYP, an increase of 246 schools over the previous year. According to the education department, in 2009 statewide of 443 high schools, 242 made AYP while 199 did not. Of 235 junior/middle schools, 79 made AYP while 156 did not. And of 935 elementary school statewide, 523 made AYP this year while 407 did not. Under NCLB, a school repeatedly failing to meet AYP could face eventual restructuring. An often-cited 2004 legislative auditor’s report predicted more than 80 percent of Minnesota schools would not meet AYP by 2014.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Hoboken Public Schools to open August 31 (teachers)/September 1st (students)

The Superintendent of the Hoboken School District has announced that the Hoboken Public Schools will open before Labor Day this year. Faculty and staff will report on Monday, August 31. All students will return to school on Tuesday, September 1. Dismissal for students for the first week of classes (September 1, 2 and 3) will be at 1 P.M. Schools are closed on Friday, September 4 and Monday, September 7, Labor Day. The full school calendar is available at http://www.hoboken.k12.nj.us/files/2009%20-%202010%20School%20Calendar%20[REVISED].pdf

Friday, August 7, 2009

2009 Summer Curriculum Committee: Day 16

The following self reported and verified activities were conducted by the Hoboken Curriculum Committee on August 6, 2009. -Dr. Petrosino

Science: Finished the 6-7-8 grade district assessments with the fabulous help of Mr. Cassesa, and we went ahead and had them scanned into the L drive @ the bussiness office w/ Maggie so science is officially now complete and all hard copies are in the binders.
Art: From July 20th - July 23rd worked on changing all MYP Units into New UbD formate for Grades 6-10th- Now done.

On July 28th-30 had to go back and type in L Drive the 3rd, 4th and 5th grade PYP ( 17 Units), with Big Ideas that were finished in June but never put into computer. Now done.

The District Wide Assessments for grades 1-8th was finished on Tues. Aug 4th. Including: Artists Visual Recognition; TESTS- for Journal/ Developmental Workbooks; Formal Performances; Display/Exhibitions of final projects; Oral Presentations and Writing Assignments for each grade 1-8 ( Placed in back of white folder) Now done. As for the 11th & 12th gr Art curriculum. I have gone over this with you. There is no 11th or 12th grade art other then IB, which has it's own set of rules/guides for Curriculum. The High School would use Grade 9 cur. as ART I and Grade 10 cur. for ART II. The only other Art class that was offered as of our meeting last Feb. was Photography, which is an elective. Right now K- 10th grades are finished Mapping, PYP, MYP, Big Ideas and New UbD -MYP . The only thing that may still need to be done was some quick editing on grades 7-10 that Lynn Fusco had volunteered to do.
World Languages: The world language group is happy to report that all of the assessments were written and typed for grades 1 to 12. All the Big Ideas (UBD Planners) were revised for grades K to 12. The PYP planners were revised and we made sure that everything was coherent and in the right folder. The MYP planners were revised for grades 6 to 12 as well. We completed one district wide assessment for grades 1 to 5 and two dishtrict wide assessments for grades 6 to 12. We created two binders for all the documents and they were placed in the library room at Brandt. Also, we placed everything in the L drive. In other words, the World Language Curriculum is completed!!! Tania Trinidad-Payanps would like to help lead the discussion for the World Language group on August 31, 2009. If you need our help with anything, please let us know
Implementation: Organized and transferred all of the work to date under the L drive; Created the CURRICULUM BY DISCIPLINE folder and rearranged all curriculum as per our conversation; there are no specific folders for grades 1-4 and 9-12 in technology. the documentation that it is intergrated is present however.

Disclaimer: The 2009 Summer Curriculum Committee is roughly 50% the size of the 2008 Summer Curriculum Committee (29 teachers vs 60 teachers) and the budget allocated is approximately 2/3 less than the allocation for Summer 2008. Dr. Petrosino has explained numerous times that this represents a significant reduction in both expenditures and faculty involved with the curriculum project.
Picture: Men at work...painting the facade of a building in Hoboken

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Administrators Meet About Curriculum Implementation

On Wednesday, August 5 district administrators and supervisors met at the Brandt Professinal Development Center for a 2 hour meeting focusing on issues of curriculum implementation. Below is a brief summary of what was discussed during the meeting. -Dr. Petrosino

Day 1 Activities related to curriculum implementation- the idea will be to have Elementary grades broken into grade level groups and led by curriculum committee members. Middle school grades will be divided by subject as will High School grades. Sessions will take place at Hoboken High School and begin immediatley after all teachers and staff gather at the High School for opening day address and assembly. In total, over a dozen curriculum committee members will take part in the opening day activities concerning curriculum implementation. It was agreed that the general focus will be on practical aspects of how the typical teacher will navigate the new curriculum and the resources that were developed to ease adoption.

2009 Summer Curriculum Committee: Day 15

The following self reported and verified activities were conducted by the Hoboken Curriculum Committee on August 5, 2009. -Dr. Petrosino

Art- This week was spent editing every grade level and every unit for:
-re-reading for errors in sentence structure, spelling etc.
-Art knowledge accuracy, deletions as well as imputing important facts
-adding in technology standards, code number and written language on
the Big Idea & MYP Planner units sheets

Editing completion for Grades & Lessons as follows:
-grade 1 Unit 1 thru Unit 8
-grade 2 Unit 1 thru Unit 9
-grade 3 Unit 1 thru Unit 7
-grade 4 Unit 1 thru Unit 5
-grade 5 Unit 1 thru Unit 4
-grade 6 Unit 1 thru Unit 9

Mathematics: Today Wednesday, August 5th, the math group completed the update on rubric examples and also added math project examples. The math portion of the curriculum section should be completed. It needs to be reviewed by Mr. McKenzie and yourself. If there are any questions or you need further assistance please feel free to call us.

World Language: Today the world language group completed the assessments for grades 6 and 12 IB Higher Level. We began to work the assessments for 7th grade.

Implementation: Much of today's activities centered on and around issues of implementation. This included work on the following topics: I. Implementation Plana. Preparation (remainder of August)- gain familiarity with the curriculumb. First Day- utilization of Curriculum Committee. First Month- Establishing Best Practices; observationsd. First Semester- District Assessments, feedback loops, reflection/revisione. First Year- District Assessments, feedback loops, reflection/revision.

Disclaimer: The 2009 Summer Curriculum Committee is roughly 50% the size of the 2008 Summer Curriculum Committee (29 teachers vs 60 teachers) and the budget allocated is approximately 2/3 less than the allocation for Summer 2008. Dr. Petrosino has explained numerous times that this represents a significant reduction in both expenditures and faculty involved with the curriculum project.

Picture: Arial view of Hoboken (upper left hand corner)

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

2009 Summer Curriculum Committee: Day 14

The following self reported and verified activities were conducted by the Hoboken Curriculum Committee on August 4, 2009. -Dr. Petrosino

Physical Ed/Health: We added technology to our all of unit planners and created the second grade Chess unit. We printed all of our revised unit planners and organized everything in the binders. In addition, we have started to work on PE assessments that will provide consistency districtwide.

Mathematics: Today, August 4th the math group has complied two complete binders. We are still in the process of proof-reading all (4th - 8th) assessments and still need to proof read 9th - 12th. Rubrics need to read and copied.

World Language: Today the world language group completed the assessments for 9 Honors and started working on the assessmnets for 11IB-DP Higher Level.

Implementation: Much of today's activities centered on and around issues of implementation. This included work on the following topics: I. Implementation Plana. Preparation (remainder of August)- gain familiarity with the curriculumb. First Day- utilization of Curriculum Committee. First Month- Establishing Best Practices; observationsd. First Semester- District Assessments, feedback loops, reflection/revisione. First Year- District Assessments, feedback loops, reflection/revision.

Disclaimer: The 2009 Summer Curriculum Committee is roughly 50% the size of the 2008 Summer Curriculum Committee (29 teachers vs 60 teachers) and the budget allocated is approximately 2/3 less than the allocation for Summer 2008. Dr. Petrosino has explained numerous times that this represents a significant reduction in both expenditures and faculty involved with the curriculum project.
Picture: Hoboken piers at night (from nj.com)

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

2009 Summer Curriculum Committee Day 13

The following self reported and verified activities were conducted by the Hoboken Curriculum Committee on August 3, 2009. Today marked the beginning of Week 4 for the curriculum committee. -Dr. Petrosino

Mathematics: completed the 8th Grade Algebra unit planner. We reorganized the folders in the computer and we are in the process of compiling the final binder. Tomorrow and Wednesday we will proof read and edit where needed.

Science: 8/2/09 - All of the essential questions and the enduring understandings foe the 6 units in grade 9 (Environmental Science) were revised and retyped according the proper UbD format. The information from the revised bid ideas pages for each unit was transferred into the new MYP planner format for each unit. The Unit assessments were revised and the approaches to Learning were aligned according to the MYP protocol.

8/3/09 – All of the completed units in grade 9 were printed and organized into the binders. Two of the assessments were searched on the internet and saved into the appropriate units for grade 9. All grades 9-12 folders were organized to make them user friendly. The Final exam was uploaded for grade 9 as the district assessment. For grade 10 the midterm was uploaded as the district assessment. For grades 11 and 12 both the midterms and finals were uploaded for the district assessments.

We going to go to the high school and scan a pdf for the remaining two exams ( 9th grade midterm and 10th grade final exam) and attach them to the appropriate folders before leaving today.

Visual Arts: These past two days I had to add some technology standards into the Visual Art lessons. Then I began with grade 1 unit 1 to quickly review each Big Idea & MYP Planner to check for correct terminology as well as add more information for easier understanding for the teachers who will be utilizing these lesson/unit plans. I am also making copies of the revised lesson/units to be placed in binder. As of now 11:00 AM Grade 1 and all 8 units & grade 2 and all 9 units have been reviewed, corrections made, copied and are in binder. I am going to start with reviewing grade 3 now.

Language Arts: Prepared for visit with Pat Reily of LitLife, also created assessments for Grades 6, 7, and 8.

Physical Ed/Health: We added technology to our all of unit planners and created the second grade Chess unit. We printed all of our revised unit planners and organized everything in the binders. In addition, we have started to work on PE assessments that will provide consistency districtwide.

Disclaimer: The 2009 Summer Curriculum Committee is roughly 50% the size of the 2008 Summer Curriculum Committee (29 teachers vs 60 teachers) and the budget allocated is approximately 2/3 less than the allocation for Summer 2008. Dr. Petrosino has explained numerous times that this represents a significant reduction in both expenditures and faculty involved with the curriculum project.


Monday, August 3, 2009

Meeting with District Administrators on Curriculum Implementation

On Monday, August 3 district administrators and supervisors met at the Brandt Professinal Development Center for a 2 hour meeting focusing on issues of curriculum implementation. Below is a list of topics that were discussed during the meeting. -Dr. Petrosino

Agenda
August 3, 2009

“The focus will be on the curriculum—implementation, PD for the year, use of the curriculum committee, nuts and bolts and connection of the work to the supervision process”

I. Implementation Plan
a. Preparation (remainder of August)- gain familiarity with the curriculum
b. First Day- utilization of Curriculum Committee
c. First Month- Establishing Best Practices; observations
d. First Semester- District Assessments, feedback loops, reflection/revision
e. First Year- District Assessments, feedback loops, reflection/revision

II. Professional Development for the 2009-2010 School Year
a. ASCD (Understanding by Design)
b. Tools of the Mind (K)
c. LitLife (Grades 1-5)
d. See memo from J. Lopez

III. Nuts and Bolts
a. FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)- helpful?
b. Actual Curriculum (L-Drive, CD’s, Hard Copies)

IV. What Resources Can you Expect?
a. Curriculum Mapping
b. Big Idea for each unit
c. PYP Planners for Grades 1-5
d. MYP Planners for Grades 6-10
e. MYP Planners for Grades 11, 12
f. Assessments for each grade each discipline (QSAC requirement)
g. Tools to help Monitor Progress*
h. Updated CD (updated from 6/2009)
i. Hard Copies (by discipline, by grade?)
Picture: Clock Towers, Hoboken, NJ

2009 Summer Curriculum Committee: Day 12

The following self reported and verified activities were conducted by the Hoboken Curriculum Committee on July 30, 2009. Today marked the conclusion of week three for the curriculum committee. -Dr. Petrosino

World Languages: Today we made significant progress. We wrote the district-wide assessment for grades 6 to 8. Also, we wrote the cumulative placement test for the 8th grade. We need to create the assessments for grades 1 to 8 into pdf files and we need to write assessments for grades 9 to 12. We discussed the assessments for the high school years and we are ready to begin writing them.


Technology: All MYP technology units are now complete for grades 6,7 and 8. Technology standards have been inserted into all grade levels across all content areas.

Left to do:
Revise technology curriculum overview narrative, including recommendation for development of Technology education course(s) at the high school level.
Print and distribute technology documentation spreadsheets.
Final cross-check for technology standards.


Science: Accomplished goals: Completed 2nd grade and began to revise 3rd grade according to the UBD format; Revised all 8th grade units according to the new MYP format along with the MYP “Big Idea” draft; Started creating assessments.

7/30/09
Accomplished goals: Revised and completed 3rd grade units according to the UBD format, and started revisions on the 4th grade units; Completed assessments for grades 1-5

Next Monday members will complete assessments for grades 6-8, and create answer keys to go along with the assessments.


Language Arts: rewrote the first 5 units of the 1st grade curriculum both incorporating LitLife and the correct UBD version. Next week, someone will have to finish rewriting the 1st grade as well as finishing grades 2-5. It's a lot of work but I also think it can get done with a lot of "man power." I'm just sorry I can't be there to finish what I started, but I have all the faith in the world that it will get done.


Disclaimer: The 2009 Summer Curriculum Committee is roughly 50% the size of the 2008 Summer Curriculum Committee (29 teachers vs 60 teachers) and the budget allocated is approximately 2/3 less than the allocation for Summer 2008. Dr. Petrosino has explained numerous times that this represents a significant reduction in both expenditures and faculty involved with the curriculum project.

Picture: "What a mother wants, what a baby needs"