New In USD 430

From the Desk of Robyn Allen

What’s New in South Brown County?

This year our teachers are busy learning all about some new initiatives we will be using district-wide.

We are implementing a new writing strategy, “RACE” Writing.  RACE is a response writing strategy that will help students become better writers and completely answer the questions being asked.  This writing strategy can be used in every classroom, every building.  Every teacher throughout the district has been trained by Cathy Esquibel, Instructional Coach.  What does RACE mean?  R = restate the question, A = answer the question, C = cite the source, and finally E = explain.  By using this writing strategy, students will have the ability to fully answer questions and become better writers by thinking critically.  This new writing strategy will also aid students in preparations for the new History Geography Social Studies assessment.  This assessment will require students to cite sources and explain their answers.

Another initiative that teachers are learning is the IDEAL problem-solving strategy.  Like RACE, IDEAL is a strategy that will help students break down a problem.  Again, Cathy Esquibel has shared this strategy with our staff.  I = identify D = define E = explore A = answer L = lookback. Using this strategy will help our students learn a path for problem-solving that will span grade levels.

We have added new intervention resources for reading this year as well.  K-8 teachers will be using “Really Great Reading” to help students that are struggling with reading skills.  Also Barton Reading and Spelling will also be used by our new building Interventionists.  Students that need a smaller group experience with more individualized instruction will have the opportunity to work with our building interventionist.

New classroom resources include Reveal Math, Earth & Space Science, Heggerty, and Statistics resources were purchased. The Heggerty resources are for PreK-2nd grade students.  It is a supplemental resource to enhance students’ phonics skills and phonemic awareness.  New math resources, Reveal Math and Elementary Statistics were purchased for 6th grade through high school grade levels.  These new math resources include ALEKS which is a built-in intervention that will aid with our continued implementation of MTSS.  Finally, we were able to update our Earth and Space Science texts.  The new resource comes from National Geographic and has online resources available.

The teachers have been working hard learning everything about these new resources, and can’t wait to use them in their classrooms!