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3A. Instructional Delivery: The teacher communicates clearly and accurately what is expected and provides lessons, assignments, materials and resources that are logically sequenced and content appropriate.  The teacher encourages student participation in the learning process through varied questioning and discussion techniques.

APPR Planning Sheet 2008-2009

Evidence
Curriculum and some units are being rescoffolded to better logically sequence instruction and construct student understanding.

Summary of Progresss
The main restructuing that occurred this year was the repositioning of when physics and chemistry curriculum is taught.  Prior to this year physics was taught in the fall and winter and chemistry in the spring.  Switching chemistry to the fall and teaching physics in the winter and spring would enable several things to happen:

  1. material/time intensive labs would be done closer to when lab safety is taught allowing for application of lab safety skills early on.
  2. the teacher has more energy/time at the beginning of the year to more effectively impliment material/time intensive labs.
  3. starting with the very small (microscopic) units of atoms and building up to the very large (macroscopic) units on special and general relativity may allow students to better construct knowledge.
  4. the development of student undertanding of the kinetic theory and in turn energy is better scaffolded starting with the basics of the atom.
A comparison of the two school years can be made using Curriculum Mapper.

Reflection
I feel the overall restructuring of the curriculum is a success and will continue to be implimented.  The curriculum flowed logically and I felt there was better overall understanding of the material.  It should be noted that concepts such as atoms and movement of microscopic particles is very abstract and challenging for some adolescents to comprehend.  Based on feedback from students in terms of their questions asked (undocumented) and test scores I feel the level of understanding increased this year.  The item analysis from the NYS ILA will hopefully verify this assumption.  This change in curriculum was also partnered with an additional emphasis on energy and the kinetic theory throughout the year.

Simple Story Student Activity to Help Construct Student Knowledge
Overview:  Students worked in groups to construct a story using a set of vocabulary words from a unit on Simple Machines.
Goals:  To encourage student "play" with words, identify where vocabulary is used in everyday life, and construct knowledge in a cooperative group.

Assignment
Directions: As a group, you have 25 minutes to write a brief story using the words or variations of the words below.
 
o    Work
o    Force
o    Load
o    Efficiency
o    Lever
o    Screw
o    Inclined plane
o    Pulley
o    Wedge
o    Friction
o    Machine
o    Wheel and Axle
o    Pull
o    Push

Your short story should also include:

o    Setting
o    Plot
o    Conflict
o    Character
o    Point of view
o    Theme

Student Work
simplestory

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