• JP works with schools providing training on how to ameliorate teacher weaknesses brought to light through the process of teacher evaluation.

  • JP Associates offers our sites grant writing assistance. Take advantage of our experience writing successful grant requests.

  • JP partners with schools and districts across the country to provide intensive professional development for scientifically-based programs.

  • JP brings together several critical factors in the development of an effective school.

  • Common Core State Standards, Factors Influencing Student Achievement, Responsive Coaching, Teacher Evaluation, Autism
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#SXSWEdu: You go (far), girl! Inspiring girls in STEM

Jackie Bastardi, a mechanical engineer, remembers what her high school guidance counselor said when she asked the counselor what it would be like to study engineering in college.

“She looked at me and said, ‘It will be hard,'” Bastardi explained. “She said it would involve a lot of math. She kind of scared me. I thought, ‘What am I getting myself into?'”

Bastardi and Adele Falco of Curious on Hudson, spoke Wednesday to attendees at SXSWEdu Playground session “You go (far), girl! Inspiring girls in STEM.” The organization produces classes and workshops on science, technology, engineering, math and applied arts for students in K-5 and middle school.

Bastardi and Falco shared four keys they use to get girls excited about exploring STEM:

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Using Exit Tickets as an Assessment Tool

Here’s the scenario: You just completed teaching a unit of study in your subject area. You made sure that you covered all learning modalities (tactile, visual, and auditory) and differentiated your teaching to meet the needs of all the learners in your classroom. Now it's time for your students to take an assessment to see how well they mastered the content. As you grade the assessments, you are shaking your head and are saying to yourself, "I know that I taught this — what happened?” I think we all have had moments like this and wonder what we might have been done differently in our teaching to ensure a successful outcome. As a matter of fact, I still have such moments. I find myself becoming very reflective. At such times I remind myself that my students need to be able to reflect on their learning as well. Enter, the exit ticket.

An exit ticket is a device that students use to communicate with their teacher as to how their learning is going for them. Typically, a few minutes before the class is dismissed or at the end of the lesson, a slip of paper is handed out on which the student comments on the instruction for the lesson taught. Students are frequently asked to jot down a success and/or a struggle that they had with the day’s lesson. Some teachers prefer to have a "parking lot" poster where the students can place sticky notes with their comments and some prefer to have an actual form for students to complete. Either way, it is helpful to see how the students perceive their successes and their struggles. With this information, we can maximize our teaching and work more efficiently, especially for small group instruction. Target groups can be created using the “data” from the exit tickets.

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Digital Learning Day 2015: A Quick-Start Activity for Getting Involved

Digital Learning Day is this week, officially on Friday, March 13. Or, as Jimmy Fallon and Justin Timberlake would tell you: Hashtag it (#DLDay).

As a teacher, your response might be somewhere between “I’m so excited to see the projects coming out. I have a Digital Learning Day celebration ready to go!” and “Oh, who am I kidding? I know digital learning is important, but do I really need to take on one more thing? I have feedback to give, tests to grade, and projects to help students organize.”

If the second reaction is yours, stop, take a deep breath, and relax. While #DLDay is officially happening this week, that doesn’t mean that your students can’t take part in the movement next week or next month. Digital Learning Day—an initiative organized by the Alliance for Excellent Education with the help of corporate sponsors—is about empowering students and teachers and increasing college and career readiness. It’s certainly too big to be confined to one day or one activity.

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Five Principles with Twenty Examples for Engaging ELL Families

Teachers of English language learners (ELLs) respond to complex student needs, including the need to learn language skills for navigating school culture and grade-level content. But their work also extends beyond the students to their families. Both teachers and students benefit when families are engaged and involved in students’ learning. What approaches to and principles of family engagement can support our students and our own growth as teachers?

Past research offers three approaches, each with strengths and limitations. The first approach is to invite families to school activities like conferences, back-to-school nights, science fairs, or parent-teacher organization meetings. Although successful participation in at-school activities can help families and schools value each other, such activities are ritualized and often have unspoken expectations and scheduling requirements that can be unfriendly to families from diverse backgrounds. The second approach is to empower learners by studying the "funds of knowledge" families bring from their varied class and cultural backgrounds. This approach recognizes young learners and their families as assets to the school community, but the necessary ethnographic and linguistic research can require a significant amount of professional development resources. The third approach is collaboration, where teachers focus on a specific set of home-friendly strategies designed to help families engage in successful learning practices at home. Although this approach shares teachers’ knowledge with parents, it does so in a way that is school centered and directive in nature.

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Avoiding Decision Paralysis in the Face of Uncertainty

The best leaders know how to keep moving forward in ambiguous situations. Whether it’s a shifting industry or a PR emergency, they’re expected to make decisions even in extremely uncertain circumstances.

For instance, when Brian Cornell took over as CEO of Target last year, he inherited several unresolved situations. The retailer was managing the aftermath of a major security breach, trying to improve its omnichannel experience, and facing questions about its troubled Canada division. Cornell has already made several tough decisions, from pulling out of Canada to announcing major layoffs.

Any leader facing high levels of ambiguity needs to do two apparently paradoxical things: First, get comfortable with the idea of not having all the answers, and second, take steps to reduce the uncertainty.

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