#LovelandLearning at LPS
Posted Thursday, February 11, 2016
In this special series, we talked academics with each building principal to really understand what #LovelandLearning is all about.
Loveland City School District (LCSD): At LPS, what is your team doing really well to promote academic achievement for students?
Kevin Fancher (KF): Our main focus and motto is Know thy Impact. We look at student growth and maximizing growth for all students with very little emphasis on actual grades. Behind the scenes the teachers at LPS have a laser-focus on student growth. In front of the students, it is all about making learning fun. Each teacher is a member of an Instructional Team. Each team meets regularly to plan instruction, analyze student work, identify trends and patterns in student performance, examine problems of practice, and discuss pedagogy. Our teams ask the following four essential questions:
1. What do we expect all students to learn? (Where are our students going, and what do they need from this unit, lesson, or series?)
2. How will we know when they've learned it? (Are they making the expected progress toward their goals?)
3. What will we do when they don't learn it? (Plan for intervention and growth)
4. What will we do when they know it or have learned it already? (How can I differentiate to enrich and expand?)
LCSD: What do you hope to work on?
KF: Our current focus is building an increased understanding of Formative Instructional Practices (FIP). This professional development hinges on teachers being able to assess while the instruction is taking place. We don't want to rely solely on informal observations and end-of-unit, summative assessments. We are continuously looking at the results we are getting from daily instruction. We do this with a variety of assessment tools from quick checks and exit tickets to running records and student conferences. Our goal is to strengthen our professional skill set in this area so that our results and efforts are maximized.
LCSD: What academic accomplishment are you most proud of at LPS?
KF: We have worked hard to build a system that provides targeted homework for every student at their level. As a result, we are seeing great results in maintaining strong student growth for all students. I’d also add that the staff at LPS have strong beliefs when it comes to putting students first. We believe all students can learn in a safe environment where they are encouraged to take risks, feel valued, and are respected. We believe that high-quality instruction is an obligation and that students need to be engaged in meaningful work at their level. We have an unconditional positive regard for people and want to serve this community the best we can. We value feedback and collaboration and welcome our families to ask questions or share any concerns they have.
Here is a look at the academic programs offered at Loveland Primary School:
Reading Instruction/Literacy by Design - Has a whole class scope and sequence of lessons that are bridged together with small group, leveled instruction. Students are engaged in reading material that is at their level while also working on grade level standards in reading utilizing a balanced literacy approach.
Response to Intervention - A systematic team approach to looking at student data, progress and applying research based tiered levels of intervention and support.
Writing Workshop/6 Traits - A system for providing writing instruction that incorporates the 6 Traits of Writing into mini-lessons and individual/small group writing conferences with students.
Math Investigations - Inquiry based math program that is rich in language and mathematical thinking (meaning students spend time talking mathematically and not just inserting numbers into algorithms). Students learn the why behind the math and examine strategies and multiple ways to solve more complex problems. The practice comes through games while the instruction takes place with facilitated mathematical conversations and embedded problem-solving. The included workshop component allows for differentiation and enrichment.
Easy Tech - Computer program with tailored lessons in computer skills (including keyboarding). We are currently adjusting this and working on a future scope and sequence.
Health, Science & Social Studies - Students participate in inquiry based lessons through class discussions, group work, and field trips.
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