Laying the Foundation for Teaching and Learning

foundationGareis and Grant (2008) define teaching as an “intentional creation and enactment of activities and experiences by one person that lead to changes in the knowledge, skills, and/or dispositions of another person” (p. 1). Teachers work hard to ensure that their students learn by carefully planning lessons and activities that meet the needs of all students and by continuously developing their own skills and knowledge about the teaching and learning process. However, until students actually learn what the teacher has taught, the instructional process is incomplete (Gareis & Grant, 2008). [Read more…]

VDOE Instructional Resources That Support the Written, Taught, and Tested Curriculum in English and Math

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The Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) website contains multiple resources to assist in aligning the curriculum that is taught with the written and tested curriculum. Use of these resources can only enhance our pedagogical practices. VDOE has done the work for us to make this necessary alignment possible with supporting resources. [Read more…]

Family Involvement: What Families Can Do to Get and Stay Involved

familyinvolovementFamilies’ involvement in their children’s education has a significant positive impact on student achievement (Henderson & Mapp, 2002).  When families engage with school personnel, students adjust more easily to the classroom environment at the secondary and elementary levels (Ferguson, Ramos, Rudo, & Wood, 2008). Further, regardless of socio-economic status, involvement of parents increases the likelihood that students attend school regularly, earn better grades, and persist to graduation (Colorado, 2008; Henderson & Mapp, 2002). [Read more…]

Bridging the Gap: Access to the General Education Curriculum

archpuzzleExpectations for students in Virginia are high, as laid out in explicit detail in the Curriculum Framework documents that support the Virginia Standards of Learning (SOL).  The SOL, in turn, are aligned with College and Career Readiness priorities.  The targets are the same for all students, including students with disabilities (SWD). The best way to bridge the gap that currently exists in graduation rates and postsecondary outcomes between SWD and their nondisabled peers is to improve meaningful access to the general education curriculum. [Read more…]

Cue Cards: Hints to Help Your Students Succeed

hintsgallery1Since the latest reauthorization of the Individuals With Disabilities Education Act (IDEA, 2004), Response to Intervention (RtI) has been widely implemented to identify and support students with learning and behavioral needs (Wisniewski, 2014).  More than 40 states have adopted and successfully applied some form of a three-tiered prevention by integrating both RtI and schoolwide positive behavioral supports (SWPBS) models (Kaloi, n.d.; Sugai &; Horner, 2009). Use of the systematic screening, research-based interventions, ongoing decision-making, and progress monitoring involved in these models have broad implications for closing both the opportunity and achievement gap for students with academic and behavioral challenges (Benner, Kutash, Nelson, & Fisher, 2013).  Moreover, SWPBS’s framework of overarching social expectations (e.g., respect, responsibility, and productivity), when translated into concrete behavioral terminology, including classroom procedures for task completion, provides opportunities for teachers to identify and explicitly teach prerequisite skills students need to perform learning tasks. [Read more…]

Yes I Can Awards

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Nominations are now open for the 2015 Yes I Can Awards!

Do you know a student with exceptionalities who shines?  Nominate them for a 2015 Yes I can Award. [Read more…]

Disability History and Awareness Month

October is Disability History and Awareness Month (DHAM). Learning about disability history and participating in disability awareness activities promotes mutual respect, understanding, and equity. [Read more…]

T/TAC William & Mary Welcomes Cami Wright

We are pleased to announce a new member of our T/TAC W&M team, Ms. Cami Wright. Cami brings to her new role as Project Specialist the expertise and experience from her 17-year career in secondary mathematics and leadership. She is a skilled and highly regarded high school mathematics teacher, administrative leader, mentor, instructional coach, and program evaluator. [Read more…]