Tuesday, August 7, 2012

FREE Professional Development Opportunity

Hoʻokahi Wai o ka Like: Like Water We Flow as One 

What: 2012 Big Island P-20 Writing Symposium
When: September 8 9:15-3:30 pm
Where: UHH University Classroom Building (UCB)
Sponsored by: UHH Department of English and the Hawaiʻi P-20 Project
Registration: August 1 - August 27, space limited - contact Seri Luangphinith (seri@hawaii.edu) for registration

Blurb: This free event is open to Big Island public and private secondary teachers who are interested in learning more about trans-disciplinary Common Core writing standards. 

DOE teachers who register will be eligible to receive professional development credit for the work they initiate at this event. Contact Adele Wada (Adele_Wada/CIB/HIDOE@notes.k12.hi.us) for more information.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

A New Way to View ESEA Reauthorization Efforts

ASCD (formerly the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development) came up with a new chart (PDF) to help you make sense of pending legislative efforts to reform the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA).

The tool provides a detailed side-by-side comparison of the current law, the changes proposed by each of the bills passed by the respective Senate and House education committees, and the Obama administration's waiver plan.

It's organized into five major categories (standards/assessments, accountability, teacher and leader effectiveness, school improvement, and funding).

No one has time, especially is school is winding down, but that's not an excuse to be uninformed, so check out this handy chart from an education-minded organization.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Hawaii Writing Project Invitational Summer Institute

Lehua Writing Project is no longer offering summer institutes, but if you know of a potential teacher leader who can stay with someone on Oahu, please encourage them to apply for the Hawaii Writing Project Invitational Summer Institute.

Below is a letter from the director, Dr. Ellen Spitler:

Dear Hawai‘i Writing Project Supporter,
Each year the Hawai‘i Writing Project (HWP), an affiliate of the National Writing Project and housed at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, works with educators on O'ahu and Maui, across grades and all disciplines to introduce them to writing practices and theories that will motivate teachers and students alike to take writing seriously and to help them discover—or rediscover—its joys.  Those who complete the Invitational Summer Institute become teacher consultants whose job it is to provide motivation and leadership in the teaching of writing within their communities. Together, we are dedicated to improving writing instruction in our nation’s schools and to promoting the use of writing as a tool for thinking and learning across disciplines.
As you may know, the federal government this year did not fund the National Writing Project and sadly many sites around the country do not have the monies to support a summer institute.  HWP is in a position to still offer the Invitational Summer Institute.
As the directors of HWP Invitational Summer Institutes, we hope you will participate or nominate an educator you feel would benefit from the excitement and learning experience the summer institute offers to our participants. We are interested in teachers from all disciplines—English, science, social studies, health, performing/visual arts, or math—and at all levels, kindergarten through college.  Committed to serving the needs of a particular geographic region, we are also interested in bilingual and ELL teachers and in those who understand the increasingly complex cultural diversity of Hawai‘i.  We also welcome administrators.
If you are an administrator, please take the time to nominate and share this invitation with strong educators on your faculty who would benefit from the program we offer. All you have to do is provide us with the name and email address for any teachers you want to nominate.  And, of course, we’d be delighted if you nominated more than one person.  We will contact all nominees to make sure they understand what the writing project is all about, how to complete the application process, and what to expect and prepare for if they are accepted.
Full tuition scholarships will be available for six credits of graduate work (English/CS 640) for up to twenty Invitational Summer Institute participants.  If you know teachers who are considering the pursuit of a master's degree, the Summer Institute offers a stimulating and supportive place to begin.  Completion of the institute also qualifies for salary increment/professional development [DOE] credit.  
DATES:    O‘ahu Invitational Summer Institute – June 18 – July 13, 2012
                 Monday –Thursday except the first week, which is Monday  - Friday

FEES:        Full tuition scholarships available for 6 credits of graduate work (English/CS 640) for all Invitational Summer Institute participants; some fees apply totaling approximately $100-$150         
DEADLINE:    May 15, 2012
Please find the Institute flyers attached. Be sure to register as soon as possible, or nominate someone you believe will benefit from what the Hawai‘i Writing Project has to offer. We look forward to hearing from you soon!  Please feel free to contact either of us for more information.
Mahalo nui loa,
Ellen Spitler, Ph.D.
Director, Hawai‘i Writing Project
Invitational Summer Institute (Oahu)

Monday, April 16, 2012


Wonderopolis (http://wonderopolis.org) is a website created by the National Center for Family Literacy. It can help parents and teachers draw elementary-age children into literacy-strengthening conversations and activities. 

Yesterdays Wonder of the Day was "Why are they called deadlines?" Each wonder includes:
  • an interesting video clip (the deadline one below with the cool post it stop motion animation)

  • several paragraphs of fairly student-friendly text that introduces the topic and content related to the question
  • learning activities that kids can do at home ("Once you have something in mind, grab a pencil and paper and do some planning. Break the task down into all its parts. Estimate how much time each part will take. Take a look at how much time you have left before your deadline, and decide how much work you will need to do each day until the deadline arrives.")
  • vocabulary featured in the text
  • a "still wondering" section that offers links to content on other sites
  • a comment section for kids

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Noteworthy Numbers

saw this in the March ASCD Educational Leadership




Does what we know reflect in what we do in the classroom?

Source: Scholastic & Harrison Group (2010). 2010 kids and family reading report: Turning the page in the digital age. Retrieved from Scholastic at www.scholastic.com/readingreport. Based on a nationally representative sample of 1,045 children ages 6-17. 

Monday, April 2, 2012

How Will You Celebrate April's Poetry Month?

• Poetry a Day Challenge - Join me in writing a poem a day - any length - long tomes or poems that fit in your pocket - just write. If you want to join the challenge, here's day 1's poem on my mana'o for educators blog. Leave a link to your blog on the comments and I'll link it back in on this blog.

• Go to the excellent Scholastic site to get ideas for your classroom, including a webcast with poet laureate Jack Prelutsky.

• NCTE's read.write.think site has more resources on writing poetry in class like shape poems and links

• My must see site Favorite Poem has citizens, both famous and not yet famous reciting their favorite poems.

• Poem in your pocket day (April 26, 2012) asks people to keep a poem in their pocket. This site has all the resources you need for this event.

Poems are safe in pockets
A hidden world
Carried around
Next to last week's lint
A secret treasure
A comfort from harsh words
An escape from mean stares
A lovely surprise for your mother
on washing day