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Critical Issues in School Reform

 

L E A R N I N G  F R O M  S T U D E N T  W O R K
Looking At Student Work:
A Window into the Classroom

FACILITATOR'S GUIDE
with Activities and Resources

I. About the Program | II. On-Line Activities | III. Viewer Activities | IV. Resources


I. ABOUT THE PROGRAM
Increasingly today, schools and their communities are using student work-from essays and public presentations to scientific experiments and model-building-as a way to further the progress of individual students and of the whole school. The collaborative, public examination of student work by teachers, administrators, parents and community members offers a useful tool for improving teaching practice and thereby student achievement. Looking at student work collaboratively enables teachers and administrators to share and reflect on ways to develop new classroom practices and environments that support learning, and encourages schools and their communities to develop common expectations for student achievement.

"Looking at Student Work: A Window into the Classroom" is appropriate in many settings with a variety of participants, including teachers, administrators, parents and interested others in your school or district.

This video can be used to:

  • introduce the idea of looking at student work

  • understand the collaborative context for looking at student work

  • raise questions about what can be learned from and who might be involved in looking at student work

  • provide an example of a group of teachers looking at student work

  • get a group of teachers ready to look at their own students' work



Norview High School, Norfolk, Virginia

"Looking at Student Work" explores a variety of ways in which looking at student work can help improve teaching and learning. The video features students, teachers and administrators at Norview High School in Norfolk, Virginia, a member of the ATLAS Communities school redesign project, who discuss their experiences in looking at student work. The video also includes brief interviews with:

  • Paula Evans and Gene Thompson-Grove, Co-Directors of the National School Reform Faculty at the Annenberg Institute for School Reform
  • A parent and a community member from Norfolk who participated in looking at student work from Norfolk schools
  • Groups of teachers, administrators, and school coaches from around the country who have used looking at student work to further teaching practice and student learning in their own schools
The 28-minute video addresses the following areas:
  • Why: Introduces the idea of looking at student work and the ways it can impact a teacher's practice
  • Who & Where: Describes the collaborative process of Critical Friends Groups
  • What & How: Looks at student work with a Critical Friends Group at Norview High School
  • What if . . .: Broadens the examination of student work to include parents and community members
Norview is one of several high schools serving the urban community of Norfolk in southeastern Virginia, with some 1,800 students and 110 teachers in grades 9-12. Approximately 60 percent of the students are eligible for free or reduced-price lunch. The student body is 71 percent African American, 28 percent white, and 1 percent other.

A report, "Looking at Student Work Together", is available from an Annenberg Institute working group on involving parents in looking at student work.

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