Saturday, February 16, 2013

Action Research Week 5

When I first began this course, the concept of action research was foreign to me.  I suppose I knew that professionals are always informally assessing situations and looking for avenues to better themselves, the facility, those around him/her, etc.  In my journey to make a decision on what my research topic may be, I had several eye-opening experiences.
Upon reading further and further into the text, “Leading with Passion and Knowledge,” I found that there was a never-ending supply of inquiries just waiting to be pursued.  The process is simple, straight-forward, and familiar compared to any other attempt to improve an establishment, but there were a lot of questions I would not have thought to ask when assessing the quality of my work.
The next most important and helpful part of my learning experience was the peer-to-peer connection aspect.  Through the use of discussion boards, blogs, and Facebook, I gained a lot of insight and constructive tips from the others I am working alongside.  Facebook was remarkably beneficial because of the response rate.  People are very quick to respond on the social network.  The blog was very likely the least helpful because so few commented on what I had written.  The discussion board allowed my peers to give me helpful feedback on my ideas; through it and speaking with my site supervisor, I was ultimately able to make a decision on my research topic.
Lastly, I enjoyed the assignments the most.  They were designed in a manner that guided me through the learning process.  Now, I have a strong, needed topic about which I can inquire.  They led me through the steps of discovering the importance of action research, how to find a topic, how to narrow it down in order to not lose track of what’s important, the steps in which to execute the process, they gave me questions to ask to ensure quality, and lastly means of maintaining the improvements that I have established.
Action research will prove to be a rudimentary function for me as a leader in my school.  Now that I have begun one process, there is no way I can stop making improvements to my school!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Action Research Week 4

My site supervisor and I have established my project mentioned last week to be my research action topic.  Her only feedback was to narrow my ideas to be able to focus on just one thing.  If you would like, please follow me here as I continue to pursue this inquiry over the next several months.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Action Research Week 3

Action Planning Template
Goal:  To determine if STAR Math is effective and if its use should be continued, expanded, or halted
Action Steps(s):
Person(s) Responsible:
Timeline: Start/End
Needed Resources
Give Students initial STAR math test on the Renaissance Place testing site.

·         Rheanna Stanley
·         Travis Bethany
·         Reese Barrington
Ongoing.  Students are given initial test within one week of their registration—this district has a high frequency rate of new students because the school is at a residential facility.
·         20 computers with internet access
·         20 calculators
Student participation and effort will be monitored and noted.
Commit to doing the Accelerated Math program in the classroom 1-2 days a week.
·         Reese Barrington
·         Rachel Tyler
·         Austin Meyer
·         Drew Nudd
·         Math Dept. in the other 5 schools in the district
September 2012-May 2014
·         1 Computer
·         1 Printer
·         20 calculators
·         (optional) math dictionaries, reference posters, graphic organizers, etc.
Students are evaluated by the software itself.  If the student completes assignments correctly, they are given a new objective and eventually tested.  If they do not, they repeat the objectives and/or the teacher is instructed to intervene.
Retest the students on STAR Math in 6 week intervals
·         Travis Bethany
·         Various test administrators from the other 5 campuses
January 2013-May 2014
·         20 computers with internet access
·         20 calculators
Student participation and effort will be monitored and noted.
Make a decision to propose expansion, continuation, or elimination of the STAR Math program.
Reese Barrington
Present-May 2014
Computer with internet access
Review and chart the data from the retests compared to the initial test.  Look for growth or regression in many categories.  Compare to the other schools’ data in the district