Through the Ackerley Network, the UW College of Education and the Ginger & Barry Ackerley Foundation are focused on strengthening partnerships and increasing collaboration with 24 high needs schools. Working together with partner schools, the Ackerley Partner School Network helps provide additional supports and resources to both in-service teachers as well as practicing teachers and principals. Through a variety of activities related to the Teacher Education Program and Professional Development, educators at both the university and partner schools have been able to communicate ideas, share expertise, and learn together.
PDS Clinical Instructors: Developing a grassroots model at Parkwood
The Ackerley Partner School vision includes establishing a " learning network". This network, as defined by the partnership, includes knowledgeable teachers within the network learning from one another as well as sharing their expertise with new teacher interns. However, there is an assumption made that teachers within the network will be able to deliver effective presentations to adults with little or no university support. This project would provide Parkwood teachers with the support necessary to develop presentations that they can deliver to other interested network teachers and UW interns. Watch Video»
Connections, Collaborations and Celebrations
Planning and implementing a student advocacy/advisory class called Cougar Connections have been a major aspect of our project. Monthly themes have been used to reach and teach all students about responsible behaviors, understanding diversity, community building and developing healthy relationships. Every student is connected to a caring adult as well as a group of peers in this program. Student Learning Plans will be distributed and monitored in a personalized manner through Cougar Connections. The goal is to catch students who may otherwise slip between the cracks and provide consistent social, emotional and academic support for all students. Relationships and supportive connections are key components of this project. Watch Video»
Exploring “White Privilege”
The purpose of this project was to explore the issue of “White Privilege,” and how it impacts student learning. Approximately 80% of students at Roxhill Elementary are students of color and/or require free/reduced meals. In contrast, the majority of Roxhill’s faculty and staff are white and middle class. With this in mind, the group sought to explore how “white privilege” affects our perceptions and teaching and looked out how to better facilitate classroom discussions around issues of race. We used the book, The Freedom Writers Diary by Erin Gruwell, as the catalyst in our discussions. Watch Video»
This project addresses Nelsen Middle School’s need to increase student learning by furthering the Renton School District’s focus on Professional Learning Communities The project goal is to increase student awareness of what they are learning by clearly communicating learning targets, connecting learning targets to a purpose, and allowing students time to evaluate and question their work. Teachers met to to discuss and revise the Assessment FOR Learning Survey. During the first meeting teachers used the time to develop their units and common assessments. Work that was not completed during that meeting was completed during a Friday Professional Learning Community and after school meetings. After the units were taught and data was collected teachers met again, to discuss the project, data, and make plans for next year. As a result of the project, teachers realized that students needed more time to identify useful informational resources and prepare for their presentations. In addition, they created a cross-curricular unit and assessment that resulted in more student connections. Watch Video»
Making Graphing Accessible To All Students: The Impact of Graphing Materials on a High School Classroom
This project addressed the need for coordinating math activities/lessons related to graphing curriculum for Lindbergh High School. Our goals were:
1. To engage more students in mathematical processes.
2. To enable students to demonstrate their learning in a more visible way.
3. Specifically in terms of graphing our goals are:
a. To deepen students’ understanding of how to graph and their ability to analyze graphs
b. To help students apply that knowledge to the outside world.
For example, during lessons surrounding points and slopes student learning is enhanced by the white boards because it is easier for students to manipulate answers, more accessible for group work and discussion of student work, and allows for quick teacher feedback.
Implementation of School Improvement Goals
The purpose of the Lindbergh High School’s project this year was to aid in the implementation of the School Improvement Plan by utilizing network funds to specifically support projects aimed at increasing student learning. Specifically, the use of the funds, outlined in the network request was: To support our reading goal, which includes researching and developing protocols to be used throughout all classrooms, network funds were used to pay teachers to research strategies in order to prepare for an inservice to be presented to all staff prior to the beginning of the 2008-2009 school year. To support the math goal, network funds were used to pay math teachers to develop extended math opportunities that students can work on at home to support the development of basic skills and to support preparation for the Math WASL. Watch Video»
TT Minor Student and Teacher Enrichment
This proposal addresses the need for teachers to come together from across the school and share experiences of teaching the new Everyday Math curriculum in an effort to understand impact the new curriculum is making on student learning. The teachers need the time to engage in discussion and analysis of student work to better understand how the curriculum function as a whole for elementary school and how it has been functioning this year for their students. While these items are being addressed at the teacher level, this project will also provide time for all students to engage in enrichment-type activities such as library and art projects, extra physical education time, and engage with community members such as story-tellers. These kind of additional projects are needed to build community across the grade levels (primary and intermediate) as well as enhance the educational experiences of the students. Watch Video»
Science Field Study Project of the Local Puget Sound Ecosystem
The purpose of this project was to integrate scientific field study with technology in order to allow students to complete a guided inquiry-based project. Students will complete a field study of a local marine habitat and then, using information they acquired in their general science coursework and technology they have been trained to use, will put together a group presentation, which documents a specific research question they have selected to research. The goal of this project was twofold. For one, it provided an outlet for field study, which will build on student interest through the use of technology. Two, this interest provided diverse learners opportunities they may not have been offered to demonstrate understanding through a more conventional report presentation. Watch Video»
This proposal addresses the need for curriculum alignment and for smoother transitions between Eckstein Middle School and Nathan Hale High School. The curriculum alignment will address social studies and language arts (humanities) courses at Eckstein and will allow for collaboration between both Eckstein and Hale to address transition (and pathway) plans between the two schools. The greatest need in all of this is time for teachers to work together to accomplish the curriculum alignment and transition plans. Watch Video»
The project aims to use student work to assess our instructional strategies and to continue to develop our lesson planning. Our aim was to have increased collaboration among teachers within and across content areas, improved student learning, and increased rigor in our classrooms. We would like to share this work with other departments at our school as a model of collaboration. We want to divide into grade-level groups next year for some of the protocols to better meet needs of specific students. Watch Video»
MTHS Honors/AP/Honors Programs
Honors/AP/CHS/IB programs are universally considered as the gateway to college. Due to grade inflation and large discrepancies from HS to HS in what is taught and how, many colleges are putting much more emphasis in recruiting students that have taken Honors or advanced courses, these courses are typically not directed at underrepresented populations in schools, and thus leave these students at a marked disadvantage. Mountlake Terrace High School is utilizing the Ackerley Funds to develop a comprehensive Honors/Advanced Program. We are identifying what is already considered Honors at MTHS, how it is taught and how it is marketed to all students, particularly those that are presently underrepresented. We are in the midst of a school-wide discussion of what Honors is supposed to mean and how we can better market our honors program, particularly to underrepresented populations in our school and to underclassmen. Watch Video»
Special Education Inclusion
The project’s purpose is to create a vision and begin a pilot inclusion program at Aki Kurose for the 2008-2009 school year. This inquiry project supports collaboration between special education and general education teachers by eliminating the separation of “those students” or “Your students” from all students, increasing shared responsibility for educating every student, and making differentiated instruction an every day occurrence. Further, it improves teaching and learning; from best practice, research based literature and our discussion with staff at Eckstein, the notion that learning in an inclusive setting contributes to accelerated student learning and a reduction in off task behaviors appears to true. It also responds to student needs; when every kid has a permanent place in the regular classroom, the notion that special education not a place but a support system becomes true. Watch Video»
Eighth to Ninth Grade Math Transition between Madison Middle School and West
The need this project addresses is to find a better way to transition students appropriately from Honors and regular 8th grade math at Madison, to different tracked 9th grade mathematics at West Seattle High School. This includes assessing current pathways through Madison, curriculum choices of Madison and West Seattle, and understanding criteria for math placement in West Seattle High. At its core, this study addresses a need to dialogue between the two math departments at each school to better understand how Madison students end up on particular mathematical tracks in high school. In addition, this study addresses a need to inform parents of the processes through which they, with the teachers, must guide their students as 8th graders transition to a new school culture. Watch Video»
Math Recovery Book Study and Application
This project gave K-5 teachers at Newport Heights an opportunity to collaborate and conduct action research designed to improve K-5 mathematics instruction, specifically in the area of number sense. WASL data and district assessment data from the school indicates that improvement is needed in student performance in this area. This project was focused on book study. Each participant read Early Numeracy Assessment for Teaching and Intervention, Teaching Number in the Classroom with 4-8 Year Olds, and Teaching Number: Advancing Children's Skills and Strategies. These books are written by Robert J. Wright, James Martland, and Ann K. Stafford. Starting in the fall, each participant read Early Numeracy, and participated in six, one hour discussion groups. In the winter, the group read Teaching Number in the Classroom with 4-8 Year Olds, and participated in six, one hour discussion groups. In the spring, the group read Teaching Number: Advancing Children's Skills and Strategies and again participated in six, one hour discussion groups. Watch Video»
College of Education, University of Washington
Box 353600 Seattle, WA 98195-3600