Teachers Are Learners, Too

August 6, 2013

If we are going to educate a generation of kids who love to learn, they must be guided by life-long learners. That is one of many things every member of our faculty has in common. The simply LOVE to learn.

This summer, members of our faculty and staff have been building their own knowledge so that we can be better educators. What are our teachers busy learning?

Outdoor Education at MirowitzOutdoor Education: Four Mirowitz teachers attended workshops on “Affective Outdoor Learning” and “Taking Literacy Outdoors.” These courses were offered through Litzinger Road Ecology Center. Another attended “Outdoor Writing Skills” and was certified in Discover Nature Schools through the Missouri Department of Conservation

Civil Rights: One teacher attended “But for Birmingham: The Rise of the Magic City and the Evolution of the Civil Rights Movement,” as part of a prestigious cohort of teachers.

Judaics: Ten teachers studied Torah with Rabbi Landa, and two teachers took graduate school courses including Judaic Studies and Enhancing Learning through Linguistic and Cultural Diversity. Our Judaic leaders attended an Instructional Leadership Institute at the Jewish Theological Seminary.

Hebrew: Two teachers studied Hebrew, and another studied Jewish text all summer at Pardes in Israel.

Singapore Math: New teachers received training in the methodology of our math curriculum that teaches students to think like mathematicians.

Classroom Pedagogy: Teachers participated in webinars through the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Design including:

  • Classroom Instruction that Works
  • De-Grade Your Classroom
  • Create Mastery Learning with Narrative Feedback
  • Flip Your Classroom: Reach each student every day
  • Flipped-Mastery Learning Model
  • Total Participation Techniques
  • The Well-Balanced Teacher
  • Creating Authentic Assessments

These were taught by master educators including Mark Barnes, Jonathan Bergmann, Aaron Sams, William Himmele, Persida Himmerle, Mike Anderson and Allison Zmuda. 

Art: Mrs. Burack, our art teacher, was trained in Common Sense Core Arts Standards. She also took a watercolor workshop.

Administration: Morah Shannon, Patty and I all connected with great leaders in our positions at seminars:

  • Shannon attended the ACSD Conference
  • Patty attended the AISAP Conference (Association for Independent School Admissions Professionals)
  • I attended the Progressive Heads summer institute

Between workshops, your child’s teachers have prepared to teach revised and updated versions of our Writer’s Workshop curriculum. They have been reading countless professional books (including “The Book Whisperer,”  “The Art and Science of Teaching,” “The Daily Five,” “Deciding What to Teach and Test,” “How to Design and Evaluate Research in Education,” “While the World Watched,”  “Slavery by another Name”). And they are counting down the days until they get to use their new knowledge to help your child reach his or her potential.

We are committed to being a place where great learning is the highest priority for every member of the community.  We can inspire a love of learning in our students if we model that love in our own lives. I feel lucky to be surrounded by this bunch of learners, and am proud to present them as your child’s educators.