Create a Personalized Learning Plan Connected to Each of Your Students
At the recent 2018 Michigan Charter Schools Symposium, Distinctive Schools network leaders had the opportunity to attend and present at the annual conference, as well as connect with fellow charter educators.
During the session, “Create a Personalized Learning Plan Connected to Each of Your Students,” Jin-Soo Huh, Executive Director of Academic Innovation at Distinctive Schools, and Stephanie Cardella, Executive Director of Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment at Distinctive Schools, shared their knowledge of personalized learning models and replicating it into an existing school culture. Personalized learning instruction offers pedagogy, curriculum, and learning environments to meet the individual student's needs. This tailored experience to learning preferences and specific interests of different students allows for a customized approach to teaching. For schools to truly adopt a personalized method of learning there has to be a design-thinking approach incorporated throughout the culture.
Huh and Cardella also shared lessons learned from implementing personalized learning at Distinctive Schools campuses. For example, Chicago International Charter School (CICS) West Belden, managed by Distinctive Schools, served as the pilot school to make learning more personalized for students.
To begin their transformation, the CICS West Belden team used a design thinking approach to hear directly from students about their wants and needs and tried out different models to better equip students to learn in their preferred ways. This resulted in a school where students had more agency and deeper relationships with teachers. Academic learning also increased as students received more tailored instruction, including additional small group instruction with teachers, supplemented by just the right level practice from online programs. Ultimately, CICS West Belden had created a model where students were thriving.
CICS West Belden’s journey highlights several lessons for schools that are considering adopting personalized learning. These include:
Trailblazer teachers and staff hold a vital role in developing school reform, and we are grateful for their innovation, commitment, and dedication to our network! This month we are featuring a Trailblazing Teacher from Distinctive College Prep – Harper Woods.
This featured Trailblazer is a talented instructor, with an incredible strength for building positive relationships. She has embraced the Distinctive way, is committed to implementing new initiatives with fidelity, and her classroom feels like home for her students and visitors alike. This Trailblazer is leading the charge with the school-home-community connection at DCP - Harper woods; her students stay connected to real-world learning and experiences by maintaining their own online portfolio of work. This Trailblazer’s classroom is committed to completing their programs of study in Lexia and Benchmark ahead of schedule, and working together as a team. She holds her students to high expectations, while at the same time showering them with love.
The students and staff at DCP - Harper Woods are so fortunate to have this Trailblazer leading and teaching alongside them. Please join us in congratulating a Trailblazing Teacher, Ms. Melissa Ludeke!
Ms. Melissa Ludeke: Featured Trailblazer!