The History of Education course at Shabazz asked students to learn about the MMSD teaching tool. This tool is used by administrators to gather data about teaching practices at their schools. The students were responsible for designing and teaching 3 lessons based on the tool. Students decided collectively to teach lessons focused around government philosophy. Their second lesson focused on different teaching philosophies. In their final lesson, students worked thoughtfully and participated skillfully in discussions to design a unit around the theme of controversial arts. “By the end of quarter, student ability to deliver coherent lessons grew significantly, in fact, their final lessons were so engaging and well crafted, I would sometimes forget I was the “teacher” of the class,” said Aaron Kaio.
During the quarter Katie Fernandez, used what she was learning by applying it to a lesson she was asked to teach in her geometry class. The lesson took place on a day the teacher was out and had asked their Katie, the class TA, to teach the day’s lesson. Katie then used the lesson organizer from the History of Education class to design and teach the lesson. During the lesson, Shabazz Principal Aric Soderbloom stopped by the class and immediately became engaged. When word spread about Katie’s high quality teaching the faculty were abuzz with excitement.
Aric invited students from the class to come to a professional development day focused on Quality Performance Assessment. The students would be interviewed about “teacher moves” that have really helped, supported, and engaged them as students. Katie, was willing to come to school on her day off to be interviewed by Aaron in front of teachers. Teachers were able to dig deeper by asking Katie questions directly. Katie’s insightful comments inspired teachers to reflect on ways that they could support students as they created more dynamic, meaningful, and engaging assessments. Interestingly, Katie decided to stay after the interview and participated as a teacher for the day. She is currently taking an independent study where she is putting together a curriculum to teach a class in an upcoming quarter.
Pictured: Katie Fernandez (left) teaches the teachers, including Aaron Kaio (right) at Shabazz Professional Development.