#gofirebirds is not just a social media handle for us at Devils Lake High School, it is a mantra, a belief that we can do better, be better, and fly higher. Funds provided through both the Striving Readers Comprehensive Literacy (SRCL) and Comprehensive Literacy State Development (CLSD) grants have been the headwind, giving us the power to #go!
Purchasing professional development centered around assisting our Tier 2 and 3 students was the take-off we needed. Many training sessions have prompted us to lay a foundation of making data informed decisions, centered on what is in the best interest of our students. Creating and maintaining an Early Warning System, implementing benchmark testing, setting aside time to evaluate other summative and external assessments, and an in-depth literacy audit prompted us to hatch a plan centered around revisiting and prioritizing our literacy standards as well as incubate the idea of how common summative and formative assessments can enhance not only student learning, but engagement around essential standards.
Our migration to a more engaging classroom is nested in literacy. Schoolwide, we have found engagement can be measured by the amount of reading, writing, thinking, and speaking done by students in the room. The investment into the development of school wide PLC groups has truly given teachers the support they need to transition to a hybrid form of teaching that emphasizes building relationships, student engagement, and content area growth. Teachers have valued this time as it not only provides opportunity for curriculum focused discussions, but it also allows teachers to discuss the professional practice behind implementing and maintaining strong engagement within the classroom, reaching depth in essential concepts, and more specifically, the inclusion of literacy-based strategies that do all of the above.
The flock at Devils Lake High School is living up to its name. We are going beyond surface level conversations regarding what we will do each day, to meaningful conversations with peers centered on group growth, support, and goal setting. Combining the “what we will teach” with the “how we will teach it” conversations is just the beginning. The future is bright here at DLHS and we have nowhere to go but soar! #gofirebirds (Shared by DLHS Instructional Coach, Tammy Meyer)