TEKS-BASED WALK-THROUGH PROCEDURES As part of Navigating the Course of Change, you as principal must ensure that teachers are teaching, and more importantly, students are learning the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS). The purpose of this walk-through is to gather data on the extent of TEKS implementation on your campus. You will obtain a great deal of data that can guide the change process by following these four steps: 1. Become familiar with the TEKS 2. Review the Professional Development and Support (PDAS) Teacher Self- Report (TSR) 3. Conduct the six-minute walk-through 4. Summarize and follow-up. Step 1. Become familiar with the TEKS. The TEKS are quite detailed. However, it is not necessary to know them in depth to use this walk-through process to gather valid data on TEKS implementation. If you are not familiar with the TEKS and the areas of emphasis for each discipline, this section summarizes them and provides a hyperlink to the online TEKS for each discipline. These brief statements attempt to capture the important ideas in each discipline’s TEKS and provide a starting place to determine whether the content and skills being taught and learned are aligned with the TEKS. You may also want to look at the side-by-side analyses produced by Region 20 for further demonstration of how the TEKS change expectations of student learning in the classroom. The English Language Arts and Reading TEKS emphasize student development of skills in listening, speaking, reading, writing, viewing, representing, and critical thinking. The Mathematics TEKS emphasize problem solving, mathematical language and communication, connections within and outside mathematics, and formal and informal reasoning to develop conceptual understanding. The Social Studies TEKS emphasize the development of critical thinking skills in eight integrated strands (history; geography; economics; government; citizenship; culture; science, technology, and society; and social studies skills). Teaching the Science TEKS provides students with opportunities to learn about the natural world by accessing a vast body of ever-changing knowledge on systems and patterns and by conducting investigations. The TEKS for Languages Other Than English emphasize acquiring another language through communication skills such as listening, speaking, reading, writing, viewing, and representing to socialize, acquire and provide information, express feelings and opinions, and to get others to adopt a course of action. The Health Education TEKS encourage students to acquire health information and skills necessary to become healthy adults and learn about behaviors in which they should and should not participate. The Physical Education TEKS provide opportunities for students to acquire the knowledge and skills for movement that provide the foundation for enjoyment, continued social development through physical activity, and access to a physically-active lifestyle throughout the life span. The Fine Arts TEKS organize the knowledge and skills students are expected to acquire in each discipline into four interrelated strands—perception, creative expression/performance, historical and cultural heritage, and critical evaluation. Step 2. Review the PDAS Teacher Self-Report (TSR). The teacher has stated the TEKS/TAKS objectives that he/she teaches or reinforces on the TSR. When you conduct a walk-through, you can look for validation of the TSR. (Note: The TAKS objectives may have changed since the PDAS form was developed.) However, it is important to note that the TEKS are much more comprehensive than the listing shown on the TSR, and a teacher may be teaching other TEKS when you do the walk-through. That is why it is important to be familiar with all the TEKS that a teacher is responsible for teaching, as shown in Step 1. The teacher should be providing opportunities for students to learn and demonstrate all of the TEKS. The TSR is only a starting point for gathering data about the scope of TEKS implementation. Step 3. Conduct the six-minute walk-through. Once you are familiar with the TEKS the teacher is responsible for teaching, use the attached form when visiting the classroom. The form is designed to simulate a cyclical, data-driven professional development process in which new information is used to improve future instruction. Though you may note other concerns, the focus of this walk-through is to gather data on TEKS implementation. You will want to note how classroom environment and instructional strategies serve to support TEKS-based learning. A suggested procedure is shown in the following chart. For example, in the first minute note the content that is being taught and that students are expected to learn. In the second minute, note the aspects of the physical environment that support this learning. Order (by minutes) Observations/Notations 1 What content and/or skills the students are to learn? What are the goals and objectives? Note the verbs, cognitive levels, context, connections to prior learning. What is students’ understanding of what they are learning and why they are learning it? 2 How does the physical environment support this learning (e.g., technology, materials, room arrangement)? 3-4 What is the teacher doing? What instructional strategies is he/she using to teach the content and/or skills? Note the level of questions the teacher asks, connections to other applications or disciplines, feedback to students, content- specific strategies. 5-6 What are the students doing? Note student engagement, the nature of student oral responses, and student products. Step 4. Summarize and follow-up. Summarize the data you have gathered from the walkthough. Compare the data you’ve collected to the TEKS and/or to the TSR. Mark one or more of the following determinations: a. Teachers are teaching and students are demonstrating appropriate TEKS. Lesson content is aligned with the TEKS as shown on the TSR and/or in the TEKS for the class. b. Students have inadequate opportunity to demonstrate the TEKS. The objectives and instruction are not aligned with the TEKS; or objectives are aligned with the TEKS, but instructional strategies are not consistent, and students do not have an opportunity to demonstrate the high levels of learning as outlined in the TEKS. c. More information is needed. If you cannot make a determination of a or b above, you may need to get more information from the teacher, do another walk-through, or review the TEKS in more detail. Follow-up will consist of responses at an individual and campus-wide level. For example, when you determine in a walk-through that students have had an inadequate opportunity to demonstrate the TEKS, you will need to make appropriate interventions to ensure that the TEKS are being taught and learned. For example, you may want to have a coaching conversation with the teacher. You will also want to examine the data to determine the level of TEKS implementation campus-wide by analyzing the consistency of TEKS implementation in each grade level and/or department? If you find gaps, you will want to intervene with appropriate groups, ensuring that they have opportunities to get necessary professional development needed to teach the TEKS. TEKS-BASED WALK-THROUGH Date: Time: Observer: Content (knowledge and skills) (1 minute) Physical environment (1 minute) Next steps Teacher actions (2 minutes) Student actions (2 minutes) Determine the alignment of this instruction with the TEKS: _____Teachers are teaching and students are demonstrating appropriate TEKS. _____Students have inadequate opportunity to demonstrate the TEKS. _____More information is needed.
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