Another year and another group of new teachers hitting the CABOCES region. This year many of these new teachers have joined one of the 3 cohorts being offered through CABOCES. Helping work with around 50 new teachers in the area has a highlight this year. Through New Teacher Academy these young educators and future leaders have a chance to make connections with other area teachers, work with other teachers at their own school and learn about many of the resources offered through Learning Resources and other options at CABOCES.
Some of the items covered during these trainings: EDI with Tessa Levitt, NYSED resources, as mentioned before Learning Resources items available from Alex Freer and Kelli Grabowski, Restorative Practices as well as some different student engagement activities. As previously mentioned, there were 3 cohorts, based on district demand, some were face-to-face and others online. There was a cohort offered at the Belmont CABOCES Center and a different group at the CABOCES Olean Center meeting face-to-face three times throughout this school year. With the rough substitute teacher situation, another option was set to meet from November to May in an online Zoom meeting after school. The topics remained the same, but online they had shorter virtual sessions over seven meeting dates. It has been exciting to meet these new educators and to give them a chance to build connections with others to help them grow as professionals.
By: Mark Carls, CA BOCES
In the Fall (Nov. 2021), an article was shared about the offering of Driver Education from the virtual world. It was introduced during the CABOCES Summer School program and is now being offered during the school year. The Winter Driver Education course has just been completed, and the Spring Driver Education course is accepting enrollments now, to begin in April. Here is a quick recap about the course and an update with more information as promised!!
The course is housed in the CABOCES Moodle Learning Management System (LMS). The students have access twice a week in Zoom to meet with instructor and utilize Moodle to complete the required content and hours to fulfill the NYS Guidelines in order to earn their NYS Diver Education Certificate. The 24 hours of instruction time, paired with 24 hours of guided parental supervision behind the wheel, earns the student a certificate that allows additional privileges and safe practices as they hit the road, alongside all of us.
January 10, 2022, kicked off our first Winter Driver Education cohort, which offered this opportunity to almost another hundred students. The students are given 2 days to complete each session, as compared to the I day for each session in the summer program. The Winter Driver Education cohort wrapped up on Feb. 18, 2022, just in time for the Mid-Winter Break.
As of right now through April 1, 2022, students can be enrolled in the Spring Driver Education cohort through the district Guidance offices. It is scheduled to start April 25, 2022, and finish on June 3, 2022. This is a great opportunity for students to complete the course ahead of their summer plans. Those who are unable to join the Spring cohort will have the Summer School opportunity, stay tuned for more information regarding those plans.
We look forward to serving many students within our CABOCES area communities!
Please contact one of us if you have any questions.
Karen Insley: email@example.com
Lisa Scott: Lisa_scott@caboces.org
Tiffany Turner: Tiffany_turner@caboces.org
By: Lisa Scott, CA BOCES
Resources found in the school library should support curricula and reflect the cultures and identities of the community. School districts within the CA BOCES region may not consider themselves diverse if only considering ethnicities, nationalities, and languages spoken. New to school libraries are diversity audits.
Auditing resources is done purposefully for ensuring that the needs and interests of the school community are being represented, which is aided by an analysis of the community. An analysis may include reviewing the district’s demographics and learning about community groups and common interests; interviewing the school nurse, guidance counselor, and social worker for understanding the needs of students and families; and using surveys to gain feedback from teachers and students. Feedback helps determine who is or is not utilizing the library and why. A diversity audit should include environmental factors as well.
A clean room with comfortable seating is an inviting space. However, temperature, food allergies, pollutants, population density, sound, light, and even parasites (lice, fleas, bedbugs), can be a deterrence to visitors. Any deficiency noted on the audit can then be addressed as a new goal for the library. Some goals can be achieved relatively quickly while others may require additional funds and time. Creating awareness is a necessary first step. Another aspect of the audit is access to resources.
Resources, whether digital or print, not only support curricula but should reflect a variety of interests and identities and consideration must be given to how resources are accessed. For example, are library users with physical disabilities able to independently access the library and its resources? How might a hearing or vision impaired student find the library a welcoming space? How might a student who does not speak English know how to search, locate, and checkout resources? An analysis of the community helps the librarian determine what resources to purchase and set potential goals and objectives for the library.
Conducting a diversity audit is relatively easy to do once the community analysis has been completed. Below is a list of diverse topics for consideration:
Indigenous, or People of Color (BIPOC)
Adoption and foster care
People who have experienced homelessness or unstable living accommodations
Socio economic diversity
The Library 510 CoSer offers print and digital resources that support many of the topics noted above. If you are interested in a diversity audit, or would like to know more about vendor products for the library, please contact me at Cecelia_Fuoco@caboces.org.
By: Cece Fuoco, CA BOCES Learning Resources
It’s true…the Minecraft: Education Edition frenzy has finally hit the CA BOCES region in a big way over the past year-and-a-half. While Minecraft: Education Edition has been around for a few years now, many schools in our area are just now discovering the power and resourcefulness that comes with using it in the classroom.
When the pandemic hit in spring of 2020, a lot of teachers were forced to pivot to many online resources that might now have always been familiar to them. One of these software tools was Minecraft: Education Edition. The digital nature of Minecraft: Education Edition makes it an ideal tool for meeting students in an area they mostly enjoy (video games) and combines to form over 1,050 different pre-made lessons and activities of varying age levels, subject matter, and needed skill sets.
The lesson library (https://education.minecraft.net/en-us/resources/explore-lessons) is vast, fully-loaded, and includes some starter subject area kits to get started including lessons for Science, Math, Computer Science, History & Culture, Digital Citizenship, Social Emotional Learning, Equity & Inclusion, and much more.
Each lesson comes with student outcomes pre-determined, links to outside resources that might be referenced in the game, and even downloadable world files, as needed. Everything to get started is found here in this one-stop-shop for educators to browse, gather, and deploy.
Minecraft: Education Edition is free for Microsoft 365 schools, with the licensing coming alongside their M365 accounts. After downloading and installing the Minecraft: Education Edition software on their laptop or iPad, students login with their M365 credentials, and then can begin enjoying all the resource available.
Some lessons focus on the creativity side, like Build Challenges such as a Treehouse Building Challenge, a Pumpkin Carving Challenge, and more. Other lessons use the Minecraft worlds and blocks to create giant immersive worlds where students go on a journey to discover learning along the way, such as navigating their way through a plant and animal cell while seeing the organelles up close and a description of what each one does that they can add to their in-game journals.
It has been a hit with the students and teachers alike in the CA BOCES region thus far. More trainings are scheduled later this spring and summer, and we cannot wait to see what the teachers and students get to discover next!
By: Ryan McGinnis, CA BOCES Model Schools
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