Foundations of Effective Teaching
This course focuses on the latest classroom-based educational research on effective teaching. The components of the program are designed to help teachers manage instructional time more effectively, minimize discipline problems, and maximize student attentiveness. Topics include the following: Classroom Management, Group Management, Interactive Direct Instruction, Time On Task, Student Motivation, Cooperative Small Groups, and Learning Styles. Research readings and writing assignments will be required. (All Levels, Pre-School -12)
Managing Anti-Social Behavior (offered 2nd semester only)
This course will explore the basic elements of anti-social behavior, from definition to management techniques. Emphasis will also be placed upon other aspects of anti-social behavior including development, behavior analysis, and school-wide management practices. This course will require extensive participation, discussion, and classroom experimentation. A variety of readings will be required which will include the manual, periodicals, and other relevant research.
(All levels, K-12) Requirement: Foundations of Effective Teaching
Early Reading Intervention Strategies (offered 2nd semester only)
This course is designed to assist teachers in understanding how students learn to read, why some students have problems learning to read, and how to assist students with reading problems to overcome their difficulties.
(Kindergarten – Grade 2)
Thinking Middle School Math (offered 2nd semester only)
This course will provide usable knowledge about how elementary and middle school mathematics is learned and how it could be taught more effectively. It will provide middle school teachers with the background to help both students who reach middle school still struggling with the math of earlier grades and those who are ready to tackle beginning algebra.
Thinking Mathematics II
This course seeks to build understanding through both hands-on activities and discussion of meaningful situations. Value is placed on thinking, reasoning, communicating mathematically, and focusing on relationships. Ten principles to guide mathematics which have emerged from the research on how children learn math are extended to the teaching multiplication, division, and beginning proportional reasoning. This class will augment the Pittsburgh Public Schools Math curriculum.
Requirement: Thinking Mathematics I (Kindergarten – Grade 5)
Accessible Literacy Framework for All
This course is an instructional framework designed to facilitate the literacy needs of individual students with complex communication needs. It is a research-based, systematic, student-driven approach to reading. ALF assesses goals developed for an Individualized Education Plan (IEP), focuses on teaching support for those goals, monitors student’s progress and adjusts lessons based on student performance. (All levels, Pre-School-12)
Instructional Strategies That Work
This course provides practical applications of instructional strategies that are outlined in the research base on effective instruction and have been proven to support student learning. Cognitive strategies that foster critical thinking and the transferability of skills are learned. Participants will learn how to evaluate curriculum materials for any content area, organize content for learning, and develop or evaluate scoring guides for student tasks. (All levels, K-12)
The School, Family and Community: Supporting Student Learning
(formerly School-Home Connection and Parent & Family Involvement – name change only)
This course examines research studies in the following areas: Building a Family Learning Environment; Communications; Homework; and School Programs and Practices. Participants will look at the benefits and challenges of parent involvement and specific ways in which parents and teachers can work together to improve classroom performance by students. (All levels, K-12)
This course focuses on the research and exemplary practices that help students acquire strong reading comprehension skills. RCI is appropriate for all K-12 teachers and support staff who need to help increase their students’ comprehension of text – whether that text is a literature selection or informational text. The course provides participants with a synthesis of the research base on reading comprehension instruction and vocabulary development. (All levels, K-12)
Teaching Beginning Reading (offered 1st semester only)
This course will provide current research on beginning reading instruction. Participants will develop an understanding of best practices and practical applications that can be utilized in the classroom. The course will provide discussion on current reading trends and a foundation of the history of beginning reading instruction. Phonemic awareness, decoding, and comprehension are major components of this course. (Grades 1-3)