My name is Beth Hardin. I have had the privilege to work in education for 25 years. I have taught in classrooms Pre K thru ninth grade. My certification qualifies me to serve students with special needs Pre-K thru 12 grade and Pre-K thru eighth grade, regular education students. I have been working all over the state of Georgia for the past 15 years supporting teachers and students in both reading and math. My job is to “coach” staff and students effectively.
My work with Berean Christian Junior Academy, BCJA, began last school year, 2013-2014, with very clear expectations, all students learning deeply and enjoying success on a daily basis. We started with a format of instruction called Workshop. This presentation allows the teacher time to provide student focused lessons, a time for students to practice that lesson independently, and to wrap up the lesson, an opportunity for students to review their work, identifying their strengths and misunderstandings. This format is similar to how we, as adults, learn and grow in our careers.
Next, we began to present many strategies for students to learn and apply new information. Many of these strategies are nothing like we learned in school and hard to for us to understand. The goal was that students were able to build a personal tool box of strategies that they were able to use consistently to solve all kinds of problems in all areas of their learning. What a source of power for all learners! The staff focused on grade level expectations that would be not only necessary for that year’s success, but prepare students for the following years learning. Consistent vocabulary, (K-5) use of learning tools and self-assessment were an expectation for all lessons.
This year, a data program, STAR, has been used to document growth at a building level, at the grade level, and most importantly at the student level. This tool provides teachers information to guide their lessons and student’s information about their personal growth and identifies areas for them to work on to increase understanding. BCJA has been able to document growth in both reading and math. We look forward to continued success. Our goal is that every student is aware and able to communicate their strengths and target areas needed to increase their understanding.
This is just a small sampling of what’s going on at BCJA. The teachers have worked tirelessly to learn, grow, and put into practice new methods of instruction to ensure every students success. Students are taking ownership of their learning and proud of the growth they are able to show, explain, and teach others.
I am honored to be a part of this process and very proud of the success all are enjoying!