Rediscovering Our WHY to Understand WHAT and HOW at WMS
Submitted by Kristen Rhodes, WMS
To embark on the second semester, teachers at Walton Middle School spent the January 5th professional day rediscovering their passion for the profession and gaining tools for enhancing student success. Teachers began the first training of the new year by completing a group activity that required them to reflect on why they teach, reminding themselves which factors of students’ lives directly lie within their circle of influence and which do not. After this collaborative activity, teachers participated in activities geared toward unlocking the Florida Standards, focusing on academic vocabulary and text-dependent questioning. The day was broken into segments that allowed teachers to first learn new content, then discuss and plan relevant classroom applications with their PLCs. After breakout sessions, teachers returned to the whole group to present their PLC’s game plan for communicating their new learning to students. In the afternoon session, district literacy coach, Rian Lyday, shared engagement strategies with teachers, emphasizing the importance of moving beyond a classroom full of compliant students into one full of actively engaged learners, making meaningful connections between education and life.