OMS in China

Occupy Middle School and ISB are working towards supporting Chinese teachers and schools that aim to develop greater authentic literacy opportunities, innovative teaching frameworks, and critical thinking skills within China.  Contact Serina Wu at occupymiddleschool@gmail.com for more information on opportunities to work with OMS educators.

 

In this video, as they prepare to co-teach the lesson, Chinese teachers Sherry, Fanny, and Elfie discuss plans in the Grade 8 EAL classroom, working with lesson objectives within the innovative planning framework.

 One of the crucial pieces in planning is identifying the need for student engagement and talk time.  Helping guide Chinese teachers to feel more comfortable with a student-centered classroom is a goal of OMS.

One of the crucial pieces in planning is identifying the need for student engagement and talk time.  Helping guide Chinese teachers to feel more comfortable with a student-centered classroom is a goal of OMS.

 Embedding teachers and realigning their role from lecturer to facilitator is a powerful tool to engage all students and to allow teachers more time for meaningful feedback and formative assessment opportunities.  Here, Elfie is in a clear facilitator position, connected to the students (almost as a peer), valuing and considering the learning and reflections of the students before speaking.   In the picture, students are fully engaged in a collaborative effort to identify essential plot points and major character emotional wellbeing in response to those moments.  The work will be utilized in the creation of an authentic publishing piece: a published screenplay of the book,  The Last Book in the Universe .    

Embedding teachers and realigning their role from lecturer to facilitator is a powerful tool to engage all students and to allow teachers more time for meaningful feedback and formative assessment opportunities.  Here, Elfie is in a clear facilitator position, connected to the students (almost as a peer), valuing and considering the learning and reflections of the students before speaking. 

In the picture, students are fully engaged in a collaborative effort to identify essential plot points and major character emotional wellbeing in response to those moments.  The work will be utilized in the creation of an authentic publishing piece: a published screenplay of the book, The Last Book in the Universe.    

Fanny and Austin highlight a powerful moment involving translanguaging.  Here, Austin digs into the crux of a key chapter from The Last Book in the Universe in preparing for screenwriting.  Notice how he and Fanny move between Mandarin and English in order to capture the knowledge necessary to attain the higher order, upcoming, authentic task of writing a screenplay.   

For those more interested in translanguaging:

Translanguaging is the act performed by bilinguals of accessing different linguistic features or various modes of what are described as autonomous languages, in order to maximize communicative potential.
-- Ofelia García (2009: 140)

Translanguaging is about communication, not about language itself. There are times when we need to be language teachers, focusing on accuracy in English so that our learners can pass exams and be taken as proficient speakers in wider society. Much of the time, though, we are working with students to explore concepts, add to their knowledge, make connections between ideas and to help them make their voices heard by others. This is often about communicating, and this is where using all our language resources can be very valuable.  
https://ealjournal.org/2016/07/26/what-is-translanguaging/

 While Elfie helps keep discussion focused on the relationship between plot and character, she also gathers formative assessment data on speaking and reading comprehension via recent WIDA rubrics such as the image below.

While Elfie helps keep discussion focused on the relationship between plot and character, she also gathers formative assessment data on speaking and reading comprehension via recent WIDA rubrics such as the image below.

Screen Shot 2017-10-08 at 2.23.26 PM (1).png

Sherry's reflections illuminate the positive energy from both facilitator and student in a classroom grounded in authentic, citizenship-based workshops linked explicitly to standards and community building, regardless of cultural background. 

Below: Lesson planning becomes creatively interconnected in ways that are meaningful to both teachers and students.