A monthly eblast highlighting school-based successful practices, tools, and resources that support teaching and learning.
December 19, 2016
Happy Holidays from everyone at CIL and ADI. We know that SEAs, districts, RCCs, and school leaders want to provide schools the best support possible to help every student succeed.  That’s why we created IndistarBURST.  Each month’s edition highlights just a few successful school-based practices, tools, and resources that support teaching and learning for everyone from the leadership team to instructional teams to the classroom, . It only takes a few minutes to see what we’ve included, but it won’t help your teachers and staff sitting in your mailbox. So forward this edition of IndistarBURST to everyone today! And encourage every staff member to sign up and receive it directly each month. It’s easy. Go to and click on the words “View the monthly eblast” and then click the “Subscribe” button in the top left corner of the screen. Welcome to IndistarBURST.
Personalized Learning and the Personal Competencies
Teachers know that each student brings to a learning task a something other—certain attributes that affect how the student responds to the challenge. The something other is the constellation of four personal competencies—cognitive, metacognitive, motivational, and social/emotional—and the learning habits that flow from them. Teachers who know how to Personalize Learning, integrating all the personal competencies, reach more students, more effectively.
Read “Jeffrey’s Story” to learn how his teacher personalized his learning by addressing his personal competencies. Here’s how it begins:  

Jeffrey is a junior in high school, thumbing through the pages of his American history textbook while his teacher, Ms. Johnson, fires up a slide presentation on the Gettysburg Address. Jeffrey slid through the first semester of the course, finding no great interest in history but managing to complete enough work at a passable level of performance to cling to a grade of C. The Gettysburg Address is not likely to arouse his passion for learning. Midway through her outline of the events leading up to Lincoln’s oration, Ms. Johnson stops talking and casts a steady gaze in Jeffrey’s direction. Sensing he is the object of her attention, Jeffrey closes his book and sits up straight in his chair.
“Jeffrey, your brother served in the army in the Middle East, didn’t he?” Ms. Johnson asks.
“Yes,” Jeffrey replies, wondering what she is leading up to. “I’ll bet he came home with some stories.”

Scroll to page 3 in this link, The Something Other: Personal Competencies for Learning and Life, by Sam Redding, to read “Jeffrey’s Story” in its entirety. And look for more highlights about Personal Competencies and Personalized Learning in upcoming editions of IndistarBURST.
This month’s Leadership and Innovation Learning Exchange webinar focused on energizing your Leadership Team. Travis Campbell from Vancouver Public Schools in Washington shared some great thoughts about Leadership Teams during the webinar. We hope you had the opportunity to participate. If not, you can access the recording here.  

Building on those ideas, we are providing several avenues for your continued exploration about Leadership Teams.
Is your Leadership Team focused on the important issues that will lead to improved teaching and learning for all your students? Is it working efficiently? You suspect there are things you could do differently, but you’re not sure exactly what. We have a tool to help you assess your current practice and guide your improvement efforts. The Leadership Team Self-Assessment Rubric provides direction for any Leadership Team toward greater effectiveness. It guides the team to reflect on characteristics of effective teams, see how they are doing and what steps to take to develop an even more powerful and effective Leadership Team.  If you are not currently using Indistar, you can find the indicators mentioned in the rubric on the Indistar site by clicking here and scrolling down to the “Basics” on the right.
Check out this blog on the IndistarConnect site, What Can Abraham Lincoln Teach Us About Leadership? You’ll find some very interesting leadership lessons that will help you improve your Leadership Team and your school. The blog links to a great interview of Doris Kearns Goodwin, the author of the acclaimed book, Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln for more in depth reading.
We introduced edshelf in last month’s edition of IndistarBURST. It is a great resource for finding websites, mobile apps, desktop programs, and electronic products for teaching and learning. This month we want to highlight two tools, Classkick and Quizizz.
On the Quiz & Poll Creators—Active Responding shelf, Quizizz (free, Web based) allows teachers to create multiplayer quiz games for students to play in class and at home. Teachers can use quizzes made by other teachers or create their own; they can play quizzes as live games in class or assign them as homework. Students play together, but at their own pace. Upon completing a quiz, reports on class and individual student performance help teachers direct their instruction.
ALSO, check out all the new apps added to the CIL-curated collection on ED Shelf. The collection, with over 100 apps in 17 categories, presents information about the apps, each selected for the collection based on a demonstrated promise of effectiveness or efficiency and ease of use. All are free or offer a low-cost purchase option. On the webpages, you'll find a CIL-created description of each application.
On the Learning Management shelf, Classkick (free, iPad only) is a nifty tool that enables teachers to view their students working on assignments and provide individualized feedback in the moment, supporting real-time checks for understanding. The student’s tablet works like an electronic whiteboard, with space to write, draw, work out problems, and complete assignments; the teacher tracks students’ work through a live screen view of all students’ workspace. Teachers can add comments to individual students or offer hints to the class, and can allow students to help each other.
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