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Teacher Consultant Best Practices
So what do teachers do during summer? Do they spend time lounging at the pool? Do they read many books? Do they vacation at the beach? Certainly they do all of those things, and additionally, they work. The idea of a teacher taking summer vacation with three months of free days is a stereotype that does not fit most hard working teachers who wish to strengthen their classroom practice. Instead, most teachers spend portions of their so-called summer break in professional development programs designed to deepen their understanding of learning, and as soon as school was dismissed this year a large group of area teachers began the first round of professional development sessions.
This year Coalfield Writers, a satellite of Marshall University Writing Project, offered the opportunity for teacher consultants of the site to participate in a Resource Development Retreat. The program was designed to allow participating teachers large blocks of time to envision and create programs that would strengthen offerings in all area schools.
Logan High School’s third annual Spring Arts Festival was held April 2, 2009. The festival, a collaboration between the school’s art, creative writing, and band departments, featured a variety of artistic creations.
Artwork of student artists from Peggie B. Hensley's classroom was displayed in a gallery walk. Students had the opportunity to sell their original drawings, calendars, and 3" buttons.
Students from Tracy Baisden's classroom hosted poetry readings every 20 minutes. Group poetry events also occurred during the evening.
"The National Writing Project (NWP) is a professional development network that serves teachers of writing at all grade levels, primary through university, and in all subjects. The mission of the NWP is to improve student achievement by improving the teaching of writing and improving learning in the nation’s schools." Each Coalfield Writer is a teacher consultant, but the way we all arrived at that place in our lives is vastly different. Read our stories below.