As we embark on a new era at Tomball High School with a new vision and new leadership, members of the leadership development team have taken the opportunity to reflect upon areas of need affecting our campus. Two of the most prominent areas of need concern academic achievement and student engagement, both of which can be affected by teachers in the classroom. In concert with the goals set forth by the campus and district improvement plans, my partner and I would like to propose a bold move toward improving student engagement and academic achievement in the English III Language Arts classroom.
One of the most prominent buzz-worthy concepts in education today is nothing new. The idea of personalized learning and individualized instruction has been around for many years, but has always faced resistance from instructors due to the overwhelming complications involved in the implementation of such a program. This is especially true considering the increase in demands on teachers and growing class sizes, however, our recent commitment to 21st Century learning and integration of technology has opened the door for a new form of individualization.
Launching a blended learning model in the English III course will provide many benefits to our students. The specific goals being targeted through the piloting of the COVA approach (choice, ownership, voice, and authenticity) in English III include improving academic achievement, student engagement, and college/career readiness. We plan to use technology to allow the targeting of individual needs and goals of the student through a blended learning model, allowing the student to move through lessons at their own pace to ensure mastery of skills, freeing teachers to facilitate remediation, extension, and enrichment.
Moving the emphasis of the course to student choice, ownership, voice, and authenticity will significantly change the learning environment, providing opportunities for learning that will impact students for years to come.