In this episode PEBC Staff Developers Sathya Wandzek and Dr. Sarah Littmann-Berger join Michelle Morris Jones to talk about talk! The PEBC Teaching Framework highlights Discourse as an instructional strategy that supports student agency, equity, and understanding. John Hattie’s meta analyses indicate that student discourse has an effect size of .82 on student achievement. Distance or remote learning presents new challenges for fostering meaningful student discourse; however, for Sathya and Sarah the key to success lies in the elements of the PEBC Teaching Framework. They remind us of the importance of establishing classroom communities that promote risk taking and relationships, gradual release and scaffolding for student success, and planning rich opportunities for student talk. Most importantly, Sathya and Sarah give us ideas for implementation and the inspiration to implement what we believe is best for student understanding. Starting off slowly, providing juicy questions, and taking the time to re-norm our understanding of school are all strategies that are highlighted.
Sarah Littmann-Berger joined the PEBC in 2010. Dr. Berger brings 18 years of teaching experience that includes teaching middle and high school science as well elementary literacy intervention and English as a Second Language. As a Staff Developer, she has worked with elementary, middle, and high school teachers, focused primarily on math and science. Dr. Berger works in Colorado as well as nationally, providing coaching and professional development for teachers, instructional coaches, and administrators. She also co-presents PEBC Minds on Math Institutes locally and nationally.
As a Staff Developer for PEBC, Sathya pursues mathematical understanding for all students and teachers. Through presenting the Math Institute and co-creating/presenting the Foundations of Numeracy Institute she gets the opportunity to cultivate mathematical understanding with teachers across the country. Her national work allows her to see many perspectives and pedagogies that support Sathya with her coaching and professional development work. Sathya has her undergraduate degree in Mathematics from CU Boulder, and was a cohort member of the Boettcher Teacher Residency Program where she graduated from Denver University with her Master in Urban Education. While teaching middle school math for 10 years in Thornton Colorado, she had the opportunity to mentor two Boettcher teacher residents, lead a curriculum development PLC, and be a lab host to the district.