To be honest, what I feared most about SLCs was putting “that” student in charge of the conference. You know, the one who actively resists learning? The one who isn’t a behavior problem but lacks motivation despite everything I do? How can she be in charge? That’s where this PDF came in handy. It clearly spells out questions to ask, what to include in portfolios and more. The behavioral self-evaluation sheet is wonderful to have and helped that one student see how she was acting.
I pride myself on being a team player. When administration announces a new initiative, I’ll do what they ask. But I much prefer to have a clear understand of why we’re changing and how that should look from my end — what I should do to help this initiative succeed. That’s why this article was so helpful to me. It clearly and quickly explains why SLCs are good, what I should be doing, and what my students should be doing.
I’ve always been a big fan of data-driven decision-making. When I assign grades, I make sure I have the data to back up those measurements. That’s why I appreciate a PDF like this. It quickly sums up the data behind SLCs, but instead of just asking me to trust this PDF, it follows up with several online resources complete with links. My favorite was how SLCs helps hold students accountable for their performance.
I’m one of those teachers who obsesses over small stuff like handouts and forms. I just don’t like when they look unprofessional and cheesy, so I can waste way too much time on getting the right font and spacing when I have to make them myself. But I don’t have to make them. This Pinterest board links to dozens of documents for SLCs, from student reflection sheets to conference forms. Some can be a little too “elementary school,” but most are just fine.
I like theory, I do! It’s just that I have trouble figuring out the specific, real-world ways in which a theory is implemented. That’s why I loved reading this story. It shows the process of implementing SLCs in a middle school, from discussions prior to agreeing to SLCs to evaluating the results. This helped me feel more confident in our school’s decision to implement this new strategy. It was also nice to see how students were anxious at first but then enjoyed the conferences they led.