WMS Millennium Project Grant Background

Proposal and Background Information

Click on the links below to find out about the WMS Millennium Project Grant:

Millennium Project Objectives:
  • The Millennium Project Objectives are aligned with the Enhancing Education Through Technology American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 goals:
    · Windham Middle School Teachers will:
    o Use the Understanding by Design (UbD) curriculum development model to develop and implement interdisciplinary curriculum units in their collaborative Teacher Learning Teams.
    o Know how to use a such technology tools as: Wikispaces for creating online learning environments; Curriculum Framer for developing collaborative UbD curriculum units; iConn.org for accessing online databases, newspapers and magazines/journals; Discovery Education Middle School Science video and instructional resources; Professional Productivity tools including word processing, spreadsheets and multi-media presentations; and other Web 2.0 tools such as Webspiration for developing online webs, outlines and concept maps; VoiceThread for creating collaborative online multi-media presentations; Scratch for teaching basic programming knowledge; Blogs for creating online journals and literature circle discussions; Delicious for social bookmarking, Xtranormal for creating scripted online movies with avatars; etc.
    o Increase their level of comfort and degree of expertise with instructional innovations focused on digital-age learning, Effective Teaching Strategies and 21st Century skills as evidenced by pre and post survey data as well as the content of the curriculum units developed

    · Windham Middle School students will:
    o Improve their writing as evidenced by the number of revisions and increased scores on writing assignments using MY Access online writing tools.
    o Apply 21st Century skills using digital tools and resources.
    o Increase their mastery of content standards as evidenced by the pre and post assessments from the interdisciplinary curriculum units, Common Formative Assessments and other local and state assessment scores.
    o Be able to use technology tools to support and demonstrate their learning through project-based learning and performance assessments.
  • Data Collection:
    • The following data will be collected and analyzed to ensure that the project objectives (see Project Summary section for objectives) are being attained:
      · Online teacher surveys will be utilized to gather evaluation data for the project. The participating teachers’ level of comfort and degree of expertise with instructional innovations focused on digital-age learning will be assessed at the beginning and at the end of the project to determine teachers’ growth in the utilization of technology resources and the provision of student centered environments that meet the individual, diverse learning needs of all students.
      · Feedback will be collected from professional development sessions to use for determining the effectiveness of the training and to assist in planning for future professional development needs.
      · Further information will be obtained from the data collected and analyzed by the Teacher Learning Teams which will include examining scores on assessments developed in the UbD curriculum units as well as looking at student work samples. The Teacher Learning Teams will provide grade level data on the implementation of the interdisciplinary units and the results of the performance assessments in order to gauge student achievement and inform planning and necessary revisions to the curriculum units.
      · The School-wide Data Team, which consists of the three WMS administrators as well as grade level and vertical team Data Facilitators, will monitor the “Big Picture” of student achievement for the entire school, examining and analyzing school-wide data from both high stakes and local assessments. This team meets on a bi-monthly basis and serves as a site-based management team, helping inform the direction of the school.
      · An online calendar will be maintained to track the schedule for usage of the Writing and Technology Center to ensure equity and access for WMS students.
      · Logs will be kept by peer tutors and the graduate assistants to record and track the degree of utilization of the Writing and Technology Center. It is anticipated that teacher, student and community use of the center will increase dramatically the opportunities for the school and community to access digital tools and resources.
      · Each Teacher Learning Team will keep a log of how their mini- and maxi-computer labs are being used on a weekly basis as they are piloting the use of the technology tools and implementing their interdisciplinary curriculum units.
      · Each Teacher Learning Team will document the discussions and activities during each of the meetings held. Agendas will also be drafted to sketch the next steps to be addressed at their next TLT meeting.

      The above data will be collected throughout the Millennium Project. These different types of data will be analyzed by the Teacher Learning Teams, the School-wide Data Team and the Millennium Project Team and used as formative data to measure the effectiveness of the grant activities so that course corrections can be made throughout the project.
      In addition, mid-year and end-of-year grant reports will be submitted based on the timelines specified by the Connecticut State Department of Education. These report timelines will provide benchmarks for analyzing data at key points throughout the grant period and serve as summative assessments for the project.