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Best Practices: Warsaw Middle School, Maine

Audrey Stokes | April 21, 2011

Warsaw Middle School is a Grade 5-8 middle school that has approximately 330 students.  Donna Chale, the school librarian, and Lori Stevens, the Technology Integrator, have utilized a co-teaching model to assist them in teaching Common Sense Media’s Digital Citizenship Curriculum at their middle school.

Here are some of the techniques they have employed to ensure that their experience with the curriculum is successful:

1. Planning together

Each week, Lori and Donna work together to plan the lessons they will do for their 6th and 7th grade students.  This planning prepares them for the upcoming week’s lesson and enables them to add additional materials or a technology skill.

2. Divide responsibility

Each week one of the teachers takes the lead for teaching the lesson.  This means there is less pressure for Lori and Donna.

3. Classroom management

With one teacher taking the lead and presenting the lesson, the other teacher can support support to students who may be struggling with the assignment.

4. Teaching to their strengths.

For example, Lori Stevens was able to play on her strengths as Technology Integrator and help all of the students learn how to graph (my media life unit) and create avatars (privacy and identity unit).

Do any other educators utilize a co-teaching model to help them teach Common Sense Media’s Digital Citizenship Curriculum?  If so, are there any useful techniques you’ve employed to ensure your teaching is a success?  We’d love to hear your feedback!