Sunday, March 8, 2015

Fischler's vision about Transforming Schools is highlighted in a December 6 2014 event at Nova University called "|Time is a Variable," a workshop about Projects with schools from Miami, Palm Beach and Broward Counties

Here are some statements by speakers at this event (video recorded by Richard Peritz) about Dr. Fischler's impact on transforming education:

Mr. Rodriguez, Miami Arts Charter School
Dance Program,
and Jaime Torres (right), Math Department
The Importance of Projects:  a summary by a student in a Dance History class by Roberto Rodriguez

BY ORGANIZING THE dance history timeline, with my classmates, it has helped me to understand the dimensions of people and culture.
Since each of us got to research a country of our interest, it was easier to participate in this history class.
Matt Blazek, Boca Prep International
When we shared information with each other.  I gained a greater perspective about how the world shares common stories.  The dance time line shows not only  how dance began,   but also the purpsoe behind the movements.
for example, Vedic dancing began in India about

500 years before Christ using fertility dances as rituals.  Within ten centuries, the dances were more organized with the Slavic tribes moved to Russia and folk dances began.   Today dance is practiced with many of these influences.
The timeline helps me understand why people from different cultures move the way they do by taking elements from the variety of cultures.   The timeline motivates me to learn more about dance and dance history because I want to find the origins of my favorite styles.
When I do ballet now, I can think about the social evolution that ballet had to endure to be eventually recognized as an art form.
-- a statement written by one of the MAC students, read by Roberto Rodriguez

I'm Jaime Torres, I also work at Miami Art Charter School.  Now picture those dance kids coming into a math classroom.  Math is the last thing on their mind.  We teachers at MAC have to be creative.  In order to teach math to students who aren't interested in math is using the Time is a Variable method.  

Many students are absent from my class because they are going to competitions.  So we give them deadlines and although "time is a variable," time is not infinite.  Students need to take time to ask for help.  in classes, we have teams where they discuss things.   It's like one-on-one teaching, since I walk around and talk with students in small groups and individually.

Some of our students are more advanced so they can move ahead more quickly.  We work for mastery.  Students don't move to the next section until they show that they understand the topic.  They show their mastery not only on paper but also with projects.
Matt Blazek, Richard Rodriguez and Jaime Torres
 (students do projects in their classes)

They have to do presentations and videos.  That's how I assess that they are ready for the next level.  They have options based on what they are interested in.  If they are a dancer, they can design a set or a stage in geometry.  Give them time to work at their pace and let them follow their interests.   

Tammy Lara
SunEd High School
Margate and Oakland
Park, Florida

Tammy Lara
SunEd High School
We run a program that is online along with direct instruction and project based learning.    In today's society a lot of principals think that they cannot go beyond certain parameters.   

I tell teachers to get the training to teach the standards to the students.

I have friends who are principals ...  Many of us had mentors that told us to "teach to the test so we can get adequate scores."   
But if we don't teach kids how to express their own answers, that test and their scores will do nothing for them when they get into college and they don't know how to research and write papers.   When they can't write a paper and talk in their own words about a topic.   Teaching to the test is the wrong approach.

One of my students, Johnny Soto, has experienced project based learning first hand.   Many students are taking on this charge to use projects to find answers themselves.  
The video production was directed
by Richard Peritz

Johnny Soto
Before I came to Florida, I was a little nervous to be coming into schools.  I had my head down.  My teachers encouraged me to open up and to be talking here and not to be afraid.
A lot of people don't listen to rap music because of violence or they talk about doing drugs or doing bad things.  But I recommend Jadakiss, whose real name is Jason Philips.  I want to talk about him because in his songs, he talks about how a lot of kids are struggling.  
Jadakiss talked about Aliyah, one of his favorite singers.  
Why hate because some people have more than others.
Right here why do they gotta open your package and read your mail, why do they stop brothers from getting their degrees in jail.
Why do rappers lie in 80% of their rhymes?

Rap is about expressing your feelings.
Jadakiss has inspired me for 8 years.  
The song is called WHY?   That song will explain why kids do what they do.

Johnny Soto, student at SunEd High
I was excited to come and talk to you about this project.  Thank you for letting me share about my interest in Jadakiss.   -- statement by Johnny Soto

Ms Lara added:
Through projects, so many students are finding their voices, students who have struggled through several years of school.

Now they can stand up and express themselves to others 

See the video:  

NSU Fischler School of Education Event - part 2

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