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Co-Teaching

How to Begin

Getting Started

Goals:  

Participants will...

  • reflect and create a working definition of co-teaching
  • gain a basic understanding of models for co-teaching.
  • self-reflect on personal strengths and discuss how each individual's strengths will support the partnership.
​​Activities:
  • Quick writeFrom your perspective, what is co-teaching?  Are there/what are the benefits of co-teaching?
  • Co-Teaching Definition and pages 3-4 (book) 
    How does your definition align?  What steps could be taken to reach greater alignment?
  • Advantages of co-teaching 
  • Assumptions and Anticipation p. 13 (book)
  • Terminology pp.11-12 (book) 
  • Co-teaching delivery models
  • Reflection 

Module 1: Goal Setting

checklist
Goals:  

Participants will...

  • look at the current reality of co-teaching in their buildings and set goals accordingly.
  • begin to discuss the culture of the classroom and how to establish mutual leadership.
​​Activities In your meeting:
  • With your co-teaching partner, complete the co-teaching survey. Click here. (You will be asked to make a copy.)
  • Discuss the survey on co-teaching approaches you completed. Using your current reality, outline a goal for your teaching team.
  • With your co-teaching partner, use pp. 70 and 71 in your packet to discuss how you will establish mutual leadership in the co-taught classroom. 
​​Questions to consider:
  • What can you control when establishing the environment?
  • What are the non-negotiables you can both agree to?

Module 2: Getting Established: Roles & Responsibilities, Physical Space & Planning Time

classroom desk
Goals:  

Participants will...

  • understand the various roles and responsibilities of each person in the co-teaching partnership and identify those roles and responsibilities in your co-teaching partnership.
  • understand the effective use of physical space in a co-teaching partnership and the items for consideration and develop a plan for arranging your physical space.
  • review possible planning strategies and establish a system of co-planning for your partnership.
​​Activities Before you meet:
  1. Complete p. 74 Collaborative Teaching Responsibilities (packet)
  2. Review and be prepared to discuss with your team pp. 75 and 78 (packet)
  3. Review pp. 101-103 Ideas for Effective Use of Space in the Co-taught Classroom (packet)
  4. Read pp. 99-100 Finding the Time (packet)
  5. Review planning tips on pp. 83-84 Maximizing Co-Planning Time (packet) and pp. 246 Co-planning Agenda Framework (book)
  6. Review these planning tools Planning Tools for Co-Teaching (note the tabs across the bottom of the document)
​​Activities In your meeting:

1. With your co-teaching partner, review your responses to the Collaborative Teaching Responsibilities handout; resolve discrepancies in your responses and establish roles and responsibilities. Questions to consider:

  • Are there other roles and responsibilities we need to establish?
  • How do we want to communicate concerns about these roles and responsibilities as they evolve?
  • Can we agree roles and responsibilities may need to be flexible at times?
  • Have we distributed roles and responsibilities fairly keeping in mind our respective strengths?

2. Complete an assessment of the physical arrangement of your room and arrange your physical space in your classroom using pages 101-103 to guide your thinking. Questions to consider:

  • Does our classroom arrangement honor the space needs of both teachers?
  • Does our classroom arrangement allow for efficient use of a variety of co-teaching approaches? Flexible student grouping?

3. Establish a co-planning time, place, method for planning. Review pp. 86, 88, 91, 92 and 93 in your packet. Questions to consider:

  • Does the planning method meet the needs of both teachers?
  • Do we need an agenda format for our meetings?
  • What preparation is expected of each of us before each planning session?
  • Have we established planning norms?

Module 3: Classroom Management for Co-Teaching

hands with puzzle pieces
Goals:  

Participants will...

  • learn about common mistakes in co-teaching relationships and/or classrooms.
  • learn strategies, and gain resources, for developing common rules and expectations in their classrooms.
​​Activities Before you meet:
  1. Review p. 79 What Can Cause Conflict Between Co-Teachers? (packet)
  2. Review pp. 62 and 63 Tips for Managing Independent Groups (packet)
  3. Review p. 74 Collaborative Teaching Responsibilities 
​​Consider the following questions in your meeting:
  1. What strategies would you use in your co-teaching relationship when faced with conflict? (Refer to page 79 in your packet)
  2. What tools you may need in your classroom to help manage time, lessons, groups, and students’ needs?
  3. How will positive behaviors will be reinforced in your co-teaching classrooms, and how inappropriate behaviors will be addressed?
Complete the following tasks:
  1. Develop some basic guidelines (or rules) that may be used in your classroom.
  2. Begin using this information to build your co-teaching relationships and help plan future lessons.

Small Group

Module 4: Grouping Students

woman at desk
Goals:  

Participants will...

  • learn strategies for creating effective groups in their classrooms.
  • learn how to use data to help create groups for station teaching and parallel teaching in their co-taught classrooms.
  • be provided an opportunity to develop groupings that could be used in their classrooms.
​​Activities before you meet:
  • Review “How do I know it’s specially designed instruction” from Dr. Marilyn Friend (below)
  • Review pp. 108-112 (book)
​​consider the following questions in your meeting:
  1. How often are you putting students into groups in your co-taught classrooms?
  2. Is there data that can help you and your co-teaching partner develop appropriate groups in your classroom (observations, screening data, district-wide-assessment data, etc…)
  3. How will you determine who will teach each group?
Complete the following task:

Using the document “Purposeful Groups” (last two pages in your Co-Teaching Packet), begin creating Heterogeneous and Homogeneous Groups. You will create lists for each “Heterogeneous” and “Homogeneous” as if you were to divide your students into two, parallel groups, as well as enough groups to do stations in your co-taught classroom. Use a pencil. These groups can be fluid and change as students’ needs change.

apple on books how do you know it's specially designed instruction?

 

 

Module 5: Teaching Station

lightbulb
Goals:  

Participants will...

  • gain a better understanding of station teaching.
  • determine when this delivery model would be most effective for student learning.
  • plan and implement station teaching.
​​Before you meet:
  • Read pp. 21-22 Station Teaching and the information below 
  • Watch videos
  • Co-teachers divide content and students in this approach
  • Students are divided into equal-sized groups and distributed among stations in the room
  • Groups of students rotate from station to station, including those with an adult and those which are deemed independent
  • Each teacher teaches their portion of content to one group and subsequently repeats the instruction for all groups

Recommended Use:

  • Frequent
  • 30-40% of the time

Collaboration:

  • Can involve a moderate amount of planning/preparation time
  • Timing needs to be planned and both teachers must agree to and adhere to this schedule
  • Co-teachers must plan for and execute transitions to and between stations within their daily lesson plan(s)

Examples of Use:

  • In lessons in which part of the planned instruction is review
  • When there are several topics within one unit of study
  • During language arts instruction, one station will address comprehension of a previously-read text, the second station will focus on editing a writing assignment, and the third station will include an activity related to a specific skill to be taught
  • In social studies, three stations are utilized to examine the geography, economy, and culture of a region or country
  • In mathematics, to teach a new process while using other stations to review applications of previously-taught concepts
  • Variation: Stations could be carried out across two days for more in-depth study or for concepts which require more time, especially in the secondary setting

Benefits:

  • Teachers have an opportunity to work with all students in the class
  • Provides a lower student:teacher ratio
  • Can reduce behavioral disruptions as there is increased student activity and engagement
  • Can increase student participation
  • Provides opportunities to present and reinforce content in varied ways
  • Provides varied points of view and presentation styles
  • Allows for greater effectiveness and efficiency, by providing more content in a shorter amount of time
  • Allows for greater differentiation to address student needs

Drawbacks:

  • Requires more varied physical space
  • Co-teachers must have prerequisites of appropriate content and instructional skills in order to provide equally effective instruction
  • Noise level in classroom increases
  • Requires some stations to function independently or would reduce the number of stations available
  • Difficulties arise when there is student absenteeism
Consider the following questions in your meeting:
  1. What are the advantages of station teaching?
  2. What content could you see this working best with?
Complete the following tasks in your meeting:
  1. Discuss your interpretation of the roles of each teacher in the station teaching model.
  2. Begin planning to use the station teaching model.

Module 6: Parallel Teaching

computers
Goals:  

Participants will...

  • gain a better understanding of parallel teaching.
  • determine when this delivery model would be most effective for student learning.
  • plan and implement parallel teaching.
​​Activities Before you meet:
  • Read pp. 23-24 Parallel Teaching and the information below
  • Watch videos

Parallel Teaching Description:

  • Co-teachers divide students into two groups and each provide instruction to their respective group
  • Parallel content is provided: students are taught the same information in both groups, even if material is presented in different ways
  • Students receive instruction from one of the two co-teachers and do not rotate

Recommended Use:

  • Frequent
  • 30-40% of the time

Collaboration:

  • Can involve a moderate amount of planning/preparation time
  • Timing needs to be planned and both teachers must agree to and adhere to this schedule

Examples of Use:

  • Each co-teacher reviews the chapter and assists students in completing a study guide with their respective group
  • For activities such as drill and practice, re-teaching and test review
  • Whole class involving lab, hands-on materials, or technology can occur in two smaller groups, with each teacher working with their respective group
  • The chapter or unit section is being read aloud in two separate groups.
  • Co-teachers are teaching the same information and using the same materials during a lesson covering the digestive system in 7th-grade science.
  • Variation: Teacher A teaches double-digit multiplication to their group using paper/pencil method.  Teacher B teaches double-digit multiplication to their group using manipulatives, such as arrays and base 10 blocks

Benefits:

  • Provides a lower student:teacher ratio
  • Students can be strategically placed in two groups
  • Multiple viewpoints can be presented, if groups are brought back together for a follow-up discussion
  • Can increase student participation and response rate
  • Instructional intensity is increased as both teachers are actively involved in providing instruction
  • Allows for greater effectiveness and efficiency, by providing more content in a shorter amount of time
  • Planning is joint​

Drawbacks:

  • Requires two sections of the classroom for groups
  • Co-teachers must have prerequisites of appropriate content and instructional skills in order to provide equally effective instruction
  • Co-teachers must work at approximately the same pace when providing parallel instruction
  • Noise level can be greater
​​Consider the following questions in your meeting:
  1. What are the advantages of parallel teaching?
  2. What content could you see this working best with?
  3. Discuss your interpretation of the roles of each teacher in this delivery model.
  4. Begin planning to use this model.
Complete the following tasks:
  1. Discuss your interpretation of the roles of each teacher in the parallel teaching model.
  2. Begin planning to use the parallel teaching model.

Module 7: Alternative Teaching

handshake
Goals:  

Participants will...

  • gain a better understanding of alternative teaching.
  • determine when this delivery model would be most effective for student learning.
  • plan and implement alternative teaching.
​​Activities Before you meet:
  • Read pp. 25-26 Alternative Teaching and the information below 
  • Watch video

Alternative Teaching Description:

  • One teacher takes responsibility for the large group while the co-teacher works with a smaller, non-permanent group
  • Alternative teaching in the smaller group can include pre-teaching, enrichment, tiered intervention or preparation of an activity to be presented to the rest of the class
  • Instruction within the alternative group utilizes an alternative method or strategy

Recommended Use:

  • Occasional
  • 20% of the time

Collaboration:

  • Requires a high amount of planning/preparation time
  • Teachers need to determine instructional needs of class and who will monitor the respective groups
  • Co-teachers work from the same lesson plan with additional accommodations, modifications, and varied instructional strategies utilized in the small group.
  • For this approach to be successful, the purpose for the small group and the members of the small group should vary

Examples of Use:

  • The large group completes an assignment covering concepts covered in the lesson; the small group receives additional direct instruction
  • The large group is working on projects in small groups, while the small group is being assessed.  All students will be assessed across two days. (This allows testing accommodations)
  • Large group checks homework; the small group is pre-taught vocabulary related to the day's lesson.
  • Following a large group introductory mini-lesson, the large group receives core lesson instruction, while the small group receives a compacted version of the lesson with extension of the concept(s)

Benefits:

  • Allows more immediate feedback, positive reinforcement, and correction.
  • Can increase student participation and response rate for students in the smaller group
  • Potential for reaching many students with diverse needs through variance in groupings
  • Allows for instructional flexibility, as it is useful for pre-teaching, re-teaching, enrichment and observation
  • Planning is joint

Drawbacks:

  • Teachers need to be very cautious to vary the students in the groups so that students with disabilities are not always in the small group
  • Students may perceive a stigma of being placed into a small group regardless of why they are placed in the group
  • Does not utilize staff members as efficient as other co-teaching approaches

​​Consider the following questions in your meeting:

  1. What are the advantages of alternative teaching?
  2. What content could you see this working best with?
  3. Discuss your interpretation of the roles of each teacher in this delivery model.
  4. Begin planning to use this model.
Complete the following tasks:
  1. Discuss your interpretation of the roles of each teacher in the alternative teaching model.
  2. Begin planning to use the alternative teaching model. 

Large Group

Module 8: One Teach, One Observe

classroom modern
Goals:  

Participants will...

  • gain a better understanding of one teach, one observe.
  • determine when this delivery model would be most effective for student learning.
  • plan and implement one teach, one observe.
​​Activities before you meet:
  • Read p. 17 One Teach, One Observe and the information below
  • Watch video

One Teach, One Observe Description:

  • one co-teacher provides instruction
  • other co-teacher collects observation data on students or the (instructing) teacher
  • observation is a deliberate, planned portion of the lesson and is based on a systematic data collection that the two teachers have determined to be important

Recommended Use:

  • Limited
  • 5% of the time or less

Collaboration:

  • Low amount of planning required
  • Co-teachers need to agree on type of information to be gathered prior to the lesson
  • Co-teachers need to agree on the system of data-collection utilized prior to the lesson
  • Co-teachers collaborate following the lesson to review the data and make data-based decisions

Examples of Use:

  • To check individual student progress (according to PBIS expectations, IEP progress monitoring, formative assessment, intervention progress, etc.)
  • Assess the latency of students initiation of  assignments following directions
  • To compare target students to others in class
  • Monitoring implementation integrity of methodologies, curriculum, interventions or instructional strategies

Benefits:

  • Allows co-teachers to focus on individual students' needs more explicitly
  • Allows co-teachers to monitor their own skills
  • Aids in the collection of progress monitoring data for IEPs and other intervention plans

Drawbacks:

  • Has the potential for overuse
  • Teachers require a pre-requisite skill of collecting and analyzing appropriate data prior to use
  • Requires a strong level of trust between co-teachers

​​consider the following questions in your meeting:
  1. What are the advantages of one teach, one observe?
  2. Discuss the recommended use of this model compared to that of the others you have used.
  3. What content could you see this working best with?
Complete the following task:
  1. Discuss your interpretation of the roles of each teacher in the one teach, one observe model. 
  2. Begin planning to use the one teach, one observe model. 
 

Module 9: Teaming

team symbol
Goals:  

Participants will...

  • gain a better understanding of teaming.
  • determine when this delivery model would be most effective for student learning.
  • plan and implement teaming.
​​Before you meet:
  • Read p. 20 Team Teaching and the information below 
  • Watch video

Team Teaching Description: 

  • Co-teachers deliver instruction at the same time
  • Instructional experience given to students is comparable and complementary

Recommended Use:

  • Occasionally
  • 20-30% of the time

Collaboration: 

  • Involves a high amount of planning/preparation time
  • Co-teachers need to a great deal of comfort, respect, and compatibility for this approach to be effective
  • This approach is affected most by individuals' personalities and teaching styles

Examples of Use:

  • During a lesson in which instructional conversation is appropriate
  • When the goal of instruction is to demonstrate interaction
  • In social studies, the teachers debate U.S. foreign policy issues
  • In language arts or English, the teachers act out a scene from a piece of literature
  • As steps in a math process are taught, one explains while the other does a think aloud.
  • While teaching chemistry, one teacher explains the experiment while their co-teacher demonstrates the experiment using the necessary materials

Benefits:

  • Provides a novel approach to instruction and in some cases a more motivational approach
  • Multiple viewpoints can be presented
  • Instructional intensity is increased as both teachers are actively involved in providing instruction
  • Planning is joint

Drawbacks:

  • Grouping is not available with this option
  • More difficult to provide and respond to individual needs of students
  • Requires more flexibility among co-teachers
  • Co-teachers need to gauge their contributions and communications so as to not overshadow each other

Consider the following questions in your meeting:
  1. What are the advantages of alternative teaching?
  2. What content could you see this working best with?
  3. Discuss your interpretation of the roles of each teacher in this delivery model.
  4. Begin planning to use this model.
Complete the following tasks in your meeting:
  1. Discuss your interpretation of the roles of each teacher in the teaming model.
  2. Begin planning to use the teaming model.

Module 10: One Teach, One Assist

teacher with math work on chalkboard
Goals:  

Participants will...

  • gain a better understanding of one teach, one assist (one teach, one drift).
  • determine when this delivery model would be most effective for student learning.
  • plan and implement one teach, one assist (one teach, one drift).
​​Activities Before you meet:
  • Read p. 18 One Teach, One Drift and information below
  • Watch video

Description: 

  • one co- teacher provides instruction
  • other co-teacher provides support to the classroom
  • the co-teacher who is assisting may monitor student work, address behavior issues, answer questions, distribute materials or model note-taking 

Recommended Use:

  • Limited
  • 5% of the time or less

Collaboration: 

  • Low amount of planning required

Examples of Use:

  • The class is reviewing a mathematics concept.  One teacher models the problem on the smart board, while students solve individually.  The assisting teacher checks to make sure all students are on target.
  • In the science lab, one teacher describes the process while the assisting teacher passes out materials and provides support to groups as needed.

Benefits:

  • Allows co-teachers to focus on individual students' needs more explicitly
  • Allows co-teachers to monitor their own skills
  • Aids in the collection of progress monitoring data for IEPs and other intervention plans

​​Consider the following questions in your meeting:
  1. What are the advantages of alternative teaching?
  2. What content could you see this working best with?
  3. Discuss your interpretation of the roles of each teacher in this delivery model.
  4. Begin planning to use this model.
Complete the following tasks:
  1. Discuss your interpretation of the roles of each teacher in the one teach, one assist teaching model.
  2. Begin planning to use the one teach, one assist model.

 

Wrapping Up

Next Steps

Goals:  

Participants will...

  • discuss accommodations and modifications and the purpose of both
  • reflect on the co-teaching being done and make plans for further implementation
​​Activities:
wrap up symbol

 

Reflection Stations:

  • Self Reflect
  • Pick a station - 10 minutes to discuss
  • Rotate (3 rotations)

 

 

 

 

***All Course work is due on Friday, May 25th.

​​
teamwork symbol
Next Steps conversation starters:
  • What has made the co-teaching experience successful? 
  • How will you plan to continue implementing these things?
  • What are non-negotiables in your co-teacher situation?
  • What advice would you give to new co-teaching partners?
  • What barriers have you faced and overcame?
  • What barriers are you still faced with and what steps can you take to overcome them?
  • If asked, what impact has your co-teaching partnership made on student learning?

**If taking the course for credit, all work needs to be submitted by May 25th (reflection document, coaching conversations, observations).**

 

 

For more information

Co-Teaching Facilitators

Facilitators

Brea Baxter

Tasha Fritz

Patricia Lehmann

Sara Schiller

Shelby Schumacher