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To schedule a training, or for further questions, please contact 

Justin Chesebrough, Director of Beyond Textbooks at:

chesebroughj@vailschooldistrict.org or 520-879-3964


Assume Student Confidence with a Growth Mindset: A Viable Way to Empower Students

(K-12 teachers & administrators) - (3 hours)

Educators often believe lowering standards will give students successful experiences, boost self-esteem, and raise achievement. It doesn’t work! Lowering standards leads to poorly educated students and is a recipe for disaster. Great teachers believe in growing intellect and talent and are fascinated with the process of learning. From Teachers: The Mindset of a Champion, participants will explore how shifting from a fixed mindset to growth mindset can empower student learning.


Balanced Literacy Part 1

(K-8) - (4 hours) 

A framework for organizing literacy instruction that is comprised of these components: 

  • Flexible Ability Reading Groups (Guided Reading) - Grades K-3

  • Literature Circles (Guided Reading) - Grades 3-5

  • Close Reading - Grades K-8

  • Read Aloud

  • Read Independently

  • Spelling/Phonics

  • Writing (Responding to Reading)

Teachers will examine how to incorporate these strategies into their school day.

(Note: This training can be combined with Balanced Literacy Part 2 for an eight-hour training, including a lunch break)


Balanced Literacy Part 2 – Writing Across the Curriculum 

(K-8) - (3 hours) 

Participants will:

  • Define what is writing and why it is powerful

  • Identify where writing instruction should take place

  • Explain the components of Writing to Learn and Writing to Apply

  • Implement the techniques of Writing Strategies for the content areas in the classroom

(Note: This training can be combined with Balanced Literacy Part 1 for an eight-hour training, including a lunch break)


Balanced Math Training

(K-8) - (3 hours) 

This training focuses on giving participants a structure for organizing math instruction that is comprised of the NCTM’s 3 components: Computational Fluency, Conceptual Understanding, and Problem Solving, and how the frameworks and resources on BT support these.


Classroom Management 101

(K-8) - (3 hours) 

Looking for tips on how to refine and improve classroom management in any K-8 classroom? Goals of this training include:

  • Explain the purpose of effective classroom management

  • Identify specific procedures to be rehearsed with students the first week of school

  • Connect the importance of teacher proximity, smooth transitions, and classroom signals to increasing student achievement!


Close Reading and Cloze Reading…Is It Different? 

(K-12) - (3 hours) 

Participants will:

  • Identify what close reading is and how it can be effectively used in a classroom.

  • Introduce the strategy of annotations and learn how students can use annotations to enhance their comprehension.

  • Analyze text-dependent questioning and learn how to create text-dependent questions for a close reading passage.


Common Core and the D.O.K. - That's Just the New Bloom's, Right?

(K-12) - (3 hours) 

Webb's Depth of Knowledge (D.O.K.) provides a vocabulary and a frame of reference when thinking about our students and how they will engage with content. So how does this relate to the Common Core? Two major shifts that the Common Core brings are in Content and Rigor, with many people arguing that Rigor is the number one major shift with the Common Core. As we peel back the layers of what is expected with increased Rigor, it is mission critical to recognize the role that understanding and effectively using the D.O.K. plays in relation to this. This training will help participants to understand the importance of using both D.O.K and Bloom’s in lesson planning and task development.


Critical Thinking Skills and the Common Core

(K-12) - (3 hours) 

The Common Core standards require students to use a different type of thinking. How do teachers embed critical thinking skills into the content so that students develop the quality of their thinking and problem solving, not just for tests, but for a lifetime of learning? This session will build background knowledge in helping educators empower all learners with the enduring skills of critical thinking.


Daily Math Skills

(K-8) - (3 hours) 

This training focuses on how to implement daily 20-minute math fact fluency skills in order to improve student fluency (speed + accuracy) so that students are able to perform computational tasks as well as higher level skills while not getting bogged down on the "ABC's of math". Implementing Daily Math Skills in Vail has historically demonstrated immediate gains on math test scores, specifically the number of students who are in the highly proficient range of the standard.


EEI (Essential Elements of Instruction)

(K-12) - (8 hours) 

Based upon the Madeline Hunter model, EEI provides a framework for effective instruction and skills that assist teachers in making decisions when they teach. By attending this training, teachers will be provided with a common instructional language that helps build school and district culture. (Note: This training can be modified to 4 hours)


Effective Feedback

(K-12) - (3 hours) 

Delivering effective feedback requires training and practice, and can be very powerful if done correctly. Constructive feedback gives students the information they need so they can understand where they are in the learning process and what steps they need to do next. “It is just-in-time, just-for-me information delivered when and where it can do the most good.” This session will focus on how the principles and examples of powerful feedback can be applied in the classroom.


Effective Enrichment for All Students

(K-12) - (3 hours)

This training provides participants with background on the purpose of enrichment, as well as practical ideas for ensuring that all students are provided with enrichment opportunities throughout the school day.

During this workshop, participants will: 

  •  Understand the role of enrichment in the everyday classroom. 

  •  Take away strategies for practical implementation


Higher Order Questioning Strategies

(K-12) - (3 hours) 

During this workshop, the participant will: a) explain the importance of effective questioning strategies, b) generate meaningful questions with a specific purpose, c) participate in a range of cooperative learning strategies and structures and be able to apply them to improving classroom practices.


IEEI (Inverted Essential Elements of Instruction)

(K-12) (3 hours) 

The IEEI model is an extension of the EEI framework that allows for supportive and structured inquiry-based lessons. By attending this training, teachers will be provided with a framework that encourages student collaboration, an emphasis on higher Blooms/DOK levels, and a variety of approaches to support student growth.


Managing Students Who Have Severe Behaviors

(K-12) - (3 hours) 

During this workshop, the participants will:

  • Compare and contrast characteristics of reactive and proactive teachers

  • Identify the reasons for students’ misbehavior and the characteristics of each

  • Recognize effective and ineffective responses to situations involving students with severe behavior


Research-Based Instructional Strategies

(K-12) - (3 hours) 

An opportunity for participants to examine research-based instructional strategies that affect student achievement and identify various methods for teaching these strategies. By attending this engaging training, participants will also be able to determine which strategies they should incorporate into their classroom practice.


Student Engagement Strategies

(K-12) - (3 hours) 

A repeatable sequence of steps designed to structure the interaction of students with each other and/or the curriculum in ways that align with basic principles and efficiently realize specific learning outcomes.

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