Feedback - 2010

I have learned a great deal from this experience and I thank PRISM for the opportunity to work with my colleagues across grade levels and disciplines. I have gained a new perspective.   Teaneck

We have come to appreciate each other and to value the teachings that are done with our students in the elementary and middle and high school levels.  Our PLC became a place and time of safe haven where we came together to share and discuss our difficulties along with our triumphs.  It became such a valuable time for us all, we decided to meet in May 5th and continue our common agenda of supporting each other for our pursuit of excellence in education.  Prism PLC Teaneck

I must echo with all of you that I have truly come to enjoy out PLC time together.  It is comforting to know that I am not alone in my frustration in what is taking place in this district, and in education as a whole.  I have found definite patterns in what occurs from the elementary to high school level due to poor leadership, lack of communication, and lack of parental support.  Teaneck

In summation I have participated in the Bones Project with PRISM, I have had a visit from author Harriet Isecke from PRISM, who worked on science through literature with my class.  I have also had a few visits from one of our PRISM instructors Anna Mazzaro who has done science activities with my class on the topics of rock and minerals, and food webs.  Those activities were very valuable to my students and me.  Teaneck

This month I have had two math lessons with Karen Rupp with measurement and probability. Our class also did a science lesson with anemometers with Anna Mazzaro. Our class had a wonderful time with both teachers and the lessons were both enriching and enjoyable. My class appreciated the lessons and the teachers that presented them. We look forward to seeing them again.  Fran Guzy-Teaneck

Vince’s visit on Wednesday was a success.  The students really enjoyed the activities and what Vince had to say.  We are in the process of putting the activities on our website and youtube channel for everyone to view.  Jim Santangelo Wood-Ridge

I have passed along word to the other math teachers about next year’s two-week workshop.  I encouraged them to attend if they were looking for professional development opportunities. Jim Santangelo-Wood-Ridge

Megan and I have also shared with our colleagues information about the PRISM summer institute and how helpful it was to us. Wendy Sistarenik-Wood-Ridge

During the 2 week PRISM workshop, there was a math instructor that talked about base 10 and using different forms of “bases” for math instruction.  I incorporated this concept into my lesson while teaching the SI prefix chart and how to convert between units.  As I explained to the students how the prefixes were separated by units of 10, we discussed base 10 and related that back to how students learn math.  This really seemed to click with the students and out of my 9 years of teaching this topic, when I gave a quiz on it I had all students score a 100%.     Wendy Sistarenik-Wood-Ridge

The number line game was played again, this time adding percentages and decimals to the mix.  Since learning the game during our Summer PRISM experience, we’ve played it once a week, but not always using the clothesline.  We play it by setting teams up and calling out fractions, decimals, or percentages for students to correctly write.  Ms. Rigg added equivalent fractions to the mix (like asking for two fractions that are equal to ?).  Each of us took the game and made it our own and the students enjoy it and have really come a long way with understanding their benchmarks.    Ms. Fennel, Ms. Rigg, and Ms. Vermiglio-Orange

During the month of December, Mrs. Semel of Prism came and demonstrated and worked with me in Science class.  The first time we met, she introduced several activities to the class to help them understand kinetic and potential energy.  We all learned so much from the activities.  The beauty of the activities were that they were simple enough for all students to do and understand the concepts.  The second time Mrs. Semel came, the class did several activities to address mechanical, sound, and heat energy.  Nancy lasher-Orange

Met with Irv Barocas, he did a demo lesson with the third graders using the Cuisenaire Rods. Students were able to determine the relationship from one colored rod to another. Students joined rods in a train and discovered equivalent rods. I repeated this lesson on 1/12/11 to one of my absent students. All students were very excited and demonstrated learning and problem solving. They referenced the rods to determine solutions. Ms. Vermiglio-Orange

Elinor Semel came to our 4th grade classroom. She did a hands-on lab with beans. Each student was given a bean to explore. The students took the seed coat off and split the seed in half so they could identify the parts inside. Elinor explained the parts of the bean "seed". She also had the students label a diagram with all the parts. Elinor had the students work in groups to make observations of the bean. Later she explained how to take and keep their notes organized. She told us to prepare the next lab after Christmas vacation. The seeds were to be put into a plastic cup with paper towels so that the students could see the germination process.    Little Ferry

We loved Irv’s lessons involving understanding fractions and would like to have him in as a guest in our classrooms.  Jordan Iannitelli and Mary Garbaccio-Leonia

We observed Karin Rupp’s “Minch” lesson with our classes.  This is the second time both of us have observed this lesson.  We spoke about the importance of seeing it a second time in order to implement it correctly when we do it.  We also discussed how important fractions (simplifying fractions and reading fractions) is important to the topic of measurement.  As always, Karin was a huge help and left us with copies of activities and assessment to use in our classrooms.  Jordan Iannitelli and Mary Garbaccio-Leonia

My students took a trip to BCI, Panama and met  Dr. Jackie Willis and Harriet Isecke. Students learned all about the predators and prey in the Rainforest. The students shared their riddles and tried to “stump” the scientist.  It was great fun!  This opportunity offered the students a wealth of first hand information about the Rainforest and my students were completely captured and thrilled by the experience.  Jeanette Scillieri-Leonia

Finally, she said to the students that it was her last visit. They said to her “We are going to miss you.”, “We love you.” For our part, it was a pleasure to have Ms. Rupp sharing her math expertise with us and our students.  Ms. Diana Huaman –Passaic

My students loved participating in two video conferences with the great folks in Panama!  The kids were full of questions, especially on the second day, and thoroughly enjoyed the experience.  I received a very kind email from PRISM, complimenting the students, which I shared with them.  But I think that the kids were also responding to the caring people reaching out to them from Panama.  It was great. Mindy Turner-West Milford