John Rogers Elementary

John Rogers

Advanced Learning Plan

John Rogers Elementary School Advanced Learning Plan

John Rogers Vision

EVERY student seen, engaged, challenged and growing.

John Rogers Mission

Nurturing and fostering an inclusive, positive and collaborative community of high-achieving learners and socially responsible citizens in an ever-changing world.

Advanced Learning Opportunities School Plan – Overview

The John Rogers ALO program stems from the belief that educational experiences must target the unique academic and learning needs of every child. ALO practices are designed with the intention to provide a varied instructional setting and experiences tailored to the unique needs of the advanced learner while supporting the integrity and consistency of the classroom experience. Children who are identified as Highly Capable or Advanced Learners receive classroom-based advanced instruction as determined by several performance criteria. In addition, children who did not qualify for the District designation of either Highly Capable or Advanced Learner are also provided classroom-based acceleration or enrichment, as determined by assessment data and in-class observation. The John Rogers ALO Plan is intended to align with current SPS policies and procedures regarding Advanced Learning, including services for “twice-exceptional learners,” those which are both gifted and disabled.

ALO Program Components

1.  Identification

District Identification of Highly Capable requires:

  • 98th-plus percentile in at least two areas on CogAT (e.g., verbal, quantitative, non-verbal, or composite scores.
  • 95th- plus percentile in reading and math on District-approved or other nationally normed achievement tests.

District Identification of Advanced Learner (Spectrum and ALO) requires:

87th- plus percentile in at least two areas on CogAT (e.g., verbal, quantitative, non-verbal, or composite scores.

87th-plus percentile in reading and math on District-approved or other nationally normed achievement tests.

Teachers review the list of Highly Capable and Advanced Learners that have qualified for these programs.

Each September, students are assessed using the mClass Beacon benchmark assessment (grades 3-5), in class curricular assessments (Teacher’s College, Math In Focus year end, etc.) and teachers review spring assessments (MAP K-2, SBAC 3-5).

Students are assessed using the above instruments periodically throughout the year to determine if advanced learners are in need of further acceleration and or enrichment to establish growth from one point in time to another.

Teachers use assessment data as well as in-class observations of performance and participation in order to identify Advanced and Highly Capable Students. 

Advanced/Highly Capable students in need of significant differentiated or accelerated programs typically demonstrate:

High levels of engagement & attention during instruction & independent practice 

Completion of assignments with no support, redirection, or corrections required

Full and accurate completion of assignments significantly earlier than classmates  

Requests from the student for enrichment, accelerated practices, or other work that might be completed at school to fill the additional time or be completed at home    

High performance on all assignments  

High performance on assessments 

In Mathematics:  consistent and high levels of evidence around the demonstration of number sense, algebraic thinking and mathematical communication.  For example, shows work, works in reverse to prove solutions, demonstrates a high demand for accuracy and efficiency, strategic use of tools and devices, able to find solutions to word problems in varying ways, etc. 

In Literacy:  consistent and high levels of evidence around the demonstration of higher order thinking in reading discussions and writing (inferential, judicial and evaluative thinking); extends responses and thinks deeply; is able to personify characters easily and think from varying perspectives; is able to grasp main ideas and themes quickly and transfer ideas to writing and comparison of multiple texts. 

Ability to teach and/or share thinking with others.

2.   Models, Strategies, & Experiences 

Beginning in the year 2015-2016 each teaching team will develop an Advanced Opportunity Plan (differentiation plan) for the classroom.  Each plan will describe philosophy, strategies and procedures in place when advanced learners are identified.  Strategies may include extension activities, acceleration to the next grade level of instruction in a subject area, parallel programs to be worked on in extra time or at home, etc. The following describes school-wide practices that teachers practice, as needed, for their advanced and highly capable learners.

ALO Math Instructional Model

Walk UP to Math 
Reserved for students who require a full year or more of mathematics acceleration.  These learners, typically 3 to 5 students school-wide, must meet rigorous qualification criteria based in performance data or be designated by the district as designated as part of the (HCC) Highly Capable Cohort learner.  However, students may assess into or be recommended for a Walk UP to Math experience if they meet all of the criteria described in the ALO Appendix.

Walk UP to Math: Qualification Criteria

Full qualification: For a child to be assigned an advanced setting, one year above grade level without conditions, your child must:

Have qualified for or continues to qualify for APP

OR demonstrate ALL of the following:

  • L4 – Spring 2014 SBAC for Math
  • 98-99th Percentile Spring 2014 MAP for Math
  • 80% or higher on the End of the Year CCSS school assessment
  • 80% or higher on 4th Grade Math In Focus end/year assessment
  • 80% proficiency on the Amplify Mathematics Assessment
  • Student received instruction one year or more above grade level the prior year in school

Conditional qualification: If a child meets 4 of the 6 criteria, above, a child will be assigned to an advanced setting one year above grade level with the following conditions:

  • He/she meets standard on all classroom assignments and classroom-based assessments administered within the advanced setting at 75% or higher, through the first unit of instruction (end of October) 
  • Student demonstrates that he/she benefits emotionally from the advanced setting

Reduction In Class Size
In grades 1st-5th reduce class size during math instruction by using our math specialist to work with small groups of students.  This can be in the form of a pull-out or push-in model depending on class and student math data.

ALO Math Strategies

All classes use Math in Focus Curriculum as well as teacher-developed lessons in accordance with the Common Core State Standards.  Teachers balance their math approach through the following:

  • Higher Level Questioning within teacher-directed lessons
  • Focus on deep understanding of mathematical concepts
  • Extensions and opportunities for practice at a deeper level
  • Peer to peer learning and discussion around problem solving and finding solutions
  • Use of enrichment components in the Math in Focus curriculum. For example, the reteach, enrichment and extra practice.
  • Use of ST Math and Khan Academy

ALO Reading Instructional Model

Reading Instruction by Individualized Reading Level Through the Comprehensive Literacy Approach to instruction, student reading levels are determined through assessment and reading/writing lessons are prepared to align with the ability of each child. The advanced learner benefits greatly from this approach as his/her reading level is often significantly above that of his/her classmates. Teachers balance their reading approach through the following activities:

  • Guided Reading Groups – by ability
  • Independent Reading – by level
  • Writing and language experiences blended with reading content
  • Individual reading conferences with students providing students with feedback on their reading strengths and progress

Reduction In Class Size
In grades 1st-5th reduce class size during literacy instruction by using our reading specialist to work with small groups of students.  This can be in the form of a pull-out or push-in model depending on class and student reading data.

ALO Reading Strategies

  • Advanced reading instruction is focused upon application, analysis, synthesis, and evaluation. Higher order thinking is integrated into all facets of the literacy experience and demonstrated through writing, discussion, projects and presentations.
  • Flexible Grouping: Students move in and out of groups upon assessment results and demonstrated need.
  • Independent Reading: Students are provided with individual choice in the books they read to appropriately place them in groups of interest and ability.
  • Guided Reading Groups:  Students are placed within guided reading ability groups based on a child’s ability to access complexity of text and higher level content reading.
  • Interactive and Shared Read Aloud: These strategies create a supportive learning environment for a range of readers to hear fluent reading and teacher generated questions to help develop higher level thinking skills.
  • Integrated Reading Projects incorporating literacy skills into content areas such as science and social studies
  • Global Reading Challenge offered to all 4th and 5th grade students interested in additional reading challenge.

Social/Emotional Development

  • Continuous Support: ALO students will receive social skills instruction as well as emotional support in all environments and opportunities throughout the day. 
  • Mentorship opportunities through All School Book Buddies wherein older classes partner with younger classes for book reading.
  • 2nd-5th Grade Student Council provides leadership opportunities for 2 students per classroom, per year. In addition, the student council has the following leadership positions: president, vice-president and secretary.
  • 4th & 5th grade students serve as library aides, student council members, conflict managers and safety patrol throughout the year to build their self-esteem and confidence.

3.  Challenging & Enriching School Day Opportunities

  • Global Reading Challenge: optional for 4th & 5th graders
  • Instrumental Music classes (4th – 5th)
  • Students participate in daily to weekly instruction in Vocal Music
  • Student Council: 2-5
  • In class Extension and Enrichment work for all subject areas, in all classrooms.
  • Leadership Opportunities in 4th – 5th grade (Library Aides, Safety Patrol, etc.)
  • Finding Urban Nature (FUN) environmental science program (4th graders)
  • Book-It Performances
  • Whistle Stop Dance Program (Kindergarten)
  • Swimming Program (K-5)
  • Art Docent Program (K-5)
  • Waskowitz Outdoor School (5th Grade)
  • Science Bites – Science Enrichment during Lunch Recess (K-5th)

4.  After School Programs

  • Choir
  • Art Club
  • Drama Club
  • Science Club