At Teachstone, we know that our work only succeeds if it is in partnership with you. So as we reflect on the significant challenges of 2020 and early 2021, we want to pause and celebrate the numerous ways in which you, and educators across this country, focused on what matters most – supporting students through meaningful interactions.
You used technology in new ways to learn about how to most effectively support students through virtual trainings. You engaged in webinars, online conferences, and studied independently to improve teaching skills. You pushed forward despite incredibly challenging circumstances, and we were honored to partner with you in those efforts.
From the start, Teachstone has had a singular goal - to ensure all children and adolescents had access to life-changing teaching. We knew the power that great teachers had to inspire, support, and guide students’ learning and development. In partnership with educators and policymakers across the country, we have made great progress toward this goal - but there is so much more to do.
As we enter 2021, we are laser-focused on fulfilling our mission by doing more to support the learning and developmental outcomes for every child.
In keeping with that work, we are excited to share that Teachstone has recently become a Certified B Corporation. This designation means that our organization meets the highest standards of verified social and environmental performance, public transparency, and legal accountability to balance profit and purpose. We’re excited by the opportunity to join leading businesses from across the country using business as a force for good.
We hope you will join us in 2021 as we continue to listen, respond, adapt, improve, and work with you towards a world where every child experiences life-changing teaching. Over the coming months we invite you to gather virtually for discussions and best practices around returning to in-person teaching, supporting students with special needs and dual language learners, responding to the increased gaps in early literacy and reading development and so much more. As always, we know that there is nothing more important for students’ educational experiences than the educators who work tirelessly to support them - and we are here to support you.
Stay tuned and thank you!
We were really happy to receive an article examining the use of CLASS in American Indian and Alaska Native Head Start Programs. And we were equally happy when lead author, Jessica Barnes-Najor, a researcher at Michigan State University, agreed to speak with us. In conjunction with her work at MSU, Jessica is a co-investigator for The Tribal Early Childhood Research Center (TRC). Read below to learn more about this important research.
Over the course of nearly a decade, beginning in 2010, the Inter-American Development Bank ran a randomized, longitudinal study in Ecuador called Cerrando Brechas (Closing Gaps), using CLASS to better understand the characteristics or practices of those teachers most successful in closing the achievement gap between the poorest children in their classrooms and their better-off schoolmates (you can read more here).
Closing Gaps found that regardless of a teachers’ age, IQ, or academic or professional credentials, it is teachers’ classroom behaviors and practices – specifically, the way in which teachers interact with students - that is most strongly associated with children’s improved learning outcomes.
Data from the National Survey of Students’ Health (NSCH) indicates that almost half of the students in the United States have experienced one or more forms of serious trauma, such as poverty, homelessness, or abuse and neglect. This means that an estimated 35,000,00 students, from infancy through age 17 are at risk for not only school failure, but for a number of social-emotional and physical complications (e.g., PTSD, heart disease, etc.) that may have life-long consequences to their health and well-being. The effect of COVID-19 has surely increased the percentage of young people who are experiencing trauma. And while people of all races and socioeconomic statuses have been affected by COVID-19, poor communities of color have been disproportionately impacted, adding an additional level of trauma to a population already traumatized by systemic racism.
We recently came across a really interesting article that examined both the academic and emotional aspects of teaching mathematics and we were excited when the lead author agreed to answer some of our questions about the study. Read below for our conversation with Rebekah Berlin, Program Director for the Learning by Scientific Design Network at Deans for Impact.