For six years, Trinity students have benefited from a partnership the College has with Prairie-Hills Elementary School District 144 in Markham, Illinois.
Dr. Trina Vallone ’99, coordinator for the Adult Studies ESL/Bilingual program, and Patricia Griffith, assistant professor of education, formed this partnership with Fieldcrest Elementary School, and it has since expanded to Highlands School and Nob Hill School.
During the Teaching Reading course, Trinity education students have the opportunity to spend 20 hours in the classroom in one of the three schools, practicing what they are learning in theory by completing reading tasks with the elementary students.
Vallone and Griffith arranged with Dr. Kimako Patterson, district superintendent, for 12 Trinity faculty members to offer professional development seminars on Friday, December 2. The district in-service was a way for the College to give back and thank the district for helping Trinity students over the years.
Teachers earned Continuing Professional Development Units (CPDUs) for attending the presentations. Topics included: Technology for Grades 7-8, Differentiated Instruction for Grades 3-6, technology, Math for Grades K-2, Graphic Novels and Guided Reading for Grades 7-8, Guided Reading for Grades 3-6, Phonemic Awareness & Guided Reading for Grades K-2.
Around 80 teachers from the district attended the in-service, including Nancy Kristin, the reading coach at Mae Jemison School. Kristin used to teach at Fieldcrest School and worked with Trinity students. She was particularly looking forward to the presentation by Assistant Professor of Education Dr. Bill Boerman-Cornell about graphic novels, and wanted to learn how to use graphic novels as inspiration for students to read more.
Julia Veazy, director of curriculum, instruction & technology for the district, was glad for the opportunity to have the teachers learn new methods to engage students and learn best practices. She was grateful to Trinity professors for validating what the teachers are currently doing.
Said Vallone, “The short workshops were packed full of information the teachers can apply immediately in the classroom. We’re glad to give back to the district. Good partnerships like these help us produce good teachers.”
Other Trinity professors presenting:
Chuck Commeret ’05, assistant professor of education, director of Adult Studies Education
Rebecca Harkema ’05, assistant professor of education, coordinator of Adult Studies Special Education
Kelly Lenarz ’99, assistant professor of education
Joy Meyer ’78, assistant professor of education, director of teacher education
Dr. Mary Webster Moore, assistant professor of education, director of P-16 School Initiatives
Jacqueline Moses ’05, assistant professor of education, Chicago coordinator of Adult Studies
Pete Post ’74, assistant professor of education
Dr. Rick Snoeyink, professor of education
Sue Zientara, assistant professor of education