Innovative Program of Instruction

The mission of LLA is to provide an innovative teaching method to help achieve a high degree of academic success while developing problem-solving skills, independent learners, and future leaders in all of our students. Project CHILD (Changing How Instruction for Learning is Delivered) is the innovative teaching method that is part of our mission.

Project CHILD is supported by Innovative Educational Programs LLC and is a research based teaching and learning system. The emphasis is on reading, writing, and mathematics. Science and social studies curriculum are incorporated throughout the day-to-day instruction. CHILD is a three-dimensional model that differs from the traditional model which is designed around a single teacher in a single grade. The CHILD triangulated design changes the traditional classroom in several dynamic ways. Three teachers form cluster teams – one teacher for reading, one for writing, and one for mathematics. Clusters teams work across three grade levels; grades 1 – 3 for a primary cluster and grades 4 – 6 for an intermediate cluster. The Kindergarten teachers at LLA teach either Math or Language Arts and switch their classes everyday. Teachers work with the same students for three years allowing a unique opportunity for teachers to become experts in each student’s individual strengths and abilities as well as learning how to work with each student’s weaknesses. Cluster teachers will be able to collaborate with each other and discuss effective instructional techniques for each individual child creating a three year team-teaching method.

The teaching methods in CHILD are also different than the traditional “one-teacher/one-classroom” teaching style. After direct instruction from their teacher, students work independently and then in collaborative groups at three types of learning stations within their cluster. Students rotate to the three classrooms in their cluster for 90 minute rotations each day. Each classroom has a Computer Station for technology-based work, a Textbook Station for paper/pencil and project work, and three additional Activity Stations in that specific subject area for hands-on work. There is also a Teacher Station in every classroom for small group tutorials and individual assistance. There are six stations total in each of the 3 classrooms and the students typically go to one per day, so three stations total everyday. The organizational tools and materials can be supplemented by the CHILD system.

Key components of Project CHILD

1. Teachers are certified by Innovative Educational Programs (IEP) as 21st Century Subject Specialists.

CHILD teachers and administrators participate in specialized training to learn to use the CHILD methods and supporting materials. Teachers function as subject specialists using 21st century strategies and skills to provide quality instruction in an innovative environment. To be certified by IEP, teachers will attend all prescribed professional development, complete and pass the subject-specific certification examination, self-assess and observe in other classrooms, and successfully implement the model as documented by an IEP consultant. Teachers will continue their professional development through ongoing self-study, attendance at CHILD workshops and conferences, and by becoming mentor/trainers for new CHILD teachers.

2. Students participate in a structured orientation to learn self- management techniques.

Students follow a structured orientation plan at the beginning of each school year. This orientation prepares them to be self-regulated learners, to responsibly use and care for materials and equipment, to stay on-task while working independently, to develop strategies to cooperate and help one another, and to move efficiently to the classroom learning stations. Integral to this orientation is learning to use the Passports and Task Cards.

3. Teachers form interdisciplinary teams with a common corps of students.

A cluster or team of teachers will work with a common corps of students. Each classroom will have learning stations equipped with computers and other appropriate learning materials. Students typically spend at least one hour in each of the subject classrooms every day. Support staff such as music, art, guidance, media, physical education, and resource teachers for students with special needs, will also help extend student learning by coordinating with the teachers where possible.

4. Teachers meet regularly to plan and coordinate instruction.

Teachers within each cluster or team will share a common planning time. They participate in weekly structured meetings to facilitate interdisciplinary curriculum planning, coordinate instruction and encourage teamwork. They complete a Meeting Agenda form, which is then shared with their administrator.

5. Teachers observe students in other classrooms on a regular basis.

Teachers spend thirty minutes observing in the other classrooms in their cluster or team. If there are multiple clusters/teams at a school, it is recommended that teachers include a subject area observation and an observation within a different grade level as well. Teachers complete a Structured Observation Form and report to their colleagues at a team meeting.

6. Teachers use research-based resources to plan lessons and coordinate instruction.

While CHILD and TEAMS schools use their own curriculum materials, a wealth of online and print resources are available to plan for active, station-based learning. Materials are provided online to assist teachers with planning both vertically and horizontally, to assist teachers with integrating technology, and develop hands-on station activities tied to lesson objectives.

7. Teachers use a structured management system to organize small group instruction.

Teachers assign students to stations on a rotating basis and monitor station visitation to ensure that all students are gaining frequent and balanced access to station activities. As students become more self-directed, they provide input into the station selection process. Whole group instruction and station work share the instructional unit time (i.e. two week instructional unit rotation) to create balance between direct instruction, guided and independent practice.

8. Students set and assess unit goals.

Goal setting is a 21st century skill that is explicitly taught to CHILD and TEAMS students. Students are guided by their teachers to set reasonable long and short-term goals which they record in their Passports or Work Logs. At the end of each unit and periodically throughout the station rotation cycles, students will use the Passports or Work Logs to assess their progress toward achieving these goals. Throughout the year, teachers will model goal-setting for students as reinforcement for this life-long behavior.

9. Students assume significant responsibilities in the daily management of the classroom.

Students have access to and control over all materials and equipment at designated learning stations. They use equipment carefully and store materials properly. They develop leadership roles by assuming more management opportunities within the classroom, monitoring their own behavior, and developing individualized learning pathways within the instructional rotation.

10. Students have frequent opportunities to work in cooperative groups.

Students often work at stations in cooperative groups where they learn to help and support one another. At the Technology Station, students may work with a partner in order to increase access to these tools. Peer coaching and collaborative problem-solving will be introduced during orientation and encouraged throughout the year with recognition and incentives to foster cooperation.

11. Students stay with the same teacher team for multiple years.

Project CHILD students stay with the same cluster teachers for multiple years (i.e. kindergarten through second grade; third through fifth grade). Each year the students will move to a different homeroom within the cluster, but will have the same subject teachers throughout the multiple year cycle.

12. The classroom ambiance is supportive, equitable, and risk-free, with high expectations for all.

Teachers create a risk-free learning climate which supports inquiry and creativity, enabling students to learn from their mistakes. All students have equal opportunities to participate in all activities. Teachers set high expectations and clearly define these expectations. There is a positive tone where students are frequently encouraged for their efforts.

13. Students work at a variety of learning stations on a regular basis.

Each classroom will have learning stations to accommodate all learning modalities. Stations may include a Teacher Station for small group instruction, and additional ones for technology, hands-on and text activities. Students work individually or cooperatively at the learning stations when they are not working with the teacher. Whole group instruction and station work share the instructional period to create balance between direct instruction, guided and independent practice. Students will have access to all learning stations on a frequent and equitable basis.

14. Station activities are clearly defined with Task Cards, aligned with standards, are appropriate to students’ abilities and needs, and provide feedback.

Each instructional rotation, teachers clearly explain station activities and use Task Cards to specify assignment requirements at each station before independent station rotations begin. Station activities are designed to coordinate with lesson objectives and are appropriate to students’ level of intellectual, academic, and social development. The activities provide feedback and samples to ensure quality and on-task behavior.

15. Students use a record-keeping tool (Passport) and Task Cards to develop 21st century skills.

Task Cards are provided by the teacher at each station to clearly communicate expectations and academic purpose to students. Students use their Passports to set goals, record information about their station work, express their opinions, reflect on their learning, and evaluate goal accomplishments. Students use their Passport/Work Log to guide their independent movement to the various learning stations within the classroom. These 21st century tools help students stay focused, organized, and accountable. Parents/Guardians use the Passports to stay informed.

16. The district/governing board and site-based leadership provide support and adequate resources.

All site-based and district/governing board leadership attend designated CHILD training and visit the classrooms frequently to become thoroughly familiar with the CHILD methods and materials. Site-based administrators support CHILD teachers and ensure that necessary resources to fully implement the program are in place. Communication is provided to parents, district staff, and the community at large to stay informed about the CHILD implementation.

17. There is sufficient time for collaborative planning.

Each CHILD cluster will have a common planning time, before, during or after school. At least one meeting per week is essential to ensure ongoing collaborative efforts and effective and timely communication between teachers. Teachers also meet regularly to plan and coordinate with subject area colleagues.

18. Instructional time is free from interruptions.

Instructional time is protected within the CHILD classroom. Interruptions such as pull-outs, unscheduled special events, and announcements are limited. Block scheduling or other innovative scheduling plans that accommodate longer class periods are highly desirable to facilitate the station rotation process. Shorter station rotation times should be included to allow for active learning time for students following mandatory testing times.

19. Students have frequent and equitable access to technology.

Technology is a tool within the CHILD classroom. Each classroom is equipped with adequate technology tools to provide for equitable access for all students and sufficient resources for instruction. All students work at the Technology Station in each of the subject-area classrooms on a frequent and equitable basis.

20. Parents/Guardians use the CHILD Passports to stay informed and provide input.

Parents/Guardians attend a CHILD orientation meeting at the beginning of the school year to become informed about the instructional model. Parents/Guardians review their child’s Passport, sign it and make comments at the end of each unit.

Curriculum

Project CHILD is an instructional delivery system designed to fit with a variety of software, textbooks, and resources within the CHILD station format. These resources and materials enhance and supplement our curriculum.

The goal of all curricula chosen by LLA is to:

  • Meet Utah Core Standards,
  • Ensure the academic success of all students,
  • Provide both remediation and enhancement instructional materials,
  • Provide teachers with curriculum based assessments that monitor student progress, and
  • Engage students in active and enjoyable learning activities.

LLA’s curriculum is centered on research-based instructional materials and serves as the foundation for delivering the Utah Core Standards as stated in our mission. We will strive to meet the needs of all learners and promote high academic success with all curriculum materials. The LLA Board of Directors, administration, and faculty will always be looking for new, innovative research-based curriculums and will review student outcomes and instructional materials for effectiveness, making adjustments as necessary for the academic success of all students.

Leadership

The vision of LLA is to create and nurture lifelong skills in our students that will challenge them to be confident and independent learners that will inspire others, achieve high academic success, have accountability for themselves and their education, and help lead our future.

LLA will strive to meet the needs of all learners and will promote student-directed lessons and daily practice. The focus will remain on modeling ways for our students to become independent thinkers, learners, and leaders while giving them every opportunity for academic growth and success. Leadership development will be a focus in every grade at LLA. Teacher modeling of good leadership strategies and practices will be a part of the LLA school culture. CHILD promotes leadership by encouraging self-discipline, self-correcting strategies, self- regulated on task behavior, collaboration among peers, time management, problem solving, conflict resolution, and the development of strong communication skills. CHILD also provides multiple opportunities for students and teachers to develop a relationship where students can help in the facilitation of many leadership roles within the classroom framework.

Additional Information

Further information on Project CHILD can be found on the Innovative Educational Programs (IEP) website.

Project Changing How Instruction for Learning is Delivered (CHILD) Logo

Patriotic, Civic, and Character Education

LLA will promote student character education to reaffirm values and qualities of character which promote an upright and desirable citizenry. The civic education will help cultivate informed students, encourage responsible participation in political life, and promote the fundamental values and principles of representative democracy in Utah and the United States.

We will teach patriotic education as part of the social studies curricula. Examples of civic education include:

  • History of the flag, etiquette, customs pertaining to the display and use of the flag, and other patriotic exercises;
  • Role modeling patriotic values associated with the flag;
  • Forms of government; and
  • The Pledge of Allegiance to the flag.

Exemptions to civic education are outlined under Utah Rule.