The new program, which will cap out at 100 students for its inaugural year, is designed to give sixth-graders a more personalized approach to math, she said. Depending on their learning needs, students will work at different stations, which could feature traditional teacher-led instruction, virtual instructors, student collaboration or software-based lessons.
“Every day there’s some kind of assessment that is given and then that assessment is analyzed after the students have left, so the next morning when kids come in, they’re being taught what they didn’t learn the day before … instead of just like a generic lesson for everybody,” Kullar said. “It’s very, very differentiated and it’s very, very personalized so that the instruction the kids are receiving is very targeted to what they really need.”
She said the program is not geared to students on one specific learning level. Participants join the program on a first-come, first-serve basis and can include those in accelerated, on-level or special education classes.
The school hopes to begin Teach to One sometime in September or October, Kullar said. A section of the media center will be transformed into the learning space. The program will be held twice a week at about 7:15 a.m. or 7:30 a.m. and does not replace the students’ regular math classes, Kullar said.
“There’s always some gaps where the kids are just missing something [and] this could help fill some of those gaps,” she said.
The program will be held for a 10-week session first semester and another 10-week session second semester. The math teachers operating this new program will be Ellen Mayo — who will be the director — and Kim Cherry, Patti Harden, Johndra Jordan, John Pearson and Julie Zahner-Bailey — who will be the instructors.
Kullar said she and a few of the teachers visited other schools where this type of program was implemented.
“Based on other schools who have been doing it across the country, they have been seeing great, positive results,” she said. “We feel really hopeful that this is going to be beneficial and that this is going to be very successful.”
After this year, Kullar said the program will be evaluated to determine whether to continue it and possibly expand it at Northwestern.