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Teachers Participate in Kagan Sessions During Holiday Break

A group of 135 Porterville Unified School District teachers are participating this week in Kagan Cooperative Learning sessions at Granite Hills High School as a way to boost student engagement and learning in all academic subject areas.

Over a three-day period this week, the teachers are learning how to have students work together with various principles.

“We are working to provide resources that teachers can use with students in the classroom,” PUSD Director of Curriculum and Instructional Technology Dr. Ken Spencer said. “The rationale is to have students work together and learn from each other while learning in a real-world environment to gain experience.”

Rather than creating group work among students with little interaction from teachers, the Kagan sessions help teachers to link work in the classroom for all students. Teachers are provided with strategies to aid instruction.

Additional training will take place this summer and fall when professionals will again be brought to Porterville to train instructional coaches and administrators at each site. Teachers will have additional help from these newly-trained coaches to further benefit students.

“The teachers have given us a lot of positive feedback from these sessions,” Spencer said. “There have been testimonials from teachers who have said this type of learning has invigorated their classrooms. We have a wide spectrum of experience within the teachers participating from new teachers to those with over 25 years of experience. It really doesn’t matter in terms of their level because it adds to what they can do as teachers to keep students engaged on a daily basis.”

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