Academic Youth Development Shaping the Culture of Ninth-Grade Classrooms

Academic Youth Development
Shaping the Culture of Ninth-Grade Classrooms
2008 NCSM Annual Conference
April 7, 2008
Today’s Agenda
1. AYD Goals and Intent
2. Live Tour of the AYD Curriculum
3. Supporting Research
4. Program Components and Logistics
Why focus on the transition to Algebra I?
• Algebra is a gatekeeper—50% of ninth-grade
students fail Algebra I.
• College and workforce expectations have
• High school graduation requirements have
• Inadequate preparation and limited problemsolving skills exist.
• The transition between middle school math and
Algebra I is crucial.
Two Areas of Focus
• Underlying issues about controllable factors
related to student learning and achievement
• Critical problem-solving skills
What is Academic Youth Development?
AYD helps students develop
• academic identities as learners who
recognize, value, and seek high-quality
• skills that enable them to help create and
contribute to a learning community.
The Academic Youth Development Initiative . . .
• Is
• Is not
• a set of experiences designed
to influence student beliefs,
attitudes, and behaviors about
• student remediation of
grade 8 math,
• an academic development
program for “regular
students”; and
• preteaching of Algebra I,
• credit recovery,
• a summer math class.
• an intervention designed to
create and support a
classroom culture of
respectful engagement.
Goals of the AYD Initiative
Three primary goals
• To improve student performance in Algebra I
and all high school mathematics courses
• To build a classroom culture focused on
respectful engagement in academics
• To increase the capacity for teaching to
rigorous mathematics standards
Social Psychology Influences
The program incorporates ideas from
social psychology:
• Effective effort: Improving and getting better at
something requires the right kind of effort.
• Attribution: Success is not due solely to luck.
• Malleable intelligence: Intelligence is
something that can be influenced and shaped
through actions and beliefs.
Model of the Program
AYD Online Curriculum Topics
• Getting smarter: growing your brain through
hard work and effort
• Learning to learn and what learning feels like
• Learning with peers: the importance of good
• Making attributions: What do you have control
over in learning?
• Applying “learning about learning” strategies in
problem-solving situations
Mathematics Theme
The mathematics content is a vehicle for
students and teachers to learn about and
apply the principles that are embodied in
the youth development content.
Why this mathematics content?
The theme of the math content of this course is
building expertise with problem solving.
– It is not eighth-grade math remediation.
– It is not preteaching of Algebra I.
Mathematics content builds students’ skills and
confidence for Algebra I success.
– – – – Ratio and proportional reasoning
Multiple representations of relationships
Problem solving
Complex problem solving
Beliefs, Attitudes, and Behavior
AYD focuses on the beliefs, attitudes, and
behavior of a cadre of emerging student
“allies” that algebra teachers can rely on to
• model effective engagement and academic
• help support and shape the Algebra I
classroom culture for learning mathematics,
• build a strong relationship between teachers
and students.
AYD shapes and supports a culture in which . . .
• engagement, participation, positive motivation,
and risk-taking are developed and embraced.
• students do not have to choose between being
smart and cool.
• effort and persistence are recognized and valued.
• mutual accountability is fostered and expected.
Inspirations from Research and Practice
Negative influences on performance, participation, and grades
• Stereotype threat
• Belief that intelligence is a fixed trait
• Sense of not belonging in math or in a math classroom
Positive influences on performance, participation, and grades
• Belief that intelligence is malleable
• Belief that effective effort pays off
• Sense of belonging in math and in a math classroom
• Incremental environment that can positively influence
sense of belonging
Inspirations from Research and Practice
• Emerging Scholars Program (Treisman, 1992)
• C-Cubed (Treisman & Shultz, 1984)
• AVID (Mary Catherine Swanson)
• Step-Up to High School (Treisman, Chicago Public
• The Algebra Project (Bob Moses)
• Teacher wisdom
Implicit Theories of Intelligence !
(Dweck, 1999)!
Entity Theorists
• Intelligence is fixed.
– Trait largely determined by nature
Incremental Theorists
• Intelligence is malleable.
– Quality that can be increased through
Desire similar outcome
• achieving good scores, doing “well”
Different motivation for pursuing this outcome
“The main thing I want when I do my
school work is to show how good I am
at it.”
“In school I am always seeking
opportunities to develop new skills
and acquire new knowledge.”
Consequences Related to Fixed and Malleable
Views of Intelligence (Dweck, 1999)!
Students who view intelligence as Students who view intelligence as
being a fixed entity tend to:
being malleable tend to:
• Believe that they only have
a certain amount of
intelligence and that it
cannot be changed
• Believe that intelligence can
be cultivated through
• Avoid challenges and seek
easy successes—pass up
valuable learning
• Pursue and enjoy
• Desire to look smart at all
• Care less about “looking
• Worry about failure and
question their ability
• Engage in self-monitoring
and self-instruction
• Focus on performance
• Focus on learning goals
Preliminary Results
At the end of the summer bridge component . . .
• there were increases in students’ confidence in their
mathematics ability.
• there were gains in student understanding of how to
work hard to be successful.
• students believed that they were in charge of their own
learning and could be agents of change.
• there were gains in students’ sense of belonging and
• there was a decrease in anxiety about failing
• persistence, identification, and enjoyment in
mathematics increased significantly.
Model of the Program
District and Campus Logistics
Recruitment, planning, and implementation
(November 2007 to April 2008)
• Site leaders and school administrators hold information
sessions, select teachers, and recruit and select students.
• Teachers participate in professional development.
Summer program
(June 2008 to August 2008)
• 14-day summer program
• Precursor to year-long effort
AYD is one necessary but not sufficient component of improving the
campus/district Algebra I program.
District and Campus Logistics
Before the school year starts
(July 2008 to August 2008)
• Students scheduled in their AYD teacher’s Algebra classes, at
least five per class
Academic year program
(August 2008 to May 2009)
• Academic year kickoff for all AYD teachers and students
• At least one gathering of AYD students and teachers per
quarter to review and monitor AYD learning, application, and
AYD is one necessary but not sufficient component of improving the
campus/district Algebra I program.
AYD Initiative Resources
• Full AYD curriculum in Agile Mind for the summer
program, including exciting animations to illustrate youth
development and mathematics concepts
• Detailed plans and lab sheets for off-line as well as online
activities (including off-computer games and activities to
engage students—it is summer!)
• Thoughtful and comprehensive support for teaching the
curriculum in the Advice to Teachers section
• Student and teacher access to AYD resources throughout
the school year
• Activities for teachers to use with students as they
regularly meet during the school year
Contact Information
Lisa Brown
[email protected]
Danielle Seabold
[email protected]
Susan Hull, Project Director
[email protected]
AYD Selected References
• Adelman, C. (2006). The Toolbox Revisited: Paths to Degree Completion from High School Through College.
Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Education. Retrieved February 20, 2006.
• Aronson, J., Fried, C. & Good, C. (2002). Reducing the Effects of Stereotype Threat on African American
College Students by shaping theories of intelligence. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology. 38, 113–125.
• Aronson, J. & Steele, C. M. (2005). Stereotypes and the fragility of human competence, motivation, and selfconcept. In C. Dweck & E. Elliot (Eds.), Handbook of Competence & Motivation. New York, Guilford.
• Dweck, C. S. (2006). Mindset. New York: Random House.
• Dweck, C. S. (2007). The Perils and Promises of Praise. Educational Leadership, 65, 34–39. • Good, C., Aronson, J., Inzlicht, M. (2003). Improving Adolescents’ Standardized Test Performance: An
Intervention to Reduce the Effects of Stereotype Threat. Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology, 24, 645–
• Marks, H. M. (2000). Student engagement in instructional activity: Patterns in the elementary, middle, and high
school years. American Educational Research Journal. 37 (1), 153–184.
• National Research Council (2000). How people learn. Brain, mind, experience, and school. National Academy
• Sedlak, M. W., Wheeler, C. W., Pullin, D. C., & Cusick, P. A. (1986). Selling students short: Classroom bargains
and academic reform in the American high school. New York: Teacher’s College Press.
• Steele, C. M. (1997). A threat in the air: How stereotypes shape intellectual identity and performance. American
Psychologist, 52(6), 613–629.
• Steinberg, L., Brown, B., & Dornbusch, S. (1996). Beyond the classroom: Why school reform has failed and
what parents need to do. New York: Simon and Schuster.
• Vaughn, (2005). Tipping a middle school to excellence. Paper presented at the Technology Information
Conference for Administrative Leadership, Little Rock, AK.
Academic Youth Development
Shaping the Culture of Ninth-Grade Classrooms