ALC Advisories - what's new?

I think SECA, NECA, W-Alt, NWTC are always working on the same few big issues: attendance, credit attainment, SEL, engagement, connectedness,… and Advisory is often one of the places we try to make progress. I’m wondering what new things are happening this school year.

At SECA we are teaming staff members during advisory and our program facilitator is working with our other specialists to help guide what curricular items we are taking care of through advisory period. Here is our working document for this year. What’s new elsewhere?

SECA Advisory 2017-18

1 Like

Randi Rose and I developed some units for NECA to use this fall semester. I will share it here in the near future.

As far as the structure of Advisory (we call it “Foundations”) here are some things:

  • All Foundations classes are co-taught – even teachers that don’t normally have a co-teacher have a specialist or someone partner with them.

  • Students stay in the same Foundations class all year.

  • It is a 30 minute period, daily. Students earn .125 credits per quarter.

  • We do Circles in all Foundations classes, as well as academic advising and conferencing. Last year we also had a Young Men’s group and Young Women’s group that met weekly. This year I think we are going to expand that to include a Student Council and a couple other groups.

  • With the leftover instructional time, usually 2 days/week, we do SEL units, program events, College & career stuff, etc.

The curricular units we’ve laid out (and I’ll share soon) for this fall are as follows. (This all starts the 2nd week of school after “NECA Orientation week”).

  1. Literacy & Assessment (lit conferences, MAP testing, etc.)
  2. Focus & Be Present (multitasking vs. monotasking, cell phone addiction, etc.)
  3. College & Career Aspirations (MCIS PLP completion, career interest, value of college ed, etc.)
  4. SEL - Self Awareness (mindfulness, brain basics, etc.)
  5. SEL - Social Awareness
  6. Financial Literacy
  7. PBL capstone

They are “mini units” of sorts (2 weeks each) but we’re already realizing we probably won’t get all this stuff in during first semester.

Wow, looks like there is a lot going on at NECA Ben!

You know, I just started taking an ethics class and one of the big issues that has been addressed is that we no longer try to discuss or bring ethics into our classroom discussions. We may covertly discuss things but it rarely is ever a lively outright discussion. This could be an interesting topic to add to an advisory. The Kohlberg dilemmas like the ones found here might open up some good debates that could help with discussions centering around morals, social awareness, etc topics. It could really be as in depth or as simple as you would feel comfortable with depending on the time and the students attitudes. Just a thought.

@BenDrewelow in the PD on Thursday, you said something about the NECA Foundations class being mastery based.

What did you mean by that / how does that work?
What resources can you share?

Basically we did backwards design and, starting with a performance rubric, created units based on specific competencies we wanted students to learn. That’s a mouthful, but here’s what I’m talking about. Basically, we’re trying to make sure we grade students on performance and learning rather than just participation/attendance/being nice, etc.

Ok, Some of the support staff (nurse, psych, speech, social wkr, sel, lead) were trying to outline the things we think at least some of the SECA kids need to know. I’m not saying they don’t have this info in class, haven’t had time to check yet. As you may notice, they are in rough form…(don’t judge, it was a friday at 3) but we did have a few laughs as well as some serious conversation. We haven’t yet figured out if/how/when it would fit in, but we really think the kids need these basic survival skills. Here’s what we came up with after a brainstorm session came up with:

20 socially appropriate ways to say F U (as well as when/where/with whom:)

Is cell phone addiction real? I can’t put mine down!

How to argue effectively

How to compromise without looking stupid

Self advocate or Bi…, where’s the line

Fake News! Or is it???

Basic car care…how to know you’re not getting taken advantage of…what do you mean by maintenance…

15 quick and healthy meals for you to cook in under 15 minutes

Career exploration - aptitude stuff?

How to apply to a vocational school/college…and get financial aid

Finance 101. Basics like rent, heat bills, taxes, car insurance. Living on their own hidden costs.

Medical 101. How to make an appointment. How to talk to a medical provider on phone. How to make a list of questions before going to the doctor, and make a list of what you are wanting. How to fill a prescription

Forms 101. County forms, medical forms, school forms. An organization system to help them get them done and turned in on time.

Politics: AKA how to find your voting area. How to look up candidates/avoid fake news.

Healthy ways to express stress. Simple list of free stress reduction activities.

What the hell is a person supposed to do? A study in ethical dilemmas and ethical decision making?

Friend evaluation: How to know if they are worth keeping around.

Cooking on a budget. Eat healthy without it tasting like crap on a stick

Interviews: How to sell your strengths and use your weakness to show learning

Credit Scores. How do you get them. Why do I need to know them. How do they help me get stuff I want.

How to use a credit card. Do’s and Don’ts

How to evaluate a daycare/preschool/K school for your child.

Taxes. Forms Money Citizenship

You and the Law/Immigrants rights/interactions with the police, how to stay safe.

Budgets: There is an App for that.

Apps to help you organize…cause you’re always on your phone anyway

Soooooooooooo, if you have more ideas on what to add, how to proceed, let me know. Right now am asking the kids if they think they need to learn any of this stuff. They were actually pretty excited (particularly the basic car care).