The Role of the Teacher in Summit Learning

See the original YouTube video on The Summit Experience page (length: 4 minutes 4 seconds)

[scenes of teacher and students in class]


Katey Blood, Teacher at Camp Ernst Middle School in Burlington, Kentucky:
Personalized learning is just equipping children to know how they learn best and then giving them multiple resources to learn the way that fits them the best.

Kevin Fleischmann, Teacher at Camp Ernst Middle School in Burlington, Kentucky:
Everything seemed different at first, but really most of it is what we’ve been doing all along, just in a much more efficient manner, in a much more engaging manner and in a way that will allow kids to really develop lifelong learning skills.

It’s me teaching a couple skills, setting them up and going, okay, now it’s your turn, and watching them do that. So your expertise is still absolutely needed, it’s just done in a different way, it’s not just me up there doing the work.

There’s dozens and dozens of things you have to be able to do at a moments notice. And I think Summit has just like shifted which skills I use more often. I do a lot more life skills, I do a lot more differentiation.

Darla Payne, Principal at Ockerman Middle School in Florence, Kentucky:
Before, teachers often could only teach to the middle, teach one way, at one time and complete one unit. Now they have a chance to teach to all of their students at different times, but through small groups or through personalized learning and the mentoring time.

[Transition screen that shows the title Project Time]


We’re trying to create actual real products that people might see. So our first project is actually, I call it an online movie review magazine. But it’s going to be put out there. Summit has definitely kind of helped me take that step forward to, rather than just being something you write and I read it, your parents might read and it gets put on the refrigerator, it’s actually something that’s going to be out in the real world.

Melissa Hrycak, Teacher at Ockerman Middle School in Florence, Kentucky:
With our current project, for example, we’re working on global issues and how they impact the world, number one, and then what can we do to change it? Before, we would have talked about the problems like hunger or water, but we wouldn’t have touched as much on solutions or we would have talked about what some solutions could be, but not really carry those out. And that’s the extra step.

[Transition screen that shows the title Mentor Time]


Gina Dewar, Teacher at Ockerman Middle School in Florence, Kentucky:
The mentor piece of Summit is my favorite part. I think that it’s so awesome that we have that 40 minutes built into the day to meet with the kids one on one. That’s something I definitely didn’t have before. But it gives me time to learn things about the students that I probably would not have learned otherwise, especially with those students that don’t typically open up to teachers. It gives me a chance to sit down with them one on one and learn things in their life that are just maybe more personal and things that help me to be prepared for what they might bring into my classroom.

You connect with all of them, you get to know them so well, and you’re able to then find out what works for them in a better way. And even better, you’re able to help them figure out what works for them. So really getting to know them and building relationships with them and helping them figure out how to persevere through their life. And I’m honest with them. I like to say to them, things aren’t always perfect, you’re going to have some times this year when you’re going to struggle and you’re going to struggle at other points in your life, so we might as well figure out ways to cope now. And you can use the same strategies in the future. So it’s still teaching, but it’s teaching some life skills.

[Transition screen that shows the title Personalized Learning Time]


The data is there and it’s immediate. As fast as I was as grading, it would still take me a couple days to get them that feedback. Now they know immediately, so that allows them right there in that moment to take that data for themselves, to go back and get what they need and fill in the gaps for learning. And then, of course, it’s data for me, and it allows me to see which kids are on track, which kids are way ahead, where they’re at, and I know every individual student. The data is amazing, it’s right there.

Oh our teachers are excited about it, they say they wish they’ve taught this way all the time. We’re going for Summit next year, so everybody’s going to be part of the family.