The IDRA Newsletter is published 10 times a year. Each edition focuses on issues in education, striving to provide many different perspectives on the topics covered and to define its significance in the state and national dialogue. The IDRA Newsletter can only be mailed to U.S.addresses, but pdf and web copies are available online.
April 2012 ~ Articles
Focus ~ Curriculum Quality
Newsletter Executive Editor
María "Cuca" Robledo Montecel, Ph.D.
Professional Development in the 21st Century (Part II) – School-Based Teacher Professional Learning Communities
Today’s teachers face unprecedented challenges that require collective thinking and problem solving informed by increased teacher learning and reflection opportunities. Well thought-out and research supported teaching provides experiences enriched by reflection and interaction with colleagues. This article by Juanita García, Ph.D., describes three interrelated functions that are critical for contributing to a teacher’s knowledge base, and it will share insights into how one successful school built a learning community that provides professionalism and the ability to act upon what is learned.
Stellar Science Strategy – #1 Building on English Learners Proficiency for Effective Science Instruction
Through an action research based approach, IDRA has identified seven umbrella research supported strategies to help English learners achieve in the science classroom. In this article, Kristin Grayson, M.Ed., describes the first strategy, its research foundation and the techniques that teachers can use to implement this strategy in their classrooms.
Two-Way Dual Language Immersion Programs
For English learners to have an equitable education, programs must be in place that value languages other than English as means for learning the academic concepts required of successful students. In this newsletter article, Kristin Grayson, M.Ed., outlines how a two-way dual language immersion program can help make this a reality for English learners.
Other short stories…
Palmview High School Leadership Day (
April 2012 ~ Newsletter Plus
Special Online-Only Supplement:
Teaching Spanish in Texas Schools – The Spanish Language Arts and Reading (SLAR),
Classnotes podcasts on professional learning communities:
Classnotes podcasts on teaching science:
IDRA Science Smart!™ Professional Development Program
Customized to strengthen your existing science curriculum and pedagogy, Science Smart! helps teachers engage diverse learners through an authentic inquiry-based curriculum that is aligned with state standards. Science Smart! deepens students’ conceptual understanding of science, keeping the “why” in scientific discovery.
Science Instructional Strategies for English Learners ~ A Guide for Elementary and Secondary Grades
A practical resource with seven research-based strategies for instruction of English learners in science with teaching learning premises, research support, essential teacher competencies, and steps for strategy implementation – along with a matrix of techniques for implementation. Customized professional development also is available. (No ISBN; 20 Pages; English; 2012) $20.00
Minority Women in Science ~ Forging the Way
This student workbook and teacher guide includes: profiles of seven minority women scientists who have surmounted barriers to forge the way for themselves and future scientists, science lessons for the classroom, and life skills lessons. Student Workbook (ISBN: 1-878550-67-5; 2000; 32 pages; paperback) $15.00 • Teacher’s Guide (ISBN: 1-878550-68-3; 2000; 94 pages; paperback) $25.00
Classnotes podcast about using Semillitas de aprendizaje™ in the classroom: