Participant Comments

Effects on Teaching

“I have made growth in how I track student participation and responses. I am able to quickly assess who is understanding lessons, and where I need to review concepts.” – Cotsen Fellow

“I have seen huge growth in the effectiveness of my teaching from having the time to collaborate with my mentor.” – Cotsen Fellow

“My teaching has changed dramatically. I no longer can plan my lessons months in advance because I don’t know where my students will be months ahead. I try to see what they have learned and plan accordingly. If they understand a certain concept, I don’t keep teaching it, because the math book says to, I move on to another concept.” – Cotsen Alum

“I made most of my growth as a teacher in the last two years rather than in the last thirteen. I was alone before. These two years, I’ve had another set of eyes to coach me and keep me focused.” (Cotsen Fellow Cindy Wechsung, Alvarado Elementary, Long Beach, CA)

Effects on Students

“Having a more individualized instructional program has led to higher student achievement, a deeper investment by students in their own learning and an overall purpose in the classroom that is felt by everyone.” – Cotsen Alum

“I can say with confidence that all my students have made growth, academically and socially. Many students have turned their curiosities into independent research projects, now that they have acquired the strategies and tools for learning how to learn new information. The overall level of thinking that occurs in the classroom is amazing. Students think critically about topics presented in class and apply that knowledge in other areas of study.” – Cotsen Alum

“All of my students this year are at or above the standard in math assessments. They adore writing and beg to do it even when it’s time for something else.” – Cotsen Alum

“On the first district assessment, my students scored 1s and 2s on a three-point scale. The most recent scores were 2s and 3s. Students say, ‘Thank you. The test was so easy.’ Students are now happy doing math and more are doing their homework.” (Cotsen Fellow Rosie Tamargo, F.D.R. Elementary, Lawndale, CA)

Effects on Schools

“The exposure to inquiry and cutting edge professional development raises the level of teaching across the school.” – Principal, Lawndale Elementary School District

“We’ve become a more cohesive and supportive community at our school.” – Cotsen Alum

“Cotsen helps with a big part of what I want at the school, accountability for students’ success.” – Cotsen Principal

“It (the program) has helped to create a climate of professional communication. You have arrived when your staff does their own staff development. I provided stipends for pairs of teachers to learn from each other this year. People want to get smarter.” (Principal Frank Noyes, Addams Elementary, Lawndale, CA)