Parent and Teacher Impact (PTIX)

PTIX 500   Building Meaningful Partnerships: Connecting Schools, Families, and Communities 3 credits

Educating young people is a task shared by many parties. A student’s success doesn’t rest solely in the hands of his or her teachers. Parents, community groups, and local businesses can all play a vital part in educating America’s youth. When schools work collaboratively with these groups, students thrive both personally and academically, and the adults benefit as well when they know they are positively influencing the education system and the lives of their youth. In this course, you will gain concrete, actionable strategies for partnering with families and community organizations to foster meaningful educational experiences for students. From examples of successful partnerships to practical applications, you will learn how to seek out, connect with, and facilitate effective partnerships with the broader community. In addition, you’ll learn how to engage the parents of special needs children and English language learners in their children’s education. Using the techniques from this course, you’ll be ready to implement a plan to successfully involve your community in fostering all students’ achievement. This course is offered through Advancement Courses.

PTIX 501   Building Parent Engagement 3 credits

Parents play an integral role in their children’s education. However, one of the biggest challenges for teachers is reaching and building positive relationships with all parents. Barriers to successful communication can easily arise, whether it’s because parents have negative attitudes toward school, are overworked or have limited time, have children with special needs, or have limited English language proficiency. It’s up to you to overcome these barriers, and this course will show you how. In this course, you will gain practical techniques and concrete, actionable tools to foster parental involvement. Examples include planning information nights, using technology to maintain regular contact with parents, collaborating with parents to meet curriculum standards (such as CCSS and ESSA), and creating a strong home-to-school connection. You’ll examine your current strengths and weaknesses regarding parental engagement and create personalized strategies for improving them. In addition, you’ll be prepared to successfully reach parents of students who may need extra support in the classroom and parents who have barriers to participation such as limited time or access to technology. By the end of this course, you will be equipped with a comprehensive set of tools for engaging and empowering all students’ parents to become active partners in their children’s school success. This course is offered through Advancement Courses.

PTIX 502   Building Student Character Through Service Learning 3 credits

With its focus on problem-solving and authentic, real-world application, service learning is one of the most significant ways to introduce your students to the skills they’ll need to thrive in today’s classrooms and tomorrow’s careers. Service learning combines learning goals and community service in ways that can enhance your students’ engagement with and achievement in academic and civic matters. In this course, you’ll learn how to integrate service learning principles and opportunities into your curriculum and design effective instruction, projects, and reflection opportunities that will hone your students’ skills in collaboration, communication, critical thinking, and creativity. You’ll examine strategies for incorporating relevant topics that will meaningfully engage your students, and for overcoming any challenges associated with creating service learning opportunities. In addition, you’ll gain tools for encouraging participation from family members, community members, and local organizations in student-driven service projects. Using the techniques from this course, you’ll be able to use service learning to engage your students in community-based projects that will demonstrate the significance of civic engagement and creating social change. This course is offered through Advancement Courses.

PTIX 503   Developing Civic Knowledge through Hands-On Community Engagement 3 credits

What must students know and do to improve their communities and influence their government? That is the central question related to civic engagement in the classroom. Civics in the traditional sense has a reputation for being stale and disconnected from the real world. However, in today’s world, it is more important than ever for young people to develop the knowledge and skills they will need to take on the challenges they see in the world around them. This course offers strategies for reinvigorating civic learning, making it come alive in both content area learning and the community. By reframing how you think about civic education, you will discover how it can become an essential part of the practices and values of any classroom. You will be able to build connections with the community and also enable students to carry their learning well beyond the classroom. Students will see how classroom learning empowers them to act, advocate, and affect change in their communities and beyond. By the end of the course, you will be able to incorporate all of these principles of civic knowledge, skills, values, and actions into your classroom practice and instructional plans. This course is offered through Advancement Courses.

PTIX 504   Educating for Character & Value 3 credits

Instilling strong values in children can create an entire generation that helps society become a more peaceful and civilized place. Teachers can play a vital role in cultivating these values, but having to implement new standards and curricular requirements can make teachers hesitant to add a “nonacademic” subject to their already full plates. However, teaching character and values is not about adding these subjects, but about integrating them effectively into existing classroom practices and curricula. In this course, you will examine the importance of teaching children character and values, the ramifications of not teaching these principles, and how you can teach values without involving religion, politics, or other personal stances. You’ll explore various universal values in depth, understanding how they enrich students’ lives, and develop concrete strategies for how to implement values-related education in the classroom. In addition, you’ll learn how to model positive behaviors in your own life and classroom, and how to use literature and media to teach lasting character lessons to your students. By the end of this course, you’ll be equipped with comprehensive strategies for integrating character- and values-related education in the classroom and forging responsible 21st-century citizens. This course is offered through Advancement Courses.

PTIX 505   Preparing Students for the Workforce 3 credits

Determining a career path has become a complex process as our society advances and people become more specialized. High school students are expected to make decisions that will impact their education, families, lifestyles, and life satisfaction for years to come. Teachers play a crucial role in helping their students navigate this critical time of life, so it’s essential that educators have a good framework for guiding students through these decisions. Building upon the work of classic career theorists, including John Holland and Donald Super, this course will take a comprehensive look at the career decision-making process, beginning with distinguishing between a career and a job or hobby, through selecting a career and landing and keeping a job. You’ll develop strategies for helping students understand themselves and identify personal preferences, values, and strengths. In addition, you’ll learn the processes involved in identifying motivation sources, exploring potential careers, and honing the soft and hard skills students need to develop as professionals. Using the techniques from this course, you will be prepared to guide your students through the process of becoming career-ready professionals who have a strong foundation for making the decisions that await them. This course is offered through Advancement Courses.

PTIX 506   Shaping Global Citizens through World Crisis Education 3 credits

All over the world today, children experience crises that impact them as they grow into adolescence and adulthood. A lack of access to education and clean water, the prevalence of armed conflict in their region, and poverty of all kinds challenge their daily lives. For children in American classrooms, it is imperative that these crises and difficult or dangerous conditions be studied and understood, so that they grow into compassionate and active global citizens that understand their role in the world and strive to make a positive impact. In this course, we will examine some of the most immediate world crises, the impact they have on the children that experience them, and strategies that you can use to teach your own students about those crises in the classroom. This course is offered through Advancement Courses.

PTIX 507   Successful Parent-Teacher Conferences 3 credits

Parents are just as critical to their children’s academic and social success as teachers are. However, opportunities for parent–teacher interactions are limited, so it’s critical to maximize times such as parent–teacher conferences to form strong relationships and a unified vision for your students’ health and growth. In this course, you will learn how to host congenial, effective parent–teacher conferences that foster relationships with parents for the rest of the year. You’ll examine the critical components of a strong parent–teacher relationship and how you can partner with parents to develop students’ unique strengths and weaknesses. In addition, you’ll create strategies for sharing student data, approaching difficult topics with parents, and involving students appropriately in your communications with their parents. With the techniques from this course, you’ll be equipped to communicate with parents not only at conferences but also throughout the school year to build a network of supportive adults for your students. This course is offered through Advancement Courses.