- New Course Requests
- Algebra Investigations
- Zones of Reglulation
- Reconsideration of Materials Request
About Algebra Investigations
Everybody learns differently. That’s why Ozark School District now offers Algebra Investigations. Throughout the 9th-grade class, students acquire the same Missouri Learning Standards as the traditional Algebra class. Algebra Investigations, however, is geared for students who learn better in a hands-on and collaborative approach, rather than a lecture and homework approach.
Zones of Regulation
In order to help students identify and manage their behaviors, Ozark Tiger Paw Early Childhood Center and the four elementary schools are utilizing The Zones of Regulation® curriculum (or “The Zones” for short). The Zones of Regulation focuses on self-regulation. Self-regulation can go by many names, such as self-control, self-management, and impulse control. Here is a summary of what the curriculum consists of:
We are looking forward to collaborating with you during your child’s time with us at Ozark Schools.
- The lessons and learning activities are designed to help the students recognize when they are in the different Zones, as well as learn how to use strategies to change or stay in the zone they are in.
- The Zones is defined as the best state of alertness of both the body and emotions for the specific situation. For example, when a student plays on the playground or in a competitive game, it is beneficial to have a higher state of alertness. However, that same state would not be appropriate in the library.
- It is important to note that everyone experiences all of the Zones – the Red and Yellow Zones are not “bad” zones. All of the zones are expected at one time or another. The Zones of Regulation is intended to be neutral and not communicate judgment.
- It is important for us to use a common language here at school as well as at home.
- This chart helps us to do this.
How Zones are used in the classroom
The Zones of Regulation is also a good tool to use in the home environment. It can be beneficial for parents to use the same strategies and vocabulary at home as students use at school. Feel free to print and use the following resources in your home:
Ozark School Interventionists Equip Students for Success
Is it a small problem or a big problem?
These may be small words, but for East Elementary first-grade teacher Angela Brown, having a handout that explains the difference between small and big problems as well as gives solutions, solved a big problem in her classroom.
“It’s been a game changer for me. We talk in first grade all the time about if it’s a small problem or a big problem. These kinds of tools are really helpful for me as a teacher so that when the behavior interventionist is not in here, I still know how to carry out what she is trying to teach them,” Brown said. “The cool thing about having a behavior interventionist is there’s somebody else in the building who knows this kid like I do. Her goal is to support that kid, but I feel supported too.”
If you’re not familiar with behavior or academic interventionists, you’re not alone. They were new positions Ozark School District added in the 2021-22 school year to help overcome the learning gaps that lingered from the COVID pandemic. Each Ozark elementary school has an academic interventionist and a behavior interventionist with a combined goal to help students succeed.
“I cannot imagine our school community without these positions now that we have gone through one year with them,” said Emily Schaefer, academic interventionist at West Elementary. “The work that is being accomplished and the lives that are being transformed through intervention will have a definite ripple effect as these kids continue through middle school, high school, and even into adulthood.”
The role of the behavior interventionist is to help students with emotional regulation, coping skills and executive functioning skills. The interventionists visit classrooms and provide lessons that help students develop these necessary life skills.
“Our goal is to target these gaps, which in turn will strengthen academic and social behaviors and ultimately increase academic engagement,” said Sarah Long, behavior interventionist at East Elementary.
In the 2021-22 school year, the behavior interventionists focused on Zones of Regulation and Executive Functioning Lessons in kindergarten, first and second grades. These two concepts help students learn self-control, self-management and impulse control, which in turn helps students better focus and handle their emotions. This coming school year, the program is expanding through fourth grade.
“By modeling the Zones of Regulation and Executive Functioning Lessons in the classroom, we are providing added resources and offering a new level of support for teachers in dealing with students who struggle in those areas,” Long said.
While the behavior interventionists focus on a child’s behavior, the academic interventionists help identify students who may be struggling academically.
“I see students who range from needing a boost at the beginning of the year to students whose deficits are quite deep,” Schaefer said. “The instruction I provide in my room is very specific and intentional to that student’s needs. It does not replace core instruction in the classroom, but rather is additional instruction.”
Schaefer sets goals for students and finds ways to help them be successful in the classroom while increasing their confidence.
“I differentiate my instruction to include a variety of strategies. If how they are learning something in the classroom isn’t working, then my goal is to find a strategy or way that will help them become successful,” Schaefer said.
Schaefer and Long said having interventionists available early on will carry over into older grades, decreasing the need for intervention as students get older.
“We are changing the future for these children by equipping them with strategies, confidence and knowledge,” Schaefer said. “The end result is a learner who is happy, proud of their accomplishments, more confident and successful.”