HSD Schools Enter a New ERA of Teaching & Learning



Hockinson Schools are aligning around three primary facets of its teacher evaluation model to increase student learning and achievement.

The 8 evaluative criteria, 30+ components, and multiple indicators of the Danielson Framework for Teaching have been distilled down to three guiding themes for lesson design and teacher evaluative feedback. These themes - Engagement, Relationships, and Assessment - are at the heart of both in-person and remote instruction, and their acronym (ERA) will help to build a common vision around instruction across the HSD.

Here is a little more about each theme:


Instructional strategies and content that create a high level of student interest, participation, and motivation to learn.

What it looks like:

  • Eagerness to start. Curiosity. Relevance. Intrinsic motivation. 
  • Variety of learning opportunities
  • Practices that activate the learner’s prior knowledge and answer the question “Why are we learning this?”
  • A buzz in the classroom
  • Student ownership of learning and going above and beyond
  • Little need for classroom management



“Learners don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.”

What it is:

  • Relationships are essential to learning on all fronts: Teacher-to-Student, Teacher-to-Parents, and Teachers-to-Teachers
  • Intellectual risks by students and teachers being real and accessible
  • Relationships and trust that counter learning impediments like bias, trauma, and skill gaps
  • Starting slow to go fast: Knowing students early on helps teachers cover content effectively and efficiently 
  • An inclusive classroom environment and student voice in school culture


Assessment...for Learning

Assessment is a roadmap for learning showing us where to start, where we are going, if we are on the right path, when we arrive, and where to go next. 

What it looks like:

  • Frequent checks for understanding that produce timely, actionable feedback for students
  • Differentiated assessment and instruction that help students move from dependent to independent learners
  • Students are part of the process are aware of standards, targets, and learning criteria
  • Variety of ongoing formative assessments
  • Use of student self-assessment strategies that support student growth

It will require a team effort to take ERA from vision to reality. Implementing ERA will involve a healthy amount of professional development as well as the participation by our teachers, students, administrators and families.

It also took a team effort to create.  A group of five educational leaders, Steve Marshall (Superintendent), Colleen Anders (Director of Teaching and Learning), and Cari Delbridge, Kim Abegglen, and Shannon McCombs (Instructional Coaches) met throughout the 2020-21 school year to develop the model.  The development process also included teacher and student input. 

All of this work culminated in a poster to illustrate and define Engagement, Relationships, and Assessment. Visitors will notice this poster in schools and classrooms to remind everyone that all three Hockinson Schools are entering a new ERA of teaching and student learning and achievement.

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