Wildomar Elementary School
G.A.T.E. Program 2012-2013
Inspiration ∞ Challenge ∞ Leadership
TIM BEDLEY • INSTRUCTOR
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WES G.A.T.E. Learning Community
CHARACTER Being smart and having all the right answers on the test is worthless if you are lacking in character. Students will be trained in manners and respect, leadership skills, responsibility, and perseverence.
READING Reading is the fundamental skill that provides the foundation for all other learning. Students will be encouraged to read for pleasure. Students will be exposed to various genres of literature and taught to independently apply the 7 KEYS TO COMPREHENSION. We will be a community of readers. Readers don't go to the library once a week on Tuesdays; readers go to the library when they need a new book. Readers discuss their reading with other readers. Readers know how to choose books for themselves. Readers have favorite authors, genres, and topics. Readers can never get enough!
WRITING Clear and creative communication skills are essential in today's information age. Students will use writing to express themselves and share what they've learned. Most writing assignments will be authentic: students will write to an audience other than the teacher. Students will be coached in advanced writing skills.
MATHEMATICS Mathematical Reasoning will be expected in the WES GATE learning community. Students will UNDERSTAND math, not just memorize formulas and algorithms. Math levels will be designed to meet the needs of each student in the community.
SCIENCES Students will be introduced to various topics and encouraged to dig deeper in order to pursue personal interests.
OUTSIDE THE BOX Creativity will be fostered as students are engaged in project based activities. Video production, art, music, puppetry, drama and website design will all be incorporated into creative expression.
MY APPROACH TO "G.A.T.E."
ALL STUDENTS ARE GIFTED. Every student has gifts and talents. Some are gifted in art. Others are gifted in math. Some (not me) are gifted in mechanical areas like fixing things. Students identified as G.A.T.E. in the LEUSD are typically given that distinction because they possess excellent academic skills like reading, writing and math. Consequently, I will emphasize two character traits with the students. First, do not think of yourself more highly than you ought. Respect other students no matter their strengths or weaknesses. Secondly, branch out and try something new. Though fundamental, there's more to life than the three R's.
STUDENTS IN THE GIFTED PROGRAM SHOULD BE CHALLENGED WITH THE DIFFICULTY OF WORK, NOT THE QUANTITY OF WORK. How many kids would want to qualify for G.A.T.E. if they knew they would be "rewarded" with a bunch of extra homework? I want my students to love school and love learning. My challenge as a teacher is to find the perfect middle ground between boredom and frustration.
STUDENTS LEARN BEST WHEN THEY ARE ENGAGED IN AUTHENTIC LEARNING EXPERIENCES. Our classroom will be full of activity, discussion, and interaction between students.
THE G.A.T.E. LEARNING COMMUNITY SHOULD BLEND STRONG BASIC SKILL INSTRUCTION WITH PROJECTS BASED ON STUDENT INTEREST. There are just some things that kids need to learn, whether or not they are interested. However, students discover the joy of learning when they are allowed to pursue their own interests. Our classroom will consist of a blend of both of these priorities.
G.A.T.E. STUDENTS SHOULD BE PROVIDED UNIQUE OPPORTUNITIES. The G.A.T.E. learning community should offer different learning experiences than the regular ed classroom.
ABOUT YOUR INSTRUCTOR
I have been teaching in the public school system since 1988. I have taught grades 3 through 8, with all but one year of my experience in elementary school. I have experience teaching students of all ability levels, including G.A.T.E. I began teaching when I was 16 years old as a private music teacher. My teaching experience continued through my college years as a youth pastor. Teaching is my passion, and I work hard at my craft. I am continually learning new ideas through research and professional training. In addition, I train other teachers in reading instruction, classroom management, student engagement, integrating music with language arts and math, positive discipline and motivation, and critical thinking strategies. I have 4 G.A.T.E. children of my own. My wife Mary is an educator as well. She works for River Springs Charter School.
My hobbies include being a sports fan (baseball, basketball, and football), shooting and editing video, designing my website, sitting on the beach, reading, dating my wife, and playing with my 4 kids. I am also very involved in my church, Calvary Chapel of Lake Elsinore. I play the drums and love listening to "happy jazz" as well as most other styles of music. My favorite food is my wife's chocolate chip cookies and my favorite restaurant is anywhere they serve fresh sushi. I have lived in this valley since 1989 and have resided in Murrieta since 2000. I plan to work at Wildomar until I'm ready for retirement at about age 85.