The Training and Technical Assistance Center (TTAC) at George Mason University (GMU)

... is part of the statewide system of Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) TTACs. Specialists provide professional development that focuses on improving academic outcomes for students with disabilities through targeted technical assistance (TA) to schools. The goal is to help school personnel gain knowledge and skills to prepare students with disabilities for graduation with a diploma or completion of an appropriate program, and successfully prepare them for post-secondary education, employment, and independent living.

TTAC at GMU in Region 4 provides assistance to the following school divisions:

Cities

Counties

TTAC News Brief

Number talks are"...classroom conversations around purposefully crafted computation problems . . . that students solve mentally" (Parrish, 2011). Number talks facilitate the development of computational fluency "while thinking and reasoning like mathematicians" (Math Perspectives, 2007). "During number talks, students are asked to communicate their thinking when presenting and justifying solutions . . . which leads to the development of more accurate, efficient, and flexible strategies" (Parrish, 2011).

September 2016

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Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is a research- based set of principles to guide the design of learning environments that are accessible and effective for all. UDL guidelines address the WHY (engagement), the WHAT (representation), and the HOW (action and expression) of learning (www.cast.org). In a traditional classroom, a teacher may devote a great deal of time and energy to planning lessons but unknowingly create barriers that exclude some children. Using UDL principles, educators can be ready to reach all learners at any age or grade level.

May 2016

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Special Opportunity!

Visit a Co-Teaching Demonstration Site in Region 4

The Virginia Department of Education has identified 27 co-teaching demonstration sites through the Excellence in Co-Teaching Initiative, including 6 at middle schools and high schools in Region 4. These demonstration sites provide opportunities for co-teaching partners throughout the state to observe inclusive practices in action. The co-teaching teams at the demonstration sites share their co-planning, co-instructing, and co-assessing practices that support successful outcomes for all students.

For more information about the Excellence in Co-Teaching Initiative, or to arrange a visit to one of these model sites, please contact Dr. Lynn Wiley, Director, VDOE TTAC at GMU at hwiley@gmu.edu or 703.993.4496.