How do Tier 1, 2, 3 impact the classroom: T1I E2

How do Tier 1, 2, 3 impact the classroom: T1I E2

Jonily : We've all been through
a math class in our lives. I

want you to think right now
about a green math experience

that you've had. And I want you
to think about a red math

experience you've had.

Cheri Dotterer: Hello, everyone.
I'm Cheri Dotterer. And I'm here

with Jonily Zupancic. And we are
here at tier one interventions.


Jonily : mathematics, one of the
biggest deficits that we see is

for students having a lack of
prerequisite skills. What's

happening is, students are not
getting the foundational

instruction. That is allowing an
opportunity for increased memory

and retention for any content
area. But we already know the

deficits they're having in
mathematics. And there is a

direct correlation to the fine
motor and handwriting piece. So

the reason Sherry and I are
having this conversation, this

foundational conversation before
we attack you, with some very

intense content today, is it's
important to understand the

purpose and why we're presenting
to you today's content. And what

we hope for the results to be,
we hope for the results to be

that we increase focus,
attention, memory, retention of

content and engagement in the
regular classroom, so that the

majority of kids so that 85 to
90% of our kids get exactly what

they need, in the 40 minutes of
math class a day or any class.

In the regular general
classroom, which we're calling

tier one,

Cheri Dotterer: I want to share
a thing called the megaphone

effect, before you go and
explain the tears. And that is

for every year that a child is
struggling and not maintaining

the proficiency. In that subject
area, the megaphone gets bigger

and bigger. It takes five years,
five years for them to catch up,

where all their peers are moving
ahead. They're back here. It

they move here, their peers are
moving ahead there. They have so

much more difficult time. So if
we can get these kids

understanding, writing concepts,
math concepts, reading concepts,

in those state those early years
kindergarten, first and second

grade, they will, we can reduce
that megaphone effect by the

time that they're in secondary
ed, which is where Jonily

started yet, but has discovered
that these gaps in mathematical

education, we can reduce the
megaphone, and we can help more

kids with less expense.

Jonily : Now, this is the really
great news as I share with us,

because I want to formally
define each tear, we keep

throwing out these terms and
through this conversation. And I

just want to make sure everybody
listening understands what we're

talking about. But there is
absolutely great news.

Absolutely great news. The
content that Cheri and I are

bringing to you today are
minimal time interventions. We

are streamlining and simplifying
the entire intervention process.

And when I say intervention, I
mean for mathematics and non

academic. So intervention for
focus, memory, retention,

engagement, and then
interventions to understand the

math content. That combination
we've simplified, we've

streamlined, and we've taken it
down to the bare minimum bottom

lines that we can do in the
classroom. So not only are we

reducing the time it's going to
take to get these kids up to

par. We're actually reducing the
amount of things that we have to

do. So we can actually do more
in less time. Now, as we said

before, and I'm going to go
ahead and share my screen. So if

so Sherry and I are going to be
putting this conversation on a

lot of different platforms. So
just understand that if you're

only on an auditory if you're
only on a listening platform

right now, like a podcast,
you're not going to see my

screen. I'm telling you
everything that's on it. But for

those of you that can see the
visual and see the slide deck,

it's just another another sense
that you can see here, I'm just

going to define each tears. We
have three tiers to support our

clients, our students, tier
three, tier two, tier one. Tier

three, is what Cheri was talking
about, as far as occupational

therapy, the typical servicing
with occupational therapy is you

pull one student out of the
classroom and you work one on

one, outside of the classroom,
typically disconnected to

whatever content they're
teaching in the classroom.

Sherry, correct me if I'm wrong,
add anything to that.

Cheri Dotterer: No, that's
exactly what happens is we have

these goals as an OT that we
need to achieve. But a lot of

times, they're not necessarily
integrated with what's happening

in the classroom. Then I tried
when I was working with all my

kids, I will be talking to the
teacher before my sessions

going, what's happening in
spelling, what's happening in

vocabulary? What's happening in
math, where do you see the

struggles, so that I could
incorporate some of those

activities into my sessions. But
yet, there are some times that

those foundational skills
underneath there are so profound

that incorporating academics
does not happen. And

Jonily : academically tier
three, when we're in schools,

logistically, it's not often
possible to pull one on one. So

even at a tier three
intervention level, if I'm

pulling students, as a
specialist and intervention

specialist, or any kind of
therapist, any other kind of

therapist or special support
person, I may be pulling two or

three students out of the
classroom, because logistically,

I just we just have too many
numbers. And we can't serve

everyone, there are a lot of
adjustments that we make. But

tier three out of the classroom,
typically one on one, tier two

intervention can happen in or
outside of the classroom. For an

academic teacher, I can do
centers in my classroom, or

stations in my classroom, or I
could set up some kind of

structure in my classroom, where
I actually have the ability as a

teacher to work in the classroom
with a small group of students

to provide what that small group
of students needs. Tier Two can

happen in the classroom, or I
can have a specialist or support

person that pulls students out
in a small group and tier two

can happen out of the classroom.
Tier Two is not as critical of

needs as tier three, when we're
talking tier three and serving

students at the tier three
level, we're talking very

critical needs, we're talking
maybe one to 2% of our

population, maybe up to 5%. But
even that gets a little bit big,

what we've been talking about as
far as tier one. And the reason

we're focusing on tier one,
which I'll define in a moment

is, as Sherry and I have been
talking about the numbers that

have been escalating for tier
three services, there shouldn't

be many more than 5% of our
population that are in need of

tier three services. If there
are, we need to really evaluate

what's happening in the regular
classroom, because the regular

classroom should be serving 85
to 90% of our kids. And it's not

the kids, it's us. So that's
what we're on a mission to

spread conversation about is if
we have that many kids that have

tier three needs, then we need
to change what's happening at

tier one. Tier Two numbers have
also been escalating. Tier Two

are not as critical as tier
three. So it's gonna be much

easier to serve more of those
tier two kids in the tier one

classroom. And then finally,
what we are focusing on because

I believe wholeheartedly, and
through my study of research

that says good instruction, the
techniques and tips and

strategies that Sherry and I are
going to give it to you today.

Good instruction at the tier one
level will reduce the number of

students that are going to have
those needs at tier two and tier

three. Tier one is in the
classroom, whole class

instruction. full inclusion
mainstream kids of all needs all

ability levels, academic and non
academic. Through differentiated

instruction. Differentiated
Instruction means that the

classroom teacher is
knowledgeable and trained and

skilled in providing a lesson so
that all students needs are met.

That is what Cheri and I are
focusing on as far as tier one.

And the ultimate goal not only
is to improve math,

understanding and achievement,
improved understanding of number

improved Fact Fluency improve
all of those math skills, but

also to improve memory and
retention of content, increased

focus and engagement. Also
increasing and improving

motivation. so that we break
down those barriers and allow

more students access to
learning. Sherry, thoughts on

that, or any other additions to
that before we get into our


Cheri Dotterer: Sure. So I had
an experience when I was working

with one of my contracts. And I
was asked to see a kiddo who was

four years old, he was in a pre
K classroom, in a building that

housed pre K through third, or
fourth, third or fourth grade,

so there was a lot of kids, the
pre K kids had a special

entryway, so they were not going
through the entire school

building. And when I first got
to the school, I went through

the main office got directed to
where the classroom was. And I

did pull out, the only place I
had to work was the hallway, to

work with his head, trying to
get to know him. The teacher

really realized what was going
on. She said, Here, come into

the classroom, and you sit here
and work with this kiddo. We got

to know one another a little bit
because I was listening to her

as she was getting ready to do
centers with the kids. And I, at

some point in time, after the
kids had gone home, we had

really long discussions. And so
this was my first experience at

tier two. And, and it wasn't
really that I was working tier

two, necessarily, but she gave
me an opportunity to do

something. And I ended up being
a center myself, I would talk to

her the week before find out
what her overall theme of the

week was going to be. And then I
would come up with an activity.

And I actually saw all of the
kids in the class. I only got to

build for the 30 minutes, I was
seeing the kid, but I ended up

spending two hours there every
week. Now, that is not something

in general OT is going to be
able to do I know that. Okay.

But what I learned from that was
some of the thought process and

some of the foundation of why am
I not helping in a tier one

classroom. When I got to one of
my other buildings that I did

have kindergarteners, I was
working with those kindergarten

teachers, when they were having
their meanings. They have their

session meanings once a week or
whatever. Periodically, I would

go into those meetings and we
would talk about handwriting,

this was all before COVID, long
time before COVID. And I never

made the connection to
mathematics until you and I met

but it's just like those areas
of me that are so out there.

It's going to take innovation,
it's going to take changing the

mindset of administrators to
help make these changes. I

mentioned that Theresa was on
the call. Theresa is also an

occupational therapist, and she
and I were talking in one of our

sessions this week, that
administration does not see the

benefit at this time of OT and
teacher in the classroom at the

same time, collaborating, co
teaching on the same topic. They

see it as double billing. And we
need to change the mindset from

the money standpoint, because
that's what's the one of the

barriers to our success.

Jonily : Love it. Love it. And
when we're thinking about

regular classroom, we have
people, a lot of times in our

schools, we've got people and
we're not logistically utilizing

the people in probably the best
ways to maximize services for

kids. So I have a classroom
right now that has 36 kids in

it. Now it's not a public
school. So we don't have any

restrictions on ratio, but I've
got a classroom we've got 36

kids in it. And we are moving
leaps and bounds with these kids

that even though there's this
huge number of humans in the

classroom, and when I come in
the classroom those days there's

two Thus, teachers, the majority
of the time, there's one teacher

with those 36 kids. And we have
structured tier one, we have

structured that classroom. So
these kids are actually learning

more in less time, they're
getting more individual needs

met, they're getting more
through tier one differentiated

instruction. And instead of
COVID, continually affecting our

excuses, our emotions, our
mental state our mindset, let's

use it to our advantage. And
let's try to figure out how we

can do more with less, and bring
back our joy, bring back the joy

in schools, the joy in
education. And we can do that

very minimally, mathematically.
All we need are 12 anchor

problems and tasks. That's my
most struggling students with

the highest amount of ADHD
students with dyscalculia

dysgraphia, dyslexia, learning
disabilities, ADHD, they are my

students that remember the most.
And what's hysterical is some of

those students with learning
disabilities, they'll be like

Mr. Panic, I remember you have
that green shirt on that day we

did this. The amount of extreme
memory and retention is unheard

of. Because I've delivered
mathematics in a way that has

become an experience and not a
lesson. Now, let me stop for a

moment. Sherry, I was just gonna
bring you in, because this is

exactly your cue for giving us
your perspective on what I just

talked about. Yes.

Cheri Dotterer: So from a
neuroscience, an anatomical

perspective. So thinking of your
brain is, has different levels,

you have the back of the brain,
the brainstem, your brainstem

goes up into the central part of
your brain as called your limbic

system. And then that goes to
the cortex, which is the outer

part, which is when you look at
pictures of a brain, and you see

all the curves and the swirls
and stuff. That's what is the

cortex. But that inner part of
the brain is where all the

memory gets stored in the limbic
system. And it gets sorted into

different parts of the brain
then. But as we are filtering

the messages coming in from the
outside, that's the sensory

system. You're bringing
information in from the outside.

So as you are encouraging the
Tell Me More method in the way

that you delivering your math.
Hey, we just a couple of weeks

ago, we did this, and you have
the kids are saying, Yes, Mr.

Pennsic, you wore that green
shirt. That moment that they

recalled that when you taught
that before, notice the depth,

the what you were wearing that
day, what the temperature was

outside, what was going on in
the neighboring classroom that

they overheard what was going on
at home, that was all of those

pieces all get put together into
one memory, one experience. And

that gets stored together. And I
often say that it's like a

filing cabinet. Every moment of
your day gets put into a folder.

And all of the components of it
are little sticky notes on the

outside. If it's a positive
experience, think of the sticky

note as green. If it's a
negative experience, think of it

as red. And if it's, maybe I'll
do that again, but maybe not.

It's going to be yellow. It's I
don't know how many of you put

it put this in the chat. How
many of you have heard about the

zones of regulation? This is
where I'm going with this is the

stickies on the outside of the
folder are the are another way

of relating to the term zones of
regulation. So the zones of

regulation are identifying the
feeling that's associated with

the emotion And so I see that
some of you have heard about

these in the past. Did you know
that emotions and feelings are

different? So when we are
looking at that experience that

happened four weeks ago, and the
kids that are finally getting

it, because of the way you
approach the mathematics, you're

going to see that difference.
Does that make any sense? I'm

getting a Yes, from Krista. And
generally, did I answer that I

did that? Answer that comment
effectively enough. This

Jonily : is so fantastic.
Because the filing cabinet is

some is a reference task,
basically, of sherry. See,

Sherry has her own reference
anchors. And we are going to be

talking about the filing cabinet
a lot. And I love how she put

it, the green is a positive, the
red is a negative, I want you to

reflect right now, on the
typical traditional math

classroom, whether you're a math
teacher, yourself, or you're a

therapist or occupational
therapist, you don't have your

own classroom, we've all been
through a math class in our

lives. I want you to think right
now about a green math

experience that you've had. And
I want you to think about a read

math experience you've had, I
guarantee that 80% of our

population, kids and adults, the
majority of their math,

classroom experiences are read.

Cheri Dotterer: That goes along
with in general, what we recall,

we recall 80 to 90% of negative
feelings over positive feelings,

we really need to draw out the
positive by drawing out the

positive that let's go with that
idea of the mountaintop

experience that mountaintop
experience that, oh my gosh,

that excitement that I this was
the main most amazing day is

going to get forgotten much
faster, then the drone of

everyday climbing the mountain.

Jonily : So when we are I gotta
tell story, so many curriculum

directors, as I'm consulting
with school districts on this

method of using reference tasks,
and how we can improve our tier

one whole classroom instruction
in mathematics. Many curriculum

directors will say to me, we've
got to go through a new textbook

rate re adoption, we've got to
go through this whole process

we've got. And it makes me
cringe a little bit because even

if we adopt a new curriculum, a
new textbook, if we're not

changing the instructional
delivery, and the mindset and

the facilitation techniques,
we're just gonna go through the

same dreaded circle again, just
with a new resource. What I want

to champion districts to do is
to not worry so much about the

actual resource. Because every
textbook will work. You can use

every textbook with this
delivery method. Every reference

task that I'm teaching you
directly relates to multiple

chapters in units in every
textbook. So I almost say it's

irrelevant what curriculum
resource you choose. All of them

will work. But at the same time,
none of the more work. And we

are prioritizing and focusing on
the wrong things at the district

level. Yes, I said it. We're
prioritizing and focusing on the

wrong things at the district
level. So I'm not saying

textbooks are good. I'm not
saying they're bad. I'm just

saying that is not the solution.
That is not the solution. So I

bring that up, because that
usually after one of my

trainings, that's usually what
some people hear me say. That's

all so we have to reconfigure
what our priority is, and what

we're focusing on, and how we're
creating our math story in our

districts, k 12. And the way
that we need to create the math

story is through these 12
reference tasks, that it doesn't

matter what textbook The option
you have, you can do it and

coincide with anything. We're
focusing on the wrong things.

And how often do we give kids an
opportunity for green stickies

in math class? I just want us to
really be deliberate and

intentional about that

Unknown: the Lima says tier one
interventions was a sensitizing

workshop systematically thought
through put into an easy to

understand framework and well
presented. Thank you to you

both. Thank you Nilima. You've
been listening to tier one

interventions with Jonily
Zupancic and Cheri Dotterer.

Tier one interventions is
released on the first and third

Tuesday of the month. The
podcasts recorded live on the

third Saturday of each month
except July, first segment of

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Episode Video

Creators and Guests

Cheri Dotterer
Cheri Dotterer
Hacking barriers to writing success, dysgraphia No ✏️ Required. 30-sec@time Speaker | Podcast Host | Author | Consultant