Lynwood – Lindbergh Elementary sixth-grade teacher Myrna Vergara had heard that educators at fellow District school Roosevelt Elementary were using the Conga Line technique to inspire students, but she wanted clarification on how it worked.

Vergara would soon learn that the Conga Line combines music and dance to help children actively learn new concepts. She had the opportunity to seek direct answers when she joined more than 360 Lynwood Unified K-6 teachers for the first ever districtwide collaborative guided planning which was held from Nov. 29-Dec. 8 at the District office.

“It was valuable to hear about experiences at other schools and to learn the techniques that are producing positive results,” Vergara said. “After experiencing this collaboration it definitely makes me feel more connected to the District as a whole.”

Promoting connectedness was one of the objectives in meeting as a District this year. The annual meetings had previously taken place at each individual school site, but this year teachers collaborated across school lines to develop networking and recommend lesson plans.

Teachers from each grade level planned standard lessons that will be taught over the next few months in classrooms throughout Lynwood Unified. New ideas and practices were also presented within each grade level of teachers. The brainstorming sessions were stored on a shared drive that all District teachers can access.

“To have our educators come together for lesson unit planning was a great step in the direction of ensuring we are all upholding the standards of our achievement culture,” LUSD Assistant Director of Educational Services Christine Arostigue-Manson said. “As we collectively define our curriculum, we set a clear standard that our students can work to achieve.”

Teachers discussed improving attendance and behavior, English Learner programs and inspiring student participation during the sessions. They also shared exercises like the idiom game, a practice that forces students to speak only in idioms to teach them about vernacular, as well as team teaching with a pair of educators sharing one classroom.

“Some of the discoveries that came out of our meetings have already been implemented in our classrooms,” LUSD Superintendent Gudiel R. Crosthwaite said. “As a district committed to continuous learning, we recognize the importance of collaboration and the importance of learning from each other.”

At the conclusion of the planning, teachers exchanged contact information and arranged future meetings to further discuss student outcomes.

“When our teachers build relationships, it strengthens the commitment they have to helping our students reach success,” Lynwood Unified Board President Alfonso Morales said. “We are all in this together as a District and we will continue to improve by relying on one another and continually seeking to enhance our learning environment.”


121317_LUSD_PLANNING: Lynwood Unified sixth-grade teachers discuss curriculum during the first ever districtwide collaborative guided planning. More than 360 K-6 teachers met to network and develop lesson plans from Nov. 29-Dec. 8.