Jason DiCarlo

Jason DiCarlo has worked as an urban educator and administrator for many years in Lowell, Massachusetts. He has taught third and fourth grade, and worked as an assistant principal and principal. As a school leader, Jason values building relationships, actively engaging and learning with his staff, and creating a school culture that is committed and dedicated to student learning.

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Defining Standards Before a Demonstration Lesson

In this video from a third-grade lesson study, Jason DiCarlo works with teachers and specialists to define standards before a demonstration lesson.

Assessing First-Grade Learning

Jason DiCarlo leads a first-grade study group as they discuss different options for young learners to demonstrate understanding beyond written responses.

Book Buzz in Study Groups

Jason DiCarlo turns a third-grade study group over to a participant to share her enthusiasm for The Joy of Planning by Franki Sibberson, the book the group is using for lesson design.

Learning from a Lesson Study

In this video excerpt from a lesson study group, Jason DiCarlo leads a group of third-grade teachers in a discussion of changes they have made to their teaching based on learning from the previous month's demonstration and discussion.

Discussion Before Demonstration Lesson

In this video excerpt from a brief meeting before a demonstration lesson, you'll see the first-grade teacher Erin, who will be leading the lesson, share her concerns. The principal, Jason DiCarlo, talks about how the goals of the lesson and expectations for success vary, depending upon the aims of the grade-level team.

Meeting Snapshot: “Look Fors” After Demonstration Lesson

Jason DiCarlo leads a group of first-grade teachers sharing their "look-for" notes after a demonstration lesson in a first-grade classroom. The teachers were observing a lesson on differences between fiction and nonfiction, and used both the look-fors and their observations of designated students to focus their notes.

Meeting Snapshot: Sharing Resources

Jason DiCarlo explains the importance of previewing resources and not just giving them to teachers, as well as linking the text directly to current work. In this video example, Jason distributes copies of Debbie Miller's Reading with Meaning during a first-grade lesson study of fiction and nonfiction text features.

Meeting Snapshot: Deciding Look-Fors

In this excerpt from a meeting before a first-grade demonstration lesson, Principal Jason DiCarlo and teachers discuss potential "look-fors" during the lesson—what everyone will focus on during observations. The lesson and activity is designed to help the children differentiate between fiction and nonfiction.

Meeting Snapshot: Defining the Essential Question

Jason DiCarlo leads a team of first-grade teachers and specialists as they work to define an essential question before a demonstration lesson to focus discussions and expectations.

Understanding Character Traits: Part 3

 Jason DiCarlo completes his lesson on character traits in third grade. This is the final installment in a three-part series.

Understanding Character Traits: Part 2

Jason DiCarlo continues his third-grade reading workshop lesson on character traits with a mentor text. This is the second video in a three-part series.

Meeting Snapshot: Selecting a Standard for Lesson Study

In this short video excerpt, Jason DiCarlo works with a first-grade team to select a standard before designing a demonstration lesson. The group explores connections between reading and writing, and has an honest discussion of where children are in terms of understanding differences in fiction and nonfiction.

Understanding Character Traits Lesson

Jason DiCarlo leads a lesson in third grade on character traits. This is the first video in a three-part series.

Meeting Snapshot: Examining Standards for Vertical Alignment

In this excerpt from a first-grade lesson study, Principal Jason DiCarlo and the team look at the standard they are tackling compared with what is expected in kindergarten and second grade.

Meeting Snapshot: Evidence of Learning

In this brief excerpt from a first-grade team planning meeting, Principal Jason DiCarlo asks for evidence of learning from previous work together. Before beginning new lesson design, the group always reflects on changes in classrooms since the last gathering.

Meeting Snapshot: Exploring Terms in Standards

Jason DiCarlo pauses for a minute with a team of first-grade teachers to examine a standard together, projected with an LCD to ensure everyone has the same understanding of terms and definitions in the standard.

Meeting Snapshot: Checking In

Jason DiCarlo launches the monthly lesson study with the first-grade team by checking in on learning since the last meeting—what was applied from the previous study (especially when it comes to standards), what went well, and what was surprising.

Meeting Snapshot: Norms

At the start of this meeting before a demonstration lesson, Jason DiCarlo reminds the first-grade teaching team of the norms they have agreed to use throughout their time together.

Creating Flash Continuums

Jason DiCarlo explains how to help teachers build flash continuums together. This activity is a quick routine used often to ensure teachers understand the Common Core standards and how to implement them at each grade level.

Professional Development and Personality Types

Jason DiCarlo revisits a classic activity for uncovering personality types and building a stronger professional development community.

Texts to Teachers

Jason DiCarlo has five easy strategies for matching teachers with books for instruction.

Picture It: Celebrate!

Jason DiCarlo shares a 15-minute monthly activity for celebrating literacy breakthroughs with teachers.

Helping Teachers Learn to Love the Common Core Standards

Principal Jason DiCarlo realizes you can’t love anything you don’t know well, so he designs a professional development session to help teachers take a closer look at the Common Core.

Aligning Coaching and Teaching Teams

Jason DiCarlo has practical tips for getting coaches and teachers on the same page when it comes to aligning goals and strategies.

Making Time for Classroom Visits

Jason DiCarlo explains why classroom visits are his top priority as a principal, and shares his schedule and prompts he uses while visiting to learn from students and teachers.

From Bootcamp to School: Building Enthusiasm for New Initiatives

Jason DiCarlo finds there are parallels between the initial unenthusiastic response of participants at his gym to a new challenge and the process of initiating change in schools.

Clarity and Connection: The Language of Change

Principal Jason DiCarlo thinks through the language he uses daily to promote a shared positive vision in his school.