Wednesday, August 31, 2011

My Experiences with the Center for Teacher Effectiveness

I wanted to post an update on my experience and feeling toward CTE.  I presume you found this rather obscure blog because you're researching Time To Teach and the Center for Teacher Effectiveness.  Good.

It's wise to go into things with your eyes open.  I was skeptical at first. In fact I'm skeptical by nature and teach intense information fluency skills as part of my online teaching work.  I examine online information, look for bias, and have a highly developed BS detector.

I recall when I first got interested in CTE.  I searched and didn't find much. These days CTE has a slightly higher online presence, but it remains a very face to face, person to person organization. There's nothing wrong with that. I was pulled in by the quality of communication and information I got from CTE. Rick has a great business plan and amazing materials. Access to that information and the training it takes to help teachers get time to teach by gaining respectful control of their classrooms  is what it's all about. That's what the training delivers. If you're a dynamic teacher ready market yourself the CTE way, you'll do well.

I'm still associated with the Center for Teacher Effectiveness.  I still endorse their program and back the integrity of the people working with Rick Dahlgren.  Rick is an amazing teacher with a powerful, experience based approach that will create a safe, respect based, learning environment.

I personally think every classroom teacher and all administrators will benefit from this training.  Our schools would be better places to learn if all new teachers were trained in the methods taught by the Center for Teacher Effectiveness.  It took me 25 years of classroom teaching to learn what Rick puts into his materials.

So why am I not actively making presentations at conferences and providing face to face training in schools? CTE is not particularly visible on the web.  They work in the classroom face to face.  I now make my living completely by teaching online and doing e-learning consulting working from my home office.  IF I were willing to go on the road and put the energy needed into marketing this program I have no doubt I could make a good income doing work I am proud of.  Becoming an active associate is one of my back up plans if I need to diversify my career.  At the moment being at home and online is what I love to do!

Here' a quotation from a recent associates newsletter I got from the center that shows the way Rick coaches.

"The CTE Way - Amazing Trainings!!!

Dear Dennis,

We hope this correspondence finds you in good health and happiness.

Two of your Time To Teach colleagues recently concluded trainings and received some of the best reviews we have ever seen.  They are Chad Houck and Roger Miller.  I am so proud of them and wanted to share what the superintendent and teachers said about their Time To Teach training.  But, before I do, let me say that we encountered a shipping problem and the books did not make it to the training!   Even with this - which is not good - they totally ruled the day.  Here is what was said:

"I believe we just don't say thanks enough and I know from first hand experience that you rarely receive positive feedback from services provided to educators.  Let me buck that trend and tell you that Chad Houcks presentation to our middle school staff was a home run!

Our middle school needed a "cultural resuscitation" this year with test scores going down and discipline and absences going up....things needed a change.  With a change in administration, I told the new principal that I had a day long workshop planned before school starts and that he would thank me after it was over.

Sure enough, the teachers comments back to us were amazing, Chad was passionate about his material.  He had credibility as a high school administrator and a dad who implemented Time to Teach with his own kids.

Your materials are great, the presenter was even better.

My only feedback is to make sure materials are in the hands of the district well before the training.  Chad had to copy off the workbook to make the workshop happen.  I am not sure that we have what we ordered yet?

Thanks again for being part of the journey this middle school is on.  I will recommend to other superintendents the need for your program in their schools.


Kevin Silberberg Ed.D
Superintendent Standard School District 
And, from Roger Miller's training:

Thank you so much for coming to Elm Grove.   Your "Time to Teach" training was truly phenomenal.  Word has already gotten to the Board Office about how great the Teacher Academy was.  Numerous teachers expressed how much they enjoyed and commented that is was the best staff development ever.  I received emails Friday evening thanking me for bringing you to Elm Grove.  Here are some quotes:

"Today's Teacher Academy was absolutely awesome. The message was so clear: You are in the wrong profession if you don't LOVE children....haven't felt this happy and motivated in 37 years. Thanks, boss!"

"I want you to know that today's staff development was truly inspiring and beneficial. I'm excited to start the new year. We have several new changes with our staff, which should prove very positive. I believe that when our ENTIRE staff implements these strategies, we will achieve more success than ever! Thank for getting Mr. Miller to our school for a wonderful staff development session and for helping our staff get off to a positive start. I hope you will see all members participating and enjoying the successes."

"Best training in my 31 years!"

I was also told that it was posted of Facebook as "The best Teacher Academy ever."  The Deputy Superintendent was told by a teacher over the weekend that is was the best.  I have also told the Deputy Superintendent and the head of Student Services that this needs to be implemented county wide.  Maybe I will get you some more work.

You are a great presenter and we can tell that you truly care about Time to Teach.  We all enjoyed your enthusiasm and personal stories.  My staff continues to cry and laugh with you.

Hope to see you again soon.  If you are ever back in the Northern Panhandle make sure you stop in.

Thank you!


Richard B. Dunlevy

We are so lucky to be associated with Chad and Roger and all of you who represent us.   

Thank you ALL so much!  I have so many of these from many of YOU, but these just came in in the last few hours and I had to share them with you.   

Rick Dahlgren 


I hope this information helps you on your way! 


Dennis O'Connor
Program Advisor
E-Learning & Online TeachingSchool of Education
Online Professional Development
University of Wisconsin-Stout
Wisconsin's Polytechnic University
530-318-1145 (Cell)
Skype: wiredinstructor2

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Time to Teach works and is a great approach to classroom management.

It's clear I haven't been active on this site for sometime.

I got an email today from a teacher researching Rick Dahlgren's Time to Teach program.  The interested teacher had found this site and wondered if my silence had a negative twist to it. 

Just the opposite.

I remain in touch with Rick Dalhgren and the Time to Teach group via a newsletter for trainers. CTE is flourishing. They are smart, skillful teachers with a very powerful product and message.

I started this blog and the Save Class Time website in anticipation of going into the consulting business using the Time to Teach materials, which are truly first rate.  Other opportunities came up and my other businesses took off so I put my active plans on hold.  However, I love having the knowledge and knowing that I could get into the presentation and training market using Rick's materials.

I'm not actively teaching in the K-12 environment, although I did do classroom teaching for 25 years.  I remember reading one of Ricks books and thinking it took me about 7 years to figure out everything he's captured in less than a hundred pages. 

I hope this helps. My silence shouldn't be interpreted as anything negative!


Dennis O'Connor
E-Learning and Online Teaching
21st Century Information Fluency

Cell: 530-318-1145
Home: 760-471-5262

Friday, January 26, 2007

Save Class Time Blog Migrates

SaveClassTime Blog is now part of the website.

See you there!

Sunday, January 7, 2007

Simulator Training for Teachers?

Imagine a chance for new teachers to train 'virtually' as they learn to deal with difficult and disruptive students.

An article in the Washington post sparked my thinking. I back tracked it to the original source at E-School News. What a boon to e-learning and online training! I can imagine this leading to real time interactive training delivered over the net to teacher groups 'anywhere & anytime'. You'd probably need Internet2 levels of broadband access and speed to make two way communications and simulation interaction work, but these days that level of tech is months away, not years.

By interacting with the simulator, student teachers could learn how to deal with the intense energy of discipline interactions as they 'hone their chops'. All this could take place before they entered a 'live fire' classroom where their credibility as teachers and students understanding of the learning atmosphere is on the line. As it is, most new teachers (IMHO)arrive in the classroom with very little practical experience in how to provide discipline and order in a classroom. Without order you can't teach. Without order that is mutually respectful and based on creating a feeling tone in the classroom, you can't last in an American classroom.

Any realistic training teachers can get that will help improve class discipline, save class time, and improve the learning environment gets my attention.

This is technology that may be available commercially later this year.
  • "The STAR Classroom Simulator, a partnership between Simiosys LLC, the Haberman Educational Foundation and the University of Central Florida, mixes computer technology and a human role-player. It's currently in trial and is expected to be commercially available within a year.

    "I thought it was a great device to see how you would respond in a spontaneous situation with a student that might be either aggressive or have some repressive tendencies," said Kevin Gouvia, a former teacher at an Orlando-area urban high school who recently tried the simulator."

Note: The image is from the University of Southern California Institute for Creative Technologies