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UNIV ERSITY OF MICHIGAN

SCHOOL OF EDUCATION

TEACHER EDUCATION, ELMAC PROGRAM


610 E. UNIVERSITY AVE., 1228 SEE ANN
ARBOR, MI 481094259

April 16,2011

Dear Fellow Colleagues,

It is with great pleasure that I highly recommend Kasey Textor for a job in your school district. I have been her field
instructor since September of 2010 in a 3rd grade classroom on behalf of The University of Michigan's EL-MAC
program. I have seen her grow as a teacher and watched as she gained confidence and mastery of teaching and
managing a classroom.

She successfully employs a plethora of management techniques to organize the students' time, to transition from one
activity to another, to organize the classroom for different modes of teaching, and to ensure that all students
participate and have success. Before the first semester ended, she had internalized these techniques so completely,
that she has been able to concentrate on lesson planning and delivery this second semester. For example, she will
often pose a question and ask students to "turn and talk" with another student. Then she asks them to share
something they said or something they heard. That way, a weaker student who might not have had the answer, can
share what s/he heard. If a student doesn't respond, she often says, "That's all right, but you think about it because
I'm going to come back to you in a minute or two." Then she does. Interestingly enough, one student in particular,
now responds the first time when she calls on him, though he never had before.

Her lessons show great thought and preparation. She works very hard to make sure that all of her lessons work for
different kinds of learners. She plans a variety of activities to appeal to students' learning strengths, and her delivery
of material exudes energy and dramatic flair. The students are often leaning forward on their seats eagerly awaiting
her next pearl of wisdom. All of this is done, however, with the students foremost in her thoughts. After only a few
times in front of the class, she acknowledged that she was no longer nervous or intimidated because she was
concentrating on what would help the ELL students or the reluctant learners. One of her social studies lessons began
w1th a Power Point presentation of maps showing French explorers' routes looking for China. She questioned
students as she went through the map portion of the lesson and then gave each pair of students a laminated map with
a set of questions asking them about routes in the New World that the French took. Students were able to draw on
the maps with markers to complete the activity. Then in a whole class discussion, asked them to guess how these
explorers might have ended up in Michigan. Student answers were greeted with "maybe," "perhaps," "possibly,"
etc. Then she left them groaning when she said they'd find out the answers the next day. She works hard to make
these additional materials for the students to enhance the learning for visual learners. She has learned how to
manipulate and massage the "canned curriculum" to give it new life and to make the material more accessible for all
students.

As early as the summer school experience she had when the El-Mac program began, she learned how to keep
running records on individual students' reading. Since then she has gained more experience in assessing students in
groups and individually. She has developed some of her own assessments for curricular material, and adapts the
given assessments for students who may benefit from modifications. She now plans lessons with that ultimate
assessment in mind, but also paying attention to what the slower learners may have difficulty with and coming up
with ideas to enhance their learning of the material.

She has participated in parent conferences and has called on parents to come in and assist with the word study
groups. While all young teachers worry about communicating with parents, Kasey plans to institute a classroom
newsletter when she has her own classroom. She also knows the students individually so well that she says she
always has good things to say about each student which helps in establishing that important school-to-parent
relationship. The students adore Kasey and that feeling is returned. However, she's a keen observer and strict in her
expectations of student behavior. She corrects misbehavior quickly but with matter-of-fact tone and delivery. She
expects students to "toe the line" and they do. No student has ever suggested to her that she wasn't the "real"
teacher because her management is so professional.

Finally, Kasey will clearly be an asset to your school community. She has worked with other teachers in the
building, has participated in the building's professional development and has solely taken on the Girls on the Run
program at Bach for 3rd-through 5lh grade girls. She works hard, has a great sense of humor, and loves the students.
Any school would be fortunate to have her working with students there.

Sincerely,

Margaret G\Jre 2108Shadford Ann Arbor, MI 48104 734/662-2040 (Home) 734/646-8662 (Cell)