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Tech in the Classroom:

How students are implementing tools learned at JRCoE in their own classrooms

Dear Alumni and Friends of the College, As we conclude another academic year, I would like to reflect back on some of the outstanding work and events that took place in the Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education. This spring we welcomed a number of prominent visitors to the college, led by Sister Rosemary Nyirumbe. It was a pleasure to be able to bring Sister Rosemary to campus for our Humphreys Lecture and allow our students to see and hear how our work with St. Monica’s School for Girls in Uganda is making a difference in people’s lives. In February, Leigh Patel of Boston College was our featured speaker for our annual diversity event, speaking on the topic of educational research. Later that month, Professor Sara Goldrick-Rab captivated the audience in discussing her book Paying the Price: College Costs, Financial Aid and the Betrayal of the American Dream. The rising costs of college is a topic that is at the forefront of higher education, and her discussion of the problems and solutions was one that resonated with students and faculty.


This spring we also celebrated one of our most generous supporters as Sandra O’Brien concluded her time as a member of our Board of Advocates. Sandra and her husband, Brian, have played a key role in the advancement of the college through scholarship and infrastructure contributions. We were honored to have OU President David Boren join our celebration, as the O’Brien’s contributions can be found throughout the OU campus. The cover story of this edition of Bridges takes a look at the impact our teaching of technology is having in classrooms once our students graduate. We spoke to students who have been part of our undergraduate program, as well as our new 21st Century Teaching and Learning master’s degree, to see how they are implementing these technology innovations into their teaching and classrooms. It is amazing to see how classrooms have transformed just over the last few years, and how our graduates are able to creatively use these tools to benefit students, teachers and families. Lastly, don’t forget to check out our faculty/staff happenings, as well as the alumni news. Our students, faculty and staff have done some amazing work and we are proud to share that with you. We also love to hear about what our alumni are up to, and invite you to share your news with us.

Gregg Garn, Dean


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2017 Celebration of Education · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · Decolonizing Educational Research


Sister Rosemary Nyirumbe visits OU


CONTACT BRIDGES University of Oklahoma Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education 820 Van Vleet Oval, Room 110 Norman, OK 73019-2041 (405) 325-4844 DEAN Gregg A. Garn ASSOCIATE DEANS Lawrence Baines Teresa DeBacker T. Elon Dancy Vickie Lake

FEATURE: Technology in the Classroom · · · · · · · ·


Meet Associate Dean Vickie Lake · · · · · · · · · · · · · ·

EDITOR Melanie Schneider

Tech with Beck · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · Around the College · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · Faculty/Staff Happenings · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · Alumni News · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · · ·

GRAPHIC DESIGNER Shayna Pond CONTRIBUTING EDITORS Barbi DeLong Susan Greer PHOTOS BY Andrew Crane Audrey House Hugh Scott Melanie Schneider

The University of Oklahoma, in compliance with all applicable federal and state laws and regulations, does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, genetic information, gender identity, gender expression, age, religion, disability, political beliefs, or status as a veteran in any of its policies, practices or procedures. This includes, but is not limited to: admissions, employment, financial aid and educational services. Inquiries regarding nondiscrimination policies may be directed to: Bobby J. Mason, University Equal Opportunity Officer and Title IX Coordinator, (405) 325-3546,, or visit This publication, printed by OU Printing Services, is issued by the University of Oklahoma. 7,500 copies have been prepared and distributed at a cost of $6,390 to the taxpayers of the State of Oklahoma.


n March 31, the Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education welcomed educators and supporters of education from across the state to the Molly Shi Boren Ballroom at Oklahoma Memorial Union for the annual Celebration of Education in Oklahoma.

The event is an opportunity for the college to honor those who are making contributions in the field of education and who have been strong supporters of the efforts of the college to continue to produce highly qualified teachers for the state of Oklahoma.

a br t i e on l e C of


Gene Rainbolt was the guest speaker for the event as the Award of Distinction winner. Rainbolt and his family are long-time supporters of the college, including the naming of the Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education in 2008 for his late wife. Rainbolt also chaired the JRCoE’s portion of the “Live On, University” campaign that helped raise $10 million in funds for the DebtFree Teachers program, scholarships and faculty support. Gov. Bill Anoatubby was present to accept the Meritorius Service Award on behalf of the Chickasaw Nation. The Chickasaw Nation is the 12th-largest federally recognized tribe in the United States and is committed to supporting the college’s Debt-Free Teacher program over the next three years. Other award winners included Julie Klingensmith (Young Educator), Jennifer Holloway, Ph.D. (Outstanding Educator), Susan Gladhill (Career Achievement) and Pam Deering, Ph.D. (Alumni Hall of Fame).

in Oklahoma 2016-17 Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education Outstanding Seniors



2016-17 Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education Outstanding Interns

Oklahoma City Public Schools Superintendent Aurora Lora (center) chats with Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education Board of Advocates members Sally Bentley (left) and Emily Stratton.

Outstanding Intern winner Natalie Baugh enjoys the evening with family and friends.

Gene Rainbolt: Award of Distinction

Julie Klingensmith: Young Educator

Jennifer Holloway: Outstanding Educator

Susan Gladhill: Career Achievement

Gov. Bill Anoatubby: Meritorius Service

Pam Deering: Alumni Hall of Fame

Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education



Vickie Lake: Leadership-Citizenship

Ji Hong: Research-Scholarship

Joyce Brandes: Teaching-Advising

Benjamin Heddy: Junior Faculty

Angela Urick: Junior Faculty

Sally Beach: Jon E. Pedersen Excellence in Graduate Mentoring

Kirsten Edwards: Patricia L. HardrĂŠ Graduate Mentoring Award

Ashton Sears: Staff Service


(L to R) JRCoE faculty members and award winners Ji Hong, Joyce Brandes and Sally Beach enjoy the pre-event reception at the Celebration of Education in Oklahoma.

Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education Chancellor Glen Johnson was a guest at the event.

Gene Rainbolt’s speech touched upon the importance of community involvement in education.

Award winner Jennifer Holloway (L) had a chance to meet JRCoE Board of Advocates members Charlotte Jones and Sharon Lease.

Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education



JRCoE Diversity Series


he annual diversity series put on by the Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education took place Feb. 16 and 17 with the theme of “Decolonzing Educational Research.” The event began with featured speaker Lisa Patel, Ph.D., an associate professor of education at Boston College and author of the book Decolonizing Educational Research: From Ownership to Answerability. Patel spoke to an audience of about 75 at the Ethics and Excellence in Journalism Foundation Auditorium, focusing on the topics of her work with societally marginalized youth and teacher activists. Patel’s talk took place in partneership with the OU Writing Center and Gaylord College of Journalism and Mass Communications.



The next day, graduate students in the Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education and from across the OU campus took center stage with a student-run symposium. More than 25 presentations were given on topics that included meritocracy in higher education, American criminal justice and colonialism, disrupting colonial land practices in the Oklahoma oil industry, diversifying teacher education, and the experiences of undocumented high school students.

evidence. From rising tuition to the limits of Pell Grants to basic needs, like food and housing, Dr. Goldrick-Rab’s work touches every facet of higher education related to cost for the students.”

It was my hope that bringing her to campus would draw more awareness to these issues of cost, inspire hope for change, and instill a sense of moral activism that is necessary to try to see change through at OU and in Oklahoma.

L to R: Dean Gregg Garn, Sara Goldrick Rab, Ph.D., and Derek Houston, Ph.D., at the lecture on Feb. 21.


enowned author and scholar Sara Goldrick-Rab, Ph.D., spoke to a full house Feb. 21 in the Excellence and Ethics in Journalism Foundation Auditorium as part of the Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education Endowed Lecture Series. The focus of Goldrick-Rab’s talk was her most recent book Paying the Price: College Costs, Financial Aid and the Betrayal of the American Dream. The professor of higher education policy and sociology at Temple University’s book focuses on research done during her tenure at the University of Wisconsin, interviewing and following 3,000 young adults on their experiences with the higher education system over a period of time. Goldrick-Rab is the founder of Wisconsin HOPE Lab, the nation’s only translational research laboratory seeking ways to make college more affordable. “The University of Oklahoma is not immune to the rising costs of higher education and the ever-expanding burden those costs place on its students,” said Derek Houston, visiting assistant professor in the college. “As a scholar-activist, Goldrick-Rab’s mission and message are informed by rigorous empirical

The campus visit included dinner with OU faculty, the lecture, a meeting with Provost Kyle Harper, a discussion with the Center for Teaching Excellence staff and an fireside chat with OU graduate students. Prior to Goldrick-Rab’s visit, a reading group was organized by Mark Morvant, executive director of the Center for Teaching Excellence, CTE staff and Houston. Interest for the reading group was strong, with nearly 20 campus faculty, staff, and students signing up. Participants read and discussed the book over a six-week period. In addition to discussing the stories of students and how the lack of affordable higher education has affected their lives. Goldrick-Rav also delved into topics that are often overlooked when talking about the financial struggles of college students, including food insecurity and lack of stable housing. In the end, about half of the students in her study left college without a degree, and among those who did remain in school, less than 20 percent completed a degree within five years. Most of those students also left with a burdensome debt, degree in hand or not. As in the book, Goldrick-Rab touched upon her ideas of how the financial aid system could be improved, including an overhaul of the Pell Grant system, more money allocated to the Work Study program, and better spelling out true college costs more clearly to incoming students. “For some, what they got out of this was an awareness of the gravity of the situation, especially related to food and housing insecurities for college students,” Houston said. “For others, it was a sense of optimism and a direction for their work. Her visit, and the activities of it, provided a starting point for discussions on how to address the various issues related to the rising cost of higher education and the burden placed on OU students.” Members of the OU community filled the Ethics and Excellence in Journalism Foundation Auditorium to hear Sara Goldrick-Rab speak on Feb. 21.

Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education



FOR HUMPHREYS LECTURE L to R: Don Humphreys, Sister Rosemary Nyirumbe, Cathey Humphreys, Dean Gregg Garn.


ister Rosemary Nyirumbe visited the OU campus on Feb. 9 as the guest speaker for the 2017 Cathey Simmons Humphreys Distinguished Lecture Series.

The annual event, funded by an endowment from Cathey and Don Humphreys, brings to campus speakers that focus on education-specific topics. A capacity crowd in Meacham Auditorium in Oklahoma Memorial Union sat in awe as Sister Rosemary discussed her work with women and children in her native Uganda. Sister Rosemary is the founder of St. Monica’s Vocational School for Girls in Gulu, Uganda, which has helped more than 1,400 girls learn such skills as sewing, cooking and hair dressing. Sister Rosemary founded another St. Monica’s school in Atiak, Uganda, and the new Sewing Hope Children School.

Hope Foundation was formed, which assists in selling the goods made by the women at St. Monica’s. She currently is working with the Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education at OU to establish a primary school for teen and adult women in Uganda (Bridges, Fall 2016). Professor Sally Beach and a team of graduate and postgraduate students have made multiple trips to Uganda over the past two years to establish the school. Sister Rosemary’s humanitarian work earned her a spot in TIME Magazine’s 2014 “100 Most Influential People” list, and in 2007 she was named a CNN Hero.

Specifically, her work focuses on helping women and children who have been affected by the violent civil wars in northern Uganda and South Sudan. Sister Rosemary’s strong connection to Oklahoma began with Reggie Whitten, who founded a nonprofit called Pros for Africa after visiting St. Monica’s. In 2015, the Sewing 8


Scan here to view Sister Rosemary’s lecture.

University of Oklahoma President David L. Boren and Sister Rosemary Nyirumbe.

Sister Rosemary signs copies of her book, Sewing Hope.

Although small in stature, Sister Rosemary is a force to be reckoned with, as the crowd learned in her storytelling.

Students and guests speak with Sister Rosemary Nyirumbe at a reception in her honor following the Humphreys Lecture.

Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education


TECH IN THE CLASSROOM: How students are implementing tools learned at JRCoE in their own classrooms


t’s a typical Tuesday late morning at Rollingwood Elementary School in Oklahoma City. Some kids are antsy, some are ready for lunch. Attentions are focusing a little bit of everywhere. And then, Morgan Dunnagan says the magic words. “Alright, it is time to get out your iPads.” Dunnagan is a fourth-grade teacher at Rollingwood, a 1-to1 iPad school, meaning each of Dunnagan’s students has an iPad at their disposal. “I was quite tech-savvy coming into college after doing robotics and computer classes in high school,” Dunnagan said. “What I really took away from my time at OU was how to use an iPad for educational use. I learned how to take a regular test review/worksheet and turn it into a fun game via the iPad.” That is exactly what was happening in Dunnagan’s class in late March, right before the rounds of state testing were to begin. The task at hand was to review vocabulary words, learning their use and context, but no one pulled out a textbook or a sheet of paper. Instead, it was iPad time. “My students absolutely love their iPads,” Dunnagan said.



“They are excited each time we get them out, even when it is for an assignment. I also love that they can also be used for down time once an assignment is done. My students know that when they are done with an assignment, they can get on Epic!, which is an online library, or they can go to to work on their coding skills.” On this day, Dunnagan was using an app called Kahoot! to go over the vocabulary review. Kahoot! is a free, gamebased learning app that allows users to create learning games made from a series of multiple-choice questions. Users can also add videos, images and diagrams to increase engagement. As the sentences popped up on the board, students were given four options from which to choose for the right vocabulary word. The giggles and groans reverberated

throughout the room at the excitement of getting one right, or the disappointment of the wrong choice. Whether their answers were right or wrong, the students were engaged in the activity and eager for the next word set to appear. “I have a few students who absolutely hate grammar and vocabulary,” Dunnagan said. “But as soon as I plug in the Smartboard to my laptop, they perk up instantly. Our reading curriculum has online games and quizzes that I can display on the board, and having them come up to the board to click the answers keeps them much more engaged rather than a worksheet. “My students behave better, tend to not blurt out as much and raise their hands if they know they can get a chance to go up to the board.”

degree program. House has been teaching for more than 25 years and has worked amidst the evolving classroom setup. “Integrating technology tools into the classroom can be a very scary undertaking,” House said. “But it doesn’t have to be. We recently became a 1-to-1 district, providing one device for every child, and I can’t imagine going back to sharing devices.

Dunnagan uses the app Kahoot! to go over vocabulary words with her students in preparation for state testing.

Audrey House is a second-grade teacher at Monroe Elementary in Enid, Oklahoma, and a member of the first cohort of the 21st Century Teaching and Learning master’s

“The devices and the apps have given students a voice where they may have been unheard before. Once reluctant writers are now writing with ease with the aid of voice typing. It has allowed students to think about the writing and editing process more critically.”

A key component to technology learning opportunities for JRCoE students has been the addition of Anne Beck to the staff. Beck joined the college in the fall of 2015 as the

Morgan Dunnagan is using iPads with her fourth-grade class at Rollingwood Elementary School in Oklahoma City.

Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education


“I want to be able to give our students tools so they can follow that old adage of ‘don’t work harder, work smarter,’” Beck said. “Teachers’ schedules are so packed as it is and technology can really help them accomplish more in their limited time.”

Audrey House’s second-grade class at Monroe Elementary in Enid, Oklahoma, is getting a hands-on experience with technology at a young age. educational technology specialist and works directly with faculty, students and in-service teachers on the different uses for technology in their classrooms. “Anne Beck played a huge role in how I do things in my classroom,” Dunnagan said. “She came as a guest speaker to my internship class and spoke with us about different apps to use to help us teach. She exposed me to Seesaw, which is something that I love using with my class.” Seesaw is a class blog that allows parents to get a view of each day’s activities in the classroom. For example, if the class is doing STEM group work or a project presentation, the teacher can upload pictures and clips for parents to see.

In the tech seminar each JRCoE student is required to attend upon entering the college and receiving their iPad, they are given the app Explain Everything, which allows teachers and students to literally explain everything, through lessons that can integrate text, voice, photos and video. This tool can allow students to work at their own pace, and go back to lessons as often as they like if they don’t quite master the concept the first time around. This technique also helps children who may be absent, allowing them to stay caught up with the class. Recorded lessons also allow teachers to build up a portfolio that doesn’t have to be reinvented year after year. Rather than starting from scratch, they can add to the portfolio each year, building up a large database of information and allowing them to perfect their lesson plans. With all the technology that is being added to students’ lives, some wonder if this is hurting interaction and

“My students’ profiles are private, so they can also communicate grades and pictures of assignments they completed home to their parents via the iPad,” Dunnagan said. “Parents love Seesaw,” House said. “They love to see the work that their child has created and interacting with them in a safe environment. They also like the positive communication that they receive from the classroom and the school.” Another component of Seesaw that House’s students love is the ability to leave comments on their peers’ work, via text or voice. “Students love to use Seesaw to record themselves reading,” House said. “Like Facebook, students can show they like the work of others by clicking a heart. Students love getting feedback from their peers, their teacher and especially their parents.” 12


iPads put the world at the fingertips of Audrey House’s second-grade students in Enid.

The devices and the apps have given students a voice where they may have been unheard before. Once reluctant writers are now writing with ease with the aid of voice typing. collaboration among students. House has found it to be just the opposite in her classrooms. “Students are at ease collaborating and communicating with digital devices,” House said. “These experiences have led to more meaningful face-to-face conversations and collaborative effort.” For Dunnagan, use of the iPad can often free her up to work more closely with students who need extra help. “I do think 1-to-1 iPads help a lot during times where I can pull small groups,” Dunnagan said. “We have different programs, such as ThinkThroughMath and Achieve3000, where students are on their own level so I can spend more time in a small group, while my other students are working on their individual level.”

“I think the college did a great job of training me for a technology-driven classroom,” Dunnagan said. “I am very aware of how to use my iPad for teaching; have been exposed to apps that are great for reading, math and STEM; and I feel like I am able to help my students use their technology in a meaningful way.” This training also allows JRCoE students to enter the classroom as teacher leaders. Dunnagan has been helping the library media assistant at Rollingwood with tech issues in the building, and also has run a staff training for the use of Seesaw. “We want employers to know that from day one, our students are ready to enter the classroom and are prepared to deal with the ever-evolving needs of students that can be met with the use of technology,” Beck said.

Once students graduate from JRCoE, they are not left to their own devices, as Beck holds multiple professional development seminars each month. Current students and in-service teachers are invited to attend to learn more about literacy apps, podcasting, media creation, Google integration and receive Google Apps for Education training.

Gone are the days of the overhead projector. Teachers can now work from their desks, as Morgan Dunnagan uses this projector to go over math homework with her class.

Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education



rofessor Vickie Lake was named associate dean of the

Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education at the University of Oklahoma-Tulsa in 2016.

“We are incredibly excited to have Dr. Lake on the college leadership team,” Garn said. “She brings great insight and innovation in our efforts to continue growing the Rainbolt College of Education in the Tulsa area.” Lake came to OU in 2011 as an assistant professor in the early childhood education program. She became an associate professor in 2013 and earned full professor status in 2016. Lake currently serves as the OU-Tulsa doctoral program coordinator, Advanced Programs Europe coordinator and is a mentor to junior faculty and doctoral students while teaching undergraduate, TE-Plus and doctoral classes.


Recognition for her outstanding work at OU includes the Citizenship/ Leadership Award for the Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education, presented at the 2017 Celebration of Education in Oklahoma. She also was named the Citizenship/Leadership Award winner for the Department of Instructional Leadership and Academic Curriculum for 2015-16 and 2016-17. In March 2014, she was awarded the Patricia L. Hardré Graduate

Mentoring Award from the JRCoE Graduate Student Council. In 2016 Lake co-authored the book Praxeological Learning: ServiceLearning in Teacher Education. In 2012 she was co-author of Service Learning in the PK-3 Classroom: The What, Why and How-to Guide for Every Teacher. Lake’s research interests include service learning, moral education, effective preservice and inservice teacher education, and mathematics and science integration for preservice teacher education. In the nomination form for Lake’s 2017 Celebration of Education Citizen/Leadership Award, Associate Professor Libby Ethridge said of Lake, “There are not that many people in the area of childhood service learning, and for those who are, Vickie Lake is leading the way.” Another colleague, Professor Diane Horm, said, “Vickie is preparing OU-Tulsa undergraduate students for leadership through her modeling of leadership, especially through her active engagement of undergraduate students in service learning opportunities.” Prior to coming to OU, Lake was an assistant professor of elementary and childhood education at Florida State University (1999-2005) before spending six years as associate professor in the School of Teacher Education at Florida State. Lake earned her doctorate in curriculum and instruction with a specialization in early childhood education from the University of Texas at Austin. She also holds a master’s degree in elementary education from the George Peabody College for Teachers at Vanderbilt University.



1. What are your favorite things about living in Tulsa and OU-Tulsa?

--Tulsa: thriving tennis community, lots of live music and I met my fiancée here --OU-Tulsa: fabulous colleagues, support for early childhood education, interdisciplinary collaboration opportunities

2. If you could vacation anywhere in the world, where would it be and why? I’ve traveled extensively, so any place I haven’t been before. Thailand is currently high on my list.

3. What is a fun/interesting fact about yourself that most people would not know? I’ve climbed eight different mountain peaks in Europe.

4. If you could only have three books in your personal library, what would they be, and why? I can’t narrow it down to specific titles, but the books would be by Nelson Demille, Patricia Cornwell or James Patterson. They write action/adventure, suspense, crime novels. I may have to sleep with the lights on for a few nights because some of them are scary, but I can’t stop reading them.



OU-TULSA NEWS Stories provided by OU-Tulsa





misha Pickens-Young, an OU-Tulsa Ph.D. student, has been

selected as one of only six doctoral students in the entire country — and the first ever in Oklahoma — to receive a prestigious and highly competitive federal Head Start Graduate Student Research Grant. Pickens-Young is earning a doctorate in instructional leadership and academic curriculum in the Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education at OU-Tulsa and works as a project director for the Early Childhood Education Institute, also at OU-Tulsa. “We knew Emisha’s unique experience of attending Head Start as a child and having worked as a Head Start teacher for more than six years made her an extremely strong candidate,” said Diane Horm, Ph.D., director of the ECEI. “She is a Head Start success story, and living Head Start’s mission of delivering high-quality early childhood education to children growing up in poverty gave her a unique vantage point.” Pickens-Young was a lead preschool teacher, master teacher, and coach for new teachers at CAP-Tulsa’s Head Start for six and a half years. Pickens-Young’s dissertation research will study teaching teams at local Head Start and Early Head Start programs, specifically how the teams impact classroom quality and child outcomes. Her research will not only be important for Head Start programs across the country, but her results also will impact the larger field of early childhood education and fill a current void in the research literature.

new study by OU-Tulsa and four other universities has found that infants and toddlers from low-income families who attended a high-quality, center-based early education program do better in language and social skills after only one year than children who do not attend the program. Participants were assessed after one year of attending Educare sites in each of the four cities, including Tulsa Educare. Children who participated had better language skills, fewer problem behaviors, and more positive interactions with their parents than children who didn’t participate in a program. The study, which appears in the journal Child Development, is based on research conducted at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the University of Chicago, OU-Tulsa, the University of Nebraska Medical Center, and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

“This study shows high-quality early childhood programming starting in infancy makes a difference in the lives of young children who are growing up in poverty,” said Diane Horm, Ph.D., director of the OU-Tulsa Early Childhood Education Institute. “The achievement gap has been a critical problem, and this study shows the power of starting in infancy and toddlerhood, and how it will set children on a path to short- and long-term success.” Researchers randomly assigned 239 infants and toddlers (ages 6 weeks to 19 months) from low-income families to attend or not attend local Educare programs at five schools (Chicago, Milwaukee, two in Omaha, and Tulsa). About half of the children were African American and about a third were Hispanic. One year later, they measured the children’s language skills, observed them playing with their primary caregiver (usually mothers), and asked parents to rate their children’s social and emotional skills. The differences between children who attended Educare and children who did not attend were larger than differences seen in previous studies of similar programs, such as Early Head Start or home visiting programs. The findings from this study extend those of the Abecedarian Project and other research suggesting that starting a comprehensive early childhood education program early can improve the outcomes of infants and toddlers from low-income families. The study will follow the children’s progress through age 5, and at that time, assess their abilities in academic areas that predict later success in school. The research was funded by the Buffett Early Childhood Fund, the Brady Education Foundation, the George Kaiser Family Foundation, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Ounce of Prevention Fund, and an anonymous foundation.

Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education






Lead software developer Ryan Ralston, Ph.D., lead instructional game designer Will Thompson, M.Ed., and associate director of innovative technologies Scott Wilson, Ph.D., presented on behalf of the K20 Center. It was the center’s first time at the conference.


nthony Kunkel joined the doctoral program in English education in fall 2016 and is the Department of Instructional Leadership and Academic Curriculum’s first Doctoral Fellow. Kunkel brings with him more than 20 years of public and private school teaching experience as well as experience as a curriculum director and as an administrator. “I care deeply for the students I teach, regardless of demographic,” Kunkel said. “It is about expecting the students to engage and to learn. My job is to offer them a curriculum that is exciting and challenging. With this comes the responsibility to see that the students are aware of how well they are doing and to encourage them to keep improving.” Speaking about his classroom, Kunkel said, “For me, the environment is everything. I like to empower students to manage certain aspects of the class and to make choices about assessments and projects. I like to run an organized class, to make creativity the expectation, and to make it safe for students to engage fully.” Kunkel currently is teaching EDEN 3223 Teaching Grammar and Composition in High School and working with Associate Professor Crag Hill on the journal, Study and Scrutiny. Kunkel’s research interests include teacher autonomy as it relates to curriculum and student motivation, as well as the narrative that would chronicle secondary classrooms, and the teaching profession, over the decades and various paradigm shifts. He has co-authored three books, one book chapter, and several articles. The department and English education program are proud to have Kunkel as the ILAC Doctoral Fellow, and look forward to his future endeavors!

Judges evaluated games for their “learning, assessment, usability, game play, sociocultural aspects, and administration tools as well as criteria specific to the type of game submitted,” according to the ECGBL website.



he K20 Center’s statistics game, Deadly Distribution, won third place overall in the Fourth International Educational Games Competition held Oct. 6 and 7in Paisley, Scotland. The competition took place during the 10th European Conference on Games Based Learning, where the K20 Center representatives also presented a paper.


eannine Rainbolt College of Education counseling psychology graduate student LaVonya Bennett was named first-place and people’s choice award winner for OU’s 3-Minute Thesis competition Feb. 24 in Meacham Auditorium in Oklahoma Memorial Union. Bennett was one of 10 OU graduate student finalists vying for the top prize. She represented the University of Oklahoma at the Midwestern Association of Graduate Schools 3MT® Competition in Indianapolis in April. “The 3-Minute Thesis helped me in preparing for future presentations,” Bennett said. ”The competition helped me to be more mindful of sharing my work that is understandable

The competition consisted of three rounds: a preliminary round in which the judges had a chance to play the game, a 15-minute presentation to a two-judge panel and, finally, a demonstration booth open to all conference attendees. “I think people enjoyed the theme of Deadly Distribution and liked that it could be used in statistics courses in any department,” Thompson said. “They also liked that both games involved authentic applications of the relevant skills.” Deadly Distribution was one of 26 games representing 11 countries at the event, according to the ECGBL website, and shares the award for third place with the Canadian game, Discovery Agents by Mary Clark and Loren Kuich.

across disciplines. Additionally, I was able to tackle my discomfort with public speaking and reaffirm myself as a rising scholar.” Three Minute Thesis (3MT®) is a research communication competition developed by the University of Queensland, Australia, and is now held at hundreds of universities around the world. This exercise challenges students to present their thesis or dissertation research in just three minutes to a non-specialist audience. As they prepare for the competition, they will decide on the most important points in their research; find an interesting way to convey them; then deliver them in a clear, concise, and confident manner.

Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education


If you are a teacher using Google

5 MUST-HAVE GOOGLE CHROME EXTENSIONS FOR TEACHERS Tab Scissor/Tab Glue: This combo is actually two extensions in the Chrome Web Store, but you can’t have one without the other! Tab Scissors and Tab Glue are lifesavers for those of us with only monitor and grading digital content. This time-saving tool easily splits your screen for simultaneous, two-tab viewing and “glues” the browser back together when no longer needed. URL Shortener: Hands down my most used Chrome Extension. URL Shortener shortens long URL addresses and also creates QR codes for me to view or download. One stop shop and I can easily save my QR codes to Google Drive.

ANNE BECK, M.ED. is the educational technology specialist for the Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education. You can contact her at



Chrome as your internet browser, you must try these five Chrome Extensions to simplify your life and increase productivity! Search these extensions in the Google Chrome Web Store in the Chrome browser.

Send To Kindle: If you read on a Kindle Reader or the Kindle app, this extension allows you to send entire articles, text snippets and other web content straight to your Kindle account, where it’s converted into a clean, reader-friendly format. This is a great way to save articles you want to read later. Post to Padlet: For avid Padlet users, this is a must have! Teachers and students can directly post to Padlet in one click. Teachers can create Padlet boards for class discussions and directly post links to resources, readings and much more while browsing. Students also can use this tool for collecting research for projects and creating research maps. Ad Block for YouTube: Most of us have had an inappropriate image or ad come up on YouTube after playing educational content. Now there is an extensions to help keep that from happening again. Ad Block for YouTube is a must-have extension for any educator regularly using YouTube in the classroom.

OU Giving Day

Sarah Owen



taci and Rick Vollmer have worked with the Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education to establish a scholarship fund to honor the memory of Sarah Elizabeth Owen. Staci Vollmer currently is a doctoral student and graduate teaching assistant in the college. Owen was a free-spirited woman who was a student at Oklahoma City Community College. She had many interests during her lifetime, but she was consistently passionate about helping those who could not help themselves. She especially loved helping animals and adults with disabilities. Owen was a baby when her mother, Staci, earned her bachelor’s degree in special education from the Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education, and she watched Staci earn her master’s degree in the same field as she grew up. In 2015, Sarah was tragically taken from her family. At the time, Staci was once again a student in the college, studying for her doctorate in reading education.


n Feb. 28, the University of Oklahoma held its inaugural Giving Day, a 24-hour period aimed at raising scholarships for colleges across campus through the OU Thousands Strong platform. In the 24-hour period, the Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education set a goal of raising $3,000 for the Future Teacher Certification Fund. Money from this fund goes to deserving students to help pay for such costs as background checks, state tests and subject area tests. Often, those fees can go above $300, all of which students are required to complete before entering the classroom. Thanks to 83 donors, the college raised $6,039, more than double its goal. That total would allow the college to fully fund test fees for 18 students. Throughout the day, students stopped by a table in the Collings Hall lobby to write thank you notes to donors who gave during the event. In all, a total of $179,257 was raised across campus to go toward scholarships.

To perpetuate Sarah’s spirit of helping those with disabilities, and with the inspiration of Sarah’s mother, the donors established this scholarship fund to help future special education teachers who will go on to serve students with disabilities. ITo contribute to this scholarship fund, contact Emily Reed at or (405) 325-1976.

Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education



SANDRA O’BRIEN HONORED FOR SERVICE She and her husband, Brian, made a major gift to the campaign to expand and renovate Collings Hall. The O’Briens helped found and equip the Sandra L. O’Brien Collaborative Learning Hub in the college, and they were the very first donors to endow a Presidential Professorship. They also have endowed scholarships for students majoring in special education and helped launch the Debt-Free Teachers program.

On Feb. 10, the Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education honored Sandra O’Brien for her service to the college as she retired from her role as a member of the JRCoE Board of Advocates. O’Brien earned her bachelor’s degree in education in 1957 from OU, where she was a member of Alpha Gamma Delta. As a charter member of the college’s Board of Advocates, she has worked diligently, for more than 20 years, to help empower our students with the resources and the encouragement they need to succeed after graduation.

2016-17 Board of Advocates

In addition to her work with the College of Education, she has served on the volunteer committee for OU’s successful Campaign for Scholarships, which has raised more than $247 million in total gifts and pledges. She also served on OU’s Reach for Excellence Campaign Committee , Centennial Celebration Committee and Alumni Association Executive Board. O’Brien is a President’s Associate, a recipient of an OU Regents’ Alumni Award, and was honored with the Meritorious Service Award at the 2006 Celebration of Education in Oklahoma. In 2008, she received the highest honor bestowed by the university, the honorary degree of human letters.

Front Row (L to R): Patty Bartell (Chair), Sally Bentley, Linda Lytle (Vice Chair), Barbara H. Thompson, Marilyn Sullivan, Sharon Lease. Back Row (L to R): Janise McIntyre, Danni Boz (Secretary), Linda Rodgers, Faith Clune, Robert Everett, Jan Barrick, Jane Kenney, Charlotte Jones, Emily Stratton, Dean Gregg Garn. Not Pictured: Roberta Burrage, Joe Castiglione, Jenny Dakil, Katie Dunlap, Ruth Ann Fate, Huntley Kubitza, Kristin Lipe, Margaret Pape, Lori Thrower. 20


HAPPENINGS SPRING 2017 FACULTY AND S T A F F CURT ADAMS, PH.D., ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR, EDUCATIONAL LEADERSHIP AND POLICY STUDIES TIMOTHY FORD, PH.D., ASSISTANT PROFESSOR, EDUCATIONAL LEADERSHIP AND POLICY STUDIES PATRICK FORSYTH, PH.D., PROFESSOR, EDUCATIONAL LEADERSHIP AND POLICY STUDIES Adams, Ford and Forsyth authored the report “Next Generation Accountability: A Vision for School Improvement Under ESSA,” which offers alternatives to single accountability indicators that are inadequate for supporting the dual goals of deeper learning and college- and career-ready graduates. With the impending implementation of the Every Student Succeeds Act, states are about to gain considerably more authority and autonomy over the design of school accountability systems. Consequently, there is an opportunity to design systems that produce information that genuinely explains how schools and school systems are meeting the learning and developmental needs of all students. BEN HEDDY, PH.D., ASSISTANT PROFESSOR, EDUCATIONAL PSYCHOLOGY Heddy recently had three articles accepted for publication in journals.

JRCOE FACULTY HONORS Three faculty members in the Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education were recognized for their work at the 2017 OU Faculty Tribute on April 11, at the Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art. Associate Professor Maeghan Hennessey (Instructional Psychology and Technology), Associate Professor Crag Hill (English Education) and Professor Sally Beach (Reading/Literacy Education) were honored for their contributions.

Professor Sally Beach - Award for International Engagement

“Teaching for transformative experiences in science: Developing and evaluating an instructional model.” Journal of Experimental Education. “Modifying knowledge, emotions, and attitudes about genetically modified foods.” Journal of Experimental Education. “Supporting Deep Engagement: The Teaching for Transformative Experiences in Science (TTES) Model.” Journal of Experimental Education.

Associate Professor Maeghan Hennessey - Henry Daniel Rinsland Memorial Award for Excellence in Educational Research

JI HONG, PH.D., ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR, EDUCATIONAL PSYCHOLOGY Hong has been awarded $15,000 from the Research Council with the Office of the Vice President for Research to assist with the development of her program of research. Hong is the primary investigator of the project, which will entail surveys and data collection at multiple schools in June and July of 2017 with the assistance of her graduate research assistant. Participants will include teachers and principals from four school sites in the Oklahoma City area. Data will be presented at the American Educational Research Association Conference.

Associate Professor Crag Hill - Rainbolt Family Endowed Education Presidential Professorship

Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education


HAPPENINGS SPRING 2017 PHILIP JOHNSON, ACADEMIC ADVISING Johnson’s theme of “yOU Make the Difference” was selected for OU Staff Week, held in April 2017.



JIM MARTIN, PH.D., PROFESSOR, EDUCATIONAL PSYCHOLOGY AMBER MCCONNELL, PH.D., ASSISTANT DIRECTOR OF LEARNING ENRICHMENT AND RESEARCH ASSOCIATE, ZARROW CENTER FOR LEARNING ENRICHMENT. Martin and McConnell from the OU Zarrow Center presented at the Institute for Education Sciences Principle Investigators Meeting in Washington, D.C., in December 2016. MELANIE SCHNEIDER, DIRECTOR OF COMMUNICATIONS Schneider was named the Staff Service Award winner of the fourth quarter.

LAVONYA BENNETT PH.D. STUDENT, EDUCATIONAL PSYCHOLOGY Bennett participated in a community presentation at Ice Event Center Bar and Grill for the Oklahoma Love Project. During the event, titled Black Trauma, she was the guest presenter on the pervasive impacts of racial trauma in the black community. After the presentation Bennett sat on a panel alongside black scholars and practitioners to field queries from the audience. ELAYNE BOWMAN PH.D. STUDENT, INSTRUCTIONAL LEADERSHIP AND ACADEMIC CURRICULUM “Integrating Physics with Algebra 2 in a secondary STEM classroom.” Paper presented at the 2016 SSMA Convention in Phoenix, Arizona. EMMANUELLE CHIOCCA PH.D. STUDENT, INSTRUCTIONAL LEADERSHIP AND ACADEMIC CURRICULUM (In Press). “Native American Language Programs in Oklahoma.” In S. Brunn (Ed.) Changing World Language Map. “Heart and Mind: Goal-Orientation of Military Students in Critical Language Learning.” Presented at the University of Central Oklahoma Language and Linguistics Student Conference in Edmond, Oklahoma. “I hope It Brings Wisdom: The perspective of ROTC Cadets on learning Arabic and developing intercultural communication competence.” Presented at the Mobilities, Transitions, Transformations – Intercultural Education at the Crossroads International Conference, International Association for Intercultural Education in Budapest, Hungary.

Associate Professor Theresa Cullen was one of five Apple Distinguished Educators worldwide featured on the Apple website earlier this year. Cullen was named an ADE in 2015, and was recently joined by Dean Gregg Garn in giving a presentation at the Apple campus in Cupertino, California to provosts and deans on enhancing colleges of education with mobile technology.



“You Learn to Shut Up: A case study of ROTC cadets crossing the boundaries of critical languages and cultures.” Poster presentation at the 10th International Conference on Third Language Acquisition and Multilingualism, International Association of Multilingualism in Vienna, Austria. Received the McNair’s Choice Award in the Education/ Fine Arts/Humanities poster competition at the 2017 OU

HAPPENINGS SPRING 2017 Graduate Student Research and Creativity Day. JANE FISHER BABER PH.D. STUDENT, INSTRUCTIONAL LEADERSHIP AND ACADEMIC CURRICULUM Baber received the Provost’s Certificate of Distinction in Teaching. The recipients represent the top 10 percent of all graduate assistants across campus by student evaluations for courses taught during the fall 2016 semester. JENNY FUDICKAR PH.D. STUDENT, INSTRUCTIONAL LEADERSHIP AND ACADEMIC CURRICULUM “Talking to Dragon: A student’s perception of speech recognition software.” Presentation at the 2016 Literacies for All Summer Institute in St. Louis. DEVON GUNTER PH.D. STUDENT, INSTRUCTIONAL LEADERSHIP AND ACADEMIC CURRICULUM “Might as Well Jump: Modeling life with mathematics.” Workshop presented at the 2016 NCTM Regional Conference. Philadelphia. “Secondary-tertiary transition in mathematics: A multifaceted issue.” Paper presented at 2016 SSMA Annual Convention. Phoenix. MELISSA GUNTER PH.D. STUDENT, INSTRUCTIONAL LEADERSHIP AND ACADEMIC CURRICULUM “Might as Well Jump: Modeling life with mathematics.” Workshop presented at the 2016 NCTM Regional Conference. Philadelphia. “Using the writing process in math to elicit student understanding.” Research session presented at the NCTM 2016 Regional Conference & Exposition, Philadelphia. Elected secretary of the Oklahoma Council of Teachers of Mathematics.

MARGARET JOHNSON PH.D. STUDENT, EDUCATIONAL PSYCHOLOGY JOSHUA PULOS PH.D. STUDENT, EDUCATIONAL PSYCHOLOGY Johnson and Pulos presented their work at the Council for Exceptional Children’s Division on Autism and Developmental Disabilities Conference in Clearwater, Florida. TAEWOONG KIM PH.D. STUDENT, INSTRUCTIONAL LEADERSHIP AND ACADEMIC CURRICULUM Received the McNair’s Choice Award in the Education/ Fine Arts/Humanities poster competition at the 2017 OU Graduate Student Research and Creativity Day. GUL NAHAR PH.D. STUDENT, INSTRUCTIONAL LEADERSHIP AND ACADEMIC CURRICULUM (In Press). “Loosening the linkages between language and the land.” In S. Brunn (Ed.), Changing World Language Map. “Form and meaning with English Learners.” Presented at the National Council of Teachers of English Annual Convention in Atlanta.

NOUMANE RAHOUTI PH.D. STUDENT, INSTRUCTIONAL LEADERSHIP AND ACADEMIC CURRICULUM Rahouti was invited to Paris for “Salon du Livre,” which is the biggest book fair of the country that takes place once a year. He was invited to do a book signing for France of Principles and France of Traditions.

GAGE JETER PH.D. STUDENT, INSTRUCTIONAL LEADERSHIP AND ACADEMIC CURRICULUM “Advocating for Authenticity: Instructional Strategies based on an Authentic Framework to Promote Critical Literacy.” National Council of Teachers of English annual convention, Atlanta. “Authentically Sustainable LEARNing for Urban Schools: The Lesson and Engaging Activities Repository Network.” Poster presentation at the International Conference on Urban Education in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Students in EIPT 3043 were certified as Apple Teachers, a professional learning program designed to support and celebrate educators using Apple products for teaching and learning.

Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education


HAPPENINGS SPRING 2017 KATE RAYMOND PH.D. STUDENT, INSTRUCTIONAL LEADERSHIP AND ACADEMIC CURRICULUM “Using the writing process in math to elicit student understanding.” Research session presented at the NCTM 2016 Regional Conference & Exposition, Philadelphia. “Novice Mathematics Teachers’ Metacognitive Knowledge about Communicative Activities: A Case Study.” Presentation at the 2016 School Science and Mathematical Association Convention in Phoenix. “If Our Classroom Were the World: Using Proportional Reasoning to Explore World Population.” Presented at the 2016 Oklahoma Council of Teachers of Mathematics Annual Conference in Tulsa, Oklahoma. GENEVIEVE A. SCHMITT M.ED. STUDENT, INSTRUCTIONAL LEADERSHIP AND ACADEMIC CURRICULUM U.S. Student Fulbright Grant. “Arabic Perceptual Dialectology in Jordan.” ANDREA SUK PH.D. STUDENT, EDUCATIONAL PSYCHOLOGY Suk was appointed by Council for Exceptional Children leadership to serve on its Student’s Committee. LINDSAY WILLIAMS PH.D. STUDENT, INSTRUCTIONAL LEADERSHIP AND ACADEMIC CURRICULUM “Educate a Girl and You’re Educating an Entire Village.” Roundtable Session at the National Council for the Social Studies International Assembly in Washington, D.C. “How do YOU do PD? Lessons learned from Research, Feedback and Experience.” Presentation at the National Council for Community and Education Partnerships/GEAR UP Annual Conference in Washington, D.C. MEREDITH WRONOWSKI PH.D. STUDENT, INSTRUCTIONAL LEADERSHIP AND ACADEMIC CURRICULUM Took second place in the Education/Fine Arts/Humanities poster competition at the 2017 OU Graduate Student Research and Creativity Day.

ALUMNI NEELI BOYD (B.S. ED., 2008) Boyd was named the Putnam City Schools’ “Teacher of the Year” during the district’s annual celebration of teaching excellence on March 7. Boyd teaches first grade at Wiley Post Elementary School. BETH HAMMETT (B.S. ED., 1999) Hammett (left) was named College of the Mainland’s Online Faculty of the Year for 2016. CYNTHIA HUDSON REED (B.S. ED., 1976) Reed is a retired volunteer teacher at Cawston Elementary in Hemet, California. Reed has been teaching Shakespeare (with original language) to elementary children for over 10 years. Her latest year included productions of “Macbeth,” “The Tempest,” a Shakespeare festival with scenes from six plays, and a soliloquy contest. SARA LAMBERT (B.S. ED., 2012, M.ED., 2016) Lambert was named Teacher of the Year at Hillcrest Elementary in Oklahoma City. This is her fourth year of teaching. She currently teaches third grade, but taught second grade the previous three years. POLLY PREWITT FREILINO (M.ED., 2004, PH.D., 2008) Prewitt-Freilino was named the director of institutional research and effectiveness at Mount Holyoke College. In her role at Mount Holyoke, Prewitt-Freilino will gather and analyze data regarding academic and scholarly programs in order to provide consistent, standard and objective metrics to support the college’s enrollment, planning and policy decisions. She will serve as a key resource in providing access to research documents, facts and figures. JAMIE RENTZEL (B.S. ED., 2004) Rentzel was named the 2017 Norman Public School District Teacher of the Year. She is in her 11th year at Norman High, where she leads the math department, serves on the district’s Math Advisory Board and also was selected to participate in the state Department of Education’s process to re-examine new state math standards.


The Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education Honor Roll recognizing our generous donors can be found online. Visit for a complete list of our most recent donors. 24






Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education


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2017 Spring Bridges Magazine  

Learn more about Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education students in the classroom, alumni, faculty and more in the 2017 spring edition of Br...

2017 Spring Bridges Magazine  

Learn more about Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education students in the classroom, alumni, faculty and more in the 2017 spring edition of Br...