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Office of School and Community Partnerships
Teachers College, Columbia University
Teachers College
Columbia University

The Arthur Zankel Urban Fellowship


All of the sites listed below are recruiting for Zankel Fellows in 2014-15. In your application for the fellowship, you will be given the option of ranking your top three site preferences. You will also have the opportunity to briefly explain how you meet the criteria listed for your top preference(s). Given the large number of applications for a very limited number of places, it is essential that you review the internship criteria listed below each site description and address them in your application.

You may be selected by more than one sponsor, so your ranking may also help us decide which of the options open to you will best suit your interests.

Early Mathematics Learning Through MathemAntics Software

Sponsor: Dr. Herbert Ginsburg

Department: Human Development, Cognitive Studies

Zankel Fellows will work with local schools to help children in Grades K-3 learn and practice MathemAtic concepts and skills through the extended use of TC's newly-developed educational software -- MathemAntics. The children will gain valuable extra experience enhancing and practicing their mathematics abilities, while also developing computer skills. The Fellows will also help classroom teachers to use technology and high-quality educational software as supplements to their classroom curriculum.

Internship criteria: Technical skill with computer software; experience working with young children from Grades K-3; clinical interview skills (to interview children as they work with the software so as to learn what features are effective); and experience working with teachers in a professional development setting.

Estimated time commitment per week: Five hours minimum direct service and another five hours working with teachers and attending meetings at TC to evaluate children's progress and to plan the next week's software activities.

Weekly schedule: TBD.

Internship site(s): Teachers College Community School (M517), 168 Morningside Avenue, New York NY 10027:

Reading Specialists at Heritage High School

Sponsor: Dr. Susan Masullo and Dr. Dolores Perin

Department: Reading Specialist MA Program in the Department of Health and Behavior Studies

Heritage High School is a NYC Department of Education school which has a history of chronic underperformance by its student population, many of whom are second language learners. The majority of students in the school demonstrate moderate to severe literacy difficulties.Each Zankel Reading Specialist provides literacy assessment and intervention services directly to students with weak reading and writing skills under the supervision of school personnel.Direct instruction is planned to take place not only in remedial reading classes at the school, but also in content areas classrooms where these high school students need support. Additional time is spent by each Fellow planning literacy activities, meeting with school personnel and the TC supervisor for guidance.

Internship criteria:

  • Responsible commitment to the Fellowship and the population being served
  • Prior experience in reading/writing tutoring, particularly with adolescents who struggle
  • Good professional, collaborative skills for working with classroom teachers and school administration
  • Ability to accept and seek guidance from site supervisor; can follow-through reliably on guidance provided
  • Good attendance, punctuality
  • Understanding of urban high school environments is beneficial but not mandatory

    Estimated time commitment per week:
    Five to ten hours working directly with urban youth and five hours preparation/planning of assessment and intervention activities, meetings with school personnel and meetings with TC Zankel Supervisor.

  • Internship site(s): HS 680 Heritage School, 1680 Lexington Avenue, New York, NY 10029

    Weekly schedule: TBD.

    Raising Educational Achievement Coalition of Harlem

    Sponsor: Angela Fulcher

    Department: Office of School and Community Partnerships

    Through the Raising Educational Achievement Coalition of Harlem (REACH), Teachers College convenes a group of local public schools across the PK -- 12 grade span to work collaboratively to improve students' academic achievements and educational attainments through a set of coherent and strategic actions to engage young people in a comprehensive educational opportunity

    Zankel Fellows will provide students in the partner public schools with high-quality expanded learning opportunities that expose them to new ideas as well as support the development of their academic skills and content knowledge.Fellows work directly with students and engage them in hands-on, inquiry-based projects are aligned to the Common Core State Standards.They also attend trainings and professional development sessions from OSCP staff to support their work around the development, implementation, monitoring, and refinement of activity plans for the expanded learning opportunities provided to students.Fellows benefit from the opportunity to share their skills and knowledge with Harlem's youth in non-traditional educational settings in New York City public schools.One Fellow described the experience as an "opportunity to experience the transfer of that learning [from courses] first-hand."

    Internship criteria: Interns must have at least six months' previous experience working with urban youth & families in traditional public schools in underserved communities and/or experience working with community-based organizations serving youth & families at-risk.Strong organization, lesson planning, writing, and facilitation skills required.Interest in youth development, storytelling/narrative writing, health, STEM or critical service learning preferred.

    Estimated time commitment per week: Five hours working directly with inner city youth and five hours in planning and preparation.

    Weekly schedule: Includes in-school and after-school activities

    Internship site(s): PS 36, PS 154, Columbia Secondary School, Frederick Douglass Academy II, Heritage High School

    Teachers College Community School

    Sponsor: Audrey Cox

    Department: Office of School and Community Partnerships

    Teachers College Community School (TCCS) is an inclusive, non-screened choice elementary school that opened in September 2011. The school is phasing in one grade per year, and will have grades PreK-2 by September 2013. Admissions preference is given to families living in Community School Districts 5 and 6, where the percentage of students reading at grade level is approximately 35; and grade level math proficiency is 45 percent.

    To effectively educate students who have a range of learning needs and language backgrounds, TCCS uses a model of inclusion that provides all students with a home base in a regular classroom, coupled with flexible services across a continuum of needs. Supplemental educational services, including early childhood programming, family literacy, after school programming, social and health services, also are provided.

    The TCCS Zankel Fellows will plan and deliver instructional support to students in the PreK-2 classrooms and in the after school programs. Fellows will be selected and assigned according to the school's highest priority needs, which may be classroom management, assessment, subject specific support etc.Fellows will benefit from their exposure to how educational activities are planned and delivered within a community school model as well as the instructional rigors of TCCS, which embraces high expectations for its diverse community of learners.

    Internship criteria: Interns must have at least six months' classroom experience at the elementary level working with children from linguistically and culturally diverse backgrounds. Strong knowledge of early literacy is preferred. Knowledge of the NYC public school system preferred.

    Internship site(s): Teachers College Community School, 168 Morningside Avenue, New York, NY 10027:

    Estimated time commitment per week: Seven to nine hours working directly with children in the classroom and one-three hours of planning and preparation. Includes in-school (8am-3pm) and after-school (3pm-5pm) activities.

    Weekly schedule: TBD.

    Literacy and Inquiry Internship

    Sponsors: Dr. Marjorie Siegel, Dr. Lucy Calkins, and Dr. Maria Paula Ghiso

    Department: Curriculum and Teaching

    Narrative description: Literacy learning is a complex undertaking that involves providing students with opportunities to read and write for real-world purposes, engage in textual analysis and language study, see themselves represented in the curriculum, and use literacy as a platform for inquiry. Fellows will work with students in TC partner schools to support these multiple facets of literacy inquiry. Fellows will collaborate with classroom teachers and C&T Literacy faculty to learn from students about their literacies and build on this knowledge through facilitation of individualized, small group and whole class instruction.Fellows will also have the opportunity to work closely with one of the faculty sponsors on related literacy inquiries.

    Internship criteria: Previous experience facilitating literacy instruction at the elementary level. Candidates must be enrolled in the Literacy Specialist Program or a doctoral program in the Department of Curriculum and Teaching.

    Internship site(s): TC Community School and PS 36.

    Estimated time commitment per week: Literacy block four times per week, plus additional time for planning.

    Weekly schedule: To be determined in consultation with the school depending on their literacy instruction schedule.

    Argumentation Curriculum Implementation

    Sponsor: Dr. Deanna Kuhn

    Department: Human Development

    For several years, TC students have benefited from interning at Columbia Secondary School, where they help to implement an innovative middle-school curriculum that develops argumentation skills that are critical in academic learning and fundamental to the Common Core Standards.The experience greatly benefits the neighborhood students it serves, as well as the TC students who participate. Fellows gain hands-on experience working directly with students in a school setting.

    Internship site(s): Columbia Secondary School in Harlem

    Movement and Physical Activity for Preschoolers

    Sponsor: Dr. Carol Ewing Garber

    Department: Department of Biobehavioral Sciences, Program in Movement Sciences and Education

    Many young children do not get enough physical activity, and this is a particular problem in children of low income residing in an urban environment, children of minority status, and in children with physical disabilities.Physical inactivity is a primary contributing factor to the burgeoning epidemic of childhood obesity among these populations. Engaging children in movement and physical activities at a young age is also important in the development of good health and is vital to physical and cognitive development. This fellowship involves developing and implementing a program of movement and physical activities that will be integrated into the structure of the Columbia University Head Start Program. Fellows will work in pairs in collaboration with TC faculty, CUHS parents, staff and affiliated faculty.

    Columbia University Head Start (CUHS) provides services to low income children and families in Northern Manhattan. CUHS serves a catchment area that includes three neighborhoods in Northern Manhattan: Washington Heights, West Harlem, and Hamilton Heights, ranging from West 125th Street to West 207th Street. While the CUHS population has been predominantly Dominican since the program's inception, demographic data indicates a shift to new immigrants from Mexico and Central America, with Mexican families (50%) now the largest immigrant group being served by the program. Dominican (28%) and Ecuadorian (21%) families make up the second largest groups. Approximately 30% of the preschool children currently attending the program are overweight or obese.

    Internship site(s): Columbia University Head Start Program, 154 Haven Avenue, 3rd Floor

    UMOJA Readers and Writers

    Sponsor: Dr. Yolanda Sealey-Ruiz

    Department: Arts and Humanities, English Education Program

    UMOJA Readers and Writers (URW) is the academic component of UMOJA mentoring program at Satellite Academy High School. It comprises of 12 Black and Latino male high school students and seeks to strengthen students' reading, writing and analytical skills. There is an additional focus on developing their leadership skills through speeches, debates and public performance. Upon successful completion of URW, students receive .5 high school credits that count toward graduation. The URW curriculum grows the skills the young men need to critically think about a piece of literature, a video clip, or other literacy modalities. An overarching goal is to develop their writing skills and reading fluency and help them become more confident and competent readers, writers, and oral communicators. Zankel tutors will work with URW students throughout the school year to encourage the young men's love for reading through discussion of culturally-relevant texts given to them at URW and in their humanities classes at Satellite.

    Internship site(s): Satellite Academy High School(s) - 195 Forsyth Street, New York, NY

    Weekly schedule: Mondays and Fridays

    Student Press Initiative: Speaking Stories - Enhancing Oral and Written Literacy Skills for ELL Youth

    Sponsor: Dr. Ruth Vinz

    Department: Arts and Humanities

    For the past two years, the Student Press Initiative has partnered with the New York City Department of Education's GED-Plus program to help young adult English Language Learners publish their oral histories. Combining oral histories and narrative methodologies while working one-on-one with students, SPI educators help students develop conversational and text-based English language skills while also providing them the opportunity to process coming of age while coming to America. Last year, the first year of this project, our students represented over 20 unique countries speaking nearly a dozen different languages and dialects.

    Zankel Fellows working with SPI staff members serve as site educators at the various GED-Plus sites working directly with students. A team of four to six people visit these sites weekly or biweekly and work in groups of two to four with small groups of students. This work involves helping students become familiar with the SPI process, interviewing students and transcribing the audio recordings, and then working with students on editing their transcripts to become complete narratives. Throughout this process, the Zankel fellows also serve as mentors to students, asking questions about how the students have processed and continue to process their life events.

    Internship site(s): Three participating District 79 public schools across the city, with the specific sites still to be determined.

    Student Press Initiative:Writing Worlds - Enhancing Literacy Skills for ELL Youth

    Sponsor: Dr. Ruth Vinz

    Department: Arts and Humanities

    For the past two years, the Student Press Initiative has partnered with the New York City Department of Education's GED-Plus program to program to support the development of adolescent ELL students' written literacy skills. The students in these classrooms are recent immigrants with first languages other than English (including but not limited to Spanish, Mandarin,Arabic, French, Creole, and Swahili). The instructional challenges in these classrooms are complex and nuanced.Imagine teaching in a classroom with 35 youth, many of whom have arrived in this country within the past several months with limited to no English proficiency.

    Zankel Fellows working with SPI staff members will work directly with students in these high risk, high need ELL schools across the city on the centerpiece of this transformational work:Writing Worlds-'"an ambitious, four-school, city-wide, multi-media publishing project focused on providing students with the opportunity to "Go Public" with their writing. This student-centered, project-based focus provides motivation for students to learn essential literacy skills for a specific and deeply personal purpose: to share their stories, understanding, and reflections with the world. In the end, and throughout the process, students celebrate their work with performances and readings. They have a school-wide celebration, and then all four schools come together for a grand book release at Teachers College. Select students read from their written work, all in a second language, all confidently, all in front of their community, their teachers and friends, and the Teachers College community.

    Internship site(s): Four participating District 79 public schools across the city - The GED Plus (ELL) schools: Tenzer Learning Center, Linden Learning Center, Bronx Regional High School, and Jamaica Learning Center.

    Teaching Immigrant Children: Re-Mediating Language and Literacy Practices

    Sponsor: Dr. Mariana Souto-Manning

    Department: Curriculum & Teaching, Early Childhood Education

    The project seeks to apply a re-mediation framework to oral language, literacy skills, and vocabulary knowledge, thus engaging young children who are in Kindergarten in rich and authentic vocabulary practices through play. The Fellow will facilitate play sessions that are developmentally appropriate and culturally relevant in small group settings. He/She will focus on cross-linguistic and trans-cultural aspects of learning, better equipping immigrant children to succeed in traditional academic settings.

    The Fellow will meet with children four times a week for a period of two hours each time (eight hours per week). They will serve two groups of four children. Professor Souto-Manning will train, supervise, and coordinate formative and summative assessment (in weekly meetings). The program will serve to extend the school day for these children and deepen their understandings of language and literacy--'"talking, reading and writing.

    Internship site(s): PS 75 (Emily Dickinson School)