October 2017 RtI E-Newsletter


Cultivating Trust Through Positive Interactions

Cultivating Trust


Positive feedback leads to better morale, enhanced motivation, and improved productivity (Fulwiler, 2015). Did you know that positive interactions (or feedback) can also build trust with students and even colleagues? There is one simple ratio developed by Psychologist John Gottman: Five to one – five positive or neutral interactions for every one corrective action (Fulwiler).

Elena Aguilar shared her observations on how this played out in the classroom when she observed an eighth grade teacher in one classroom with negative interactions and outcomes alongside another teacher and classroom with positive interactions. The same student cohort was used in both observations, and tracked using the Teacher-Student Interaction Tracking document with compelling outcomes to support the Gottman “Magic Ratio.”   


Looking for additional opportunities to increase positive interactions with a student or colleague? Try these suggestions adapted from Provide Positive Feedback:

  • Represents the school or class in a favorable manner
  • Meets a goal (short or long term)
  • Delivers a presentation or reads aloud in class
  • Helps you or someone else with a task
  • Produces more or improved work
  • Reaches a new level of competence or understanding
  • Influences someone to do something positive


Wisconsin Response to Intervention NIEAThree Ways to Prepare for Native American Heritage Month –
Celebrated Each November

In Wisconsin, there are more than 11,000 American Indian students representing 11 unique nations (or tribes). For schools implementing a multi-level system of support, learning about the diverse cultures of students within our state is critical. To help you expand your knowledge, celebrate the rich cultural contributions of American Indians and bring these lessons into the classroom, we’ve compiled three key resources.


1 - Wisconsin RtI Center Culturally Responsive Practices Web Page
The center has compiled resources relating to the seven experiences that inform culturally responsive teaching and learning; opportunities to learn about a student’s home culture on our experience page specific to American Indian students; and  Equity: Wisconsin’s Model to Inform Culturally Responsive Practices which describes a lifetime journey to increase our cultural responsiveness. Additionally, we offer a Building Culturally Responsive Systems training.   


2 - Wisconsin’s Disproportionality Assistance Network
The Disproportionality Assistance Network is committed to racial equity and building the capacity of districts, schools, and educators through face-to-face meetings, webinars, book studies, and professional learning communities. Throughout the month of November, the Network will offer regional trainings titled -  Addressing the American Indian Student Achievement Gap in Wisconsin.

Later in the school year, they’ll offer two online study circle conversations to discuss:
Everything You Wanted to Know about Indians But Were Afraid to Ask by Anton Treuer
How to Be an Indian in the 21st Century by Louis V. “Two Shoes” Clark III


3 - National Education Association
The NEA has developed curricula for learning about and celebrating Native American Heritage Month. The programs are structured for grades K-5grades 6-8,  and grades 9-12


With 11 unique nations in the state of Wisconsin alone, there are abundant resources and opportunities to share rich conversations. In addition to these top three, the center will feature more ideas and articles on our Facebook page and Twitter feed during the month of November.


October is Drop Out Prevention Month

college and career ready in wi


More than three million students do not graduate each year (Statistic Brain 2017). “We know there are early predictors of potential drop-outs which can exist as early as grades 6 – 9,” reports the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction (DPI). The good news? We know it is a process starting in the middle grades which allows the use of early predictors and warning systems to identify potential drop outs. This leads to critical intervention opportunities to ensure every child graduates college and career ready.

 At the Wisconsin RtI Center and PBIS Network, we have a team of expert Technical Assistance Coordinators (TACs) in each region with resources to help you facilitate and navigate these critical interventions.


Early predictors and warning systems are key tools for universal screening, an essential aspect of a multi-level system of support. They allow schools to analyze existing data to:

  • Determine students in need of additional supports,
  • Identify resources to support these students, and
  • Examine patterns to identify school climate issues.


Keep in mind, it’s not a “one size fits all” process. There are different nuances to screening based upon the students’ age. If you would like assistance, connect with your Regional TAC by clicking here.



DEWS (Dropout Early Warning System)." Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction. May 15, 2017. Accessed October 20, 2017. https://dpi.wi.gov/dews.

Fulwiler, Michael. “Provide Positive Feedback.” The Gottman Institute. September 06, 2015. Accessed October 20, 2017. https://www.gottman.com/blog/provide-positive-feedback/.

“High School Dropout Statistics.” Statistic Brain. September 25, 2017. Accessed October 20, 2017. http://www.statisticbrain.com/high-school-dropout-statistics/.