Professional development workshops led by leading edge educators.
Join us on Sunday, June 25th for an exciting series of professional development workshops led by some of the most innovative and creative professionals we know. (See their bios here.) When you register, choose one workshop that intrigues you from each of the following two blocks.
[Full Gathering Schedule | Registration Opening April 28th]
Workshop Block I: 1:00-3:00pm
1a. Teaching Civil Rights: The Constitution on the Ground
This workshop will explore instructional strategies for teaching about modern civil rights, including debates and trial and negotiation role-plays. The materials presented have been developed by the Schoolhouse project of the University of Michigan Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse. Teachers from grades 8 through college can use the materials for lessons that localize constitutional law and practice, communicating to students that they and people like them are participants in developing and contesting civil rights norms.
- Margo Schlanger, Henry M. Butzel Professor of Law, University of Michigan
1b. Rethinking Assessment: Digital Tools to Engage, Assess and Differentiate
Learn to go beyond just giving quizzes to assess students. In this session, get hands on experience using 6 free, engaging and easy to use technologies that can be used to formatively assess students. Get practice interpreting multimodal formative assessments and learn to make decisions within the framework of the formative assessment cycle. Walk away with ready to use activities that can be given to students and shared with other educators in your school.
- Becky Shiring, Director of Professional Development & Continued Learning, Squirrels, LLC
1c. “This is Your Brain on Art: Creative Problem-Solving”
Art is defined in many ways in today’s society and classroom. What is art? How can we use it to help us learn? These are the main questions we will explore in the interactive workshop. The creative brain works in many different ways and should be used to its full potential in the classroom. Using different activities and lessons may help students of any age unlock and utilize the brain to in many different ways. This type of differentiated instruction may be the key to help students learn how to utilize their individual and unique learning patterns to achieve a higher understanding of a concept or idea. Join us in discovering the many different ways the brain is able to process information and how you can apply diverse learning methods in your classroom as well as in your own personal/professional development.
- Hilary Parmentier, English Faculty, Florida Keys Community College
- Alaina Plowdrey, Center Director, Saint Leo University
1d. Integrating Off the Shelf Video and Board Games into Classrooms
This workshop will give attendees a series of lenses, similar to the work Jesse Schell did in his book, “The Art of Game Design”, through which to evaluate how well, and in what ways, off the shelf games may fit into a particular assignment, unit, or course.
During this workshop, we will use a pilot course from summer 2014 as a case study to discuss issues we encountered while integrating games into the curriculum, including (but not limited to):
- Designing the curriculum to create a structured environment meant to teach students the course material
- Transforming the casual experience of teaching a game into an opportunity to learn practical material
- Tools to assess learning throughout each class session and to encourage students to stay focused on learning goals
- Logistics, concerns and challenges that emerged during the initial pilot phase
In small groups, we will play a game used in the pilot course, then we will reconvene and brainstorm ways in which this, and other games, can be used at various levels of instruction. In the final segment of the workshop, participants will practice what they have learned by evaluating several hypothetical case studies intended to provoke thought about using games creatively in the classroom and integrating games into courses or programs. Attendees are encouraged to bring in their own scenarios for further discussion.
- Brenda Imber, Instructor at the English Language Institute at the University of Michigan
- John Beals, Instructional Learning Senior at the University of Michigan Language Resource Center
- Val Waldron, Computer and Video Game Archive Manager at the University of Michigan
- Phill Cameron, Instructional Learning Intermediate at the University of Michigan Language Resource Center
1e. Digital Storytelling Made Easy: A Guide to Engaging Girls in Game-Based Learning
Trying to bring games into the classroom, but having trouble engaging the girls in your classroom? Join the mightiest mini-story jam, a high-tech creative exercise where participants craft their own wild adventures and wield the power of Twine to breathe life into plots and characters. No prior knowledge of Twine or game design is required. Presenters will provide a brief overview of educational game design and Twine, a free computer program that allows users to create interactive, nonlinear stories akin to the “choose-your-own-adventure” stories that became popular in the 80’s and 90’s. A design theme, relevant to educators and the Gathering’s theme of “Wonder Together,” will be announced during the workshop. After which, participants will be set free to craft, tinker with, and polish their Twine mini-stories. Attendees will be invited to showcase their Twine mini-stories at the iiE project showcase on Monday. Applications and implications for the classroom will be discussed, with special attention to how teachers can utilize Twine to capture the attention of girls with STEAM.
- Jennifer Killham
- Luke Kane
- Brittany Holmes
Workshop Block II: 3:30-5:30pm
2a. How to Teach with Minecraft
GameStart is an Ann Arbor-based program whose primary focus is bringing technology education to kids in grades 1-12, through the medium of video games. Rather than invent new games that kids may not find compelling, we leverage passion for established, well-known games such as Minecraft in a hands-on and collaborative learning environment.
In this workshop, we will share what GameStart instructors have learned about using games to explore computer technology including software programming, animation, and game design.
- Nate Aschenbach
- David Arditti
2b. Motivational Interviewing for Educators
How we communicate with our students is critical for positive student change. Traditionally, educators are at the front of the class, providing knowledge and specific content, to students that will then be assessed at a later date without much authentic contact between educator and student. By using non-traditional communication techniques in even brief teacher/student interactions, educators can increase their odds that the time they spend with their students will foster a close bond and help the teacher truly understand the student’s life experience. This mutual respect can lead to more positive educational experiences that students are actively engaged in. This session will focus on two techniques. The first, Motivational Interviewing, will be introduced to the participants leaving them with thought provoking new ideas about how teachers and student can work together. The second technique explores how we can help students identify the obstacles that are preventing them from reaching their educational goals. The combination of helping students identify their obstacles to success while using the collaborative communication techniques of Motivational Interviewing is powerful and will help us become stronger support people for positive educational change in our students.
- Barbara D. Robertson, MA Clonlara School
2c. The “My Personal Philosophy” Curriculum: Building Empathy through Social/Emotional Learning
This session will present participants with a complete 4-8 week curriculum for use in 6th- 12th grades, with suggestions for adaptation to lower grades. Participants will receive a general introduction to the curriculum (content, inspiration, relevance in the face of existing ESSA priorities) then taken through several of the key activities to give them a feel of what students using the materials will experience. Participants will be given a copy of the curriculum to take home and online resources for additional support content.
- Anna Gersh, Ph.D Project Administrator EMU Bright Futures at the Institute for the Study of Children, Families, and the Community (ISCFC)
2d. Launch Design Thinking in the Classroom
Learn how to lead students in the process of creating an empathetic solution to a well-defined problem.This hands-on simulation workshop includes an overview of what design thinking is along with how it relates to educational standards and the development of the soft skills employers are looking for these days. Participants will work in small groups to experience the complete design thinking process. We’ll use the Extraordinaires Design Studio to work through identifying a problem, followed by observation / research, brainstorming, collaboration, and testing to reach a proposed solution. Session wrap-up includes group reflection on the process and how it can be applied in your particular setting. Participants will leave with support resource hand-outs, and access to a Google doc with examples of real classroom integration.
- Carol Glanville, MA. Ed. Director of Educational Technology, Diocese of Grand Rapids
2e. The Research Paper Transformed: Multi-Genre Projects
Tired of reading formulaic research papers from your students? Explore an alternative: multi-genre projects. With multi-genre projects, learners of all ages can deepen their understandings about a topic and broaden their writing repertoires, and you can enjoy reading the fruits of learners’ work! In this workshop we will create a group multi-genre project and discuss the opportunities and challenges of using this approach with learners. We’ll explore examples of children’s and adults’ multi-genre work and make plans for using this approach with your own students!
- Susanna Hapgood, Associate Professor, University of Toledo
- Martha M. Champa, Adjunct Instructor, University of Toledo and Intervention Specialist, Washington Local Schools, Toledo, Ohio