Discuss and study practical instructional techniques to implement project-based learning (PBL). PBL is a catalyst to teach students critical skills for success through personalized instruction. A morning keynote address will focus on tenants of competency education, 21st century skills, and evolving instructional and assessment practices. Breakout sessions in the morning and afternoon will follow the keynote and cover: Blended Basics: Using Technology and Data to Personalize Learning; Centers-based Instruction (K-12); Project-based Learning and Instruction (K-6); Next Steps Design (K-6); and Next Steps Design (Gr. 7-12).
8:00-8:20 a.m. - Registration & Coffee
8:20-8:30 a.m. - Welcome
8:30-10:00 a.m. - Keynote Speaker: Jonathan Vander Els. & Brian Stack
10:15 a.m.-12:00 noon - 4 Breakout Sessions
12:00–1:00 p.m. - Lunch
1:00–2:45 p.m. - 4 Breakout Sessions
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Our traditional educational system, a factory model of education, has been in place for decades. However, does this model properly prepare our learners for the world they will enter after school? Many of the jobs they will have after graduation do not even exist today. During this session, we will focus on the tenets of competency education and consider how both instructional and assessment practices are evolving to meet the changing needs of learners in our schools. The session will explore project-based learning as a catalyst for developing those deeper learning competencies that are critical for success in college, career, and civic life.
Participants will understand:
A. Overview of competency education
B. Successful instructional shifts necessary to support student learning.
C. How project-based learning meets learners’ needs.
Keynote Presenters: Brian Stack and Jonathan Vander Els
AM Session ONLY
Traditional school structures, those that have served generations of America’s youth, have left today’s educators with tough questions to grapple with. Does your school have effective structures in place to prepare today’s students for the unknown needs of tomorrow’s society? Is your school flexible enough to provide personalized pathways for all, with a student-centered approach? A traditional educational model no longer properly prepares learners for the world they will enter, and this has resulted in the need for schools to break from tradition to adopt a more student-centered, personalized structure known as competency-based learning. In this breakout session, Jon will help educators and school teams determine their current reality through self-evaluation utilizing the competency-based learning school design rubric from their book, Breaking with Tradition. Jon will then help teams prioritize their needs and determine their “next steps” through a design session, allowing individuals and teams to leave this session with concrete realistic next steps towards developing their own competency learning system in information their schools. Presenter: Jonathan Vander Els
Repeated AM and PM Sessions
Does differentiating instruction seem overwhelming? Discover how competency-based learning centers allow for personalization, natural differentiation, and quality instruction for all learners. Amanda Tozier, a fourth grade teacher, and Jill Lizier curriculum coordinator and former first grade teacher, Crystal Bonin, high school English teacher present an overview on learning centers through both a panel discussion and level-focused groups. Come discover how to create an environment where all students, regardless of ability, are provided with a learning pathway that fits their needs and brings them to competency. Instructors: Crystal Bonin, Jill Lizier, & Amanda Tozier
Repeated AM and PM Sessions
At Highlander Institute, we believe that if mastery is the goal and personalization is the challenge, then blended learning is our solution. In this session, participants will articulate their own “whys” for blended learning, and experience elements of blended and personalized learning models, including opportunities to work in small groups and to progress through learning tasks at their own pace. As part of the discussion, participants will receive open-source resources that they can use to support blended learning implementations in their own schools and classrooms, as well as information and realistic next steps towards developing their own competency based learning system in their schools.
Presenters: Maeve Murray and Maureen Sigler
PM Session ONLY
Traditional school structures, those that have served generations of America’s youth, have left today’s educators with tough questions to grapple with. Does your school have effective structures in place to prepare today’s students for the unknown needs of tomorrow’s society? Is your school flexible enough to provide personalized pathways for all, with a student-centered approach? A traditional educational model no longer properly prepares learners for the world they will enter, and this has resulted in the need for schools to break from tradition to adopt a more student-centered, personalized structure known as competency-based learning. In this breakout session, Brian will help educators and school teams determine their current reality through self-evaluation utilizing the competency-based learning school design rubric from their book, Breaking with Tradition. Brian will then help teams prioritize their needs and determine their “next steps” through a design session, allowing individuals and teams to leave this session with concrete based and realistic next steps towards developing their own competency learning system in information their schools. Presenter: Brian Stack
70 Constitution Ave, Concord, NH 03301
North Main Street to 393/202 east to a right on South Commercial Street. Proceed to stop sign and turn left onto Constitution Avenue. Courtyard by Marriott is on your right.
From the North:
I-93 South to exit 15W. Turn right at stop sign and proceed to flashing yellow light. Turn right at flashing yellow light onto Commercial Street. Proceed to stop sign and turn right, continuing on Commercial Street, and turn right into Corporate Center at Horseshoe Pond.
From the South:
I-93 North to exit 15W (393/202 West). Turn right at flashing yellow light onto Commercial Street. Proceed to stop sign and turn right, continuing on Commercial Street and turn right into Corporate Center at Horseshoe Pond.
From the West:
I-89 to I-93 North to exit 15W (393/202 West). Turn right at flashing yellow light onto Commercial Street. Proceed to stop sign and turn right, continuing on Commercial Street, and turn right into Corporate Center at Horseshoe Pond.
From the East:
393/202 West (cross over I-93) to right at flashing yellow light onto Commercial Street. Proceed to stop sign and turn right, continuing on Commercial Street, and turn right into Corporate Center at Horseshoe Pond.
I-95 South to Exit 2 (Hampton Beach/Exeter). Proceed on NH 101 W (towards Manchester) to I-93N to exit 15W (393/202 West). Turn right at flashing yellow light onto Commercial Street. Proceed to stop sign and turn right, continuing on Commercial Street and turn right into Corporate Center at Horseshoe Pond.
Jonathan VanderEls is the Executive Director of the New Hampshire Learning Initiative (NHLI). NHLI serves as a catalyst for innovation in NH’s education system and schools. NHLI oversees the efforts and supports the scaling of the important work in New Hampshire as we move toward a fully integrated, competency-based PreK-20 system that supports all students, families, and educators.
Prior to becoming the Executive Director of NHLI, Jonathan served as the principal of Memorial Elementary School in the Sanborn Regional School District in New Hampshire. Hired by the district in 1999 as a fifth-grade teacher, he assumed the role of assistant principal and special education coordinator in 2005 and became principal in 2008. Under his leadership, Memorial Elementary School became a nationally recognized model professional learning community.
Jonathan has presented at numerous local, state, and national conferences on PLCs, competency-based education, teacher leadership, and assessment. He is actively involved in the New Hampshire Performance Assessment of Competency Education initiative and is a member of the National Association of Elementary School Principals, New Hampshire Association of School Principals, and Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.
Jonathan earned a bachelor’s degree in history, a master’s degree in elementary education, and a specialist degree in educational administration and supervision from the University of New Hampshire. He holds elementary education, principal, and superintendent certification in New Hampshire.
Brian M. Stack, M.Ed, is the Principal of Sanborn Regional High School in Kingston, New Hampshire and an author with Solution Tree, a professional development program that supports educators in schools and districts around the world. For the past decade, Brian has been a member of the research, design, and implementation team for the school district’s nationally recognized K-12 competency-based learning system. Brian has been an educator since 2001 with a background as a high school math teacher, curriculum director, high school administrator, and school board member in three different school districts in New Hampshire and Massachusetts. He has worked as a consultant and expert coach for a number of schools, school districts, and organizations engaged in personalized and competency-based learning from coast to coast. He wrote the latest Solution Tree book to help school leaders make this transition in their own schools.
Brian is a member of the New Hampshire Association of School Principals (NH ASP). NHASP awarded the 2017 New Hampshire Secondary School Principal of the Year award to Brian. In 2010 and 2013, NHASP also recognized him with the Outstanding Role Model award. He is a strong advocate of personalized learning, competency-based learning systems, and high school redesign for the 21st century. He has presented his education reform and redesign work in workshops and conferences all over the country.
Brian received his bachelor’s degrees in mathematics and math education from Boston University and a master’s degree in education administration from the University of Massachusetts at Lowell. He lives with his wife Erica and their five children Brady, Cameron, Liam, Owen, and Zoey on the New Hampshire Seacoast. Follow Brian Stack on Twitter at @bstackbu and you can learn more about his work to redesign public education on his Principal's Blog
Maeve Murray is the Project Manager overseeing the Fuse Rhode Island Fellowship at Highlander Institute. Before starting at the Institute, Maeve was a founding high school math and special education teacher at Village Green Virtual Charter School in downtown Providence. She has also previously worked as an education policy fellow for the Rhode Island Governor’s Office, and taught English as a Second Language and American literature through the Fulbright Bulgaria program.
Sarah Bond is a teacher at Maple Street Magnet School, the first and only magnet school in the State of New Hampshire. Sarah has a Master of Science in Human Development and Family Studies with a concentration in Child Development, a B.S. in Early Childhood Education, and a B.A. in Psychology. Prior to the Magnet School, Sarah taught for two years at the UNH Child Study and Development Center, working with young children and mentoring University student interns. Most recently, Sarah has been an active member of the NHLI Innovation Studio Series and serves as a team leader for the NG2: Personalized Inclusive Education Pathways Project.
Sara Cantrell, M.Ed. is an advocate for PBL as a process of teaching and learning. Six years ago, she had the opportunity to serve on a steering committee, formed to create a new magnet school in Rochester. The steering committee created the Maple Street Magnet School, a school that is committed to teaching through the PBL model. Sara serves as a New Hampshire PACE Teacher Leader, as part of an initiative that makes NH the first state allowing student assessment through locally, teacher created, common performance assessment tasks in lieu of the Smarter Balanced Assessment. She also actively participates as a member of NHLI Innovation Studio Series and NG2: Personalized Inclusive Education Pathways Project. Sara continues to teach at Maple Street Magnet School where she works diligently and collaboratively with her colleagues to better plan, organize, implement and assess PBL in a competency based grading system.
Monique Temple Boudreau graduated from Salem State College in 1998 with her Bachelors in Elementary Education Studies. She later went on to get her Master's Degree in Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment in Literacy at Lesley University in 2002. Since then Monique has continued her journey as a lifelong learner and an innovative teacher. She has been working on projects with the State of New Hampshire over the last 15 years including most recently, the NG2 project and an active member of the NHLI Innovation Studios series. She is currently a second grade teacher at Maple Street Magnet School in Rochester, the first and only magnet school in New Hampshire. Maple Street Magnet School prides themselves as truly embracing Project Based Learning with students K-5. The Magnet School has been doing PBL since it began 5 years ago.
Crystal Bonin is an English teacher at Bow High School, where she teaches writing courses and an interdisciplinary American Studies course. In all courses, she guides her students to competency in a literacy workshop model, which allows for student choice and growth around assigned texts, writing assignments, assessment, and independent reading. She lives in the Lakes Region of New Hampshire with her husband, cats, and books. Follow her on Twitter @readreadwrite or on her blog, www.readreadwrite.com.
Jill Lizier is the Curriculum Coordinator at Swasey Central School in Brentwood, NH. Jill was previously a first grade teacher in Newton, NH and has developed and utilized quality performance assessments to assess competency. Jill has presented at local conferences on academic competencies and essential skills and dispositions. Jill may be followed on Twitter:@JillLizier
Amanda Tozier has been an elementary school teacher since 2003, teaching multiple grade levels spanning second to fifth grade in the Sanborn School District. She earned her B.S in Elementary Education from Keene State College in 2002 along with completing a minor in dance. Additionally, she earned a M.Ed in Creative Arts and Learning from Lesley University in 2006. Amanda has developed and utilized quality performance assessments (QPAs) to assess competency. She has presented at local conferences on academic competencies, as well as UNH at a previous summer summit. Amanda also continues to serve as a representative for developing QPAs for the state of New Hampshire's growing bank of performance based assessments for PACE. In her spare time, Amanda is typically spending time with her family or teaching yoga to toddlers to teens at a local studio.
Maureen Sigler started her career in Washington, DC as a Teach for America corps member. She taught 2nd, 3rd, 5th and 6th grade in both a traditional public school and at DC Prep, a charter school. While teaching at DC Prep Maureen also served as a mentor teacher for new and veteran educators. After leaving the classroom, Maureen directed the Brown History / Social Studies MAT program and did national consulting around teacher coaching and professional development. Most recently, Maureen directed federal early childhood poverty programs in Providence, including a Kindergarten Prep program in the OIneyville community. Coaching, teacher development, and working for equity in education are Maureen’s passions. Maureen has a BA from Trinity College and a Masters in Education from Harvard University.
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