Teaching & Learning, School Leadership & Management

Now More Than Ever – PBL/CBL

Our kids (and their teachers!) are feeling overwhelmed. They are currently facing challenges that are so big they can seem impossible to impact. In addition, school is no longer “what it has always been…” Remote learning, blended learning, online, face-to-face – school transformed in ways no one could have imagined. 

An understandable response in such confused situations can be to revert “back to the basics.” For K-12 this can mean packets of worksheets (paper or digital) and well planned assignments that support foundational learning. Learning happens in these cases, yes, but such models understandably can’t deliver the innovative problem-solving experiences that we know future generations will need to have had to prepare them for our collective future.

PBL and CBL offer proven ways to increase engagement and depth of learning. In this session Jim will suggest some “profoundly simple” ways for teachers to bring real projects, projects that matter to the learners, to their communities, and to the world into the reality of Maine schools.

So… no matter what model your school is using this fall, this session will provide opportunities to support all learners in critically important ways.

And oh, yes, as an educator, Project-Based/Challenge-Based Learning will help you know that you are making significant contributions to not only meeting curricular goals, but to making the future a better one for your learners. 

Because  that is what teachers do. Yes, you can! Please see this blog post for rationale behind this session.

Speaker Bio: Jim Moulton is both father and  grandfather, and always an educator. Now 65 years old, he is spending his last 2 or 3 years of full time work with a singular focus on his pedagogical roots, using the things learned through his unique experience set to help all K-12 students be best prepared to become the leaders our communities need going forward.

Jim taught Grade Three at Bowdoin Central School before leaving the classroom to become the Staff Developer in the Community of Learners  program as the graphical internet was born in the mid-1990s. His work has included involvement in the Maine Learning Technology Initiative (MLTI) from the very beginning,  the SEED Program, writing for Edutopia on the Spiral Notebook Blog, being a member of the Buck Institute for Education’s national faculty (now PBLWorks.org), a decade of  independent consulting at JimMoulton.org, and a decade as a K-12 Development Executive at Apple.

School Leadership & Management, IT Leadership & Management

VTEd Learns Network: Collaboration Powered by VTAOE & Edmodo

In this interactive session, learn how to utilize Edmodo groups as a platform for digital collaboration with colleagues. We will review the functionality of Edmodo and how to create Groups, use the Group Directory for Districts and Schools, and invite members so that you can do more than just meet online and share resources with the tools provided in Edmodo. From Google,Microsoft, and Zoom integration to Design Thinking PLCS and hosting EDcamp-style learning sessions, you will be able to reimagine professional development and digital collaboration.

Speaker Bio: Kate Baker, M.Ed and MAIT, is the Senior Community Engagement Manager at Edmodo, a veteran high school English teacher with 20+ years classroom experience, board member of the Flipped Learning Network, and contributing author of Flipping 2.0:  Practical Strategies for Flipping Your Classroom. Passionate about evolving authentic learning into digital formats, Kate leads by example and shares her expertise with the global Edmodo Community and on Twitter @KtBkr4

Dinner over Zoom

Wednesday Night Dinner!

Get your dinner, and bring it back to your computer! Join a session room, and have dinner with friends, new and old! These special dinner “session” rooms will be set up so that anyone can turn on their audio/video. Join in!

Sometime near the end of dinner, we will send out an all-event chat notification to gather in one room for the Daily Door Prizes!

Do you have a topic that you’d like us to host? We’re hosting dinner sessions Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday nights! Send us an email, and let us know what topic you’d like to see on a session room!

Teaching & Learning, School Leadership & Management

Supporting Students’ Behavioral Health in Online & Blended Learning Environments

Online and blended learning environments present special challenges when it comes to supporting students’ behavioral health needs. In this interactive session, participants will be introduced to a tiered framework for addressing these needs and will have an opportunity to learn from each other as to how those needs are being met and how they are documented to ensure accountability throughout. District and school teams are encouraged to attend together. Bring your devices for sharing ideas! We will be using Pear Deck and Google Slides to brainstorm and share best practices – encourage colleagues to be a part of your school’s conversation.

Teaching & Learning

Vermont Computer Science Teachers Association Meeting

Vermont now has an official CSTA association! Basic membership in CSTA is free. Let’s meet to discuss what we would like to get out of our association. Are you interested in opportunities to learn about how others are teaching CS? Do you need professional development hours? Do you want to advocate for CS in Vermont? Do you want to share resources and opportunities? Let’s make goals and a plan together!

Teaching & Learning

Special Need Students and Online Learning

In this workshop, we’ll be looking at both the practice and the logistics involved in providing accommodations.  We’ll look at Maestro and walk through how to submit and view documents in a student’s profile.  We’ll overview the “standard” accommodations on the VTVLC website and brainstorm how to provide other accommodations as needed.

School Leadership & Management, IT Leadership & Management

FLASH: Vermont Student Privacy Alliance

What is the VTSPA and how can your school benefit from engagement with this organization? The VTSPA is a collaboration of Vermont supervisory unions and school districts that share common concerns around student privacy. The VTSPA was organized in 2018. Courtesy of AOE, alliance membership by SU/SD is free.  Learn about the Vermont Student Data Privacy Agreement, developed in collaboration with legal counsel on the national and state levels, that provides SUs/SDs with a template K-12 privacy agreement for vendors to sign. SUs/SDs without the fiscal or human resources to vet software and Learning Management System resources on their own may search the online database to see how a resource is being used in other like or neighboring districts and to examine the privacy agreement in place.

Featured Speaker Steve Garton

A Practical Approach to Privacy Implementation from a System Perspective

Privacy is now a big deal for schools and everyone agrees that it is important. At the same time, you don’t have time to read really long and ever changing privacy policies. So how can you practically include privacy concerns into your district app approval and implementation process? This session will provide hands-on examples with helpful free tools and resources to make your job easier. We will also lead a discussion to look at practical solutions that other districts have successfully implemented including distance learning privacy tips.