Day 2 of the ISSN Summer Institute came to an end, and it was quite a full day. Some good sessions, some poor sessions, and a really amazing keynote speaker.
This session was moderately useful in introducing the ideas of having TEDx talks in our schools. I learned about the TEDx Youth Day, which seemed like a great opportunity, though it being in November seems like it would be hard to get ready for in time. It got me excited for the possibility for hosting one, or even a viewing party, with our schools, though.
This double session was pretty great. We walked right into a project, the presenters stepping into their roles, pushing us into our roles as engineers, that I think got the session off to a great start. The presenters modeled the group roles, the material management, the rubrics, and how to start with the problem and provide the information we need to know only once we’ve determined that we need to know it, and different strengths worked on different things (engineering, budgets,marketing), but all the groups naturally had to work together. An excellent example.
This session was…not very useful. I found the New York Region session to be more useful in terms of networking.
Then the ISSN Summer Institute officially ended and we transitioned into the larger Partnership for Global Learning conference. We had a lovely dance performance before dinner, but our keynote speaker Andreas Schliecher was amazing. He presented data from the PISA assessment on what really affects student learning, what acts as a predictor of student success more than just grades, the relationship of equity and success. I really liked how lateral accountability is one of e keys of success, because it makes students professional without removing accountability. And all of his claims had data to support it.
Because, as he said, “without data, you are just another person with an opinion.”
Day 1 was fairly interesting. We started off with a speech by principal Salome Thomas-El, which was a pretty good motivational tool to get us started. Then our GPS session started. It’s always great to be able to talk to other math teachers, and we had a good discussion on what is definitely the hardest part of the ISSN Outcomes: the Take Action phase. Figuring out what having students take action looks like, and how we can fit it into our classroom when it always seems like this key important phase takes away time from our overpacked curricula is still a work in progress, but progress was made. Finding a way to weave the standards into the action, such as learning about graphical representations of mathematics at that time, seems like one way to go.
Then the Learning Expeditions were finally revealed. We were given a variety of choices of exhibits, museums, and memorials to visit, but we could only choose one, and only 12 people could go on each exhibition at most. My number was chosen towards the end, so I didn’t get my top choices of expedition, but my trip to the Hirshhorn was still fairly enlightening, and doing it as a learning expedition reminded me how having an assignment at a museum can make it much deeper and force people to look at an exhibit closer.
Now we’re talking about kicking off the year with an expedition. We yearn for the day that we can have one as self-guided with our students as these were.
I’m writing from Washington DC now. Well, technically Rockville, MD, since that’s were the hotel and conference is, but we’ll be in DC itself for parts of it, and that’s where the Amtrak dropped me off. I’m at a conference run by the Asia Society along with my principal and four of my co-workers (Mandarin, Special Ed, ELA, and Earth Science). I was willing to go because it was funded, a trip is better than staying home, and I might get something out of it, but now I’m fairly excited for some of the sessions I’ve signed up for after looking through the itinerary. Here’s a breakdown of what I’ll be doing. I’ll try to have write-ups on at least the more interesting sessions, if not all of them.
10:15 – 11:30 – GPS Performance Outcomes and Global Leadership – Math
1:00 – ??? – Learning Expedition (I have no idea what this is, but it should be good.)
8:30 – 10:10 – TEDx at Your School: Innovate and Integrate
10:20 – 12:50 – Using Project-Based Learning for Unit Development
1:40 – 2:50 – Networking: Learning from Colleagues by Sharing Lessons from the Field – Math
7:00 – 9:00 – Learning with the World: PISA Results and Preparing All Students for a Global Future
8:30 – 10:15 – Curriculum Development for Global Competence
10:30 – 11:45 – What’s Global in the Common Core Standards?
11:45 – 1:30 – Light-Speed Technology for the Global Classroom
1:45 – 3:00 – Game Design and Gaming for Students
3:15 – 4:30 – Teaching about the UN: Model United Nations as a Tool for Global Learning
5:00 – 6:30 – Partnership for Afterschool Education Reception
9:45 – 11:15 – The Power of Simulations
11:45 – 1:00 – Teaching the Interconnectedness of Global Understanding