Sunday, October 5, 2014

District Wide Conference in Bethel

     This is a little behind, but I still want to write about it. We had a District Wide Conference in Bethel September 2nd-5th. The first two days were like a pre-conference then the last two days were the actual conference. I want to start by saying the Lower Kuskokwim School District really knows how to do trainings, conferences, and any professional development related things.
     The district took care of everything from our travel, meals, and accommodations. There were around 300 teachers from all over the district. Pretty much everyone was there. So not only did we get some awesome professional development, we had the opportunity to meet a lot of different people. I also got to catch up with the other new teachers that I met at New Teacher Inservice.
     The first two days I went to training for the Scholastic READ 180 System. We have implemented that into grades 3-8 at Eek School. I will make another post on that. They had some trainers from Scholastic come in and give us all the info we needed to use the system. Unfortunately, all of us teachers from Eek were delayed getting into Bethel because of fog. One thing about living in the bush, weather controls just about everything. Especially air travel. We were supposed to leave about 8 or 9 in the morning and didn't get into Bethel until about 2:30. So we missed a lot of our session on the first day, but we were able to get caught up and we have figured out a lot of stuff on our own.

It was pretty foggy. 

     The last two days of the conference I had four sessions to go to. The district assigns sessions to teachers in different grade levels or fields. It is all very organized. I had three required Math sessions I had to go to and then I had a free session where I could pick anything I wanted. At first I thought, uh Math all day, but my sessions were great and I learned a lot. 
     The first session I had on Thursday was Hands on Equations (click the hyperlink if you would like to know more). This is a hands on way to teach students Algebra and encourages Mental Math. You use a scale, number cubes, and pawns to visually represent and balance equations. It also focuses on Student Centered Learning. It was a really interesting session and I am hoping to implement this into my classroom eventually. 
     Then I went to a session on using the new Math Standards and Materials. We use the Glencoe Math books that use the Common Core Standards. The instructor in this session showed us how to set up and use the online components to the book. She showed us some of the different things we can use and do with the students. I also learned a lot in this session and it help me to figure out what online resources to use for the book.
     My last required session was on using Best Practices Teaching Mathematics. We talked about all the Best Practices and then we did some hands on activities. And just like our students we were easily distracted by fun things! :)
     The session I got to pick on my own was on Cooperative Learning Strategies and it was pretty awesome! We learned a lot of different grouping and learning strategies. I can't wait to use some of them. One thing I really loved about the session is how the instructor showed us how you can use content to get students into groups or pairs. And the best part is the students don't even know they are learning while they are doing something as simple as getting into groups.

Sitting in one of our sessions.

My friend Heather, she teaches in Quinhagak.
(They had Gold Fish snacks and we were really excited!)

Haha see what I mean! We got a little distracted.

     Altogether, it was a really great week and I learned so much and met so many great teachers! Then it was time to head home, rest up, and plan for the next week.

Love the plane rides here, so beautiful!

No comments:

Post a Comment