Special Workshops



Nov. 16: 8:30 AM - 12:30 PM - Pre-Conference Workshops

Nov. 16: 1:30 PM - 5:30 PM - Conference Day 1

Nov. 17: 8:30 AM - 5:30 PM - Conference Day 2

Nov. 18: 8:30 AM - 5:00 PM - Conference Day 3

Pre-Conference Workshops: Nov. 16 - 8:30 AM - 12:30 PM

$189 per person. Choose one of six. (Add $25 if not attending the conference)

sousa1) Differentiation and the Brain: How Neuroscience Supports the Learner-Friendly Classroom

Examine the basic principles of differentiation in light of what current research on educational neuroscience has revealed. Discover ways to better meet the needs of increasingly diverse students; learn more about how the brain learns and about approaches to differentiation; understand the science behind teaching the best content in the best possible way; design and implement strategies for effective differentiated teaching; and create a positive and productive learning environment.

David A. Sousa, EdD, EdD, Education Consultant; Co-Author, Differentiation and the Brain: How Neuroscience Supports the Learner-Friendly Classroom (2011)

goldstein 2) Educating Resilient Children with Autism, ADHD and Other Developmental/Learning Disorders

Review the most current research on children's developmental disorders and resilience, specifically as it relates to children with complex developmental and related conditions. Learn methods and strategies to help educators and other professionals develop the mindset necessary to foster resilience in these children.

Sam Goldstein, PhD, Assistant Clinical Instructor, University of Utah Medical School; Co-Author, Handbook of Resilience in Children (2012), The Power of Resilience (2009) and Assessment for Autism Spectrum Disorders (2008)

armstrong 3) The Empty Desk: Why We Lose At-Risk Learners and How Brain-Compatible Teaching Can Help

Teachers are challenged daily to meet the educational needs of at-risk populations. Many times the teaching methods fall short, failure rates are high, absenteeism is rampant and students and teachers feel highly stressed with all the pressures of school. Look through the lens of neuroeducation to gain insight about supporting at-risk learners through differentiated instruction and research-based strategies that can be applied in the at-risk classroom.

Sarah Armstrong, EdD, Adjunct Faculty Member, University of Virginia; Co-Author, A Practical Guide to Tiering Instruction in the Differentiated Classroom (2010)

4) The Adolescent Brain

reynaPart I: 8:30-9:45AM
The Adolescent Brain: Learning, Reasoning and Decision Making

Dr. Reyna will review recent neuroscience discoveries about how the brain develops in adolescence, with implications for how we teach young people and how we prepare them to make healthy life choices. In particular, she describes massive changes in the adolescent brain and how theories of brain functioning explain topics ranging from mathematical cognition to risky decision-making.

Valerie F. Reyna, PhD, Neuroscientist and Psychologist; Co-Director of the Cornell University Magnetic Resonance Imaging Facility and of the Center for Behavioral Economics and Decision Research; Professor of Human Development, Psychology, Cognitive Science, and Neuroscience (IMAGINE program), Cornell University; Developer of fuzzy-trace theory, a lifespan model of memory and decision-making; Co-Editor, The Adolescent Brain (2012)

Part II: 10:00 AM - 12:30 PM
The Neuroscience of the Adolescent Brain Reveals Challenges and Opportunities for Positive Interventions

willisThe last part of the human brain to "mature" is the prefrontal cortex, the control center of executive functions such as judgment, critical analysis, prioritizing, deduction, induction, imagination, communication, reflective (versus reactive) emotional control, and goal development, planning, and perseverance. These executive functions are needed now and will be even more critical for the best job opportunities and creative problem solving in the 21st century as globalization and technology continue to change the skillsets needed by the students who will lead us in the coming decades. The fastest rate of change and development of the brain's executive function networks takes place during adolescence. This interactive workshop includes classroom ready strategies that promote the development of the executive function networks during their peak growth years. These strategies provide opportunities to cultivate the innovative and creative minds that will allow students to reach their highest potentials now and prepare them for the 21st century they will inherit.

Judy A. Willis, MD, EdM, Adjunct Faculty, Graduate School of Education, University of California, Santa Barbara; Author, Inspiring Middle School Minds (2009)

5) The DiscoTest Initiative: Student-centered Assessment, One Mind At A Time

We introduce the DiscoTest Initiative-a movement dedicated to building and disseminating diagnostic, formative, and embeddable low-stakes standardized assessments that address a full range of academic topics. Participants will learn about the cutting-edge work in cognitive neuroscience and developmental psychology that undergirds these assessments, and have an opportunity to engage in hands-on activities that will give them a tangible sense of what DiscoTests measure, how they work, and how they can be used diagnostically to diagnose the learning needs of individual students. Each DiscoTest is based on exhaustive research into how students learn targeted skills and concepts, and provides rich information about each student's particular learning needs. Discussions will focus on the proper role of educational assessment in learning, the classroom, and society.

Zachary Stein, EdM, Deputy Director; Senior Analyst, Developmental Testing Service; Co-Author, "Redesigning testing: Operationalizing the new science of learning" (2010, The New Science of Learning)

Carol Bennett Dessureau, EdM, Researcher, Cognitive Development, Harvard Graduate School of Education, who now works for Lectica, Inc. managing the DiscoTest coding system; Former teacher and administrator for Boston Public Schools, and Site Director for the Boston Teacher Residency Program

schenck and cruickshank

6) Teaching Teachers Using the Mind/Brain Processes of Experience to Match Students' Needs

Explore a new neuroeducation model for staff development for teachers through the use of experiences and learning sciences. Examine a framework of teaching that combines the dynamic skills theory with years of teaching experience in the field. This process is adaptable to any learning situation that involves having students actively experience the concepts being taught.

Jeb Schenck, PhD,

Adjunct Professor, University of Wyoming; President, KNOWA Inc.; Author, Teaching and the Adolescent Brain (2011), and Jessica Cruickshank,
EdM, Vice President, KNOWA Inc.; Administrative Director, Solid Rock Outdoor Ministries