pre conference workshops

Friday, February 19
5:30 – 8:30 PM ET / 2:30 – 5:30 PM PT

Cost per person: $89 with conference registration.
By advance registration only. Select one of three.
(Cost is $99 if you are not attending the conference.)

For those who cannot attend the live webinars on Feb. 19, a recording of the webinar will be available to stream for one month following the live webinar for those who have registered and paid for the pre-conference workshop.



1. Meaningful Learning: Designing Meaningful, Student-Driven Learning Experiences in School, at Home, and Online

Learning can be messy, but it is our job to make it meaningful. During these difficult times, it’s important that educators use our obstacles as an opportunity to learn and grow and to look beyond our current circumstances to find innovative solutions. No matter what happens moving forward, it is very clear that we will need to design experiences that are meaningful regardless of where and when the learning takes place. In this virtual workshop, Andi McNair will explore practical ways to inspire a willingness to invest, provide opportunities to learn, and encourage meaningful connections beyond the walls of the classroom as you redesign experiences for your learners. You will walk away from this learning experience with the tools and mindset you need to make this a reality in both a manageable and meaningful way.

Andi McNair, BS, Educational Consultant; Gifted Education Specialist; Digital Innovation Specialist, Education Service Center (ESC) Region 12; Named a “Top People in Education to Watch” in 2016 by the Academy of Education Arts and Sciences; Blogger for A Meaningful Mess; Author, A Meaningful Mess: A Teacher's Guide to Student-Driven Classrooms, Authentic Learning, Student Empowerment, and Keeping It All Together Without Losing Your Mind (2019), and Genius Hour: Passion Projects that Ignite Innovation and Student Inquiry (2017)




2. Powerful Teaching: Unleashing the Science of Learning in Class and Online

Have you had students struggle to remember what was taught the previous year, semester, or even the last month? Have you had students internalize failure, thinking they won’t succeed because they’re “not smart”? There are reasons, researched reasons why this happens. Patrice Bain, veteran teacher and co-author of Powerful Teaching: Unleash the Science of Learning, knows the rigor required. Having worked with cognitive scientists for over fifteen years, Bain developed teaching strategies based on robust research that improve learning. Best of all, these strategies don’t add to teachers’ already filled plates but will streamline what they are already doing. In this engaging and interactive virtual workshop, Patrice Bain will unlock the research and provide evidence-based strategies that will transform your teaching so that all students will be successful learners.

Patrice M. Bain, EdS, Education Specialist, K-12 Teacher who has worked closely with cognitive scientists for 15+ years turning research into teaching strategies; Former Adjunct Faculty, Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville and University of Missouri St. Louis; Educational Advisory Board for Deans for Impact and the Federal Reserve Bank; Served on “Neuromyths vs. Neurotruths” Committee for National Commission on Education; Author, A Parent’s Guide to Powerful Teaching (2020); Co-Author, Powerful Teaching: Unleash the Science of Learning (2019)




3. Comprehension: A New Model of Reading Instruction to Foster Motivation and Engagement (K-12)

Reading, and understanding what you're reading, is arguably the most important skill we can provide learners. However, we are often too focused on the skills of reading. These skills are important and include a range of literacy processes, such as decoding, vocabulary, activating background knowledge, and cognitive strategies. But this is not enough to ensure that students read (and write) well. Beyond the skills of reading, students need to experience the will to read. This requires that teachers focus on motivation and engagement, goal setting, choice in reading, and relevance. This virtual workshop will describe the three phases of skill, will, and thrill and provide you with actionable ideas that you can use in their classrooms to improve reading skills and motivation in your students.

Douglas B. Fisher, PhD, Chair, Department of Educational Leadership, San Diego State University; Classroom Teacher, Health Sciences High and Middle College; Co-Author, Comprehension [Grades K-12]: The Skill, Will, and Thrill of Reading (2020), This Is Balanced Literacy, Grades K-6 (2019), Teaching Literacy in the Visible Learning Classroom (2017), and Rigorous Reading (2013)