Langley’s unique education conference is Saturday

“Things that suck” is one of the suggested topics for an education conference this weekend that organizers call an un-conference.

EdCamp35 on April 18 is meant to turn the traditional conference on its head by sparking conversations about educational topics participants want.

It starts with public suggestions on what topics should be tackled. The suggestions, about 50 so far, include topics such as social media and technology, poverty in the classroom, learning styles, changing how students are assessed, and self regulation – as well as whether conferences can really make a difference.

The conference also differs in that it is open to anyone who wants to attend and contribute – staff, parents and students.

Last year brought together stakeholders from several districts.

People sign up to take part through the website www.edcamp35.com, where they can also find out more. The second annual EdCamp35 runs 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at R.E. Mountain Secondary, 7755 202A St. The event is free but people must register in advance to allow for planning. Lunch is provided.

Here’s some of the ideas being suggested for EdCamp35

* Creating cultural change in schools

* Genius Hour & 20% Time

* iPads in a primary classroom

* Changing assessment practices

* Sketchnoting

* Things That Suck

* Self Regulation

* Digital Storytelling

* Focussing on Strengths rather than awards.

* Global Classroom Project Sharing

* Parents and the Classroom

* Freshgrade, portfolios, descriptive feedback, & their value over grades

* Learning from Education Blogging

* Reconsidering our approaches to inclusive education

* Sharing your class/school story

* Physical Literacy

* kids with special needs, individual learning needs, behaviour management

* IEPs and working collaboratively with parents, working with other professionals outside of the school system

* Student mental health

* math education

* Elementary Secondary Transitions

* Starting with strengths of students and staff

* Matching technology education throughout SD35

* What a school district can do vs. the ministry control

* Student-centred inquiry based classroom

* Reforming resource room learning: Is there something innovative & practical out there?

* Cross-curricular inquiry – getting rid of “subjects”

* Communicating Student Learning (assessment & reporting)

* Creativity

* New curriculum: Going deeper into competencies (core & curricular)

* New curriculum: Graduation years (10-12) – what we might want them to look like/include

* New curriculum and Provincial exams/assessment

* Effective integration of fine arts in the curriculum for enhanced learning outcomes.

 * After EdCamp? – Are conferences such as these having an impact on teacher practice and student learning?

* Supporting Gifted/High Ability kids’ curricular needs

* How can you incorporate movement into a secondary academic class?

* Music Education: The catalyst for positive change in our children

* Transitioning the teacher model; shifting from the “sage on the staff”, to the “guide on the side”

* Social Media; both in the classroom and the school

* Making Learning Visible; providing a window into the classroom

* Giving effective feedback

* Assessment without grades

* Shared learning spaces (physical & virtual)

* FreshGrade at the secondary level

* Addressing poverty in the classroom in a sensitive manner (through art projects, discussion et al). How do you approach the topic when you have students in real poverty in the class?

* Primary Literacy stations

* Primary Guided Math

* Primary Portfolios

* Thinking Routines to encourage and support student thinking

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