On Monday, February 11, while students had a day off, teachers, administrators and staff had a day on and attended IUSD’s Professional Learning Summit focused on teaching and learning. Organized by the District’s Education Services Department, 2,000 plus staff members were able to choose between more than 330 different sessions presented by more than 385 staff members at four IUSD high school venues.
Topics included science, technology, mathematics, data assessment, literacy, engineering effective classroom environments, instructional strategies, Special Education, student engagement and ownership, counseling and wellness, behavior and classroom climate, vaping and more.
Renowned keynote speakers kicked off the conference at each of the four venues. The speakers included:
Amanda Morgan is passionate about respecting and protecting childhood and making sure that what we know about how kids learn and grow is evident in what we do in the classroom. She holds a BA in both elementary and early childhood education and an MS in family and human development. Her past experience includes teaching in public, private, and migrant school settings as well as teaching preschoolers, grade-schoolers, college students, teachers, and parents. She writes, speaks, and consults on the topic of intentional, whole child development and is the creator of the blog, Not Just Cute.
A.J. Juliani is the Director of Learning and Innovation for Centennial School District. As a former English teacher, football coach, and K-12 Technology Staff Developer, A.J. has worked towards innovative learning experiences for students in various roles. A.J. is also an award-winning blogger, speaker, and Co-author of bestselling books EMPOWER and LAUNCH: Using Design Thinking to Boost Creativity and Bring out the Maker in Every Student.
Robert Duke is the Marlene and Morton Meyerson Centennial Professor and Head of Music and Human Learning at The University of Texas at Austin. Duke’s research on human learning and behavior spans multiple disciplines, and his most recent work explores the refinement of procedural memories and the analysis of gaze in teacher-learner interactions. A former studio musician and public school music teacher, he has worked closely with children at-risk, both in the public schools and through the juvenile justice system. He is the author of Scribe 4 behavior analysis software, and his most recent books are Intelligent Music Teaching: Essays on the Core Principles of Effective Instruction, The Habits of Musicianship, which he co-authored with Jim Byo of Louisiana State University, and Brain Briefs, which he co-authored with Art Markman.
John Spencer is a former middle school teacher and current college professor who is passionate about seeing kids reach their creative potential. He is the co-author of the bestselling books EMPOWER and LAUNCH: Using Design Thinking to Boost Creativity and Bring out the Maker in Every Student. In 2013, he spoke at the White House, sharing a vision for how to empower students to be future-ready through creativity and design thinking.
IUSD’s dedicated staff, who attended the Professional Learning Day, are lifelong learners and embrace continuous improvement so that they can empower students and prepare them for challenging college, careers and post-secondary goals.