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Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Conference Ideas: Keepers and Areas for Change and Improvement

Our team is hosting many parents for conferences at this time of year. We've done a lot to prepare, and I'm happy with so many of our efforts including the following:
  • Showcase portfolios that include academic stats, signature learning efforts, photos, passion pages, social/emotional reflections and goals, and more.
  • The opportunity for children to write a script and use that script to lead their own conference.
  • The chance to discuss what matters to parents and students, and troubleshoot when needed.
As I think of the conferences to date, I'm reminded of the following teaching/learning elements of success:
  • You can't be nice enough
  • It's best to do fewer things well than try to do too much
  • Make time for student reflection
  • Utilize the conference conversations to lead to bettering the curriculum program and teaching efforts.
  • A good routine and consistency matters
Some nice additions to these efforts may include the following:
  • Continued improvement of portfolio efforts.
  • Making sure that students place signature learning and reflections into the portfolios on an ongoing basis.
  • Including a program overview in the portfolios--this overview may be the curriculum night presentation. This will serve as a point of reference for program discussion and development. 
Teaching is a field where you can forever improve, and the conferences are a time to celebrate what is working well and to begin work on areas where improvement is possible. Onward.