GPAEA Schools in the News – May 2015

Post updated throughout the month. Did we miss something? Send your school news to jennifer.woodley@gpaea.org.

Note: The articles compiled in this list come from independent media sources who are solely responsible for their content. GPAEA staff did not participate in writing any of these articles and GPAEA does not necessarily endorse the content of the articles. Some articles may be available only by subscription.

PD Opportunities – Summer 2015

Looking to update your professional development resume?  Check out classes coming this summer to an AEA office near you!  Course Catalog Link can be found at www.gpaea.org or by clicking HERE!  Start date is listed in parentheses.

This list is not all inclusive, but highlights some courses for the summer. Classes are being added on a daily basis! Please visit the course catalog for details!

Climate, Culture and Behavior

  • Check and Connect  (June 3)
  • Bullying Investigation Round 2 (June 1)
  • Human Relations (June 18)
  • A Behavior Tool Box for Your Classroom (June 18, July15)
  • Nonviolent Crisis Intervention Training (start dates vary)

Early Childhood Highlights

  • Getting Started with Project Work “A Day of Learning and Observation” (June 5)
  • Re-Use it! Creating Art with Natural and Recycled Materials (June 15)

Iowa Core Highlights (Literacy, Math, Science, Writing)

  • UbD = Increasing Implementation of Quality Iowa Core (June 4 and June 11)
  • Building a Writing Toolkit (June 10, July 27, Aug. 3)
  • NGSS Science, Reading, Writing Integration for varying levels (start dates vary)
  • Iowa LETRS-  a variety of modules (start dates vary)
  • Science Fiction in the Classroom (June 22)
  • K-2 Counting and Cardinality/Operations and Algebraic Thinking (June 22)

Technology Highlights

  • Assistive Technology Summer Institute (June 2)
  • Communicating and Collaborating with Google Docs (June 4)
  • Self-Directed Professional Learning in Online Communities (June 9, June 24)
  • Pushing the Boundaries (July 6)
  • Mobile Devices in the Classroom:  Practicing the 4Cs (June 10, July 17, July 20)
  • Excel for Educators (June 29)
  • Google Training Levels 1-5 (start dates vary)
  • Tri-State Technology Boot Camp (July 30)

Vocational Education Highlights

  • Educators in the Workplace (June 22)
  • Teacher in the Workplace XVII (June 22)

Hitting, Kicking and Screaming… Now What?

Dr. Angelisa Fynaardt, Associate Administrator

Elementary school teacher holding file

Learn to think like a Behavior Detective!

Hitting, kicking, swearing, throwing chairs and refusing to work are examples of problem behaviors in schools. These occur in general and special education, across locations, and with a wide variety of adults and peers. Is it happening in your classroom?

We have seen an increase of calls and emails about students with problem behaviors, the need for more professional development and on-site support, and contacts from lawyers and advocacy agencies about services for students with challenging behaviors. Great Prairie AEA is here to help you become a “Behavior Detective” and learn more about strategies that you can use in your classroom/school to address behavior problems.

Learn how to think like a Behavior Detective!

We know that we can change students’ demonstration of problem behaviors by impacting what we do before or after a problem behavior occurs. We also know that behavior occurs in a context.   It does not occur in isolation. Behaviors occur in response to what is happening in the context of the situation. It is often helpful to think about “The 5 W’s.” Knowing information about who, what, when, and where of the problem behavior helps us to figure out the why for the behavior. As a behavior detective, ask yourself the following questions: Continue reading

Summer Institute Series: Thinking Functionally About Behavior, June 15 & 16

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Are behaviors in your building causing you and your staff to have high levels of stress? Do you want to know more about how to manage those behaviors? How can we see the behaviors we want to see from our students?

Join us on June 15 & 16 to learn how to think functionally about the behaviors you encounter on a daily basis so you can match your interventions and strategies effectively. Throughout the two days, we will talk about behavior assessment and behavior intervention. We will share content and strategies to support your work with students who demonstrate problem behaviors in your schools.

Download a PDF: Behavior SI 2015 Postcard

Summer Institute Series: Leading and Sustaining the Work of the Collaborative Team Process, June 8 & 9

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Join Solution Tree Consultant, Tim Brown in learning how to lead the work of collaborative teams.

Tim Brown will guide your teams in answering the following questions:

  • How will you establish common understandings and expectations for collaboration across your system (district, school, & teacher teams)?
  • How will you train collaborative team leaders?
  • What does the work of a collaborative team look like?
  • What is the role of common assessments in the work of the collaborative team?
  • What is your long-range plan for implementing a collaborative system?
  • How will you monitor, support, and evaluate the effectiveness of the collaborative process?

Register at http://bit.ly/gpsileading

Download a PDF: STPLC SI 2015 Postcard

Wrapping Up w/ GPAEA Media!

Kristin Steingreaber, GPAEA Media Specialist

Here are a few Media year-end reminders and an invitation to stay connected with GPAEA Media!

  • May 11-14 is the last week of Media van delivery to schools
  • May 18-21 – last week for van pickup
  • Calendars will open by June 1st for using the Reorder Past Order feature
  • Media Clerks last day – June 2
  • Media Specialist last day – June 18

Summer access to the library is online only!
Over the past 15 years, it’s been great to work together with schools to transform classrooms and libraries with Media Resources. There is a terrific Media staff that will be back in August to assist you.  As I am retiring this year, I encourage you to stay connected and watch for news about Media in the future! If you have questions about the library, please contact us at mediacenter@gpaea.org  or contact me directly at kristin.steingreaber@gpaea.org Thank you!

Check out the newest resources: Continue reading

Graduate Credit Changes for July 1, 2015

GPAEA has been a proud, longstanding partner with Drake University, Morningside College, and Viterbo University to offer graduate credit so that educators in our area can advance their careers, increase pay levels, and offer deeper learning and support!

Effective July 1, 2015, the Professional Development office will implement the full definition of college/university accreditation standards by requiring all graduate level work through the course catalog to have a minimum of 2 hours of homework for every hour spent in class. Classes that are offered for two consecutive days will not be available for graduate credit; renewal credit will still be an option to meet your relicensure needs.

Implications for those who are taking classes are deeper connection to the learning, implementation opportunities over time, and increased feedback from instructors. Implications for instructors will be to offer varied learning opportunities outside of class. Thank you for your continued support and we appreciate partnering with you to meet your professional development needs.

Please contact me with any questions at Katie.gavin@gpaea.org or visit our website at www.gpaea.org.

The 8th grade AWIM STEM Scale-Up program at Seymour Community School District

 Rosemary Peck, GPAEA Science Specialist

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“Do we need to change the angle of the wing?”  “It nose‐dived…there is too much weight on the nose.” “ That’s it‐it worked perfectly!”  Conversations in Mrs.Lukavsky’s 8th grade science class, Seymour Community School District, revolve around asking questions, planning and testing designs, analyzing data to look for patterns and brainstorming solutions. The students are building and testing gliders with specific constraints and group goals, as part of the A World In Motion (AWIM) STEM Scale‐Up program, Mrs. Lukavsky received for the 2014‐15 school year.

To launch the unit, each group built and tested a standard glider to test variables and further their understandings of the science concepts involved. Students explored the relationship between force and motion and the effects of weight and lift on a glider. In the next phase of the unit, students learned the relationships between data analysis and variable manipulations, and the importance of understanding consumer demands. The class was presented with survey results concerning what criteria would be most desirable in marketing the gliders. Based on the data in the survey, each group chose a goal and had certain constraints and criteria for their new glider design. That’s when the real challenges began. Continue reading

Straight Talk About Literacy Leadership

Dr. Susan Hall Flyer - 1 Column Flyer-BlueTuesday, August 18, 2015 – Fairfield Arts & Convention Center
8:30 AM – 3:30 PM

Featuring Dr. Susan Hall, Consultant, 95% Group Inc.

The workshop is designed to support instructional leadership. Topics include:

  • Building intervention blocks into the master schedule
  • Approaches to promote and provide time for grade-level team collaboration
  • Ways to support teachers as they learn these new instructional strategies with small groups
  • Hallmarks of effective reading instruction
  • Maximizing core reading instruction
  • How to conduct a walk-through and observation visit

Register at: http://bit.ly/sttalk

Download Dr. Susan Hall Flyer

GPAEA History Day Contest Results – April 14, 2015

5-5-15

Congratulations to Mt. Pleasant Middle School National Qualifying Team!
Shaleen Thiengmany, Erin Zihlman, and Abby Ryon

Eunice Kennedy Shriver’s Leadership and Legacy:
Changing the World’s View on the Mentally Disabled

Teacher: Jennifer Stater


Great Prairie AEA hosted a district History Day on April 14, 2015 in Fairfield. Congratulations to the following Junior & Senior division winners who will advance to State on Monday, May 4th at the Iowa Events Center. Learn more at http://ia.nhd.org/index.htm.

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JUNIOR DIVISION

Junior Paper

  • Katherine McLaughlin, The Grimm Legacy: Lessons, Adventures, and Magic,
    Sigourney Elementary School
  • Maddie Bemis, The Legacy of FDR, Pekin Community Schools

Junior Individual Exhibit

  • Jaden Davis, Dan Gable, Mt. Pleasant Middle School
  • Subrahmanyam Mullangi, Steve Jobs’ Vision and Passion, Aldo Leopold Middle School
  • Kjierstin Ridgway, The Greensboro Sit-in, Evans Middle School
  • Faith Roberts, The Mother of the Holocaust Children, Eddyville Elementary
  • Wyatt Brinegar, The Man Who Opened the Prairie, Eddyville Elementary

Junior Group Exhibit Continue reading

This is Eli…

Jennifer Woodley, Communication Specialist

A little over a week ago, I visited Jamie Reifsteck’s first grade classroom in the Fairfield Community School District to participate in an Autism Awareness activity. I was welcomed by a group of smiling faces and blue shirts! “We are all wearing blue today – for Eli!” they told me, “Eli has Autism.”

Eli’s family (mom, dad, and sister) visit the class a couple of times a year to share information, lead awareness activities, and encourage the kids to ask questions about Eli and Autism. “All this is to help build a community around Eli. We don’t want the kids scared or confused, and we want them to be comfortable interacting with Eli anywhere at any time,” explained Eli’s dad and Great Prairie AEA School Improvement Specialist, Mike Stiemsma. “It’s great when they see him at Hy-Vee, they run up and give him a high 5 and say “hi” even if he doesn’t say “hi” back.” Continue reading

Local students compete at Tater Toss Catapult Competition

Originally shared in Lee County Economic Development Group Newsletter - April 2015

Originally shared in Lee County Economic Development Group Newsletter – April 2015

The competition was flying at the first Tater Toss Catapult Competition Wednesday, April 8th in the SCC gym. Thirtythree students from schools throughout Southeast Iowa designed and built working catapults to compete. Catapults earned points for accuracy, distance and design. SCC Work-Based Learning Specialist, Leanne Krogmeier, says the event is a fun way for students to showcase their imagination and represent their schools. “There’s a lot of talented kids out there who were busy building some pretty clever contraptions.” Krogmeier says the event allows students to learn more about the fields of science, architecture, construction and engineering.

Accuracy of the catapults was tested as the teams aimed for targets at 15 and 30 feet. New London High School placed 1stat the 15-foot distance and WACO Middle School placed 1st at the 30-foot distance. Keokuk High School focused their efforts on the longest distance, winning first place in this category. Team coach Matt Hodges stated their practice shots were in the 170 ft. range. The WACO Middle School 7th grade team placed first overall and there was a tie for 2nd place overall between WACO Middle School 8th grade and Wapello High School. Continue reading

UbD = Increasing Implementation of Quality Iowa Core

UbD June 15 (1)If you are looking to increase the effectiveness of unit planning by using a process that can be used in any content area or if you have already begun using UbD and would like more time to collaborate and continue learning this workshop is for you. Collaborate among content areas and across districts.

Who should attend?  PK-12 Teachers (all content areas), Teacher Leaders, Coaches,Curriculum Directors, and/or Principals

8:30 AM – 4:30 PM
Lunch on your own

One recertification credit $50