Pennsylvania Association for Middle Level Education


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PAMLE Summer Institute 2017

Summer Institute Sessions


What’s Happening in Your Building That Reflects Recent Findings on Young Adolescent Development? – Dave F. Brown, Ed.D. – Co-author of the 3rd edition of What Every Middle School Teacher Should Know (2014)
You think you know what your students are experiencing? Come take this short quiz on recent findings on young adolescent development; and discuss how your school may need to think differently about how you address your students’ social, emotional, physical, cognitive, and identity needs.

Differentiated Models for Teacher Evaluation – Robert Chatlak, teacher, & Adrienne Floro, principal, Chartiers Valley MS
This session focuses on two separate differentiated models for supervision that can be utilized by teachers and administrators for assistance with the 82-1 evaluation process.  Demonstrated is an ePortfolio created to streamline peer/team evaluation (related to the Danielson Framework), as well as, an action-inquiry model in the form of a teacher/administrator directed book club.

Design Thinking – Julie Cook, Jeannine Dunn & Brandon Reichart, teachers, Souderton Charter School Collaborative (STW)
Design Thinking has transformed our technology program. Participants will learn about three initiatives: The Last Chance Repair Shop, Shark Tank Challenge, and Makerspace. Students learn valuable skills that include everything from learning to sew to understanding circuitry. Working together, students find they can solve problems and find solutions to complex problems. 

Building an Anti-bullying & Inclusive Culture Through, No Place for Hate – LaMont Lyons, assistant principal, Cindy Holleran & Alicia Guarnaccio, teachers, Chartiers Valley MS
Chartiers Valley Middle School is designated a No Place for Hate school by the Anti-Defamation League for the 2015-16 school year.  Participants will learn about No Place for Hate, building an anti-bias, inclusive culture and ways to build and sustain a No Place for Hate committee.

Thinking: Why is it so Rarely Used? – Patricia Stepler, retired teacher & currently working with the Proctor Gallagher Institute & Center for Teacher Effectiveness
There is a vast difference between mental activity and thinking.  We will explore the intellectual faculties of the mind and how to enable both staff and students to unleash the dormant potential of talent that is currently unused and discover ways to increase results in achievement.

Wake Up! Middle Level Certificate is Valuable! – Carol Watson, associate professor Kutztown University & Dave F. Brown, Ed.D. – Co-author of the 3rd edition of What Every Middle School Teacher Should Know (2014)
Since establishing the PA middle level certificate, PDE has done little to explain how it works, and what holders are certified to teach. This session will clarify how it works, and what holders are qualified to teach. Discussion includes the versatility it offers administrators, and the depth of knowledge in content, young adolescent development, and best practices for ML.

Generation Z: How Might a Deeper Understanding of Generation Z Imact our Schools? – Brian Kelley, teacher, Charles F Patton MS & Co-director of the Pennsylvania Writing & Literature Project
Come consider some recent research about this unique generation and share in a group conversation around helping adolescents
  • shape identy.
  • manage the flow of personal information online.
  • understand the influence of social networks.
  • develop interpersonal as well as digi-personal skills.

Making Content Accessible to English Learners – Ashlee Bailey, ELL teacher, Radnor MS (STW)
As the number of English learners increases, there is a greater need for methods and strategies to support their language development and academic achievement. Attendees will work to understand the language learner, and will learn to use the students’ background to inform teaching. Attendees will also learn to assess students’ language use, set objectives at various linguistic levels, and use best practices to move students from conversational to academic language.

Building a Team Through Advisory – Anneliese Ledebur & Ann Jaco, teachers – Titusville MS (STW)
Daily at TMS, time set aside for one of our most important initiatives, Advisory.  All students participate in a thirty minute, non-graded class, where the focus isn’t mathematics, science, or even English.  This time is focused on teaching students how to work together and succeed as a team.

Developing, Implementing, Utilizing and Enhancing a Successful Middle School Makerspace – Virginia McGarvey, Librarian – Kennett MS (STW)
A Makerspace is a designated area that inspires thinking, creativity, imagination, and hands-on engagement that encourages extended learning in engineering. Learn how Kennett Middle School has developed a successful Makerspace as an extension of our STEM curriculum utilizing creative budget techniques, subject area connections, and fun, innovative inspiration for students. 

Rookie Teacher Survival Skills Workshop – Kathleen A. DiMichele, Teacher – Northley MS (STW)
Rookie teachers and seasoned ones in need of a few new tools in their survival toolbox will examine their student and parent communication styles.  Strategies for turning a potentially volatile parent relationship into a positive partnership will be shared and practiced.  Student redirection skills and relationship building opportunities with the hard to handle student will be modeled.  

Writers Day: Engaging the Community to Harness the Writer Within – Brian Kelley & Honey Beth Kropp, teachers – Charles F. Patton MS
Learn about our school-wide writing conference for students.  How we recruit and organize community writers to present workshops, offer session choice, and organize the inclusion of a keynote author.  Video and survey results will be shared, followed by the opportunity for Q&A breakout sessions.

Developing Leadership Through Mentoring – Nicole Ciaramella, teacher – Chartiers Valley MS
We will describe our current mentoring program which welcomes new sixth grade students in our building.   We will provide information and documents to create a similar program.   This program is low-cost, easy to implement and has had a positive impact on both the sixth graders and the eighth grade leaders. 

SOS: Supporting Our Students – Through Differentiation – Renee Owens, teacher – Hershey MS
This session will focus on putting theory into practice through the use of low-prep, high-impact strategies, materials, and activities that teachers can immediately use in their classroom. We will explore many digital resources to help make differentiation for all students both accessible and manageable to all teachers as well as explore flexible ways of teaching to manage differentiation. Participants will engage in exploration or action-planning to begin, or continue, on the journey into differentiated instruction. 

Top Ten Tools in My Tech Toolbox – What do you have in yours? – Renee Owens, Teacher – Hershey MS
Digital tools are the key to unlocking effective instruction and formative assessments that engage students while providing data to drive meaningful and authentic instruction. This session will introduce low prep, high impact tools that educators can implement in their classroom. In this session, I will present via an interactive Nearpod my top ten tools in my toolbox. The session will end with a smack down as participants may share the top tool in their toolbox.


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