Mini-Learning Session 3-1 (10:15 AM - 11:15 AM)
3G1: Social Emotional Learning and Whole Child Education Across the Curriculum – Sara McHale, Spanish Teacher, Twin Valley MS (STW)
What is Social Emotional Learning and why must it be taught in Middle School? Educators will learn how to identify the SEL (Social Emotional Learning) techniques that they use in their classrooms. Educators will participate in, share, and brainstorm SEL activities that can be used and adapted for their content areas. Educators will reflect on their classroom and school communities, make short-term and long-term goals for incorporating SEL, and bring back ideas to implement immediately.
Sara McHale is a 7 and 8th grade Spanish teacher at Twin Valley Middle School in Elverson, PA. She earned a B.A. in Spanish, a K-12 Teacher’s Certification, and a Master’s Degree in Secondary Education with a Specialization in English from Kutztown University. She is currently finishing a second Master’s Degree from Neumann University in Social Emotion Learning through Thom Stecher and Associates.
3H1: Outdoor Ed – How Can You Make it Happen in Your School? – Kyle Wetherhold, Principal, Wilson West MS (STW)
This presentation will discuss how to use the space inside and outside your school building to create outdoor education opportunities.
Kyle Wetherhold, Principal of Wilson West Middle School since 2010,
3I1: Addressing social class: Overcoming common misconceptions to effectively teach those from poverty backgrounds – Dr. Jason T. Hilton, Associate Professor of Education, & Ms. Madeline McCleary, Senior ML Education, Slippery Rock University
Students from poverty backgrounds are often the subject of negative stereotypes. In the classroom, teachers often take on a “savior” status believing it is their job to save poor students from their deficient backgrounds. Moving from saving poor students to building on their successes, and from overcoming perceived deficiencies to finding common connections among students are strategies that can allow teachers to avoid common mistakes and more effectively reach students from lower socioeconomic backgrounds.
Dr. Jason T. Hilton is an Associate Professor of Education at Slippery Rock University. He teaches courses related to pedagogy, research methods, comparative education and he supervises student teachers. His research interests include critical pedagogy and technology.
Ms. Madeline McCleary is a senior at Slippery Rock University where she is an honors student, middle level education major, and the President of the student AMLE on campus. Her interests include social studies education and diversity.
3J1: Make Learning Fun: Gaming and Simulations in the Classroom – Janice Lear & Josh Thomas, Teachers, Charles F. Patton MS
Simulations and gaming strategies provide rich opportunities for student-centered learning which boost engagement, honor the middle schoolers’ diverse learning needs, and provide authentic practice in 21st Century skills, including communication, collaboration, creative thinking and problem solving. This session will demonstrate a number of simulations and hands-on learning strategies that can be used in Social Studies, English/Language Arts, and Science classrooms.
Janice Lear is a Middle School teacher, with experience in grade 6 through 8, teaching Social Studies, Pre-Algebra, English/language Arts and Geography. She is a two-time presenter at the PA Council for Social Studies and a three-time presenter at the PAMLE conference.
3K1: Cross Curricular Connections: The Atomic Bomb – Mitchell Buell, CMLA President, Millersville University
This presentation was a set of curriculum created by the Millersville University CMLA, based on the book Bomb by Steve Sheinkin. Cross Curricular Connections will be established between Science, Math, English Language Arts, and Social Studies. A Boy Scout Troop benefitted through this curricula; troop members received the Nuclear Science merit badge.
Millersville University Students, board members of the Collegiate Middle Level Association. We are a variety of different subject’s areas, such as Science, Math, Social Studies, and English.
3L1: Educating the Whole Middle Level Student Using a Comprehensive Child-Centered Approach – Kelly Fulciniti (Counselor), Jennifer Shroads (Director of Special Education), Sam Adams (Principal), South Side MS (STW)
Cultivating the social, emotional, and academic well being of every student is the foundation of our ever-changing and fluid middle-level structure at our school. Integrating a variety of resources including the Student Assistance Program, Advisory Lessons, Teaming, Digital Citizenship, the Youth Ambassador Program, and more offer the tools to foster this foundation. During this interactive presentation, participants will uncover the key components needed to successfully implement a building-wide plan to educate the whole middle level student using a comprehensive child-centered approach.
Ms. Kelly Fulciniti - Ms. Fulciniti is the Middle School Counselor and Youth Ambassador Program advisor at South Side Area School District. Ms. Fulciniti is rooted in the beliefs that will a well-balanced educational approach all students can learn and succeed.
Ms. Jennifer Shroads - Ms. Shroads is the Director of Special Education at South Side Area School District. She is dedicated to creating avenues for learning that allow all students to experience success.
Mr. Samuel Adams - Mr. Samuel Adams is the Middle School Principal at South Side Area School District. He has been a member of the PAMLE for many years. Mr. Adams believes in a philosophy of promoting student growth by maximizing instructional opportunities and focusing on educating the whole-child through a comprehensive model.
3M1: AR/VR and AI, the Future of Education – Dr. L. Robert Furman, Principal, South Park Elementary, Author, Blogger for The Huffington Post & Ed Tech Review
What is Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality or Artificial Intelligence? Are these words going to take over the world – or how about taking over our classrooms? We hear these terms and have no idea what they really are and how to use them in the classrooms. Have you stopped to think what these could mean for you as an educator?
Disruptive technologies such as artificial intelligence, virtual reality and augmented reality are changing the landscape of education – be it K-12, higher-ed or vocational studies. While these technologies are in their nascent stages, the benefits they bring to the table such as low cost, greater efficiency, and wider coverage are overwhelming.
Dr. L. Robert Furman is an educator, leader, principal, student, speaker, and published author. As a former teacher and now administrator, Dr. Rob serves in the foreground of everyday education. Currently, Dr. Rob serves as Principal at South Park Elementary Center outside of Pittsburgh, PA, and has truly become a sought after leader in topics surrounding the field of education today. Dr. Rob is the author of several books including Reading, Technology, and Digital Literacy and the ISTE bestselling title Are You Future Ready. Beyond speaking at venues across the country, Dr. Rob is also a contributing blogger for The Huffington Post as well as the Ed Tech Review. Rob also hosts a well-known YouTube educational video blog called The Seditionists and educational podcast called the Council on the Future of Education. Further, he has received several prestigious awards, such as being named in the National School Board Association’s “20 To Watch” in technology education and a Pittsburgh Tribune Review News Maker of the year.
Luncheon Activities (12:30 PM - 2:30 PM)
ML: Tailgate Luncheon Buffet (12:30 PM - 1:30 PM)
Buffet will be located in the hall then PASAP attendees will be in President's Hall 1 & 2 and PAMLE attendees will be in President's Hall 3 & 4.
PASAP and Interagency Updates (1:00 PM - 1:30 PM)
Breakout Session 4 (3:00 PM -5:00 PM)
4A: Drugs & Alcohol: Signs, Symptoms & Trends - Kyle Harder, Gateway Rehab (Standard 4)
Drugs and alcohol are an important issue in schools and represent a significant risk to our students. Come and learn about current trends in drug use, the science of addiction, what to look for, and ways treatment can be effective. There are simple things we can learn about addiction that can vastly improve the way we focus on and respond to addiction in our community.
Kyle Harder, Director of Business Development, for Gateway Rehab has been involved in the social service field in the Pittsburgh area for 25 years. Kyle received his BS in Social Anthropology from the University of Michigan and his MBA from the University of Pittsburgh Katz School of Business. In recovery himself, helping to overcome stigma, assisting people with getting in treatment and achieving long term recovery is his personal mission
The presentation will include an overview of the findings of the U.S. Secret Service Report on Targeted School Violence and include specific examples based on incidents across the country. The components of the threat assessment process that will be reviewed include: developing appropriate policies and procedures for carrying out threat assessment inquiries; relevant state and federal laws; the role of law enforcement; advising students and adults on the kind of information that should be reported: identifying students of concern; gathering and analyzing information to determine the level of risk and intervention required; and strategies for managing the student. This training is designed for school administrators, law enforcement, mental health professionals, counselors/ psychologists, and other school personnel that would serve on a threat assessment team. Student Assistance Program (SAP) referrals and those that require a different type of intervention will be discussed. A sample policy and forms will be provided.
Coleen A. Heim is an independent consultant offering consultation, training, and technical assistance to schools, agencies, and communities. She has a Master’s Degree in Health Education and a Bachelor's Degree in Law Enforcement and Corrections from the Pennsylvania State University.
From 1997 to the present, Coleen has provided technical assistance and training on the development of safe schools and emergency response plans, including threat assessment training for school personnel, law enforcement, and mental health professionals. She has over 35 years experience in developing and implementing comprehensive drug and violence prevention programs throughout the Commonwealth. While employed by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, Coleen was one of the regional coordinators that developed and provided training in the PA Student Assistance Program model. She continues to work with SAP District Councils and SAP Coordination Teams, conducts SAP maintenance sessions, and is a trainer for three Commonwealth Approved Training Providers.
Coleen has provided safe schools training/consultation to over ninety-six schools, conducted fifty-one safe schools assessments, and worked with twenty-one school districts on the development of safe schools and emergency response plans. This includes training on the implementation of bullying prevention programs. She attended the national certification training for the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program.
Mini-Learning Session 4-1 (2:45 PM - 3:45 PM)
4G1: Integrated ELA Advanced Algebra Escape Room Lesson – Elizabeth Zebrowski & Allison Wambach, Senior Middle Level Education Students, Millersville University
4H1 Communicating to Instill a Growth Mindset – Deborah Schussler, Associate Professor of Educational Leadership, Pennsylvania State University
Thanks to the work of Carol Dweck, educators now try to motivate and engage students by fostering a “growth mindset” as opposed to a “fixed mindset.” However, knowing what to say to cultivate a growth mindset may remain an enigma. This interactive presentation introduces fundamental aspects of a growth mindset and then asks participants to revise language, including their own, to instill a growth instead of a fixed mindset.
Dr. Deborah Schussler has been an educator for 25 years. Currently she is an Associate Professor of Educational Leadership program at The Pennsylvania State University and an Affiliate at the Prevention Research Center and Rock Ethics Institute. Previously she was a high school English teacher in rural and suburban districts in Tennessee. Dr. Schussler is known nationally for her work on teacher dispositions, teacher moral development, and the development of social-emotional skills.
4I1: Population Connection: Hands-On Activities for People and the Planet – Kathryn Silvis, Education Department Chair, La Roche College
Participants will be involved in several hands-on activities that simulate the use of available resources. For example, participants will take on the role of panthers as they "hunt" for "food" to explore the concept of carrying capacity. Activities will include connections to math, science, and social studies concepts. A link to FREE lesson plans and additional teacher resources from Population Education will be provided. Get ready for a fun time exploring population concepts!
Kate Silvis teaches Math, Science, and Social Studies Methods at La Roche College (near Pittsburgh). Kate is a volunteer trainer for Population Education, an organization that provides teachers with professional development and classroom materials to help prepare young people to become responsible consumers. Kate earned her Doctorate Degree in Curriculum and Instruction from Indiana University of Pennsylvania, and has ten years of middle school teaching experience as well as twelve years of teaching experience in higher education.
4J1: Mentoring Students: A School Wide Positive Approach – Richard Spering (Assistant Principal), Jennifer Kukowski (Health & PE), Nancy Pontier (Guidance Counselor), Palisades MS
Mentoring programs provide a small developmentally responsive environment for students to focus on a culture of learning while building connections with their peers and faculty. At Palisades Middle School, mentoring period consists of a mentor and ten to twelve same grade level students who meet daily for a minimum of twenty minutes to participate in mini-lessons ranging from goal setting to strengthening interpersonal skills. Mentors develop a positive relationship with students assisting with academic and social goals.
Jennifer Kukowski: Health & Phys. Ed. Teacher, Palisades Middle School, Leader of the Mentoring Committee, 30 years of experience
Mini-Learning Session 4-2 (4:00 PM - 5:00 PM)
4G2: How to Power a Level One 90% Target Language Class! – Ellen Shrager, Spanish Teacher, Abington JHS
4H2: Unplug and Reconnect: Our Advisory Program – Kristin Deichler, Principal, South Fayette MS (STW)
In our presentation, we will be sharing our journey to fully implementing an Advisory Program in our Middle School. We will talk about our professional sessions and steps leading up to unveiling the program to the students. We will also share how we included “student voice” in our process. Additionally, we will make available all of our resources and templates that are used in our program to attendees.
Kristin Deichler is the principal of South Fayette Middle School, which is a suburban middle school located outside of Pittsburgh, PA. We have over 850 students in our middle school. Ms. Deichler has spent her entire career at South Fayette Middle School, with 14 years as a middle school math educator and four years as the administrator. She is thrilled to collaborate with middle level educators and administrators from the area and beyond in order to make stronger, early adolescent programs in our state and region.
4I2: Elevating student’s thinking by applying scientific thought reasoning to Social Studies – Gary Hite, Science, Social Studies, Gifted Education Teacher, Upper Dublin MS
How to guide students through the process of choosing a topic for an in-depth study exploring a historical event from the years of study in Social Studies class. Using at least four different sources and at least two different media, the student will create a demonstration/presentation to share how the event of their choosing might have been different if at least one aspect would have changed. The project will explore different possible outcomes and how the course of U.S. (and perhaps World) history would be different. The project will be shared with peers, parents, and other adults during the ‘What If Fair’ presentations.
Gary Hite is an 8th grade Science, Social Studies and Gifted Education teacher in the Upper Dublin School District.
4J2: G.O.L.D. Night Girls Only Leadership Development – Melissa McCauley (FCS), Monica Kilcoyne (Social Studies), Debbie Zanetti (Social Studies) teachers, Pleasant Hills MS (STW)
“She believed she could so she did.” This is the foundation for our G.O.L.D. program, which stands for Girls Only Leadership Development. Our mission was to provide an experience for our girls that focuses on their unique by hosting a variety of activities that develops girls’ leadership skills along with promoting positive relationships that helps develop self-confidence, healthy interactions, independence, and empowerment. Come find out all about GOLD night and how to make it happen at your middle school.
Monica Kilcoyne, 6th grade social studies teacher for 5 years at Pleasant Hills Middle School. She has a bachelor’s degree in elementary education and master’s degree in special education from Duquesne University.
Melissa McCauley , Family and Consumer Science Teacher for 10 years at the middle school. Currently working toward her doctorate through Drexel University and focusing her dissertation on female leadership.
Debbie Zanetti , Seasoned teacher of 27 years: seventeen years in elementary and 10 years in middle school teaching social studies. Bachelor degree earned from California University of PA and masters equivalency from Gannon University.
4K2: Using Student Voice and Choice to Build School Culture and Learning – Noel Petrosky (Principal), Dana Smith (ELA Teacher), St. Marys Area MS
Our presentation will include a collection of best practices used to promote and instill positive school culture. Using some of our daily clubs and classes as a driving force in this school wide change, students are becoming the vehicle to promote and spread positivity throughout the school. Our newly renovated makerspace/library/STEM lab and our SCORE period (Student Choice Optimizing Real-time Education) allows student choice to drive our learning center and student opportunities.
Dana Smith is a 7th grade ELA teacher and Student Council Advisor who has been teaching for 10 years. She also works with the clubs: Team Renaissance, Girl Talk, and Literature Live. Mrs. Smith is a graduate of Slippery Rock University and the University Of Pittsburgh at Bradford majoring in English Literature, Communications, and Secondary Education.
Noel Petrosky is a Middle School Principal and has been working in education for over 15 years. She has been involved in expanding and developing a growth mindset in education as it relates to STEM implementation and development in both an elementary and middle school setting. Mrs. Petrosky is a graduate of Saint Vincent College, Indiana University of PA and Gannon University.
Conference Evening Activities (5:15 PM - Midnight)
Sundown Yoga with Lori (5:15 PM - 6:15 PM)
Join us for a session of relaxing Yoga.
Dinner On Your Own (6:00 PM - 8:00 PM)
Take advantage of the several fine restaurants in the State College area - Restaurant Guide
Monday Evening Social - Dean's Hall 1 & 2 (8:00 PM - Midnight)
Be sure not to miss the Ice Cream Sundae Social and Dance featuring First Class Entertainment