Special Topics

Now accepting applications for 2017 Special Topics. 


We would like to invite you to join our program by becoming a Special Topics Presenter this year

Special Topics can be a  “great, aha, cool, good to know, how-to, hands-on, I can use this, isn't learning fun......” - kind of presentations.  They are 1.5 hours in length held on Monday, Tuesday and/or Wednesday evening, 6-7:30 pm.  Please contact Sherrie Bosserman at sbosserman@gmail.com, 447-8409, for more information and/or respond by sending the following information to Sherrie.

 Please provide the following information:

Full Name

E-mail

Phone Number

Full Address

Topic Title

Topic Description for program:

Preferred Session Day(s): Monday, Tuesday, and/or Wednesday

Audiences: Elementary, Middle, High School Teachers, Parents, Counselors, Administrators

Technology and/or special needs or things we should know:

 Audiences: Elementary, Middle, High School Teachers, Parents, Counselors, Administrators

Speaker Bio for program:

















2016 Special Topics

 Select One Session during This Time Slot to Attend Monday

 6:00-7:30 PM

A.  Identification of Creativity, Leadership and Arts Excellence in the Classroom Dr. Peggy Wenner (Primary Teachers, Elementary Teachers, Middle School Teachers, High School Teachers, G/T Coordinators, Parents, Counselors, Administrators) Hatch A

 This will be a short presentation regarding identification of gifted students in the areas of creativity, leadership and the arts, followed by a discussion of districts’ measures for identifying students in these areas that often are missed in our gifted student population

 

B.  Letting Students Talk...The Socratic Way Sara Newell (Primary Teachers, Elementary Teachers, Middle School Teachers, High School Teachers, G/T Coordinators, Parents, Counselors, Administrators) Hatch C

 Adolescents need to be engaged in active learning.  They also value discussion, peer interaction, and knowing that their opinions and thoughts are valued and heard.  Socratic questioning reaches these needs, and in turn helps students develop products that show advanced thought and critical thinking.   But…. Socratic seminar can be scary, and the time and structure can be overwhelming!  Come learn how to use the style of Socratic questioning on a more informal level and still gain the positive results of seminar sessions!  Participants will leave understanding the value of using Socratic style questioning, how to prompt students to be critical thinkers, and how to help students apply the thoughts they develop through Socratic questioning to their reading, writing, and academic understanding. Participants will take part in multiple Socratic style activities, ranging from lessons that could take 10 minutes in their classroom, to units/lessons that could be utilized for multiple class sessions. Many materials will be provided that could be used in a classroom the next day!

 

C.  Technologies to Support Gifted and Talented from a UDL Perspective: Multiple Means of Representation - Cassidy Hall (Primary, Elementary Teachers, Middle School Teachers, High School Teachers, G/T Coordinators, Parents, Counselors, Administrators) Farnsworth

 This session will focus on tech tools that give gifted and talented learners various ways of acquiring information and knowledge. Please bring a device as this session will be very interactive where you will explore the tools that you find most interesting

 

D.  Edufest Book Club, 2016 - Margo Long (Primary, Elementary, Middle School, High School Teachers, G/T Coordinators, Parents, Counselors, Administrators) Boyington

 Edufest Book Club is a tradition at Edufest each year. Come explore an exciting new book, The Smartest Kids in the World and How They Got this Way by Amanda Ripely, which explores other cultures and the challenged in educating bright students. We will discuss surprisingly applicable strategies to change our educational system to nurture our brightest students.  Margo’s excitement and energy will certainly encourage lively discussion and interesting inquiry.

 

E.  Jumpstart the Future with Advanced Opportunities - Tina Polishchuk (Middle School Teachers, High School Teachers, G/T Coordinators, Parents, Counselors, Administrators) Hatch B

 The legislature recently passed new legislation and funding to widen options for all students.  Gifted and talented students are prime candidates to take advantage of these programs.  These include early access to high school and college classes. Every student in Idaho is now allotted $4,125.00 starting in 7th grade to customize their secondary education plan. With new funding streams dedicated to moving student forward, learn how schools and districts can create pathways for students to jump start their future.

 

F.  Self-Advocacy: The Power of a Child’s Voice - Tamara Fisher (Primary Teachers, Elementary Teachers, Middle School Teachers, High School Teachers, G/T Coordinators, Parents, Counselors, Administrators) Brink

 As coordinators, parents, teachers, and counselors, we often find ourselves in the position of advocating for the gifted youngsters in our lives. Yet, at some point, they will need to know how to advocate for themselves. How can we nurture this important life skill and foster a life-long willingness to tactfully speak up for their own learning needs? Is it possible to teach gifted students to speak up without them seeming arrogant about their abilities? Topics covered in this presentation will include strategies for developing this important skill in gifted youth and discussion about the appropriateness of self-advocacy.

 

G.  Show Me the Money! - Brenda Miller (Primary, Elementary, Middle School, High School Teachers, Parents, G/T Coordinators, Administrators, Counselors) Alexander

 Want help paying for next year’s Edufest Conference or other professional development credits? Have an innovative idea for engaging students through the use of technology but don’t have the needed resources? This workshop will focus on tips and tricks for crafting your message and getting funders to listen.  Participants will gain an understanding of how to apply for Northwest Professional Educators grants and scholarships as well as how to access other funding sources to support their efforts in the classroom. If you have received a grant, never applied for a grant or applied and been denied this presentation is for you.

 

H. Teaching Math with a Twist: Curriculum and Solving with a Rubik’s Cube - Kim Hyde (Upper Elementary Teachers, Middle School Teachers, High School Teachers, G/T Coordinators) Bergquist

 This session will focus on learning how to use a Rubik’s cube to help children of all ages grasp important math, algebraic and geometric concepts.  Holding a Rubik’s cube and twisting and turning its parts gives hands on experience to those tactile and sequential learners. Learn how to use a Rubik’s cube to cover over 50 + (K-12) standards.  

 

I.  Scene It All: Film and Video Instruction for the Classroom - Jeff Danielian (Elementary, Middle School Teachers, High School Teachers, G/T Coordinators) Hatch D

 Enhance your curriculum with film and video projects. Free, web-based, and relatively inexpensive programs for PC's and Mac's have made the magic of Hollywood accessible in the classroom. Come see how they can make a difference in yours! Both novice and experienced participants in this strand will learn about the techniques and resources needed to create a project, as well as be guided through the process of planning, shooting, editing, and formatting short video segments (newscasts, movie previews, short films, photo stories, documentaries, oral histories, and so much more!) Interdisciplinary connections will also be a focus.

 

J.  Ask a GT Student - Meghan McDonagh, and Gifted Students in Various Grades (Primary Teachers, Elementary Teachers, Middle School Teachers, High School Teachers, G/T Coordinators, Parents, Counselors, Administrators) Jordan A

Hear the voices, opinions and input of gifted students. Come prepared to ask your questions and get honest answers. This is your chance to learn from gifted students themselves how they perceive their needs and experiences in the classroom


Select One Session during This Time Slot to Attend Tuesday

 6:00-7:30 PM  

AA. Building a Makerspace Culture - Amy Vecchione (Elementary Teachers, Middle School Teachers, High School Teachers, G/T Coordinators) Hatch A

 Successful maker initiatives are made up of a team based community, and well-designed personal learning experiences. Technology can be secondary to designing any successful makerspace. Librarians at Boise State will present the best elements for a successful maker program based on their model - the MakerLab at Boise State University Albertsons Library. The five elements that are necessary for a successful makerspace are: a positive culture, well-crafted student learning experiences, technical expertise, financial model, and a healthy network of innovators. Space and technology come after all of this has been established. Does having a 3D printer help? Yes, it does. Attendees will learn about the successful elements of maker programs in this active presentation. 

 

BB.  Generation TED:  Using TED Talks to Enhance Academic Experiences - Sara Newell (Primary Teachers, Elementary Teachers, Middle School Teachers, High School Teachers, G/T Coordinators, Parents, Counselors, Administrators) Hatch C

 Research?  Creativity?  Technology?  Presentation?  Motivation?  What do they have in common?  They are skills of exceptional 21st learners who are prepared for the future.  And, they can all be taught through the use and creation of TED Talks. Come to this session where you will see examples of innovative, catching TED Talks that can be used in classroom, hear ways to utilize TED Talks to increase learning, and discuss the multiple advantages of using TED Talks in the gifted classroom.  The session will also take attendees through the process of developing TED Talk presentations with their students, as well as how to set up a full scale TEDposium, including examples of previous TED Talks given by the presenter’s students.  All resources that the presenter uses during the TED Talk process will be shared.  

 

CC.  Technologies to Support Gifted and Talented from a UDL Perspective: Multiple Means of Expression - Cassidy Hall (Primary Teachers, Elementary Teachers, Middle School Teachers, High School Teachers, G/T Coordinators, Parents, Counselors, Administrators) Farnsworth

 This session will focus on tech tools that provide gifted and talented learners alternatives for demonstrating what they know.  Please bring a device as this session will be very interactive where you will explore the tools that you find most interesting. Please bring a device as this session will be very interactive where you will explore the tools that you find most interesting.

 

DD.  Pick of the Lists: Great Books for Gifted Readers – Laura DeLaney (Primary Teachers, Elementary Teachers, Middle School Teachers, High School Teachers, G/T Coordinators, Parents, Counselors, Administrators) Boyington

 Discover great, new books for gifted readers that can spark units of inquiry, establish new lenses for understanding, and ignite imagination all published within the last 2 years.  Learn about how to connect with authors through technology and gain primary source information about how professional writers work. This is a class where you can find inspiration in children’s books to take your curriculum in new directions.  The class will work with picture books, middle grade readers, and young adult titles in both fiction and non-fiction categories and is taught by Laura DeLaney, owner and buyer at Rediscovered Books and an experienced educator of GT students. 

  

EE.  Social and Emotional Needs of Gifted Children: An Evening for Parents, Administrators, Counselors, and Others - Susan Wolfe and Scarlett Randall (Primary, Elementary, Middle School and High School Teachers, G/T Coordinators, Parents, Counselors, Administrators) Hatch B

Each child exhibits particular social and emotional needs. Children with high abilities have additional affective needs that result from their increased capacity to think beyond their years. They exhibit greater intensity in response, combinations of unique interests, personality characteristics, and conflicts that differ from those of their age mates. This interactive session offers an examination of the essential topics we need to know about the social and emotional development of gifted children and the issues they encounter when their needs are unmet.

 This session will:

·         examine how giftedness is identified and defined, characteristics and needs of gifted individuals and programming options

·         explore asynchrony, multipotentiality, anxiety, twice-exceptionality

·         provide tools to help build awareness around the affective needs of gifted students and give participants strategies for addressing social-emotional issues and concerns facing gifted children today

·         provide information on how to become an advocate for your child's academic and emotional needs

 Don't believe or support the misnomer, "They're gifted, they'll figure it out." Many gifted kids struggle to cope with their lives and the increased expectations, just like other kids. They have increased intelligence, but gifted kids need, and deserve, our help.

 

FF. "If You're So Smart, Then How Come..."- Tamara Fisher (Primary Teachers, Elementary Teachers, Middle School Teachers, High School Teachers, G/T Coordinators, Parents, Counselors, Administrators) Brink

Have you found yourself saying this session’s title? Giftedness can come with some confounding behaviors. “Analytical Thinking” becomes “The Paralysis of Analysis” (and sometimes shares characteristics with an anxiety disorder). “Attention to Detail” becomes “Unhealthy Perfectionism” or “Procrastination” (and sometimes shares characteristics with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder). “Curiosity” becomes the annoying student who asks the questions you don’t know the answers to… (and sometimes leads to Existential Depression, i.e. a mid-life crisis at age 12). “Asynchronous Development” becomes the roller coaster of the 7-yr-old who is reading a chapter book one minute and having a meltdown the next because he can’t tie his shoes. Come learn about and share in a discussion of the double-edged sword of giftedness – including strategies for managing both the downside and the upside.

HH. Clever Classroom Creations: Origami in the Classroom - Lindsey Rogien (Primary, Elementary Teachers, Middle School Teachers, High School Teachers, G/T Coordinators, Parents, Counselors, Administrators) Bergquist

 Paper folding has been a subject of beauty and intrigue for centuries. Of late, researchers have studied the use of origami to facilitate learning of mathematical and spatial concepts. Positive findings show an increase in attention and memory of such topics by children. Origami can be used for such things, as well as to teach math, history, appreciation of other cultures, creativity and to build fine motor skills. In this session, participants will make their own paper creation, see ideas for direct application in the classroom, and learn how to make every day lessons fun with folding!

 

II. Teaching Math with a Twist: Using Rubrics Cubes to Create Mosaics - Kim Hyde (Upper Elementary Teachers, Middle School Teachers, High School Teachers, G/T Coordinators) Hatch D

 This session will focus on creating Rubik’s cube mosaics.  Participants will gain hands on experience on giving a lesson that incorporates art and math with the wonders of the Rubik’s cube. They will learn how simple it is to solve the front face of a Rubik’s cube and how 36 -500+ cubes can be used to create works of art. Participant will gave firsthand knowledge on how a Rubik’s cube can inspire and bring together every learner in your classroom from emerging learners and gifted learners.

 

JJ. The Top Ten Skills to Cultivate in High Potential Students - Jann Leppien (Primary Teachers, Elementary Teachers, Middle School Teachers, High School Teachers, G/T Coordinators, Parents, Counselors, Administrators) Jordan A

 The importance of intellectual talent to achievement in all professional domains is well established, but less is known about other individual differences that predict success. What characteristics are important for educators to cultivate so as to help highly capable students maximize their potential and realize their dreams?  In this session we will rely on the research literature in the field of gifted education and psychology to discuss the top ten skills that have been identified and discuss how educators can develop these traits in their students.

  

Select One Session This Time Slot to Attend Wednesday

 6:00-7:30 PM

 AAA. Meet with the Experts - Conference Speakers (Primary, Elementary, Middle School and High School Teachers, G/T Coordinators, Parents, Counselors, Administrators) Hatch A

 Do you have questions that you would like to pose to our conference speakers about issues in the field of gifted and talented education?  Well, this is the session for you.  Come prepared with questions to ask these people who have all worked with advanced learners in a variety of grade levels, coordinated g/t programs, lead state-initiatives for the advocacy of these students, and conducted research in many areas related to giftedness.  This is an informal session where conversation and dialogue will be the focus as we collaborate on solutions.

 

BBB. Expedite Powerful Differentiation with the Prompts for Depth and Complexity - Maggie Smith-Peterson (Primary, Elementary Teachers, Middle School Teachers, High School Teachers, G/T Coordinators, Parents, Counselors, Administrators) Hatch C

Increasing the level of intellectual demand in a task, project, or lesson does not have to take hours of planning. Luckily for us, Dr. Sandra Kaplan created the prompts for depth and complexity: a set of powerful cues that instantly change the way we interact with content.  Not only can teachers learn to use these prompts deftly, but our students also can become masters at adding depth and complexity to any content we choose (or are required) to teach in school. In this session you’ll meet the prompts, play with the prompts, and put the prompts to work. Take away new tools and resources that will make quality differentiation a breeze.

 

CCC. Technologies to Support Gifted and Talented from a UDL Perspective: Multiple Means of Engagement - Cassidy Hall (Primary Teachers, Elementary Teachers, Middle School Teachers, High School Teachers, G/T Coordinators, Parents, Counselors, Administrators) Farnsworth

 This session will focus on tech tools that allow gifted and talented learners to tap into interests, experience appropriate challenges, and increase motivation.  Please bring a device as this session will be very interactive where you will explore the tools that you find most interesting. Please bring a device as this session will be very interactive where you will explore the tools that you find most interesting.

 

DDD. Smart with Art, The Premier Mobile Art Education Program for Students - Diane Rowen Garmire (Elementary, Middle School, and High School Teachers, G/T Coordinators, Parents, Administrators) Boyington

 Smart with Art is the premier mobile art education program available to students in the Greater Seattle area, and coming soon to Eastern Washington, and Utah.  Not so long ago, Washington Art educator Amy Friedman felt the need to start this business when she saw art education being cut from so many of our public schools. She has designed the entire curriculum to meet both Washington State Standards and the National Standards for the Art Education. Some may ask "Why is art education important?" Research shows that involvement in arts education can help ensure a child's success in school and life! Young people who consistently participate in art programs are:

 ·         4 times more likely to be recognized for academic achievement

·         3 times more likely to be elected to class office in their schools

·         4 times more likely to participate in a math and science fair

·           4 times more likely to win an award for writing an essay or poem

 

A hands on session will include all materials and lesson plans to help teachers have a better understanding of how "Smart with Art" can benefit your students! Find out how to help bring "Smart with Art to Idaho schools as well!

 

EEE. Capturing Curiosity, Creativity and Passion of Young Learners:  Teaching Research to 1-3 Graders - Betty Turner (Primary Teachers, Elementary Teachers, G/T Coordinators, Parents) Hatch B

 Have you ever wondered how to help students learn and present their learning to their friends?  I have been teaching research skills to young students for 13 years and have tried several methods.  I use a combination of materials and will show you how to take the mystery out of teaching research.

 

FFF.  The Academy Awards for Young Adult Literature - Jeff Danielian (Elementary Teachers, Middle School Teachers, High School Teachers, G/T Coordinators) Brink

 The Academy Awards for YA Literature presents a program that utilizes anywhere from a small group of students to an entire school community in an effort to plan, develop, and perform a mock "Academy Awards" show with a focus on young adult literature. In a nutshell, students in the regular classroom, enrichment class, or after school activity read and nominate books in eight categories, prepare written scripts, and perform short dramatic pieces or movie previews based on chosen books. These pieces are disbursed throughout the presentation of nominees and the presenting of awards. All of the pieces come together during the night when the show is presented. This new week-long strand will go in depth to direct participants in all phases of the show. Reproducible handouts and assignment sheets, as well as examples of student work, will be shown and discussed.


GGG. Differentiated Inquiry - Aaron McKinnon (Elementary Teachers, Middle School Teachers, High School Teachers, G/T Coordinators) Alexander

 Differentiated Inquiry combines the foundation educational philosophies of differentiation with inquiry. If you have not created learning groups based on inquiry levels or structured your classes with lessons that provide for different levels of inquiry, this workshop offers a chance to experience it through a hands on lesson investigating simple sound concepts...and you get to keep the kazoo you make!


HHH. Clever Classroom Creations: Origami in the Classroom - Lindsey Rogien (Primary Teachers, Elementary Teachers, Middle School Teachers, High School Teachers, G/T Coordinators, Parents, Counselors, Administrators) Bergquist

 Paper folding has been a subject of beauty and intrigue for centuries. Of late, researchers have studied the use of origami to facilitate learning of mathematical and spatial concepts. Positive findings show an increase in attention and memory of such topics by children. Origami can be used for such things, as well as to teach math, history, appreciation of other cultures, creativity and to build fine motor skills. In this session, participants will make their own paper creation, see ideas for direct application in the classroom, and learn how to make every day lessons fun with folding!

 

III. Lessons Drab? Make Them Fab! Engage and Motivate Students with Strategies You Can Use Tomorrow- Michelle Nutt (Primary Teachers, Elementary Teachers, Middle School Teachers, High School Teachers, G/T Coordinators, 21st CCLC Directors and Staff, Counselors, Administrators) Hatch D

 Bling up your lessons and motivate every learner in your classroom with strategies you can use tomorrow. Learn hands-on approaches that make your curriculum come to life. Explore intelligence types and how to incorporate multiple intelligence learning into each lesson. Come away from this session with the ability to engage and motivate all students with relevant, responsive, and meaningful lesson design.

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