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Welcome to the Vermont-NEA ESP Conference Site.  To register for the conference, click the "sign up" link at the top right of the screen. After you have created account, click on "Schedule" and then select "Simple".  You are then able to select your morning and afternoon session as well as your lunch choice.

Please note that there is no "register" button.  If you are signed in and select your choices you are all signed up.  If you want to double check, just log out of Sched.org and and log in again.  You should see your selections.

 Then you can select your sessions.  If you have any questions or need assistance, please contact Ariel Darby at  adarby@vtnea.org  or call her at 802-224-2409.

ESPs who are not Vermont-NEA members may register after March 1st.  There will be a $150 registration fee due to Vermont-NEA prior to March 29th, sent to Vermont-NEA, 10 Wheelock Street, Montpelier, VT  05602. ATTN:  ESP Conference 2015

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Friday, March 20
 

8:30am

9:00am

Welcoming Remarks
Speakers
MA

Martha Allen

Vermont-NEA President
CH

Chris Halpin

ESP Award Winner


Friday March 20, 2015 9:00am - 9:15am
Oscar Ballroom II and III

9:15am

Effective Communications in the Classroom-and in the Halls
Limited Capacity filling up

Communicating effectively with your peers, administration, students and parents is crucial to your success as an educator. In this workshop, we will talk about the fundamentals of effective communication, and how simple, direct and honest approaches work to enhance your work. We will differentiate between communicating with your fellow education support professionals and communicating with the teachers and administrators in your school. We also will look at how best to communicate with students and their parents, as well as to the community. At the conclusion of the workshop, you will have tips, techniques and materials that will help make you better able to get your point across-and understand others.

Speakers
CR

Colin Robinson

Colin Robinson, a native Vermonter, has been with Vermont-NEA since June of 2010 and currently serves as Political Action Director and one of two organizers on staff. In his current role, he works to organize and build power among members regarding legislative and electorial issues from the local to the statewide level. From 2011 through 2013 his primary repsonsibilities focused on new member organizing as the lead orgainzer on Vermont-NEA's... Read More →


Friday March 20, 2015 9:15am - 11:45am
Northstar II

9:15am

Farm to School 101: An Introduction to Integrating Farm, Food, and Nutrition Education into Your School
Limited Capacity seats available

Promoting health begins in the cafeteria by serving healthy meals and continues by addressing nutrition and health as part of the overall education of students. This approach requires collaboration among professionals across the school to bolster choices and educational opportunites that have a lasting impact on students' health and ability to learn. Workshop participants will explore and expand their knowledge and experience related to Farm to School. Topics will include: an introduction to the 3C's (cafeteria, classroom, community) approach to integrating farm, food, and nutrition education, promising practices for using food and agriculture as a vehicle for teaching, identifying curriculum and activity connections, and the role that ESP's can play in implementing Farm to School. The workshop will be interactive with participants learning and practicing how to engage youth through hands-on cooking and taste tests.

Learning Objectives: By the end of this workshop, the learner will be able to: Understand the connections between the classroom, cafeteria and community, Share the importance and scope of integrating farm, food, and nutrition education into the curriculum, and Develop strategies for implementing Farm to School practices at their school.


Speakers
EB

Ethan Bodin

Ehtan Bodin is an educator working in Shelburne Farms' professional development programs VT FEED and Sustainable School Project. Ethan holds both a Bachelor of Arts and a Master of Education from Saint Michael's College where he focused on curriculum development and evaluation. In his spare time, he helps operate a small sugar bush on Elmore Mountain, VT and enjoys thinking about the possibilities of applied permaculture on his family's 25 acre... Read More →


Friday March 20, 2015 9:15am - 11:45am
Gateway II

9:15am

Google Apps: The Basics
Limited Capacity full

Google Apps are integrated into most of Vermont Schools.  This workshop is for participants who need support in the "basics" including email and managing emails, documents and managing folders, creating Google forms for classroom use, and other needs as addresses by the participants in a pre-conference survey.

Speakers
BB

Bonnie Birdsall

Bonnie Birdsall is the Technology Integration Specialist for the Williston, VT School District. She works with teachers, staff, and students to help integrate technology into the curriculum in natural and meanigful ways to enhance learning. Bonnie has taught courses and workshops to Vermont educators and adults on a variety of topics. She believes that educators are all learners and should use technologies to connect, grow, create, and... Read More →
avatar for Jessica Wilson

Jessica Wilson

Technology Integration Specialist, Hinesburg Community School
Jessica Wilson is the Technology Integration Specialist at the Hinesburg Community School and CSSU Central Office. She works closely with the PreK-8 teachers and staff to help transform the school into a flourishing learning environment that incorporates 21st century skills through the use of technology, so everyone can develop good strategies for learning and be active contributors to our global society. Jessica is vice-president of the... Read More →


Friday March 20, 2015 9:15am - 11:45am
Roundabout

9:15am

Improving Reading Skills through Text-Based Questions
Limited Capacity seats available

One of the "shifts" in learning with the Common Core State Standards, is for students to read more difficult texts (complex texts) with a deeper understanding.  One tool for requiring deeper understanding is to use text-dependent questions.  These questions require students to refer back to the text for evidence.  This workshop will go deeper into these questions and strategies to support students read for evidence.

Speakers
TV

Terri Vest

Terri Vest is a National Board Certifiied teacher who works at Twinfield Union School in Plainfield, Vermont. In her 34-year career, Terri has taught English, Social Studies, Psychology and elementary. Terri has been designing and delivering workshops for ESPs for over 15 years because she believes that ESPs should have access to professional, adequate training to help them do their jobs that are critical to today's students and today's... Read More →


Friday March 20, 2015 9:15am - 11:45am
Gateway I

9:15am

Introduction to Resilience and Mindfulness Practice
Limited Capacity filling up

As educators, we often ask children to "calm down" or "pay attention", but spend less time actually teaching them how to do so. Mindfulness practice is intended to help educators and students find a more focused and relaxed state of mind in order to be better prepared to receive new learning. These practices also help to develop the resilience that allows us to effectively cope with obstacles encountered along the way, and strategies for effective self-regulation. Current brain research, along with centuries old contemplative practice, tells us that there are very specific techniques we can emply to bring ourselves into a more optimal presence for learning. This session is designed to share some of the current work in the field of mindfulness, as well as to share some helpful breathing and focusing activities to practice on your own and with students in your instructional setting.


Speakers

Friday March 20, 2015 9:15am - 11:45am
Oscar I

9:15am

Strategies for Success: Building Independence and Confidence in Reading and Writing
Limited Capacity seats available

This presentation will focus on productive and guiding students to independence as they learn to read and write. The emphasis will be on how to support the learner without doing the hard work for the student. Most valuable for individuals working with students in grades K-2.

(This class was formerly named Supporting K-2 Literacy in the Common Core)


Speakers
LJ

Lindy Johnson

Lindy Johnson is a Curriculum Specialist in the Barre Supervisory Union focusing in grades PreK-2. Lindy has taught in grades K-4, is Reading Recovery trained, has worked for the VT Dept. of Education, and the University of Vermont. She believes strongly in utilizing read alouds to engage students in reading and writing at all grades and ages.
ET

Emily Thomas

Emily Thomas is a reading interventionist and reading recovery teacher at Barre Town Elementary School. Emily formerly taught kindergarten and first grades.


Friday March 20, 2015 9:15am - 11:45am
Northstar I

9:15am

Vocabulary Instruction: Manageable and Lasting
Limited Capacity full

There is growing concern about the widening "vocabulary gap" between children from different socioeconomic groups.  By age three, many children from lower-income families may hear up to 30 million fewer words than their more privileged counterparts.  However, there are strategies that have proven effective in building vocabulary development, reducing the gap, and paving the way to higher achievement levels.  This workshop will provide participants with some research and strategies to support learners build and retain a stronger vocabulary.

Speakers
KH

Karen Heath

Karen Heath is a Vermont educator who has worked with students from preschool through graduate school. She spent the first part of her career working with struggling middle and high school students in Boston and at The Maplehill School in Plainfield. Then she went to Barre City School where she taught English Language Arts to 3rd-6th graders. During this time, she was named 2005 Vermont Teacher of the Year. Karen currently serves as the... Read More →
LM

Lorraine Morris

Lorraine Morris is a 3/4 literacy teacher at Barre City Elementary School. She received her BA in Education from Norwich University and her Master's Degree with a focus of Curriculum and Instruction from Lyndon State College. Also, she has presented at workshops, and staff professional development, as well as, taught graduate courses through LAPDA, focusing on Literacy instruction and Technology integration.


Friday March 20, 2015 9:15am - 11:45am
Escapade II

11:45am

11:45am

12:30pm

Boundary Issues for School Employees
Limited Capacity seats available

This workshop will explore situations and problems school employees face with challenges in maintaining approprite boundaries between school employees and students, parents, the administration and the community. Strategies will be developed to establish appropriate boundaries in order to maintain employee effectiveness and to protect the integrity of the employee and relationships within the school and the community. Physical, emotional and knowledge boundaries will be explored. Particular emphasis will be given to the use of electronic communications and social networking.

Speakers
RM

Rebecca McBroom

Rebecca McBroom began her carrer with the Vermont-NEA as a Legal Counsel in June 2014. She is a native Vermont, as well as a University of Vermont and Vermont Law School graduate. She earned a B.A. in Sociology in 2004, and later attended law school in order to pursue a career in social justice. She worked in labor since she graduated law school in 2010, and is excited to join the ranks of Vermont-NEA. Prior to VT-NEA Rebecca served as the... Read More →
BR

Bob Raskevitz

Robert Raskevitz is proud to have been a teacher at Leland and Gray Union High School in Townshend, VT. While at Leland and Gray he was active in the Windham Central Education Association and the Vermont Science Teahers Association. Robert is currently a Unified Service Director at Vermont-NEA. Robert is active as Chief Instructor for both Hunter and Bow Hunter Education. He enjoys many outdoor activities in every season. Robert's son attends... Read More →


Friday March 20, 2015 12:30pm - 3:00pm
Northstar II

12:30pm

Bullying and Harassement Policies, Prevention and Positive Intervention
Limited Capacity filling up

ESPs are more likely to witness harassment and bullying than any other school employee, yet training to prevent and deal with these events, so they lead to more positive outcomes for everyone, is limited and inconsistent across the state.  This workshop will focus on the law, school policies and processes to  create more positive environments in order to make school a safer place for all individuals.

Speakers
JT

Jacquelyn Tolman

Jacquelyn Tolman has more than twenty years in the field of education working as a classroom teacher, special educator, consultant and administrator. She earned her Master's Degrees in Special Education and Administration and has worked extensively with schools on establishing a positive climate and well coordinated student support systems. Jackie currently serves as the Assistant Principal for one of Vermont's largest elementary and middle... Read More →


Friday March 20, 2015 12:30pm - 3:00pm
Gateway II

12:30pm

Chromebook and Advanced Apps
Limited Capacity filling up

In this workshop, participants will strengthen their skills in using Chromebooks and Google Apps for Education to maximize student achievement and engagement.  They will review the basics of using a Chromebook and explore the Google Chrome Store apps and extentions to find apps which support students' individualized learning needs and diffferentiated instruction.  Additionally, participants will learn strategies for collaborating and communicating.  Participants should bring a Chromebook with you to this workshop.  If you do not have one and would still like to be a part of this workshop, email Ariel Darby at adarby@vtnea.org and let her know that you would like to borrow a Chromebook for this session.  We have limited availability.

Speakers
BB

Bonnie Birdsall

Bonnie Birdsall is the Technology Integration Specialist for the Williston, VT School District. She works with teachers, staff, and students to help integrate technology into the curriculum in natural and meanigful ways to enhance learning. Bonnie has taught courses and workshops to Vermont educators and adults on a variety of topics. She believes that educators are all learners and should use technologies to connect, grow, create, and... Read More →
avatar for Jessica Wilson

Jessica Wilson

Technology Integration Specialist, Hinesburg Community School
Jessica Wilson is the Technology Integration Specialist at the Hinesburg Community School and CSSU Central Office. She works closely with the PreK-8 teachers and staff to help transform the school into a flourishing learning environment that incorporates 21st century skills through the use of technology, so everyone can develop good strategies for learning and be active contributors to our global society. Jessica is vice-president of the... Read More →


Friday March 20, 2015 12:30pm - 3:00pm
Roundabout

12:30pm

12:30pm

Getting Ready for SBAC! Supporting Students Who Need Accomodations
Limited Capacity full

SBAC (Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium) time is around the corner and for the first time, Vermont students will be taking these tests, which will measure their understanding on key standards outlined in the Common Core State Standards (CCSS).  This workshop will allow participants to understand the varied accomodations featured in the SBAC, experience the test itself, and discuss how they can support their students so that all accessibility features can be utilized so students can fully demonstrate what they know and are able to do. 

Speakers
KH

Karen Heath

Karen Heath is a Vermont educator who has worked with students from preschool through graduate school. She spent the first part of her career working with struggling middle and high school students in Boston and at The Maplehill School in Plainfield. Then she went to Barre City School where she taught English Language Arts to 3rd-6th graders. During this time, she was named 2005 Vermont Teacher of the Year. Karen currently serves as the... Read More →


Friday March 20, 2015 12:30pm - 3:00pm
Escapade II

12:30pm

Just Do it! How to take steps to empower and nurture yourself in order to move toward a happier self and impact those around you.
Limited Capacity filling up

This lively workshop will empower participants to look at their own practices around climate and self-care. The presentation will also illustrate concrete strategies (such as positive language, humor, and solution-focused problem solving) in order to have an impact on student resiliency and systemic change.


Speakers
VN

Vicki Nelson

Vicki M. Nelson has been an elementary school counselor in Vermont for eleven years. She graduated from Franklin University in Columbus, Ohio with a B.S. in Communications. After volunteering with homeless families and children for several years with the Horizons Initiative in Boston, she decided to pursue a Master's Degree in Counseling Psychology at Cambridge College in Cambridge, Massachusetts. She now lives in Charlotte, Vermont with her... Read More →


Friday March 20, 2015 12:30pm - 3:00pm
Escapade I

12:30pm

Open Spaces-Open discussion about topics of interest
Limited Capacity seats available

"Open Spaces" is a participant-generated workshop.  Jon Falk from NEA in Washington, D.C. will facilitate the Open Spaces concept by generating topics for discussion, supported by Vermont-NEA Staff.  The discussions will be led by members, who will share out at the end of the session.  These ideas will be recorded and shared with key people and who knows where these ideas will lead!  If there are topics that you would like to discuss and they are not represented in the workshop offerings, this is the workshop for you!


Speakers
JF

John Falk

Jon Falk is a Senior Program/Policy Specialist in NEA's Education Support Professionals Quality Department. He works with NEA's state and local affiliates to build support for NEA's half-million ESP members. He also leads ESPQ's efforts to combat outsourcing of ESP jobs, and in many areas of Federal policy that affect support educators and students, including school nutrition and the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act. In addition to his many years of... Read More →


Friday March 20, 2015 12:30pm - 3:00pm
Oscar I

12:30pm

Using Tools for Supporting Mathematical Understanding
Limited Capacity filling up

With the adoption of CCSS Math, many educators find themselves overwhelmed with what they believe to be "new math." This workshop is designed to help participants learn how constructing knowledge through the use of math models will lead to a deeper understanding of math concepts for students. Participants will gain both content knowledge and strategies for supporting students in the math classroom. This workshop is geared to look at concepts introduced in grades 3-6, however, these concepts are built in lower grades and retaught in upper grades. 

Speakers
CF

Chris Farnham

Chris Farnham is a Math Interventionist/Math Coach at Barre City Elementary and Middle School. Before specializing in mathematics, Chris was a second grade teacher. She has earned her Master's degree through the Vermont Mathematics Initiative. Chris also works with the Ongoing Assessment Project (OGAP) facilitating professional development nationally.


Friday March 20, 2015 12:30pm - 3:00pm
Northstar I