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Workshops

Please see below for summaries of the available workshops, to guide you as you complete your registration. Click on presenter names for more information.

Workshop Session 1

10:30 - 11:30 AM
Developing Learning Strategies Courses in High School
Jen Lillie, Kingsway College School &
Michelle Leiter, Greenwood College School

In this interactive workshop, presenters will discuss how Learning Strategies courses (GLE10-GLE3O) are taught at the high school level. Please bring lessons, materials, and how you run the course in your timetable.

Playful Learning: Cultivating Resilient Communities in Education
Niki Van Haarlem, The Sterling Hall School

Come explore the transformative power of play in education. Drawing from a case study at The Sterling Hall School, discover how a Grade 3 community utilized play to enhance collaboration, problem-solving, and well-being post-pandemic. From math challenges to outdoor rituals, learn practical strategies to cultivate joy, strengthen relationships, and foster academic growth within your own learning community. This interactive workshop will help unlock the potential of playful learning for building resilient, thriving educational environments.

FULL: Fluency in All Areas of Literacy Instruction
Jenny Van Remortel, Kingsway College School

All aspects of reading fluency will be covered as well as written fluency. Teachers will leave with ideas and materials they can use in their programs immediately. The reading fluency section will address letter naming, grapheme identification, word reading, sentence reading and passage reading. The written fluency section will address printing fluency and spelling fluency.

Recharge and Refocus: Harnessing the Power of Brain Breaks for Engaged Learning
Susie Heinrich, The Sterling Hall School

Do your students lose focus after 15-20 minutes?  Do they zone out or become disengaged or bored when working on an assignment?  In this workshop, teachers will learn multiple brain breaks (2-4 minute activities that help the brain network switch and revitalize) by engaging in them personally.  Between brain breaks, teachers will learn how to run effective brain breaks and why they are desperately needed by all students.

Stop, Drop & Breathe: Student-created Mindful Routines
AnnMarie Zigrossi, St. Clement's School

Mindfulness can be used as an effective tool to support student well-being. Learn how Grade 3 students created a daily mindful practice that fostered resiliency and self-regulation skills. This session will focus on how incorporating choice and ownership throughout the process led to high engagement and promoted greater independence in accessing these tools when faced with challenges throughout the day.

Designing Research-based Learning Spaces for Students
Jen Frickey & Carrie Gilfillan, Lakefield College School

The research around how space impacts learning continues to increase in its clarity and importance. The way we physically set up and design the spaces that our students learn and interact in can have noticeable impacts on how students engage in their learning and navigate through their school days, especially for students with learning differences. Last year the Learning Support team at Lakefield College School went through a significant renovation of their spaces, and the outcomes have had positive effects on students, staff, and the school culture around accessing learning supports. This workshop will walk through research that informs the design of learning spaces, the design process that the LCS team used from start to finish, and will build in time for you to do a mini design-sprint to start to play with ideas that can impact the future of your learning spaces at your school. Come ready to learn and brainstorm all the creative ways you can enhance your space!

Workshop Session 2

11:45 AM - 12:45 PM
Admissions and Learning Strategies: Working Together for the Success of New Students
Susie Heinrich & Cat Gallienne, The Sterling Hall School

In this session, we explore the critical partnership between the Admissions department and the Learning Support Team in ensuring a smooth transition for new students into the school community. Recognizing that each student brings a unique set of strengths and areas for growth, we delve into strategies for holistic assessment and thoughtful admissions processes and discuss post-admission support mechanisms.

FULL: The Role of Metacognition in Teaching and Learning
Danielle Ross, Branksome Hall

Metacognition is the main driver in self-regulation. It is the ability to think about our thinking, gauge progress and achieve overall success. Research has established a positive link between metacognition and academic performance. In this session, we will delve into the invaluable skill of metacognition and its pivotal role in fostering self-regulated learning among students. Educators will discover the power of explicitly teaching metacognitive skills, empowering learners to understand their own thinking processes, manage their learning effectively, and become independent, self-directed learners. Participants will actively engage in discussions and will leave the session with tools and strategies to explicitly teach and develop metacognition.

Response to Intervention - Chill and Chat

Join us as we explore how we are implementing a Response to Intervention (Light) program. What’s working, what’s problematic? Share the systems you are using in your school, or join us if you are just interested in learning more about Response to Intervention (RTI) or Multi-Tiered System of Support (MTSS).

Bringing Explicit Instruction to the Junior Grades

Over the past few years, The Mabin School has transitioned from a balanced literacy to a structured literacy approach.  Lauren and Jillian are eager to share and reflect upon the unique needs of junior teachers and specifically the importance of explicit instruction in grades 4-6.

Teacher’s Toolbox to Promote Well-Being in School
Tamara Drummond & Kate Silverberg, Kingsway College School

The aim of this workshop is to provide teachers with resources and practical tools to help promote the overall well-being of students. With a focus on mental, physical, social-emotional, and cognitive well-being, participants will have the opportunity to not only learn about what the research says but to also share and learn from each other.

Workshop Session 3

1:30 - 2:30 PM
Collaborative and Proactive Solutions: Using collaborative problem-solving to facilitate positive behaviour change and increased student agency
Cat Gallienne, The Sterling Hall School

The Collaborative and Proactive Solutions (CPS) model offers a problem-solving approach that gets to the core of why a student is demonstrating challenging behaviour and engages them in coming up with solutions. This approach puts relational learning at the forefront by empathizing with the student’s concerns, hearing how they see the problem and working together to make a plan to solve it. CPS promotes student ownership of strategies, builds student capacity for future problem-solving and facilitates the relationship of trust that is vital to student success.

Leveraging Generative AI for Differentiation
Rachel Greenstein, The Sterling Hall School

Discover how generative AI can support a differentiated classroom by automating monotonous tasks and crafting customized learning experiences.  By expediting the creation of diverse instructional materials and adapting content to meet individual student needs, educators can dedicate more time to fostering meaningful relationships and nurturing academic growth. Join us to explore practical applications of AI that can help you build a more inclusive, supportive learning community.

Universal Design for ELL and/or students with LDs and how to differentiate the needs and understand the intersectionality
Lauren Caldwell, Branksome Hall

Together, we will explore Universal Design strategies to support the communication needs of both English Language Learners and students with Learning Disabilities. Our focus will be on identifying and understanding the distinct needs of ELLs and students with LDs while also acknowledging the intersectionality of these needs. Additionally, we will explore how to approach referrals for psychoeducational assessments for students who are in the process of developing their English language skills while potentially presenting with learning needs.

FULL: Executive Function Skills - Practices for explicitly incorporating EF into classroom teaching
James Burns & Susie Heinrich, The Sterling Hall School

In our fast-paced schools it can feel like teaching executive functions is another thing to complete on our long list of to-dos. As a result, executive function skills can sometimes get forgotten, and become something that we either do for our students rather than teach explicitly, or we rely on Learning Strategists to complete in 1:1 sessions. In this workshop, we will discuss some different ways that we help our students and colleagues be explicit about EF through the assessment design process, lesson planning process and classroom environment. This workshop will provide opportunities to show and share.

Building bottom-up learning spaces to support Neurodiverse Learners
Alexia Citak & Maya Contreras, Branksome Hall

Neurodiverse learners, especially those with ASD or ADHD diagnoses, experience the world through multiple sensory channels at once. This workshop will focus on how neurodivergent students often learn better through bottom up thinking. It will consider practical approaches in support of regulating sensory information and examine maladaptive strategies that students use that directly and indirectly affect their learning at school. The strategies provided during this session will be informed by our learning at Landmark College's Summer Institute, a college that specialises in supporting a solely neurodiverse population of students. 

Designing Systematic Explicit Instruction Interventions Informed By Evidence-Based Assessments
Teresa Pollet Boyle, Bayview Glen School

Once we identify which students need learning strategies support, what comes next? Where do we start, and how do we know students are making enough progress to close the gap? 

 

When systematic explicit instruction is informed by evidence-based assessments, structured literacy intervention is more efficient and effective. This workshop will share examples of explicit instruction interventions that systematically build foundational literacy skills. We will also explore different structures to make intervention groups more efficient, effective, and equitable.

 

We will discuss the role universal screening, diagnostic assessment, and progress monitoring play in designing explicit instruction interventions. The workshop will introduce a simple data-based decision model and outline how it can be used within a Response to Intervention (RTI) framework.  

 

Real-world case examples using DIBELS 8 and Acadience data will be used to explore the following questions: 

·      How do you interpret assessment data to guide where to start?

·      How often should progress monitoring occur?

·      How do you determine if an intervention is effective?

·      What can you do when a student is not progressing?

·      When do I need to change my intervention plan and what might those changes be?

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