I had the privilege of attending the first ever ElevateEDU Summer Institute on June 8th. A group of area educators came together and put this on in about 5 months and it was amazing to be part of this first of many conferences. ElevateEDU is a collective group of educators, businesses and entrepreneurs on a mission to transform the educational landscape for all kids.
The day started with Adam Arrendondo, who is part of the KC startup village, discussing the soft skills that are missing from today’s employees and entrepreneurs. The one soft skill that Adam reiterated was the need for critical thinking and real life problem solving. This really hit home for me of how I can change my assessments and teaching to include more real life problems. I saw my top students struggle with a real life problem at the end of the year last year and know that I need to change how I teach to my students throughout the year.
Another thing that I learned which I am going to incorporate into my lessons is a breakoutEDU games. I can see how this is going to really make the student critically think and solve problems quickly. We did this game last year in PD and the district has pre-made boxes, but what was holding me back was how do I do this was 20+ students and multiple times a day.The suggestions was that to break the class in to 4 different groups, where each group had to solve one lock and then the next group had to solve the next. This take each student listening and processing the information that the others groups are discussing, which will help with the student’s listening and processing skills. The other was as the students solved one puzzle that you go right behind them to reset for the next class—just let the class know that you reset the puzzle for the next class. The session that I attended gave us a website that had pre-made breakoutEDU games-- http://www.breakoutedu.com/games
Val Staponski | ESMS Math
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