We are also facing very challenging times. Between natural disasters such as hurricanes and floods, and the heartbreaking tragedies of young lives lost through senseless acts of violence, it is more important now than ever before that we come together to build each other up and support one another as we are charged with the care of our nation's most important asset - the minds and hearts of our students everywhere - the future hope of our world.
We are stronger than we realize. We are more creative than we know. And we are able to rise to this challenge. It is up to us to provide that place of hope and inspiration, and to encourage our students to develop the skills they will need. Be it insightful reading, inspiring writing, critical listening, powerful speaking, wise viewing, or using media and technology to deliver their message, it is in our classrooms that students can find their voice and their abilities to change their world.
We invite you to submit session proposals that share your ideas to help your colleagues rise to the challenge each and every day.
How can we be innovative in the classroom to meet the challenges we face in the areas of:
• using testing data to drive our instruction• incorporating STEM and the arts in our language arts classrooms• knowing how and when to use technology versus texts• getting students to appreciate both the classics and contemporary literature• giving students the freedom and the tools to express themselves• being creative and engaging yet providing rigor in our assignments• getting kids to read more and write more than ever before• ensuring our curriculum is student-centered while being standards-driven
It's a long and daunting list - challenging to say the least - but we do it every day, and we keep doing it, even when things get tough. We rise to the challenge because we love what we do, and we love who we serve - our students and our future.
Remember that our audience will consist of teachers of students in grades K through college. We’ll have pre-service teachers, early career educators, and master teachers. We’ll have teachers from rural areas and urban communities. We’ll have teachers who work with traditional, ESOL, and ESE students. Our audience will be as varied as our state is.
Let's all Rise to the Challenge!