All posts by Amanda Walma (Kent ISD)

As the Professional Development Coordinator for Kent ISD, I help to provide professional learning opportunities, that are aligned to the school improvement framework, to all educators. We created The Bulletin to keeping educators informed about the hottest topics in education and upcoming professional learning opportunities. We offer Learning On Demand, so that you can access learning from your computer at anytime/anywhere and Learning To Go so that you can bring many of our most popular workshops directly to your school. Let me know if there is anything I can do for you or your district.

Meet Up and Eat Up

We all know how important a nutritious meal can be for our students and their learning.

“Study after study shows that kids who eat breakfast function better,” Dr. Schneider says. “They do better in school, and have better concentration and more energy.” (The Case for Eating Breakfast, Healthychildren.org)

But what happens to our students over the summer when school breakfast and lunch programs are not available? And what about that last meal of the day?   Continue reading Meet Up and Eat Up

#SummerAdminReads

Kelli Campbell, T&L Director Kent ISD- As summer approaches, I am preparing my summer reading list. One thing we know as educators, is that reading is very important to professional growth. Reading can remind you, challenge you, and give you an opportunity to interact with others. (Why Leaders Must Be Readers, Forbes.com)

What’s on your summer reading list?

As you put together your summer reading list, here are a few newly published books that may be of interest to every building administrator! Continue reading #SummerAdminReads

Kent Innovation High Students Enter ArtPrize

This spring, Kent Innovation High’s Economics/English classes (grade 11) engaged in a project connecting art to real-world economic issues. Students began by studying supply and demand shifts and the role these play in the national marketplace.

Four short stories by powerhouse authors including Kurt Vonnegut and Chinua Achebe created a lens by which students could understand the personal impact of economic shifts including poverty, government intervention, immigration, and more. Continue reading Kent Innovation High Students Enter ArtPrize

Strategies to Encourage Summer Reading

Summer. The word alone conjures images of the pool, beach, sand, sun, relaxing with a good book…

Unfortunately, summer break often means a vacation from reading for many students.

Summer Reading Loss Research

The importance of summer reading is well documented in educational research. Studies confirm that summer reading loss perpetuates the achievement gap between low-socioeconomic communities and more advantaged communities. However, Jimmy Kim (2004) found Continue reading Strategies to Encourage Summer Reading

Supporting New Teachers

Learning Academy Provides Classroom Strategies, Camaraderie

by Linda Odette, School News Network 

Imagine what it would be like to keep up to thirty 5-year-olds under control without a lot of knowledge on how to manage such a group. Then imagine you’re also a new teacher.

Enter The Learning Academy, a Kent ISD professional development program started in 2013 that brings together new teachers for lectures, simulated classes and observing master teachers to help them be more successful in the classroom. Continue reading Supporting New Teachers

Leaders in Action Needed

Kent ISD strives to provide the highest quality professional learning opportunities for educators. The West Michigan Educational Leadership Conference (WMELC) is an intensive day of learning and networking experience bringing together hundreds of education administrators and leaders, as well as, content experts.

The goal of WMELC is to inform and equip school leaders so they may govern and lead their districts effectively. The theme this year will be Leaders in Action. A “Leader in Action” is someone who has successfully implemented the topic of the presentation. Every presentation will have a district/building administrator that can showcase the presentation topic in action. Continue reading Leaders in Action Needed

Plan Your PD for 2017/18

As we near the end of another school year, Kent ISD is ramping up efforts to provide outstanding professional learning opportunities in the 2017/2018 school year.

High Interest Topics for 2017/2018

Kelli Campbell, Teaching and Learning Director at Kent ISD, and I visited a few districts over the winter months to get an insight into what our local districts were looking for in the coming school year. We gathered all the information from our visits and found the following topics were of highest interest: Continue reading Plan Your PD for 2017/18

Why YOU should attend SCICON 2017!

SCICON is back for another exciting year.  

On May 17th, Kent ISD will be hosting the annual SCICON GR. This one day conference will feature Wendy Johnson. Wendy is a Ph.D. Candidate in Science Education, and writing her dissertation on “Fostering Three-Dimensional Science Learning: The Role of Curiosity in Productive Classroom Discourse”, at Michigan State University.  Area teachers will be sharing classroom stories and experts from STEM and education technology will  facilitate sessions.

Reasons to Attend SCI CON this year:

Continue reading Why YOU should attend SCICON 2017!

Top 5 Sessions for Admins at PLCON 2017

“Personalized learning is intended to facilitate the academic success of each student by first determining the learning needs, interests, and aspirations of individual students, and then providing learning experiences that are customized—to a greater or lesser extent—for each student. To accomplish this goal, schools, teachers, guidance counselors, and other educational specialists may employ a wide variety of educational methods, from intentionally cultivating strong and trusting student-adult relationships to modifying assignments and instructional strategies in the classroom to entirely redesigning the ways in which students are grouped and taught in a school.” (Glossary of Education Reform, 5/14/15)

On May 3rd, Kent ISD will host The Personalized Learning Conference (PLCON). This conference is beneficial to all educators who want to learn more about personalized teaching and learning.

Leaders in education have a unique opportunity to create organizational priorities and values that support personalized learning for every student.  Administrators can maximize time and teachers to create student success! Continue reading Top 5 Sessions for Admins at PLCON 2017

CORE Program is Making a Difference

Originally posted on GRAND RAPIDS, Mich (WOTV) January 2017 – Kent Transition Center (KTC) offers a new, innovative program designed to meet the needs of Kent County’s secondary students that are not yet prepared for independent, competitive employment, which is an enrollment requirement for KTC. Check out the video above where Maranda visited the CORE Program. Continue reading CORE Program is Making a Difference