MENTAL MODELS: How understanding the mind can transform the way you teach.

Whether you’re making a ham sandwich or playing Beethoven’s 9th,
we all possess mental models determining how we go about
engaging in a task — and teaching is no different.
The mental models informing how we teach are as varied as
teaching itself. From the role of effortful thinking in memory
formation to the relationship between prior knowledge and new
learning, a better understanding of the mind can provide teachers
with the mental models they need to better serve their students.
All of which invites the question at the heart of this talk: Which
mental models are important for teachers to know, and what does it
look like to apply them to practice?
Join two experts in the field of applied cognitive science as we
examine what defines an effective mental model for teaching, share
real-world examples of these principles-of-the-mind at work, and
offer practical strategies for how to incorporate such concepts into
the classroom.

Jim Heal

Program Director Deans for Impact

Rebekah Berlin

Educational Consultant

Session location and time will be published via the Festival App in late September.

Forging a bilingual identity in an immersive English-Chinese context.

Wellington College China has been pioneering an immersive English-Chinese bilingual programme since 2016. In that time, schools have developed a nuanced curriculum which allows pupils to access the best and most challenging parts of both the British and Chinese curriculums. Yang will explore how a genuinely bilingual approach has shaped both the teaching and the learning in Early Years and Primary classrooms.
What will people learn from this session? The focus will be on developments to classroom teaching in a co-teaching environment and how children can explore the best of East and west through all their curriculum areas.

Dr. Yang Yang

Master, Wellington College International Tianjin

Session location and time will be published via the Festival App in late September.

Designing for Learner Variability

This session will explore the four guiding principles for designing for learner variability. Participants will have the opportunity to collaborate around best practices to support each design principle and consider what works best for their context. We’ll share our self-assessment tool and explore ways to leverage the Learner Variability Navigator to address student needs in your role or context.

Jessica Jackson

Director of Professional Learning at the Learner Variability Project, Digital Promise

Session location and time will be published via the Festival App in late September.

Dispositions of Mind and Early Childhood Education

Veteran early childhood educator, author, presenter, and researcher, Tia Henteleff, will present a scholarly and energizing perspective on the beautiful complexity of teaching and learning during the foundational years in early childhood. In this session, Tia Henteleff looks at the role of play as well as literacy, numeracy, creativity, and imagination as integrated and essential components of a child’s intellectual curiosity. Bringing together insights from other big thinkers in education alongside research from Mind, Brain, and Education, as well as her own experiences in the classroom, Tia Henteleff will expand upon ideas from her newly released book, the concept of dispositions of mind, and the important role that early childhood educators have in the life of a child.

Tia Henteleff

Design Science Teacher and CTTL Research Lead for the Lower School, St. Andrew’s Episcopal School and The Center for Transformative Teaching and Learning

Session location and time will be published via the Festival App in late September.

Listening, Learning and Letting Go: Showing up Coach-like as Educators

In this session, participants explore what it means to integrate coach-like approaches to leading and teaching. Participants will practice with powerful questions, active listening, and nonattachment and strategies to create inclusive spaces and center individual voice and choice. This session will also explore discomfort and the worry and excitement of expected and unexpected moments. What if we viewed discomfort as critical to the learning process? What is possible when we sit with our discomfort? The session includes small and large group discussions, hands-on activities, and triad coaching. Participants are asked to come to the session curious and ready to learn.

Brianne Roos

Assistant Professor, Loyola University Maryland

Carey Borkoski

Associate Professor and Certified Coach, Loyola University Maryland

Session location and time will be published via the Festival App in late September.

MBE: The More You Know, The More You CAN Know

This session explores how Mind, Brain & Education (MBE) can help teachers, students, and parents understand their learning processes and how to best support learning in others. Foundational, evidence-based concepts such as neuroplasticity, emotion & cognition, and memory and attentional systems will be explored alongside the most recent neuroscientific findings. Attendees will leave informed and inspired to learn more, with interactive opportunities to brainstorm how these ideas apply in practice. This session is suitable for those with budding interests in the brain and learning, as well as those looking to extend their existing knowledge on the topic.

Kristin Simmers

PhD Student in Learning Sciences, University of Connecticut

Session location and time will be published via the Festival App in late September.

Neuroscience & Education: Bringing Neuroscience into the Classrooom

Through a collaborative effort between a cognitive neuroscientist and a former K-12 educator who transitioned into research, we will discuss recent findings at the intersection of neuroscience and education, and how teachers can begin to put such findings into practice in their own classrooms.
The session will include a live demonstration of portable Electroencephalogtaphy (EEG) technology, where electrodes are placed on the scalp to capture the brain’s electrical activity. Dr. Davidesco uses this technology in his classroom-based research, and during the session participants will discuss the potential of this technology to narrow the gap between neuroscience and education.

Kristin Simmers

PhD Student in Learning Sciences, University of Connecticut

Ido Davidesco

Assistant Professor of Learning Sciences, University of Connecticut

Session location and time will be published via the Festival App in late September.

Poetic Connections: Building Bridges to the Past with Found Verse

Local author Lesley Younge will share her recently released YA nonfiction verse novel, Nearer My Freedom, and other found verse texts as models of how erasure poetry can bridge the gap between English and History classrooms or support an interdisciplinary curriculum. A powerful close reading strategy, crafting found verse from primary sources enhances historical understanding, allows for creative expression, and builds empathy.

Lesley Younge

Middle School Humanities Teacher, Maret School

Session location and time will be published via the Festival App in late September.

The Art of Neuroscience in the Classroom​

Students often become lost in a sea of words when reading jargon-laden science textbooks. Creating colorful illustrations provides an anchor in the storm, affording students the opportunity to creatively visualize concepts. As a science educator for over 35 years, I have incorporated art into my biochemistry, biology, ecology, and neuroscience curricula, drawing along with students as they construct visual representations of the material. Illustrating with students often replaces lecture, and through this process develops greater attention to detail and deeper understanding. No matter your artistic ability, come draw with me and learn more about the structure and function of the nervous system. I will provide examples of ways to incorporate art into your teaching, samples of student’s work, and materials for your own illustrations.

Nancy Cowdin-Hennessy

Teacher, Georgetown Visitation Preparatory School

Session location and time will be published via the Festival App in late September.