CBOL 2017 - Breakout Session Detail


Student Choice & Agency

Learn about strategies for helping students drive their own learning experiences


Design Thinking and Personalized Learning: How can we co-design authentic, engaging learning experiences with our students?

When educators use design thinking to design learning experiences the result is inherently personalized learning. When students use design thinking to engage in tasks or challenges, they develop mindsets such as empathy, resiliency, learning from failure, optimism and radical collaboration. Learning is situated in real-world problems that are meaningful to students, and they become co-designers of their own learning according to their interests and abilities. Because design thinking is iterative, natural feedback cycles are built in which allow students and teachers to know what students know and can do, and what they need to do next towards developing mastery.

Speakers:  Tracy Dalton, Jess MacKinnon.  Tracy Dalton is the Learning Specialist | Learning Innovation for the Calgary Board of Education.  Jess MacKinnon is the K-12 Segment Manager for Desire to Learn (D2L).

Kids Can't Learn in Airplane Mode: Promising Blended Learning Practices

When students enter the classroom without a mobile device, we are asking them "to turn on airplane mode". We are asking them to disconnect from any app that might help them to write or resources that could further their understanding of academic language. We are also asking them to disconnect from one another and from us, as educators. Rather than empowering them to send messages and conduct research, without equitable access, we are telling them to power down in order to learn. 

This session will highlight promising Blended Learning practices in Aurora Public Schools and aim to support other teachers and leaders in developing these practices in their own classrooms and schools. From students capturing learning digitally to allowing for personalization of settings and apps for learning needs, this session will focus upon how students can start to advocate for staying connected in our schools.

Speaker:  Ben Wilkoff.  Ben Wilkoff is the Director of Blended and Personalized Learning for Aurora Public Schools. 

Putting Students in the Driver’s Seat: Personalized Learning through Student-Owned Data

What happens when we put student data into the hands of the people it really affects—our learners? Leveraging quantitative and qualitative data builds learner agency and scaffolds students toward setting meaningful goals for their academic progress. This hands-on workshop walks practitioners and school leaders through ways to put students in the driver's seat for success—as individuals, members of their learning community, and empowered partners in their own education. At Taos Academy Charter School, an innovative blended-learning school serving grades 5–12, goal-setting and consequential thinking are cornerstones of instructional practice. We believe that "the most important instructional decisions, those with the greatest influence on student success, are made by learners themselves" (Stiggins, 2009). Our advisers teach students to track their efficiency, chart progress, set goals, problem solve, and self-reflect. Come learn strategies for giving data back to the students with our team!

Speaker:  Elizabeth LeBlanc.  Elizabeth S. LeBlanc serves as Curriculum & Data Coordinator and ELA Specialist for Taos Academy Charter School. She has 10 years of experience in the design and implementation of high-quality blended learning programs. 

Student Panel: Student Voices

What do students think about transforming education towards blended and personalized learning environments? The student panel features students who are enrolled in blended and supplemental online learning classrooms. Students come from various schools with diverse backgrounds. In a provocative, unfiltered and honest conversation students will provide first-hand accounts of their experiences, why they enrolled in blended classes, and pros & cons. This is your chance to ask questions to students participating in blended learning models. Send your questions to students through Twitter using #CBOL2017

Speaker:  Judy Perez, CEO and Founder of iLearn Collaborative.  Judy has been identified as a national level expert in K-12 online and blended learning by the U.S. Department of Education. She has over 25 years of experience in education with 14 years in online and blended learning. Prior to founding the iLearn Collaborative, she directed district-level blended learning at Jeffco Public Schools and led their online school from turnaround status to Performance accreditation.