T21CON will feature multiple thematic session tracks, presentations by industry leaders, and an outstanding keynote. This year, T21Con's keynote is in the Center for Performing Arts building and the conference sessions are in the State Farm Hall of Business at Illinois State University.
8:00 AM-2:00 PM
Monica Genta’s goal is to transform teachers, leaders, and schools from seeing education as an ordinary job into an extraordinary adventure. She is a believer in finding awesome and celebrating life every day! Monica is the author of four books, a middle school science teacher, and nationwide educational consultant and motivational speaker. Monica’s TED talk has been viewed by thousands of educators from all over the world. Find out more at www.monicagenta.com or on social at @MonicaGentaEd
Sean Eichenser, middle-level ELA teacher, Chicago Public Schools
How are teachers supposed to compete with video games and streaming sites? Gamification! Gamification is one of the newest trends in education, letting kids earn points, badges, or leveling up their skills. It’s a great way to build buy-in, reinforce social-emotional goals, or increase engagement and creativity in your classroom content. However, it often feels like an “all or nothing” kind of strategy. That doesn’t need to be the case! Discover ways to add small, technology-enhanced gamified practices to your classroom tomorrow! It's not just a buzzword, it's a new way of looking at instruction.
Aaron Gierhart, third-grade teacher and assistant instructional professor, Geneseo School District 228 and Illinois State University
In this session, the presenter will share how he implements a digitally-mediated weekly writing workshop, including approaches for digital feedback and interpersonal, individual instruction with students. Alternative, non-text approaches to digital composing (e.g., podcasting, web design, digital videos, etc.) will be shared as well.
Jory Jones, third-grade teacher, Brookfield LaGrange Park School District 95
Goal setting is a powerful tool that allows students to take ownership of learning. Students have become more self-motivated and have a growth mindset. Using a Google Slide template students document pre and post-assessment scores in academic areas. Students learn to analyze their own data, recognize individual growth, and reflect on their progress. Walk away will the templates to use right away in your classroom.
Michael Lockett, retired teacher and international storyteller/author
Educator/Professional Storyteller/Author will introduce the use of storytelling as a teaching tool in the classroom. The focus will include technical tools and technology. But it will not rely on them as the main components of the presentation. Rather, the presentation will stress using technology to support teaching with auditory, visual and kinesthetic teaching methods to reach across learning styles to improve classroom teaching. Participants will be asked to join in role-playing and in helping tell stories to help them master the concept of using storytelling in the classroom.
Ryan Iberle, transition facilitator teacher leader, Bartlett High School District U46
This session will demonstrate ways educators can incorporate Chrome Extensions/Add-Ons, Google products, and web resources within lessons to make teaching more engaging, accessible, collaborative, interactive, and efficient for students. This is a hands-on exploration of the many free resources and current technologies available, so please bring any technology devices (computers, tablets, phones, etc.). Participants will have the opportunity to explore tools and resources such as Quizizz, Nearpod, ShowMe, Quizlet Live, and many more. Additionally, participants are welcome to share their own technological tips and insights. This session applies to all disciplines, grades, and levels of technological knowledge.
Emily Telford, high school teacher, University High School, Illinois State University
The idea of using virtual reality in the classroom is exciting to think about, but it can be overwhelming to begin to implement VR in a classroom. You may be asking yourself, what are the practical applications? When can VR be used in the learning cycle? Which device is best for my students? How can I manage my students while they are using VR? Can VR be more than just a “gimmicky” tool? How can I use VR to get my students to create and enhance learning? How do I even get started? This presentation is for classroom teachers of all age groups and content areas that are interested in using virtual reality and/or augmented reality at their school and want to learn about research-based applications and recommendations. Attendees will walk away with a toolbox of knowledge from teachers who are currently using VR to enhance learning in their own classrooms.
Kimberly Priller, math interventionist, McLean County Unit 5
Educational research today points to a few key factors for true academic growth and investment through motivation -- all are centered on the individual student. Yet classrooms remain unchanged since the industrial age! Join us to find tools to collaborate and advocate for a successful classroom inclusive of ALL learners and their individual needs.
Monica Genta, teacher, author, speaker, motivator, Windsor Middle School
People often say education is broken, however, I don’t think that’s true. I believe education is evolving into something beautiful. No longer is reading, writing, and arithmetic the foundation of learning. I truly believe learning has evolved into relationships, relationships, relationships. If we want to see the fruits of education, first we must build deeply rooted relationships with our students. Come hang out with me as we look at fun, innovative ways to do life with kids. This session, based on Genta's 2019 book, The Rooted Classroom, is filled with ideas that connect technology and transformative activities that bring people together. You will laugh, you will cry, and you will walk away with a new passion for this profession.
Jason Carr, math teacher, Illini Bluffs Middle School
Come find out about three of the digital citizenship programs out there and why you should be integrating them into your curriculum. I will also talk about the International Society of Technology Education's standards and they will help you get your classroom up to par for 21st Century Learning.
Boxed lunches for attendees are available in SFHB's atrium.
Billy Spicer, integration specialist, Winnetka Public Schools 36
Students yearn for experiential learning that flourishes on collaboration and creativity. Yet bringing these experiences into the classroom continues to be a challenge for many educators. The Breakout EDU Platform offers entry points into immersive games for educators to explore in meeting this challenge. Participants will explore exciting student game creation courses to help spark the creative process of digital game building utilizing the Breakout EDU Platform. Dive into game design and explore ways to build + reinforce + enhance key concepts while offering learners an outlet to show what they know while synthesizing content beyond a surface level understanding. By asking learners to design games, we are challenging them to unearth their own interests and skills to create new worlds for others to experience.
Tammy Pollard, teacher & technology coordinator, Gifford Grade School
Our students bring texts to life using technology! Come see how our students use video creation tools, robotics, Chromebooks, and more to interact and immerse themselves within literature and informational texts. We will also demonstrate ways that our students use technology to transform their own writing into creative masterpieces using tech tools in the classroom.
Pamela Starostka, third-grade teacher, Brookfield LaGrange Park District 95
As leaders in Access for All, our district One to One initiative, we have implemented a wide variety of technology in our third-grade classrooms. Chromebooks and the Google Suite have allowed us to have more student collaboration, create differentiated project-based learning opportunities and so much more. We are excited to share our experiences and findings with other teachers. Walk away will student sample ideas, Chrome extensions, and resources to take back to implement in your classroom.
Ashley Larisy, speech-language pathologist, Community High School District 218
Special Education classrooms have evolved significantly over the last 20 years. Access to readily available instructional supports and curriculum materials are at an educators fingertips, which allows instructors to open the door to creating inclusive and fun environments for all students. Come and explore various websites, software programs, apps, and assistive technology tools that can be used to support all learners.
Brandan Oates, business teacher, Kingsley Junior High School Unit 5
Is Google Classroom actually the best learning management system (LMS) out there? Sure, it dominates the K-12 market, but being the most popular does not equate to the highest quality or greatest functionality. In this session, we'll explore a variety of learning management systems to make sure the one you're using is actually the best one for YOUR classroom...not just the one everyone else is using. Laptops recommended.
Michael Doyle, instructional technologist/coach, Central School District 301
Have you ever wanted to take your history students’ on a field trip to the Colosseum in Rome? Maybe, walk the streets of Dickens’ Oliver Twist with a classroom of English Lit kids? A fantastic new tool from Google will allow you to bring these sites to your students’. Best of all, your students can create their own Virtual Reality trips to share with you! Come to this session to learn more about the Google Tour Creator!
Katie Whitehurst, fourth-grade teacher, Cantrall Intermediate School, Athens District 213
Join over 9 million teachers, parents, and students using Prodigy- a free, adaptive learning math game. Prodigy is curriculum-aligned and available for students in 1st-8th grades. During this presentation, you will learn what Prodigy is, how it helps students achieve, and how to get started using it in your classroom tomorrow.
Monica Genta, teacher, author, speaker, motivator, Windsor Middle School
Hamburger Phones. Epic Garages. Thrift Store Trophies. What do these seemingly meaningless statements have to do with education? Everything! Come discover how changing the way students respond to YOU can revolutionize your classroom. These innovative teaching strategies, based on Genta’s 2015 book “Game Changers” are outside the box, but add whimsy and motivation to your environment. These ideas are connected to technology and are bound to change the way the game is played in your classroom. Most importantly, these strategies work! Mandatory materials for this energetic and inspiring session: an open mind, smile, and the desire to have a really good time!
Winnie Nuding, middle-level language arts teacher and Girl's Who Code Club sponsor, McLean County Unit 5
Women have been underrepresented in STEM fields for years, so what can we do about it as teachers, staff, and community members? Some current efforts in schools to combat these discrepancies do not always promote the positive change that we need. This presentation debunks deficit-minded myths about women in STEM while providing strategies to create more equitable coding spaces at any age level. Learn one teacher's journey from having zero coding experience to sponsoring a school-wide Girls Who Code program at the middle level. Participants will leave with the knowledge to evaluate current coding opportunities in their own schools/communities and specifically locate programs that empower young women to be themselves, confide in each other, and CODE!
Charri Trembley, middle-level instructional coach, Kaneland CUSD 302
Looking for a way to house all of those cool tools that you want to use in your awesome tech-inspired lesson? Consider attending this session to be exposed to different ways to organize all the fun tech stuff and make it meaningful for your students. All resources that are used will be free and accessible to all. We will share how to incorporate HyperDocs into lots of different curricular areas! Also, we will share what worked and what didn't in a 6th grade Math example and a freshman History example that was used this past school year. Please bring a charged laptop and a lesson idea that you would like to "Hype" up!