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Small-Group Workshops

Workshops: Interactive “How-To’s”

Friday Morning

Fernando Reimers, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA

Develop and deepen your understanding of the core ideas of the conference. There is little that is more pressing in the US and around the world than the need to innovate, yet it is very a difficult thing to get “right.” Explore questions around the topics of selecting types of innovation and understanding how your institution’s context will bear on the implementation process.

Scarsdale High School, Scarsdale, NY

Every school grapples with internal goals in the area of advanced learning and with the subsequent articulation challenges that students face as they move onto college. Hear in more detail about the steps taken, the stakeholders involved, the ongoing challenges surrounding Scarsdale’s decisive break with the AP tradition, and the process by which they developed a structure for framing advanced learning.

High School Associated to Renmin University, Beijing

Outside of China one hears frequent generalizations about Chinese schools and universities, and the effects of the gaokao, the very high-stakes college entrance exam. This is an opportunity to hear how to design a curriculum for advanced education in that context, the adaptive responses that evolve in schools and among students and their families, and to develop a more nuanced understanding of the different levels of education in China.

Friday Afternoon

Sherman Teichman, Tufts University, Medford, MA

What is involved in running such a complex endeavor as the EPIIC program? How does the community of learners evolve? How does the awareness of the Symposium influence the learning in the Colloquium? How might it work at other levels of education?

Andover Bread Loaf, Phillips Academy

ABL succeeds by empowering. It empowers teachers in schools that are not blessed with resources. It empowers students to learn with their teachers and to take learning seriously. What is the pedagogy underlying this network? How does the nature of the network influence learning, both by teachers and by students?

Shanghai Datong High School, Shanghai

As is the case all over the world, there are vast differences across the Chinese educational spectrum in urban vs. rural settings, and in schools catering to elite students vs. vocationally oriented educational settings. Across the Majority World available resources influence class size and many other aspects of school life. How do these variables interact with cultural values around education in China? Ask questions and hear about ways in which these issues are being addressed.

Parthenon Group, Mumbai

The “education team” of the Parthenon Group sees a vast array of educational contexts around the world. Most educators are used to thinking in terms of their school or their school district. The Parthenon Group is involved in contexts of all sorts and as a result, the Group has develeoped perspectives that are available to few practitioners, whether teachers or administrators. Ask questions and learn about some of the diverse settings in which they work.

Addison Gallery of American Art, Phillips Academy
Robert S. Peabody Museum of Archaeology, Phillips Academy

These two museums have come to hold a special place at Andover as centers for integrative learning. Since before the term became popular, and each in their own way, the two museums’ staffs have developed innovative approaches for working not only with students and faculty at Phillips Academy, but with visitors from all sorts of schools.

To simplify a bit, the Peabody does this with a focus on material culture. Starting often with simple objects, they use anthropology and archaeology as pathways to help learners integrate complex cultural, historical, economic, aesthetic … viewpoints.

At the Addison, an important goal is to help learners develop visual literacy. While human brains are overwhelmingly structured to give priority to visual input, the academic world has long reduced this channel to privilege the written word. Using imagery opens access to many new ways to integrate students’ learning.

Saturday Morning

John Gilmour, LEAP Schools, Cape Town & Johannesburg

The LEAP Schools grew out of John’s personal journey in addressing post-apartheid challenges in South Africa’s educational world. The need for blunt confrontation of problems and for transparency in actions stands in striking contrast to more typical settings where dysfunction is allowed to persist unchallenged.

Middle School for Math and Science, Washington, DC

From its home on the campus of Howard University, this charter school serves a citywide group of children. (MS)2 offers lessons in using technology to individualize learning to enable students to overcome preparation gaps. Hear more about the coalitions that made this possible and how the school works.

Accelerate, Challenge, Enrich; Phillips Academy

Why take students 2,000 miles away from their familiar campus? How do you accelerate math/science students whose prior experience has left them behind their peers and out of step with opportunities for advanced math and science learning at upper levels of the curriculum? How does this program fit into the culture of the school it serves? Raise questions about how one might develop and adapt such a program for different contexts.

Learning Communities, Phillips Academy

Why is this model of professional development so appealing and empowering to faculty who are used to a great deal of autonomy? What happens when teachers are encouraged to step back in the role of learners? What happens when the learning process intentionally joins learners from different disciplines? Learn how a careful blend of administrative support for grass-roots developments can meet needs of individual teachers and the institution.