October 2019
2nd Annual Southern Tier Science Conference
Over 100 educators from around the area attended the second annual Southern Tier Science Conference at Chenango Valley’s High School after school on October 10th. With over 15 presentations, participants were able to learn about things like Stem Cell Activity in Drosophila, Google and Science: A Phenomenal Partnership, Seismology, Topography and Soils: a Project Based Approach and many others. 

Participants also had the opportunity to view products and collaboration opportunities from FOSS/Delta Science, the Ross Park Zoo, Roberson Science Museum, Animal Adventure Park, LabAIDS, and the Waterman Environmental Center to name a few.

During the refreshment break, participants also had the chance to collaborate with colleagues, speak further with presenters and win raffle prizes donated by many different vendors! We have received excellent feedback from attendees that are already implementing the ideas learned in their classrooms and looking forward to attending the STSC next year! 
 
We extend our gratitude to Chenango Valley Central School District and the High School for the use of their facilities, FOSS/Delta Science, STANYS and the Master Teacher program of NYS for their support and generosity, and the vendors and the presenters for sharing their valuable information. Finally, a big thank you to all of the conference attendees, because without you this conference would not have been such a great event!
Mindfully Digital
On October 10th and 11th, Maine-Endwell Central School District welcomed educators from across the state to a two day conference, entitled “Mindfully Digital,” to showcase the district’s journey in technology integration. Maine-Endwell has been a front-runner in educational technology, and has not only provided students devices, but has allocated resources, such as training and support through Managed Technology Services led by Broome-Tioga BOCES and the South Central RIC, to ensure mindful use in student instruction. Maine-Endwell recognizes that to be prepared for college and careers, schools need to equip students with future ready skills; this is why the district is committed to being mindfully digital.

On Thursday, October 10th, a regular day of student attendance, participants traveled throughout the district to see technology integration in action. At each school, they were greeted by principals who shared the building’s background. Participants then split into small groups led by student guides who facilitated classroom visits to give a first-hand view of what the program looks like in real time. A lively student panel also gave participants a chance to hear students’ views on the ways technology is used in the district. 

On Friday, a district superintendent’s conference day, all Maine-Endwell educators along with conference registrants attended a motivating keynote session by Devorah Heitner, author of Screenwise: Helping Kids Thrive (and Survive) in Their Digital World . The rest of the day provided educators with an array of sessions presented by Maine-Endwell teachers, among others, that addressed a wide range of topics centered around the district’s ongoing, and ever evolving, experience with technology integration. Participants left with a variety of ideas to take back to their districts, schools and classrooms to help them manage and integrate technology in mindful ways to enhance learning for all.
Bridging the Gap: Math Literacy and Problem-Solving
In her book This is Disciplinary Literacy , Releah Cossett Lent writes: “ One of the casualties of the ‘reading across the curriculum’ movement has been the disenfranchisement of math teachers who felt they had to incorporate ELA reading into their classes.”  Often math and other content-area teachers deeply recognize students’ needs for literacy skills, but might feel challenged by the notion that they must be embedding the exact same strategies and techniques their ELA colleagues are using in ELA class. As students move past foundational reading and writing skills, literacy becomes much more specialized within each content-area, but what exactly does disciplinary literacy instruction look like? And what does it look like in math?  
 
PLIC’s session Bridging the Gap: Math Literacy and Problem-Solving will work to define the literacy skills of readers and writers in math, and how those skills both overlap and differ from what happens in other content-area literacies. The first of this three-day series took place on October 24th, with attendance reaching its maximum capacity. Teachers from a dozen area districts explored the thinking work of comprehension that all readers employ, and then identified how that same work shows up explicitly in a math reader. Issues around text-complexity, monitoring for understanding, and having a “reading toolbox” specific to math reading were the main focuses of the session, as well as considerations for assessing comprehension in math.

Teachers will return on December 11th to consider the implementation of an instructional cycle for math literacy: assessing, evaluating data, and designing targeted instruction around math reading strategies.  
Teachers and administrators in the region can now access information about instructional technology resources and initiatives through the new Broome-Tioga BOCES Instructional Technology webpage. This webpage serves as a centralized location for standards, key research articles, tutorials and resources, upcoming workshops, and service descriptions/contact information.

This website was developed by the instructional technology team based on regional feedback. The website also features innovative lessons and models of effective use of instructional technology in our region’s classrooms. We welcome new submissions to this feature; teachers can send Dustin Andrus photos and a brief caption/blurb at dandrus@btboces.org .

The website can be accessed from the Broome-Tioga BOCES Instructional Technology Integration page  HERE .
  Learn ~ Collaborate ~ Explore ~ Register Today!
Looking for more Professional Learning opportunities?
Check out the PLIC catalog and calendar here !