Event Debrief: EdRev 2015

One of the great displays at EdRev 2015.

One of the great displays at EdRev 2015.

This was my fifth — fifth! — year at EdRev and it was maybe the best one yet. I’m so grateful to my gracious hosts at PEN for inviting me to speak and for welcoming me so warmly back to my west coast home in SF. Here are some highlights from my trip.

  • The keynote was terrific. Lieutenant Governor (and former San Francisco mayor) Gavin Newsom gave the keynote address and I just loved it. His message was inspiring: he’s dyslexic, and he’s managed to see his dyslexia as an asset that’s helped him be creative, flexible, and successful. That’s a powerful message to send to kids — to see one of the most powerful leaders of your state say he has the same learning difference that you have and that it’s an asset, not a liability. He was warm, funny, and very real, and I was so excited to see the kids’ and families’ reactions to his talk. (Also: is Gavin Newsom running for president? Because this SF native said some awfully nice things about the Dodgers.)

  • The tech section was better than ever. The EdRev tech section was run this year by assistive technology guru and all-around edtech rock star Shelley Haven, who I admire very much. This year, the tables were well-positioned with demos grouped by theme. I was at the executive function and attention table, and I was paired with Fred Jaravata, an edtech guru in his own right and a teacher and technologist at Schools of the Sacred Heart San Francisco. It was great to see my old colleague here, and we had a good time talking to families about the particular challenges their kids faced and what our best ideas were for addressing them. The positioning of the tables was really smart: we were interspersed with vendors’ tables but we were away from the vendors themselves. That way, I could talk about the benefits of various tools and strategies and then refer families over to the vendors’ tables (like Notability and Ponder, among others) to get more information and (occasionally) free stuff. (I’m a big Notability believer, and I was delighted when those kind people gave me a free tee shirt.) I got to talk to a ton of families about big-picture ideas about using technology to support their kids’ academic progress. Highlights included when I got to demo how well Notability’s audio recording features interact with its note-taking features (“are you kidding?!” one mom exclaimed) and showing a family the built-in accessibility features on the iPad. These “aha!” moments are the reason I love this event and the reason I love this work. I think the PEN folks and Shelley Haven did an exceptional job of making this one of the most high-impact elements of the day, and I was thrilled that I felt like I got to help a lot of people.
  • I feel good about my talk. In spite of flinging my computer off the table at the beginning of my talk and regrettably letting fly a mild expletive when my laptop hit the floor, I’m generally pleased with the talk I gave. I think folks were expecting me to spend more time talking about specific technology tools parents can use to help their kids with social emotional learning, but that’s not really my style (as you’ve likely gathered by now). I’m much more inclined to talk about the relationship piece: I think it’s important to talk about the real-world dynamics that we can model and teach to kids. Once we’ve got that larger infrastructure in place, then we can talk about the particular tools that help support that system. I made a big list of tech tools and websites and resources (which you can find here) that I referred to as I ended the talk; I’m hopeful that that was helpful to the people who came looking for that information.
  • I feel really good about my resource list. I’m really pretty proud of that list of resources. I highly recommend you check it out.
  • Have you watched Todd Rose’s TED Talk? You should. My former HGSE classmate and teaching fellow Todd Rose attended EdRev again this year. He’s previously been the event’s keynote speaker, and now he’s a key supporter of PEN and its efforts nationwide. Todd is one of the few people I know who’s as intensely kind as he is brilliant. Take a look at his TED talk (see below) and keep an eye out for what he does next. He’s doing great things for education.

Upcoming PEN Event: Executive Function

Here’s the next PEN Speaker Series Event for parents. Check it out! — PMK

Friday, January 24, 2014, 9:00 – 11:00 am

Making Sense of Executive Function for Your Child

Surina Basho, Ph.D

Children diagnosed with executive function challenges can have difficulties in initiating tasks, organizing their mental processes and materials, remembering and retrieving information, shifting their mental processes and behavior flexibly, managing their time, and self-monitoring.  Information about executive function will be presented as well as strategies for helping children with executive function difficulties.

Location:  Delancey Street Screening Room

Interpretation:  Spanish interpretation is available for this event

Registration:  ParentsEducationNetwork.org/Events

 

2013 – 2014 Speaker Series Calendar

Download a Flyer here: https://www.dropbox.com/s/n32hs4a7yz59qx9/PENCalendar13-14.pdf

 

PEN Event this week: College Student Panel

This is a great annual event by PEN–highly recommended!! — PMK

 College Students with Learning and Attention Difficulties: A Panel Discussion
TWO LOCATIONS!
In San Francisco: Tuesday January 7, 7-9 pm
In San Mateo: Thursday January 9, 7-9 pm 

Applying to college or choosing a college for the student with learning and attention difficulties is an important and sometimes difficult and confusing process.  Hear from the experts: college students with learning and attention difficulties.  Our students, all founding members of SAFE Voices, will discuss their experiences with:

•    Whether and how to disclose a learning disability

•    How they determined the best fit and scope of support for their college choices

•    What they as student with learning and attention difficulties found when they arrived at college

•    How to navigate and manage college life – academically  and socially 

Cost: FREE. Suggested donation $20. Please register online to help us plan.

SAN FRANCISCO: Tuesday January 7, 2014 | 7-9pm
Location: Drew School, 2901 California Street, San Francisco
Click here to register for the San Francisco Panel on January 7 

SAN MATEO : Thursday January 9, 2014 | 7-9pm
Location: Junipero Serra High School, 451 West 20th Avenue, San Mateo
Click here to register for the Peninsula Panel on January 9

Upcoming PEN Event: Making Sense of Executive Function

Here’s a great PEN event for parents. There’s a parallel one for educators that should be interesting, too. — PMK

Friday, January 24, 2014

9:00 – 11:00 am

Making Sense of Executive Function for Your Child

Surina Basho, Ph.D

Children diagnosed with executive function challenges can have difficulties in initiating tasks, organizing their mental processes and materials, remembering and retrieving information, shifting their mental processes and behavior flexibly, managing their time, and self-monitoring.  Information about executive function will be presented as well as strategies for helping children with executive function difficulties.

Location:  Mercy High School

Registration:  ParentsEducationNetwork.org/Events

Upcoming PEN Event: College Student Panel

This is PEN’s annual college student panel; it’s great and totally worth checking out! — PMK

College Students on Learning and Attention Differences

San Francisco (Drew School):  Tuesday, January 7, 2014; 7 – 9pm

Peninsula (Serra High School):  Thursday, January 9, 2014; 7 – 9pm

Panel of SAFE Alumni

Applying to college or choosing a college for the student with learning and attention differences is an important and sometimes difficult and confusing process.  Hear from the experts:  college students with learning and attention differences.  The students, all members of SAFE, will discuss their experiences with applications and college life.

Registration:  ParentsEducationNetwork.org/Events

 

Upcoming PEN Events!

There are more great PEN events coming up this fall (yes, even now that my own talk is over). I’m attending the Friday 10/25 with Ms. Simpson in tow; feel free to join us! Visit PEN’s website to register.

 

The View from High School for Students with Learning and Attention Differences
Friday, October 25, 2013; 9-11 AM, Panel of High School Learning Specialists

Are you in the middle of the high school search?  Come hear a panel of high school learning specialists from a variety of schools discuss resources, support and what’s expected of students and families in different programs.  This background information can help a student determine the best fit for their learning profile.

Location:  Children’s Creativity Museum
Registration:  ParentsEducationNetwork.org/Events

 

The Whole Brain Child
Friday, November 15, 2013, 9-11 AM, Tina Payne Bryson, Ph.D.

Tina Payne Bryson demystifies meltdowns and aggravation, explaining in a clear and practical way the new science of how a child’s brain is wired and how it matures.  Dr. Bryson will introduce twelve practical Whole-Brain strategies which can be applied to everyday parenting, turning outbursts, arguments, and fears into opportunities to integrate a child’s brain and foster vital growth.  The result?  Kids who are happier, healthier and more fully themselves.

Location:  Delancey Street Screening Room
Registration:  ParentsEducationNetwork.org/Events
Interpretation:  Spanish Interpretation available.

 

2013 – 2014 Speaker Series Calendar
Download a Flyer here: http://parentseducationnetwork.org/Resources/Documents/PENCalendar13-14.pdf

Resources: Today’s PEN Talk

Here are some resources from my PEN talk today. Enjoy! — PMK 

October 2013 PEN Talk: Success Starts at Home: Homework Strategies for Cultivating Independence and Self-Advocacy
Delancey Street Screening Room, 600 Embarcadero, San Francisco 94107

School is about more than learning reading, writing, and arithmetic: it’s also about learning strategies for doing homework, studying for tests, and seeking help. Every student does this a little differently, especially students with learning differences, and it’s critical for every student to thoughtfully discover what methods work best and how to communicate their needs to others. Honing these skills can help every student find greater success in school and develop as a self-advocate along the way. This talk will feature proven strategies and ideas for students, parents, and teachers that can help with navigating homework, studying, and self-advocacy in middle school and high school.

Thanks so much for attending my talk for Parents Education Network! Below, you’ll find the slides from my talk. You’ll also find links to some of the organizations, resources, and tools I mentioned in my talk.

http://www.haikudeck.com/p/rsYnrf8d7H/success-starts-at-home

Here are links to some of my favorite resources for great technology to help aid students’ success at school.

Shelley Haven’s Tech Potential page. An extraordinary resource for assistive technology and ideas on how to make technology help every student, parent, and teacher.

Commonsense Media and Graphite. CSM reviews media for parents and kids, and their new educator-focused site called Graphite offers the same for educators. A great resource on apps and whether learning is truly “baked in” meaningfully.

EdTechTeacher’s “iPad as…” page. I love this resource for its “pick the learning need, then pick the app” approach.

Want to connect? email me at pmkievlan@gmail.com or find me on Twitter @PMKievlan.