Runnels | Independent School, Baton Rouge


Teachers Build Instructional Skills at Summer Conferences, Workshops


Many of our teachers were on the go this summer, taking advantage of opportunities to strengthen their instructional skills and expand their their knowledge of the subjects they teach by participating in professional development conferences, workshops, and seminars. 
Elementary Assistant Principal and Guidance Counselor Beth Golden traveled to Atlanta, GA in June to attend the Innovative Schools Summit, which consisted of five different conferences featuring nationally recognized authors and experts in the fields of school counseling and innovative educational strategies. “I had the opportunity to attend five presentations a day,” said Mrs. Golden. “I obtained a tremendous amount of new knowledge that will increase my skills and help me to be more effective when working with our students.”
High school biology teacher Ramona Eberly attended an AP Biology Summer Institute at Gulf Coast State College in Panama City Beach, FL for four days in June. “The College Board has updated AP Biology for the 2019-2020 school year,” Mrs. Eberly said. “Attending this conference gave me the opportunity to review and discuss the new course and exam description with other AP Biology teachers and get a preview of new classroom resources.” 
Several of our kindergarten and elementary teachers participated in workshops on Singapore Math sponsored by Mathodology, which were held in Jacksonville, FL and Charlottesville, VA in June and July. Participants included Kindergarten Director Paula Naquin, kindergarten teachers Lisa Latona and Stacey Smith, elementary teachers Kari Calhoun, Julie Stevenson and elementary lead teacher Renee’ Miller. 
In addition, Mrs. Miller and elementary teacher Christine Pousson traveled to Dallas July 16-19 to take part in Kim Sutton’s Math Camp. “Mrs. Sutton modeled a variety of games and hands-on activities to introduce number sense, operations, and fractions concepts,” said Mrs. Pousson. “She ‘re-energised’ my sense of play and increased my ‘teaching tool kit’ for the upcoming year.”
Stacey Smith also took part in a second math seminar called Differentiating From the Start in Orlando, FL in late June. At the two-day session, which focused on teaching math to young students, she met educators from all over the United States. Mrs. Smith said she immediately bonded with a teacher from North Hollywood, CA. “She and I would like our kindergarten students to become pen pals,” she said.
Elementary teacher Beth Alfonso was in Kansas City, MO July 8-11 for the Greg Tang Math Plus Conference. Greg Tang and his son Greg Tang Jr are nationally known math educators and authors. ”I had the opportunity to listen to several sessions with Ban Har Yeap, a prominent figure in the Singapore Math world,” she noted. “I gained a more thorough understanding of the pedagogy behind the program as well as practical ways to guide my classes more effectively.” 
Jr./Sr. High Assistant Athletic Director and Athletic Trainer Marcella Babcock went to Thibodaux May 30-31 for the Louisiana Athletic Trainers 2019 Summer Educational Symposium. She heard talks by local and out-of-state athletic directors and physicians on topics applicable to sports medicine and psychology. 
Photo caption, right:  Elementary teacher Stacey Smith, left, wins a door prize at the SDE Differentiating From the Start math conference in Orlando, FL this summer. With her is conference presenter Shannon Cunningham.
Photo caption, left: Elementary teacher Beth Alfonso at the Greg Tang MATH PLUS Conference in Kansas City with noted author and conference speaker Jon SanGiovanni.