Traverse17 Conference – Brief Summary

For the third year, I attended and facilitated sessions at the Traverse Conference, Watershed School’s Expedition to the Future of Learning (#tvrse17 on Twitter). In fact, the Mount Vernon Institute for Innovation (MVIFI) has been a partner for all three years of the Traverse Conference, providing multiple teams from MVIFI to lead and present various sessions about observation methods, design thinking, expeditionary learning, and instructional rounds, just to name a few.

For a window into the three days of this year’s Traverse Conference, check out the #TVRSE17 Twitter hashtag, or enjoy the Storify Trilogy from Jim Tiffin, Jr., an invaluable member of team MVIFI.

As for the sessions that I facilitated, I co-presented with Shelley Clifford, the Head of Lower School at Mount Vernon Presbyterian School. We offered two sessions dedicated to learning about and experiencing learning walks and instructional rounds. Our session description follows, as does a link to our facilitator flow, which contains links to our materials and sites used during the sessions.

Learning Walks and Instructional Rounds: Being an Explorer of Your Own School
with Bo Adams and Shelley Clifford from Mount Vernon Presbyterian School
How do you study your own school community as researchers, designers and innovators? In this session, pioneers at Mount Vernon Presbyterian School will share their journey in using learning walks and instructional rounds to study the art and science of teaching and learning a their school. After laying some groundwork in our base camp, we will venture out to conduct learning walks among the other sessions at Traverse ‘17. Through experiential practice, fellow adventurers in this session will have a successful summit under their belts so that they can begin imagining and planning for future learning expeditions at their own schools upon return. [Facilitator flow and links can be found at]

Mindset Book Study: Learning Resources from #MVPSchool

In March and April 2014, the faculty of the Lower School at Mount Vernon Presbyterian School engaged in three book-study cohorts exploring Dr. Carol Dweck’s Mindset: The New Psychology of Success…How We Can Learn to Fulfill Our Potential.

The game plans for our learning together can be found on Scribd and Google Docs.

And to really engage in #DeeperLearning around Mindset, we developed Mindset Bingo, which can also be found on Scribd and Google Docs.

Connecting Learning and Value: Zero-Based Strategic Transformation #NAISAC14 #boandgrant

Description, Slide Deck & Storify (#boandgrant)
from the #NAISAC14 session that Grant Lichtman (@GrantLichtman) and I facilitated
Friday, February 28, 2014

NAIS Bo Fri4 2.28.14 #boandgrant


Storify (tweet collection): “Connecting Learning and Value: Zero-Based Strategic Transformation #NAISAC14”

Updated: Quick resource pack for #NYSAISnow #NYSAISahdh

What you’ll find here, in this post, is a quick resource pack for the fun work that @GrantLichtman and I were fortunate to do with NYSAIS – the New York State Association of Independent Schools. We were at Mohonk Mountain House for the annual Assistant Heads and Division Heads conference, and the group of educational leaders focused on Time, Space, and Curriculum in educational transformation and innovative schooling.

  • Bo & Grant’s facilitator scratchpad and switchboard (Google doc with intended learning arc and links to resources and slidedecks).
  • Jim Tiffin’s (@JimTiffinJr) Storify – in three parts – archiving some of the pre-conference buzz, ideas from the keynote address on Wednesday night, sessions on Thursday and Friday, etc. In the keynote, Grant and I focused on “priming the pump” for how schools can utilize and amplify human curiosity and lessons of innovation to (r)evolutionize time, space, and curriculum use in schools. Thursday and Friday, we dove deeper into those ideas with workshop formats and facilitation.
  • Jim Tiffin’s visual notes from the keynote Wednesday night. THANKS, Jim!
  • And Grant “signed me up” for an impromptu Twitter meet-up lesson at 2:45-ish on Thursday! Love that NYSAIS spontaneously used some “unconference” thinking to enlist what learners wanted and needed…and created a spontaneous session. I so enjoyed using a lot of “yes, and…” improvisational format to mine the experience among those who attended this flash-mob session when they could’ve been hiking and playing around Mohonk in different ways. It was a fun session sharing insights from one of the most powerful professional learning tools I use!
  • Jenny Kirsch’s blog-post reflection from NYSAISahdh. Thanks, @MsJennyKirsch!

Jim Tiffin Vis Notes NYSAIS ahdh13

Lemme See Your Tootsie Roll – I Mean, PBL! Encienda #EduCon #EduCon25

How might schools nurture curiosity, imagination, and humanity to a greater degree? It might be as “easy” as being intentional and purposeful about practicing those traits.

On Saturday, I was honored to share an Encienda presentation at EduCon 2.5. Encienda is EduCon’s version of an Ignite slide deck – 20 slides, all set to auto-advance every 15 seconds. Here’s my slide deck as a PDF with my slide notes:

The entire round of Encienda was fabulous. Unintentionally, the trend was definitely about PBL – project-based learning – and engaging learners in real-life issues and problem solving.

Now, we just have to Go. Do. Make it so.

Added 1-30-13: