Approaching Teaching @ AISK

inquiring – conceptual understanding – contextualizing – collaborating – differentiating – assessing – reflecting

The Learner Within: Week of October 4, 2015

 How will you grow, learn, and inquire this week?

Inquirers – Knowledgeable – Thinkers – Communicators – Principled – Open-Minded – Caring – Risk Takers – Balanced – Reflective

How do we, as educators, take responsibility for our professional growth in order to be the best we can be for AIS students?


We show empathy, compassion and respect. We have a commitment to service, and we act to make a positive difference in the lives of others and in the worlds around us. (IBO. IB Learner Profile. Caring. 2013.)



How are you taking charge of your learning?

Set an objective for your learning this week!

On the AIS Campus

SIP Connections. The decisions that inform why we do what we do at AIS Kuwait, in and out of the classroom, are guided by the AIS School Improvement Plan. Guiding documents such as the SIP help us all to make choices that steer teaching and learning towards success.

  • Tapping the Power of Stories. Teaching reading and writing strategies is essential, but in Story: Still the Heart of Literacy Learning, Katie Egan Cunningham reminds us that when we bridge strategy with the power of story, we deepen literacy learning and foster authentic engagement. Preview the entire book here. (This may require setting up an account with Stenhouse, but they provide amazing resources!) SP2. Literacy.
  • Vocabulary Building. Word walls are an integral piece in growing students’ vocabularies. This post from Dr. Kimberly Tyson highlights how to use boards, ceiling tiles, cupboards, and even digital spaces to surround kids with content-rich language. SP2.1.1g

MYP Curriculum Connections. AIS is currently participating in an IB training pilot. The MYP Curriculum Connections pilot is designed to support schools in making connections between curriculum standards (what we teach) and the philosophy of the IB (how we teach and assess). #inquirers #risk-takers

In Kuwait

TESOL Kuwait. TESOL Kuwait is a professional organization for anyone involved in teaching non-native speakers of English. This membership organization is devoted to the professional development of its members most of whom are based in Kuwait and the Gulf region.  TESOL Kuwait is an official affiliate of TESOL International. #knowledgeable #communicators

tesol kwt

Outside of Kuwait

Eduro Learning. Eduro Learning believes that as technology continues to change both the way we learn and the way we think about learning. The power of relationships are more important than ever. #open-minded #communicators

NESA Weekend Training Institutes. NESA’s weekend training institutes are a fantastic place to spend your professional learning time and money! NESA’s Training Institute model is a cohort approach where participants choose one offering that will be their focus for the two-day experience. #inquirers #open-minded

  • The Fall Training Institute will take place at the American School of Dubai, UAE November 6 – 7, 2015. NESA is offering nine in-depth, two-day workshops on topics ranging from Math in early childhood through the use of data and “Next Generation Science Standards.”
  • The Winter Training Institute will take place at The American International School of Muscat, Oman February 5 – 6, 2016. The WTI will feature some very exciting two-day workshops, including: a special session with Carol Commodore on standards-based assessments in specialist areas (e.g., art, music, drama); “mindfulness”; teaching compassion; and more.

NESA Spring Educators Conference. The Spring Educators Conference is a three-and-a-half-day conference for educators of all grades and disciplines, featuring keynotes, 4-hour workshops and multi-day offerings presented by specialist speakers, general interest sessions, and teacher-presented workshops. The 2016 NESA SEC will take place in Bangkok, Thailand April 1 – 4, 2016. #knowledgeable


  • #AISQ8chat. Read a summary of last week’s first #AISQ8 Twitter chat of 2015 – 2016 here. Join us Tuesdays on Twitter for a slow chat when we discuss a wide variety of educational topics. These slow chats include #AISQ8 Twitter members as well as a wide variety of educators from various locations around the region and the globe. How to participate details can be found here.  #communicators #risk-takers
  • Connected Educator Month. CEM is first and foremost about making connections. Engage in 31 days of connected activities, giving you one simple way to get more connected every day. CEM’s edConnectr uses tags and maps to make it easy and fun to create profiles to collaborate, get help, or just connect. Use/Follow the #CE15 hashtag to get connected this month! #communicators #risk-takers
  • Eduro Learning. Eduro Learning believes that as technology continues to change both the way we learn and the way we think about learning. The power of relationships are more important than ever. #inquirers #risk-takers
  • Hacking Mars. Microsoft brings ‘The Martian’ to Earth with Hacking Mars design challenge, Bing Watney Home map experience and more. The Hacking Mars Design Challenge invites teams to research and submit a three-to-five minute video about a product, service, app or game that would help Watney: stay alive (grow food, filter air, produce water), pass time (keeping hope alive, dealing with extreme isolation and constant stress) and get home (focusing on communication issues). They can tackle one topic or take on all three. The deadline for entries is Oct. 13.
  • Learning 2 Asia. Have a look at #Learning2 Tweets to learn from global experts and Disrupt – Rethink – Change. This Learning 2 conference in Asia was hosted by the International School of Manila, October 1 -3, 2015. #risk-takers #communicators
  • Office 365. Become an Office 365 Ninja!
  • USC Rossier Online Graduate Programs. The USC Rossier School of Education offers graduate degree programs delivered online that prepare educators to facilitate innovative learning across a range of settings. Through live, face-to-face online classes and rigorous, relevant curriculum, USC Rossier’s online programs bring educational innovation to you — no matter where you live. Online programs include: Doctor of Education (EdD) in Organizational Change and Leadership, Master of Arts in Teaching, and Master of Arts in Teaching — TESOL. Learn more here.

Reading: Articles and blog posts of interest.

  • 7 Habits of Highly Affective Teachers. Rick Wormelli encourages readers to “make emotional health a habit.” Through these seven habits we can make AIS a better place for everyone. #caring
  • Promoting Independent Thinking. Thinking independently isn’t something that comes naturally to everyone. Providing opportunities for students to think about what they think, and then to clarify why they think a certain way fosters independence. This post offers 60 ways to help students think for themselves. #thinkers
  • Provoking Student Misbehavior. This article from ASCD’s October 2015 Educational Leadership begins with the statement, “Misbehavior is a form of communication.” The article goes on to highlight five common provocations to avoid. #caring #reflective
  • Revisiting Growth Mindset. How is a teacher a partner in the development of a growth mindset? In this commentary, Carol Dweck reflects on, and offers further insight, to inform our understanding and application of Growth Mindset. #reflective

My colleagues and I are taking a growth-mindset stance toward our message to educators. Maybe we originally put too much emphasis on sheer effort. Maybe we made the development of a growth mindset sound too easy. Maybe we talked too much about people having one mindset or the other, rather than portraying people as mixtures. We are on a growth-mindset journey, too.


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This entry was posted on October 4, 2015 by in Professional Learning and tagged , , , , .
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