Approaching Teaching @ AISK

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

Approaching Teaching: Week of March 5, 2017

 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 develop and use conceptual understanding, exploring knowledge across a range of disciplines. We engage with issues and ideas that have local and global significance.

(IBO. IB Learner Profile. Knowledgeable. 2013.)

How are you taking charge of your learning?

Set an objective for your learning this week!

Outside of Kuwait

March 2017

  • Professional Learning Weekend. Cairo American College (CAC) teachers would like to share their insights and teaching models with other international school teachers in the region in order to better support teacher understanding and student learning. We are hosting a professional learning weekend from March 25 – 27, 2017. Register here. Teachers have an opportunity to participate in a Lab Site process to learn about one of these three teaching models used at CAC:
  • Teacher Skills Forum 2017. The 2017 Teacher Skills Forum intends to examine the process of deconstructing learning targets and re-constructing clear and understandable learning goals to enrich the quality of teaching/learning experiences in the classroom. Registration for the Teacher Skills Forum 2017 is now open. Register now. March 25 & 26, 2017 at the Dead Sea, Jordan King Hussein bin Talal Convention Centre. #knowledgeable

 April 2017

  • Key Principles for Responsive ELL Instruction. As the demography of international schools continues to change with the result that every classroom has more English learners than ever before, it is necessary to turn the often-heard mantra, ‘every teacher is a language teacher’ into classroom practice. These immersion classrooms differ from past practices and as such require EAL- responsive and collaborative ‘growth mindsets’ not just among EAL teachers but among all teachers. April 27 – 29, 2017. Bangkok, Thailand. Learn more.
  • NESA Spring Educators Conference 2017. The Spring Educator’s Conference will take place in Bangkok, Thailand, March 31 – April 2, 2017. #inquirers

May 2017

  • The Innovator’s Mindset. Great teachers have been “innovators” long before any of the current technologies existed in our world.  It was always about doing something better with what was available, to help kids. In this workshop, George Couros will discuss the idea and characteristics of the “Innovator’s Mindset”, and how they can make a significant impact on the learning of ourselves and ultimately our students. May 19 – 20, 2017. Bangkok, Thailand. Learn more. #open-minded #inquirers
  • Leading Innovative Change. Although schools are moving forward, change is always something that many struggle with. Focusing on an innovator’s mindset and our “why”, this workshop, led by George Couros, is meant for leaders to help others within their organization not only accept change, but embrace it, to create better powerful learning opportunities for our learners. May 17 – 18, 2017. Bangkok, Thailand. Learn more#thinkers #inquirers

June 2017

  • Embedding Formative Assessment. Learn what Formative Assessment is (and isn’t) with Professor Dylan Wiliam. June 2 – 3, 2017. Bangkok, Thailand. Learn more#knowledgeable



  • Eduro Learning. Our world seems more divided than ever these days, and it can sometimes feel overwhelming, even hopeless. As educators, what can we do to make a difference? Find out in this self-paced series: Teaching Empathy to Unite a Divided World. $120 USD. #caring

Reading: Articles and blog posts of interest

When blended learning is equated with digital workflow, students remain consumers of teacher-directed content instead of becoming creators of knowledge within a context that they can actively control.

  • Gratitude. Teachers face stressful days and often can be given overwhelming tasks. Studies show that those who show gratitude, despite the hardships, often see a decrease in stress, are more productive, and feel much better overall. The goal of this challenge is to make your life a little bit better one day at at time. Take “The 5 Day Gratitude Challenge” which aims to put a little structure into giving thanks, and offers an opportunity to encourage people. #balanced
  • Refugee and Immigration Topics. Annenberg Learner has curated a list of resources on to support teaching about the global refugee crisis and the related topic of immigration. Engage students with activities, lesson plans, and other professional development resources about these topics. #open-minded
  • Human Rights Collection. Look for the new “Forced Displacement and Human Rights” collection on Essential Lens: Analyzing Photographs Across the Curriculum. Students analyze rights-cleared photographs of refugees and internally displaced groups, and discuss the causes of human displacement and how the international community is responding. The photographs are included in the resource. #open-minded
  • Math Card Games. Eureka Math teaches students to experience math, to understand it conceptually and in application. These card games are intended to help build fluency in math in a fun and engaging way. Find the rules and instructions for ten games for skill levels ranging from grades K through 12 here. #knowledgeable
  • “Math People.”  Unfortunately many adults and children make the claim, “I am not a math person.” Read more here to learn how to remove obstacles to learning math. #open-minded

Your brain grows when you make a mistake, even if you’re not aware of it, because it’s a time when your brain is struggling. It’s the most important time for our brains.

Jo Boaler, Stanford professor of math education

  • Skills Development. What can it look like to actually teach “soft” skills? This was explored by the AIS MYP staff during the Curriculum Connections project. The very first steps of aligning Approaches to Learning (ATL) skills began with categorizing the explicit and the implicit ATLs. Implicit skill development naturally aligns with curriculum standards and MYP assessment objectives (e.g., research skills, collaboration). On the other hand, explicit skill development needs to be explicitly planned for (e.g., time management, failing forward, managing distractions). Find out how grade 6 teachers at AIS are working with students on how to “evaluate and manage risk.” #thinkers
  • Teach Smaller. In this podcast from Teachonomy, learn three practical tips to help reduce stress and overwhelm in the classroom. The show notes section offers a quick summary of the tips discussed in the podcast. #balanced
  • Understanding Place Value. Find out how a grade one class explores “big numbers.”  #knowledgeable
  • Women in Engineering. The inaugural Maker Faire Kuwait happened in mid-February. It was a great first event, with 67 local makers showing their projects, from high-tech inventions to handmade regional crafts, to an engaged flow of attendees. Through all three days, one aspect stood out: the large number of proud young women engineers#risk-takers

The proportional number of female makers [at Kuwait MakerFaire] outweighed what I see at Maker Faires in the US or Europe.


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This entry was posted on March 5, 2017 by in Math, Professional Learning, Technology Integration.
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