Monsters occupy a special place in our culture as the physical embodiment of emotions like fear, sadness, or anxiety. Help your students more deeply understand their own emotions through a “building a monster” project. You’ll learn how to layer in both SEL and discipline-specific principles, how to provide feedback that fosters growth, and how to assess this type of creative work.
As you engage in this workshop, you’ll understand that the monster project creates a gateway for students to experience positive emotions, thereby strengthening relationships, improving focus, and building resilience. You’ll also have a fun, absorbing project to slide into your curriculum whenever your students are feeling a little disengaged or otherwise preoccupied by emotional matters.
Station activities are a great way to guide students through a variety of learning experiences while allowing you to work more intensively with small groups or individuals. Well-designed stations can prime students for an upcoming unit, solidify what’s already been taught, or even serve as a performance assessment.
And, with a little planning, you can add humor, optimism, enthusiasm, and curiosity to the stations. The regular experience of these positive emotions can improve students’ attention, resilience, social connection, and sense of well-being. Win!
In this workshop, you’ll learn how to design stations that meet your academic goals as well as foster positive emotions.
The most transformative change teachers can make in their practice is to transfer the locus of control to students. Doing so touches every part of the student and teacher experience, improving relationships, engagement, autonomy, and sense of well-being.
In this workshop, you’ll learn how to transition your assessment and grading processes so that students are involved in every step, from deciding which learning targets to focus on to determining where their work falls on the progression of learning to assigning a grade to an assessment performance. Working with the rubrics you already use, we’ll create a student-driven grading system that allows both you and your students to thrive.
The design thinking process is a fantastic tool for building empathy and joy while allowing students to investigate their deepest academic questions. Student-centered and choice-based, the design thinking process allows students to explore content areas, build explicit skills, and play.
In this workshop, you’ll customize a design thinking project for your students--like creating a game for others--that allows them to experience positive emotions while they learn critical academic content and skills. We’ll also discuss how to provide timely, targeted feedback and assess the work once it’s completed.
Curiosity is a powerful driver of behavior that can also improve focus, resilience, and social connection.
In this workshop, you’ll tap into awe, reflect on wonder, and strategize how curiosity can become a regular feature of your curriculum through carefully designed activities. You’ll customize suggested activities so that by the workshop’s conclusion, you’ll have a collection of lessons to use with your students.
The regular experience of awe, according to psychologist Dacher Keltner in his book Awe (2023), can “animate [student] curiosity in school and predict better academic performance for students in underresourced neighborhoods”. In this workshop, you’ll design a project in which students explore the emotions of curiosity, wonder, and awe in order to design an adventure for themselves and others. Through this process, students can solidify subject area skills and experience positive emotions.
A happy byproduct of this project is an increased sense of competence, confidence, and connection for students and teachers!