Friday, August 11, 2017

Be a Presenter at the LLI Southwest Conference, Hosted by The Oakridge School, February 23-24, 2018

This February, The Oakridge School plans to host its 2nd annual teaching and learning conference in partnership with the Lausanne Learning Institute. The 2018 LLI Southwest Conference offers an opportunity for educators to experience relevant, authentic PD that focuses on topics like design thinking and student centered learning. This year's theme, Making Learning Visible, highlights one of the most unique aspects of the LLI Southwest experience: the opportunity to observe Fishbowl Sessions where teachers administer lessons with real students from The Oakridge School.
This year, I'll be leading the committee that selects and organizes the conference program, a task that's caused me to reflect more deeply about the overall purpose of professional development (especially for teachers). When it comes to PD, instead of asking how I can become a better teacher, I keep returning to the reason we have schools in the first place. Schools provide spaces for learning to be celebrated and made visible for others to see both on our campuses and beyond. Therefore, the real question, for me, is how do I become a better promoter of learning both with my students and with my fellow colleagues.

This is why the fishbowls at LLI Southwest stand out against all other conference experiences: Educators can see learning in action by working together with students in classrooms. Making Learning Visible means, not only talking about best strategies, but actually witnessing the practice together. The feedback from last year's conference echoed these sentiments, and it's why I encourage anyone to make the trek to Texas this winter (...well that, and the warmer weather).

I also want to encourage readers to consider being a presenter for the upcoming event. Last year we had more than 100 presenters, representing 37 schools, from across the nation. Prospective presenters can submit a proposal for leading a 1 hr general session (without students in the room), or they can submit a lesson idea for leading a fishbowl (which is a 45 min lesson followed by a 25 min debrief without the students present). Go to the link to submit your ideas; we'll be accepting proposals until November 17, 2017.

We're excited to announce that Matt Scully and Ryan Welsh, from Providence Day School, will be giving the keynote on Friday, February 24th.  Go here to visit the conference website and learn more about this exciting opportunity. Hopefully we'll see you in Arlington this February.


  1. I plan on submitting a proposal for the style of professional development that we are doing this year! I think it is a new style and it is proving to be very interactive with the faculty.

  2. That's a great idea, Matt! I think people would be very interested in hearing about our badge micro-credentials program for professional development.

  3. I plan on submitting a few proposals for LLI SW this year. I'm focusing on ideas related to shared leadership, blending core curriculum and maker mindset, and growth mindset for students. I am excited for the new opportunities and connections that will be possible as a result of LLI SW. It's going to be awesome!

    1. I love the ideas for session topics. You've done some really cool stuff related to bringing the maker movement into the English classroom. Can't wait to see your presentation at OESIS Boston in 2 weeks!