fall 2017 newsletter
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Grand opening of the new & improved WAETAG website
We are pleased to announce the launch of our brand-new website, and we want you to be the first to check it out! With you in mind we've created a site we hope will support and empower you as you work diligently to support and empower your students.
By: Vicki Edwards
The WAETAG Board met in August at the beautiful Lake Kachess Lodge with lofty goals. We were focused on committee work for the fall conference, beginning preparations for the 2018 conference, working on long and short-range strategic planning and making final preparations to launch our new website. At the close of our three-day meeting, I was proud of the goals we met and honored to be working with a team of passionate advocates for gifted children. I began reflecting on how much has happened in Gifted Education in Washington State and the nation since last fall's conference.
In January, the UW Robinson Center hosted an Equity Summit on Gifted Education featuring local and national speakers addressing topics related to equity in gifted education. You can find resources from this two day conference here.
February 2 was Gifted Education Day in Olympia. In addition to 300 neon-green scarves bringing visibility to gifted education throughout the Olympia campus, I was honored to be introduced at a caucus with Camille Jones, Washington Teacher of the Year 2016. Our host, Representative Dent was proud of our roles both as teachers in Washington's District 13 and also colleagues in Quincy School District.
I had the privilege of representing WAETAG at the Advocacy Conference in Washington, D.C. in March. Despite a freak blizzard that shut down most of the city, other advocates and I were determined to keep our appointments with key lawmakers and bring awareness to the imbalance of funding for gifted education nationwide. We presented statistics from the NAGC and the Institute for Educational Advancement regarding the misconceptions about educating the gifted child and statistics addressing the discrepancy between the actual number of identified highly capable students and the number of students receiving funding or support nationwide. You can read the Poll of Voters about Gifted Education here and voice your concern to your legislators. NAGC also lists some key ways to effectively communicate to our elected officials, I followed these pieces of advice and found them to be helpful while in Washington, D.C. as a voice for WAETAG, gifted educators and gifted children.
In August, eleven WAETAG Board members from different parts of the state dedicated three days to the goals we set forth on our agenda. We purposely set the bar high, yet we exceeded the long-range and immediate goals we set and are especially excited to roll out the new and improved WAETAG website.
Several times during the retreat I stopped, looked around and felt such pride for the amazing group gathered to bring the best gifted education has to offer for the fall conference. This board meeting was also about longevity. Our work will ensure that we have high caliber protocols and programs in place this fall and for years to come.
Join us October 13-14 at Hotel Murano in Tacoma for this year's WAETAG Conference!
Would you or someone you know love to attend the conference but aren't able to secure enough funding? We invite you to sign up as a volunteer. By volunteering for one day of the conference you will receive one day free.
Volunteer shifts are available on a first-come basis, and it will be at WAETAG's discretion which day we need you to volunteer vs. which day you'd like to participate in the conference. We will do our best to accommodate your schedule requests, but cannot guarantee any day.
The total cost for registration will be one day of volunteering plus $150. This is less than half of the cost for the full conference. We appreciate our volunteers so incredibly much. We truly would not be able to do this without you!
ELA teacher resources
By: Jen Flo
Helping all students reach their potential is our profession, and whether you work in a dynamic PLC, or are trying to create a unit/class on your own, here are some tools that I have bookmarked for Language Arts Resources and go to frequently:
This site offers a variety of resources for educators, administrators, and parents. I like to refer back to the National Standards page to review those standards in quality programming, assessment, and other areas. This site also offer theory, research, strategies and other educational practices that help me create classroom opportunities for all students.
Always engaging and challenging, Ian Byrd offers teachers resources that promote deeper thinking and exploration of ideas. Teachers can download free resources and purchase additional items in his store. Some of my favorites include his extensive idiom activities (you can sign up for a weekly email!), character analysis, and developing a coat of arms. There are free lessons and video lessons, and I think your students will love them!
This resource page (one of many on this site) has gathered a list of published books.
Reading Like a Historian
From their website: "The Reading Like a Historian curriculum engages students in historical inquiry. Each lesson revolves around a central historical question and features sets of primary documents designed for groups of students with diverse reading skills and abilities." Although geared for middle school/high school, I have adapted some of the lessons for fifth grade.
Achieve the Core
Resources on this site include passages from all grade levels, across genres, that are rich and rigorous. It is easily searchable and includes questions that help start classroom discussions.
Literacy Design Collaborative
On this site, there are a variety of lessons and units for STEM, Social Studies and literacy.