Stephanie Hensley, Adams State teacher on special assignment, and Dr. Kristy Myers, assistant professor of teacher education, organized the event. Myers said approximately 40 participants, including teachers, administrators, and Adams State students, attended.
Nikol Kelley, Centauri Middle School seventh grade Language Arts teacher, said: “The workshop was very compact and thorough on strategies we can use to help our students think more productively in class.”
Carrie Zimmerman, principal at Skoglund Middle School, agreed: “I was excited about the effective strategies to get students engaged in the reading and writing process. This is really something we are trying to focus on in our middle school, and it will reinforce what we are already trying to do within our reading instruction.”
Stevi Quate and Ilana Spiegel, consultants from the Public Education Business Coalition, facilitated the training. Quate, author of “Clock Watchers,” and consultant for PEBC, taught middle/high school for over two decades. She was a co-director for the Colorado Writing Project and Colorado Critical Friends and a state literacy coordinator.
Spiegel, a PEBC staff developer for 15 years, was a PreK, Kindergarten, first grade, and fourth grade lab teacher for Teacher’s College Reading and Writing Project.
Michelle Rodriguez, Alamosa Elementary School fourth grade teacher, said the institute was motivating and pulled all the reading strategies together.
According to Hensley, the purpose of the institute was to provide professional development opportunities for teachers in the San Luis Valley and build partnerships with local school districts. The two-day institute provided educators the opportunity to study the many ways thinking strategy instruction supports understanding and to learn more about the role of comprehension instruction.