Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Personalized Learning Spaces With The Brain in Mind - November 14 & 15 Conference, #PLS15

It was the last warm weekend in November. Sixty degrees and sunny! I can't deny I was a little reluctant to dedicate this weekend to be inside learning about personalized learning spaces. Boy am I glad I did!  This conference, Personalized Learning Spaces with the Brain in Mind was time well spent with great practical ideas and plenty of inspiration.  We examined how learning environments can help our students to engage, collaborate and personalize their learning.  By giving students voice and choice over their environments and learning, they are freed to be more creative and engaged. We had sessions on personalizing spaces on a budget, mobile makerspaces, personalized learning and genius hour. Erin Klein, Naomi Harm and Brad Gustafson were just a few of the guest speakers.  My Lakeville colleagues and I were immersed in ideas about ways to give students more control over how they learn. I thought this video, 2015 SchoolPower Fund-A-Need gave great insight into the topic of personalized learning spaces.

I found myself pondering back to my own days in school and wishing that my teachers had taken a weekend to consider these ideas too! Don't get me wrong, I had great teachers, but we didn't have many opportunities to collaborate or create.

When I arrived home from the conference, I was inspired.  How could I make my space more personalized for my students.  I used one of the tools shared at the conference to create a plan for the OHE library!  Classroom Architect - http://classroom.4teachers.org/  I would love to add some collaborative arrangements, a few soft surfaces (all of mine are hard surfaces), high top surfaces for students to stand if they wish and mobile maker carts to share with the entire building.  It was fun to dream!

The #PLS15 was a buzz all weekend as conference participants shared their learning!