ELMLE Rome Conference, January 25-26, 2013

ELMLE Rome 2013 Conference Programme

Presenter Name


Workshop Topic

Description of Workshop

Acros, Trinidad

TASIS England

If You Give A Middle Schooler A Foreign Language – Creative Writing In The Foreign Language Classroom

Writing in a foreign language can be a daunting task. This workshop will explore mechanisms, approaches, and ideas to develop interest and familiarity when it comes to writing in a foreign language. Using popular children’s books, like “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie,” by Laura Numeroff, “There’s a Wocket in my Pocket,” by Dr. Seuss, “Runny Babbit,” by Shel Silverstein and “Pancakes for Breakfast” by Tomie dePaola, I will demonstrate different lessons where students successfully and naturally embrace writing. I will also use communal story writing as a way to review grammar concepts. This workshop will delve into brainstorming, scaffolding, and, lastly, my biggest writing “enemy:” ‘Google Translator’.

Amenhar, Maryanne

ASC Hillingdon

Get Advisory Started

Do you ever have great advisory lessons but aren't sure how to get them started? Ever want to have a good discussion with students, but just can't get the energy flowing in the room? Come to this session and you will walk away with fun, lively activities that you can use to introduce topics such as: goal setting, peer pressure, diversity, and sexual health.

Balfour, Helen

Frankfurt International School

Dance Your Way To Confidence and Creativity

Participants will experience an active workshop whereby dance/movement and physical theatre will be the medium to explore and develop personal confidence and to help find the creativity in us all. The session is designed for everyone. Please wear comfortable clothes, bring an open mind and a sense of humor.
Boost confidence and 'move' into creativity!

Beard, Erica

ACS Doha

Language Learning In An International Setting

Language education in the 21st century is fast becoming a hot topic as the demand grows for positive international relations and the global market plays an increasingly important role. The challenges of being an international language teacher at this important time in history are both frustrating and rewarding. Finding ways to help student flourish in a new language and culture can be a daunting task when the language of reference is not always English, therefore the teacher is essentially teaching two foreign languages at the same time. Teaching a foreign language in an international setting with a linguistically heterogeneous group of students also has its benefits in that students have been exposed to language learning from a young age. Teaching these students to harness their talents and past experiences with language is key in determining success in the foreign language classroom.

Beek, Avis & Dick, Catherine

International School of Prague

Problem Playground: Mathematical Problem Solving And Assessment

Join us as we venture into the realm of mathematical problem solving. We will have a go at a couple of tasks and use the experience as a starting point for discussion about the characteristics of interesting and challenging problems. We will discuss how to select and/or design curriculum-based problems that all students can access, as well as how to assess final solutions and foster problem-solving persistence and self-reliance. While we promise to bring our selection of favorite problems, assessments, and online resources, we hope participants will also bring their resources to share with the group.

Bettasso, Elisabetta & Salomom, Pascal

Ambrit International School

Peer Leaders In Action:  A School Wide Approach

This workshop will focus on the success of The Ambrit School Peer Leaders Program (PLP, now in its 5th year). The PLP has helped 8th grade students to feel more confident in developing Public Speaking Skills, Organizational Skills and Empathy Skills. Peer Leaders go into classrooms in the Primary School and offer Character Education Workshops once a week for 30 minutes. Our experience is that "little kids love big kids" and Primary School children feel more connected to older students whom they come to view as an "extra support person". The maturity that develops in the 8th grade students is measured by self-reports and written reflections. Primary School Staff report on the benefits for their students and complete a written evaluation of their Peer Leader(s). This workshop aims to help staff implement a program such as this in their school. Presenters will discuss how students and staff profit from this program and will discuss areas for consideration such as logistics, training, supervision and ethical issues.

Braud, Marie Christine

American School of the Hague

WWII In The French  Classroom

This presentation will show how a modern language class can build on language acquisition and performance through cross-curricular content, specifically WWII, using a variety of activities and performances. In the Language Arts and Social Studies classes, the grade 8 students at the American School of The Hague, read The Diary of Anne Frank and present a research project on World War II. In the French class, this unit of study is based on the events in a small village in France during World War II and the aftermath of war which develops both student understanding of the French war experience and enriches their knowledge of the language. We will view sections of two French films, (with sub-titles), read texts, work with vocabulary building and comment samples of student works, including i-movie presentations and generated games. Although this unit is specifically developed for an intermediate French class, you will leave with a wealth of ideas and samples for any language classroom. Come, let's work together and share!

Burk, Everette

International School of Kuala Lumpur

First Five Minutes: A Data-Based Targeted And Tiered Math Program

Using MAP data as a basis, students set goals and worked on targeted areas in one of seven math strands at their ability level. The daily practice, completed in the first five minutes of each class period, made the opening set purposeful, targeted and tiered to the level of student ability across all levels of math in grade 8. Data to support the effectiveness of the targeted and tiered practice will be shared. Application to other areas (Language Arts, Science, Music, etc.) will be the basis of a facilitated group discussion.

Callan, Michael

International School of Kuala Lumpur

Four Stop Tours & Virtual Visits

Visiting other schools and ‘borrowing’ fantastic ideas from others can be a very rewarding professional experience. If you were to welcome a visitor into your classroom, into your learning community or into your school what would you show them? What would be the stops on your tour and why?

This hands on workshop helps teachers and administrators identify and amplify the important symbols of their classroom and school cultures. Working with others, participants will plan their four-stop tour and make preparations to capture these stops in order to contribute to a community of middle schools in which members may virtually visit one another and ‘borrow’ the amazing things that middle schools do.

Churchill, Joanne

TASIS England

Food For Thought: Nutrition And Health For Middle School

With health so firmly on the political agenda and in the news, we will critically examine the current health issues, trends and problems and how we can address them through diet and nutrition education. I will share my Heath Class Curriculum which includes how to read food labels and guidelines and ways to prevent health problems like obesity. We also look at the effects of fast food and junk food and the way the food industry works. We will look at current research on diet and 'superfoods' and explore the ways food might prevent illness and enhance well-being.

Citrin, Dylan

International School of Milan

Helping Students Help Each Other: Starting An Effective Peer Tutoring Program At Your School

In this simple 'how-to' session, we will discuss a very popular and effective peer-tutoring initiative at The American School of Milan. The After School Achievement Program (ASAP we call it) started to address skill deficiencies, improve student confidence, and unify the school culture between peers and grade levels. The presentation will begin with an overview of the ASAP program at the American School of Milan – how it started, expanded and why it is effective. By the end of the session attendees will have step-by-step instruction on how and why to start their own successful and popular peer-tutoring program at their own school. This session appeals to teachers or administrators interested in supporting student learning, peer relationships, and starting an important new program at their school.

Ekstrom, Dawn

ACS Cobham

Building On Your Strengths: Creating An Inclusive Resource Program For All Students

This session will start with sharing information from the perspective of one school that has made this shift to an inclusive model, followed by sharing by the audience what is being done in other programs, and a general discussion of best practices. The session will end with a group problem solving/next steps discussion so that teachers can walk away with ideas on how to move forward should they choose to.

Falcinelli, Michelle

Ambrit International School

A New Twist on e = mc²:  Empowering Learners Of Mathematics Using Choices To Build Confidence

This session aims to share and explore different ways we can use choices in the mathematics classroom to encourage students to be more actively engaged in the learning process. Offering students choices in methodology, assignments, activities and assessments encourages them to strive for deeper understanding of concepts, empowering them to make more informed decisions and thus develop greater confidence in themselves as problem solvers. At the same time, offering choices allows us as teachers to differentiate our instruction and assessment of our students, enabling us to be more effective in our roles as mathematics teachers. Practical, easy to implement examples will be shared during this participatory workshop, so come with your mathematical thinking cap on!

Rene, Judith

ePub: Expanding Confidence and Creativity EfficacyLearn how to make an eBook using ePub. Through digital storytelling, you will learn how to increase creativity and literacy in any discipline but especially in language classes. You will see how writing will improve students' confidence in the language classroom and beyond. You will learn how to format in order to publish the eBook to be read on multiple readers.

Gamette, Melissa

International School of Dusseldorf

Language Learning With Edmodo

Join this session for an enthusiastic exploration of how Edmodo, a learning network for students and teachers, can increase student understanding in the realm of learning an additional language. Look at samples of student learning and listen to testimonials given from educators, administrators, parents and students on some of the benefits for using this online program. Discuss strategies with other World Language teachers for increasing the value of this online program as it relates to formative assessment, active learning, time management and technology integration.

Gaspersich, Mark & Chong, Evan

American School of Warsaw

Using GoPro Cameras As A Teaching Tool

GoPro HD cameras are an effective way of documenting instruction and learning both inside and outside the classroom. They are relatively inexpensive and easy to operate. In this session we will view some examples of their use within schools and also get a chance to examine and operate this amazing technology.

Hawkins, Kevin & Hardlow Smith, Kara

International School of Prague

Mindfulness Application In Middle School

This workshop is for teachers who already have some understanding and experience of mindfulness and who want to learn to use it in various school settings. We will explore: enhancing teacher presence in the classroom; deep listening skills in language classes; optimizing performance in sports, arts, and exams. We will consider the latest research into creativity, insight and compassion and ask if mindfulness tools can help us develop these capacities.

Hawkins, Kevin & Hardlow Smith, Kara

International School of Prague

Mindfulness in Schools

To be mindful means to be able "to pay attention, here and now, with kindness and curiosity" (Amy Saltzman). Can we develop our capacity to be mindful, and can we help children do so too? Could the potential benefits for our students and teachers include enhanced compassion and creativity? This experiential workshop will introduce you to mindfulness and how it has begun to be taught in secondary schools in the UK and some international schools. You will look at the origins of mindfulness, the research into its effectiveness in mental health and education, and the work of UK Mindfulness in Schools Project. You will be able to try some exercises for yourself and make connections with your own experiences and teaching. Kevin Hawkins, Middle School Principal at the International School of Prague will facilitate further group inquiry into the potential applications and benefits of mindfulness teaching in international schools.

 Hutchinson, Fay American School of ParisSTEM-ulize your Science Curriculum with 3D Science, Real-time Data and more Come and experience teaching Earth Science with 3D animations and stereo-photographs as well as using real-time data to authenticate lessons. Participants will also learn how to access and use free, simple-to-use, software simulations from NASA Glenn in the context of aeronautics including paper airplane design, rocketry, kite-building, sports, and more. - Lesson plans, activities for students, demonstrations, interactive games and more to help your students make meaningful connections with the fields of STEM. 

Lapper, Heather


International Baccalaureate’s – MYP Developments

This session provides an opportunity to learn about the MYP and hear about the latest innovations in this international program designed specifically for 11-16 year olds. The session will examine changes in curriculum and assessment and how they relate to improving teaching and learning.

Hill, Sandra

Inter Community School Zurich

Internationally Mobile Children

This session will consider the transitional needs experienced by students at international schools, referring specifically to case study of a school in Switzerland. It is hoped that a deeper understanding of their needs will be developed and what the implications are for schools.
Aspects to be covered are; defining the meaning of being internationally mobile; advantages and disadvantages of being internationally mobile; culture shock and its implications; defining the transition process and the models developed to explain it; and the implications on staff and management of meeting the needs of internationally mobile children.
Students experience the same feelings of anticipation, excitement, concerns and anxieties. Students need guidance and support during the transitional phase and the school plays an important role in easing this potentially traumatic time both for the students and their families.

Mobbs, Tony

International School of Prague

What is Authentic Assessment?

Agree as a group of educators what we mean by an authentic assessment.
Develop a set of criteria and filters to develop assessment tools to measure student learning.
Use the filters to check existing assessments for authenticity.
View some exemplars of authentic assessments.
Review existing assessments to make them more authentic.

Owen, Ruth

Inter Community School Zurich

APPS To Make You Appy

The first part of the session will be posting your favourite and most useful apps for class work, subject specific, productivity and fun. We will then demonstrate as many as we can. I will make a sharing document so that we can all have access to everyone's ideas. Any blogs or useful websites will be added to the document as well.

This is a session for sharing apps rather than discussing how they are used in school. Be prepared by bringing along your ideas and don't forget your ipad or tablet. Non tablet users are also welcome.

Robinson, Adam

St.  John’s International School

Writing And Reading Workshop:  Fostering Creativity, Confidence, Ownership And Technology in Middle School

Many middle school students leave traditional English classes bored, frustrated, or with little to no confidence in their abilities as writers and readers. In this seminar, inspired by Nancy Atwell's revolutionary work over 20 years ago, teachers and administrators will learn about the benefits of conducting Writing and Reading Workshops in order to boost students' confidence and creativity in the language arts. By giving students ownership over what they read and write and the time and physical and technological tools to do so, students can and will thrive as English learners. The practical and pedagogical benefits of turning English class into a Workshop will be discussed as well as the details of how to set up and operate a Writing and Reading Workshop.

Rupert, Nancy

UNC Asheville

Teams:  The Heart of the Middle School

What makes an effective team? This session describes best practices of teams of teachers who are highlighted as "exemplary" by principals and who are part of schools that have a national designation called "Schools to Watch". The interview data and survey data are part of the AERA Middle Level SIG. Participants will be able to evaluate their own team's effectiveness and receive tools for making their teams better.

Rupert, Nancy

UNC Asheville

Mathematics and the LD Learner

Learning disabilities account for over half of the disabilities children face in middle schools. Many disabilities go undetected and challenge students to focus, get organized, and disrupt students' abilities to focus and process mathematical knowledge and structures. When teachers teach specific structures and strategies, students with and without "learning disabilities" benefit. This session is based on strategies implemented in a K-8 school where 25% of the sixth grade students had IEPs. Teachers will receive information, tools and strategies for working with students and their parents to address challenges middle school students face in the mathematics classroom.

Sherrell, David

Freedom From Chemical Dependency

Middle School Social Norms:  Reducing Risk, Sharing Healthy Realities

Middle school students are healthy! Yet, though most middle school students do not use alcohol or other drugs, research shows their attitudes about substance use are already forming. How do these attitudes form? The social norms theory states that students form attitudes about substance use based on peer norms they think exist. When students do this, they naturally overestimate – and start to emulate – the riskiest behaviors practiced by peers. The social norms approach to prevention helps students correct overestimations of unhealthy peer substance use. When students know their peers are making healthy decisions, they are more likely to select these healthy behaviors themselves. FCD is using this approach in international middle schools to prevent student substance abuse. Any faculty member can also use this evidence-based approach. In the presentation, FCD will guide faculty through the social norms approach and offer simple strategies teachers can use to keep healthy students healthy.

Singer, Karen

International School of Nice

Forensic Science In The Classroom

Would you like to teach Forensic Science? I would like to share with you the course that I have created and the resources that I am using. The course is appropriate for 8th grade students, and I teach it as a semester course. The crimes have been written by a talented IB English teacher and they have been tailored made for the skills presented in the text book. The story (motives) combine Art, History, Foreign Language, and Geography making this course interdisciplinary. The end product has advanced as my technical skills have advanced. I started with PowerPoint, and have now moved on to videos or voice-overs. I have taught the course 3 years now with much success. I find that my best students are still challenged, and the less able students thrive with a specific real life scientific inquiry

Stein, David

American School of Warsaw

Theatre Arts And Applied Production

In this interactive workshop participants will learn how improvisational theatre games and activities can provide meaningful and amusing opportunities for students to get out of their seats, let down their guard, and get to know themselves and their peers. The activities and resources shared in this workshop are applicable in any classroom or group setting to foster team building and mutual respect. Get ready to be silly and have some FUN!

Tarrant, Vanessa

ACS Cobham

The Missing Piece

Languages have mystified both learners and educators for centuries. People have asked if there is a magic formula to learning languages. Well the simple answer is no, as it is such a complex area of study. However, I do believe to have perhaps found the missing piece, which helps to simplify languages. The key comes in the form of Linguistics, the scientific study of language. How can the dissection of language help? This is what I would like to share with you and I think the results I have gained so far are testimony to this. We will look at a breadth of languages to illustrate the contrasts and similarities and how this helps us to have access to further languages.

Tree, Denise

ACS Cobham

Effective Student Council In A Transient Population

This forum is an opportunity for current or aspirational Student Council Advisors to meet with each other to share the challenges and creative solutions for running an effective and authentic 'student voice' Student Council in an international school. Participants are invited, indeed encouraged, to bring details about resources they have found useful, tricky situations they have navigated, and creative solutions that they've successfully implemented. How the discussions are structured will depend on the number of attendees ie either whole group or small group, and the framework for discussion will be informal enough to allow attendees' interests to determine the final program.
Interest in such a forum has arisen from my own first year as a Student Council Advisor. Questions that I've puzzled over include 'how can they be supported to develop their leadership skills when all they want to talk about is the dance?', 'experience and knowledge leave when the student leaves - how can Council maintain continuity and consistency of practice?', 'how can incoming students be given a fair chance of election, especially for the Executive?', 'what is an effective structure for a student council in a transient population?' Hopefully, this forum will springboard ideas and build networks that will support Advisors in their valuable roles.

Van der Tak, Trudi & Cheryl de Vries

International School of the Hague

The Birth Of A Service Trip

Good intentions are not always equal to good results. A chance meeting after the tsunami of 2002 led to an idea to help a nursery school for the children of Burmese migrant workers in Thailand. The first misconception was the premise that merely seeing the faces of these young children would be enough to stimulate empathy in middle school students at the American School of The Hague. Starting with a 6th grade initiative through the advisory program, fundraising for a nutrition program for these nursery school children became the first focus. After several years of trial and error and a presentation on service learning by Catherine Berger Kaye at ELMLE in Paris 2009, we now have a solid Service Learning Trip that has included middle and high school students. What has made this trip successful? Service learning is truly about understanding the predicament of others and taking real life action, beginning with small steps that contribute to not only giving of oneself but to what we take away. Come and join us for this presentation and we will share our experiences with you along with student testimonials and practical guidelines for developing a service initiative for your own school.

Veilleux, Danielle



This session will look at a curricular approach to planning for, teaching and assessing creativity in classrooms, both in the arts and in other subjects in Middle schools. Creativity is something all students are capable of, regardless of academic activity, yet is very often ignored or viewed as a less valuable skill. In the IB MYP, we are reasserting creative thinking into the curriculum in the Arts, with a structured approach to assessing this valuable skill. Thinking creatively encourages students to explore the unfamiliar and to experiment in innovative ways to develop their artistic intentions, their processes and their work. Through this they are enabled to discover their personal signature and realize their artistic identity.

Wintjes, Stephanie

St. John’s International School

Follow the Line

"The idea becomes a machine that makes the art." By using inspiring ideas from Prof. Tim Ingold's book "Lines", I created structured procedures to work with students in the art class. Starting with the concrete, moving into the abstract: we draw a piece of string then move on to draw imaginary journeys. We observe and draw lines in nature, in shells, leaves, trees. We expand our thinking about lines and come up with family lines, lines in poetry, sentences, music notation, sewing, dancing, the passage of time and the passage of that soccer ball! We understand threads, traces and lines: we feel connected to the whole world. By the end of the course, we have learned as much about ourselves and our own learning styles as we have about the world around us.