Tuesday, November 20, 2018

MRVED Update - November 21, 2018

MRVED Business

The annual MELT is fast approaching and the MRVED has been busy making arrangements for the big day. The MELT will be held on January 21, 2019 at the LQPV High School.  Registration will open on December 5th and it will close on December 19th. Please remember to register early as sessions will fill up fast! There are new sessions offered this year as well as some popular sessions from years past.  Some groups will also have the opportunity to network.

Last year we sent out the MELT brochure a couple days prior to sending the registration link.  This allowed people to set their schedule and read through the descriptions prior to registering.  This seemed to work really well.  The process will be the same this year.  The brochure will come to you on Monday, December 3 from your Principal.  The link to register will come to you on Wednesday, morning from your Principal.  Principals, look for this information from Gloria please.

We cannot stress enough the importance of registering as early as possible.  Some sessions fill really fast, therefore the later you are in registering, the greater the risk of not being able to get into those sessions.

Upcoming Meetings
November 28, 2018  Superintendents’ Council

December 7, 2018 Title III Teachers
December 12, 2018  MRVED Board (6 p.m.)
December 13, 2018 TAC
December 14, 2018 Principals’ Council
December 19, 2018 Superintendents’ Council

January 11, 2019 Title III Paras
January 21, 2019 MELT
January 23, 2019 Superintendents
January 25, 2019 Principals

Minnesota Standards Updates (Physical Education & Science)

Developing a Shared Understanding of the 2018 Physical Education Standards and Benchmarks 2019 Training Schedule

In this training, actions and resources are recommended to help educator teams* develop a shared understanding of the 2018 Minnesota physical education standards and benchmarks, and initiate the curriculum review process. By attending this training, participants will develop a shared understanding of:
  • The 2018 Minnesota K-12 Physical Education Standards and Grade-Level Benchmarks
  • The shifts that drove changes in the standards
  • The knowledge, skills and rigor represented in the learning progressions in the benchmarks within and across grade levels
  • The curriculum review process and action planning as part of a continuous review cycle

*It is highly recommended that physical educators attend this training in school district teams.

Registration begins at 8 a.m. Training is from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Participants are asked to bring a brown bag lunch and beverages.

There is no cost to attend these trainings, but registration is required. Please register individually, even if attending as part of a school team.

To register, click below on the training you wish to attend.

Monday, January 14, 2019 - Minnesota Department of Education, Roseville, MN

Tuesday, January 15, 2019 - Minnesota Department of Education, Roseville, MN

Wednesday, January 23, 2019 - Metro Service Cooperative, Arden Hills, MN

Wednesday, January 30, 2019 - Minnesota Department of Education, Roseville, MN

Thursday, February 7, 2019 - Sourcewell-MN (formerly NJPA), Staples, MN

Tuesday, February 26, 2019 - Lake County Service Cooperative, Fergus Falls, MN

Thursday, March 21, 2019 - SW/WC Service Cooperative, Marshall, MN

Friday, March 29, 2019 - Resource and Training Solutions, Sartell, MN

Tuesday, April 30, 2019 - South Central Service Cooperative, North Mankato, MN

Friday, May 3, 2019 - Southeast Service Cooperative, Rochester, MN

Tuesday, May 7, 2019 - Northeast Service Cooperative, Mountain Iron, MN

Thursday, May 9, 2019 - Northwest Service Cooperative, Thief River Falls, MN

Tuesday, May 21, 2019 - Winona State University, Winona, MN

1st Draft of the New Science Standards

Provide Feedback on the First Draft!

The first draft of the revised Minnesota K-12 Science Education Standards-2019 is now available (see below). The public is invited to provide feedback during its Public Review and Comment Period, November 9-26, 2018. Submit your feedback using the online form, or attend one of the Town Hall meetings (all have already been held) and provide your feedback in person.

Contact Terry Alvarado to request a reasonable accommodation to participate in this event. Please note: The Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) requires a two-week advance notice to provide accommodations and 48-hour notice to cancel the request.

The date by which all schools must implement the new standards will be determined during the rulemaking process.

For more information about the standards review process, contact John Olson 651-582-8673.


I came across this short film series entitled ReMoved.  It's a story, from the kids perspective, about being placed into foster care and then going through having a brother adopted.  It's a very touching short story, and one that will make you think about how trauma affects our kids.  If you have 30 minutes, give both parts a watch today, it is well worth it!

Teach Like a Pirate - Part III Building a Better Pirate & Conclusion

Part III of Teach Like a Pirate provides us with a challenge to be better, tips on how to get started, and advice to surround ourselves with positive people.

My biggest takeaway out of Part III  was in the chapter Where do I start? Burgess talks about the five most common reasons why we never get started with something.

1. The fear of failure - people won't start something if there is a chance they can fail.  We don't have to embrace failure, but we can learn from it and not be afraid of it.  He uses the example of if a lesson fails, nobody dies, it's OK.  You are a teacher, not a brain surgeon, failure is OK in our world!

2. Believing you have to figure it all out before you begin - In reflection on my own life, this is a tough one for me.  I want to know everything before I start something.  I have worked hard in my personal and professional life to fix this attitude of mine.

3. Perfectionism - Some people wait for the "perfect" time to start something.  It goes back to the analogy from one of the previous chapters about creative people walking around getting "struck" by brilliant ideas.  If we wait for the perfect moment to strike, we'll never get started.

4. Lack of Focus - It's all about prioritization.  Being able to prioritize the truly important things in our lives, and not allowing the small things to take up the majority of our time.  We lose focus on what truly is important.

5. Fear of Criticism and Ridicule - Starting something new is not only different for you, but different for the people around you.  The people around you might not be ready for the change, don't let those people get in your way of progress.

Teach Like a Pirate is a book chalk full of strategies you can implement in your classroom tomorrow.  You don't have to be a great performer like Burgess to take the strategies and implement them into your classroom.  I felt the book was much deeper than just the strategies though.  One of the biggest "aha" moments for me was really thinking deeply about ALL aspects of the lesson plan.  The analogy of the BBQ is spot on, we have to bring all elements to the table on every single day in order to have a successful BBQ.

The other part of this book that really got me thinking was the aspect of presentation.  In the chapter about the 3 circles, Burgess is absolutely correct.  We spend so much of our professional development time on best practices and content, but never focus on the actual presentation of the material.  Without proper presentation, there is no engagement, without engagement, there is no learning.  This book made me think more deeply on how I do my own professional development.  How do I engage the learners in the audience?  How do I make my content sizzle?  Do I bring enough passion and energy to the table every day?

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

MRVED Update - November 7, 2018

MRVED Business

Thank you to everyone who took the time to fill out the October 17 Common Inservice Day Evaluation.  Our Superintendents, Principals, and Teachers' Advisory Council will be reviewing the evaluations from the day.  It is the hope of all these groups that we can provide something that is meaningful for all the teachers in the MRVED.  Our next Common Inservice Day will be MELT on January 21, 2019 at Lac qui Parle Valley High School.  Look for more information on the MELT in the next few updates. 

Upcoming Meetings
November 9, 2018  Joint mtg Principals’ Council & TAC
November 16, 2018  Principals’ Council
November 28, 2018  Superintendents’ Council

December 7, 2018 Title III Teachers
December 12, 2018  MRVED Board (6 p.m.)
December 13, 2018 TAC
December 14, 2018 Principals’ Council
December 19, 2018 Superintendents’ Council

MELT Call for Networking Facilitators

The MRVED is looking for facilitators of networking groups  As a facilitator you are not expected to be the expert in the room, but rather move the discussion along.  The goal of a networking group is to share resources and ideas with people who have the same interests.  They are meant to include a "give & take".  Bring something to share and take something away that someone else shared.  The only networking groups that will be offered are those that have a willing facilitator.  If a networking group does not have a facilitator, it will not be held!  If you would like to sign up, please click the link below and add your name to the list next to the group you would like to facilitate.  The networking sign up will close at 3:30 PM on November 15.  If you have any questions or cannot access the form, please contact Brandon (


TIES 2018 Conference

Don't forget to register for the 2018 TIES Conference held December 8-11 at the Hyatt Regency in downtown Minneapolis.  The TIES Conference is one of the best educational technology conferences in the midwest.  The sessions are great and the networking is awesome!  Jaime Casap, Educational Evangelist at Google and Kimberly Bryant, founds and Executive Director of Black Girls CODE are the keynote speakers this year.  The TIES Conference website is linked below.  Head over there and check out the lineup of breakout sessions, view the bios of the keynote and featured speakers, and get registered!

Snapchat for Teachers & Schools

In the previous MRVED Update we highlighted a great blog by Matt Miller entitled Ditch that Textbook.  He has a couple awesome blog posts on utilizing Snapchat in the classroom.  I know many of you are thinking that there is no place in the classroom for Snapchat, but I think you would be surprised.  Check out the blog posts today!

Snapchat 101 for Teachers

15 Ways to Use Snapchat in the Classroom

Teach Like a Pirate - Hooks

Over the next couple chapter Burgess highlights his "hooks".  Hooks are strategies to get kids engaged in the learning.  It's his take on Madeline Hunter's anticipatory set.  How do we get kids "hooked" into learning the content for the day?

After seeing Burgess, he went through many of the hooks in his presentation and demonstrated how to use them.  I'm not going to highlight the hooks in this post as I believe Burgess does it much better in his book.  The book does an awesome job of providing different examples on how to use the hooks in the classroom as well as reflection questions to think about as you are lesson planning.

The hook is probably one of the most important parts to the lesson.  If you don't have your kids engaged from the beginning, they aren't going to be with you at all throughout the lesson.  Too often we dive straight into our content without providing hooks for our kids.  I know I was guilty of starting my lesson like this; "Where did we leave off yesterday?  Oh yeah, turn to page 147 in your book." and that was the beginning of my lesson!  Talk about not engaging my kids at all!  The hooks in Teach Like a Pirate are great strategies you can use tomorrow!  Going a little deeper than the tangible hooks, we need to really examine our lessons and take a DEEP look into EVERY aspect of the lesson.

Hooks Resources
Thinglink of Ideas
Hook Ideas

#mrvedtlap gets better and better every week!