Thursday, December 26, 2013

Meet Our Keynote Speaker, Rick Wormeli

We are thrilled to have Rick Wormeli as our Opening Keynote Speaker for our 10th Anniversary Conference, Unlocking Potential. Rick will also be presenting three of our breakout sessions. 

Rick Wormeli is a National Board Certified Teacher and a columnist for Middle Ground magazine. The winner of Disney's American Teacher Award for English in 1996, Rick is an internationally known speaker on middle-level education, innovation, differentiation, and teacher professionalism.

Rick offers a wealth of experience having worked as a middle grades teacher, human growth and development teacher, and staff development educator. He is also an educational consultant to National Public Radio, USA Today, and the Smithsonian Institute.

Rick has presented at the White House, has appeared on Good Morning America, and has worked with school districts all across the country.

We know this is an opportunity for professional learning that you will not want to miss. Do not delay, register today. Early Bird registration ends January3rd. We look forward to seeing you on January 25th at Spain Park High School. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to drop us an email or contact us through Twitter or Facebook.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Breakout Sessions 2014

Here they are...the Breakout Sessions for our 2014 Annual Conference, Unlocking Potential. The Alabama NBCT Network Conference will be on January 25th at Spain Park High School. This conference is open to ALL educators and preservice teachers. Be sure to register soon and bring a colleague or two with you. The Early Bird rates end January 3rd. Don't delay, register today!





If you would like to download a copy of this schedule, you can find that here. See you January 25th, 2014 at Spain Park High School. If you have any questions, send us an email, alnbctnetwork@gmail.com, or contact us through Twitter or our Facebook group.

Friday, December 6, 2013

"Unlocking Potential" Conference Schedule

Below you will find our schedule for the 2014 Annual Conference, Unlocking Potential, presented by the Alabama NBCT Network. This is a day of fantastic professional learning and connecting that you will not want to miss. Stay tuned for the breakout session schedule, which is packed with engaging and practical sessions facilitated by Alabama's leading educators. Be sure to register soon. Early bird registration ends soon!



If you would like to download a copy of this schedule, you can find that here. See you January 25th, 2014 at Spain Park High School.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Sneak Peek: Concurrent Sessions for Our 10th Annual Conference

This year, the Alabama NBCT Network will present Unlocking Potential for our 10th Annual Conference, featuring world-renown educator, author, and NBCT, Rick Wormeli as our keynote. We have big plans for our 10th Annual Conference, and we're going to give you a sneak peek at just a few of them. We are also fortunate to have Dr. Tommy Bice, our State Superintendent as our lunch keynote. Both of these speakers will bring inspiration and motivation for our teaching practice while causing us to reflect on ways we can continue to grow professionally.

Not only do we have these two powerhouse keynote speakers, we also have concurrent sessions led by leading educators from across the state. Here are just some of the sessions they will be leading at our conference:

  • Cultivating 21st Century Leaders
  • Flipped Learning: A Beginner's Journey
  • Mobile Device Madness
  • Using Leadership Academies to Reach At-Risk and Average Students
  • Develop Your Own Leadership Academy
  • Improving Engagement in the English Classroom
  • Leadership Qualities
  • Love It or Hate It: An Active Discussion about Current Educational Issues
  • Augmented Reality in the Elementary Classroom
  • Increasing Engagement in the Science and English Classroom
  • Leadership Imperatives for NBCTs
  • The Nontraditional Classroom
  • Standards-Based Assessment: It's a Journey and I'm Near the Base of the Mountain
  • Reflection Starts with a J--for Journaling
  • Making the Case for Social Media
  • Holocaust: Resources to Reinforce the Common Core Standards
  • Easy, Manageable, and Useful K-12 Assessments
  • Feedback without Grades: Contract Grading in the Secondary Classroom
  • Lights, Camera, Action!
  • Twitter 101 and Twitter 201
  • techKNOW Leadership
  • Practical Formative Assessment
  • Budding Bloggers in the 21st Century
  • Instructional Leadership: The Multiplier Effect
  • The 1:1 Initiative
  • What's New in the National Board Process?
  • National Board Renewal
Our conference is open to all educators and preservice teachers. This is sure to be a day of professional learning you do not want to miss. Be sure to register soon and get the Early Bird rate. We look forward to seeing you January 25, 2014 at Spain Park High School in Hoover, Alabama. Stay tuned for other exciting announcements and plans for this year's conference.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Call for Proposals


Please save the date for the upcoming 10th Annual Alabama NBCT Network Conference, Unlocking Potential, on January 25, 2014. Our keynote speaker is internationally known educator, speaker, author, and a member of the first class of National Board Certified Teachers, Rick Wormeli. Registration is already open. You can find all of that information here: http://alnbctnetwork.blogspot.com/p/our-annual-conference.html

As we begin making plans for our annual conference, we are now opening a Call for Proposals. We know that NBCTs all across our state are doing amazing things in their classrooms and schools. We would love for you to share them with your fellow educators and preservice teachers at our annual conference. Proposals will remain open through August 31, 2013. We are looking for sessions on best practices, assessment, leadership, differentiated instruction, digital literacy, and advocacy. You can submit your proposals here: http://goo.gl/RM6dF.  Presenters will be notified by the end of September. Each presenter and one co-presenter will receive free conference registration.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us. We wish you the best for the upcoming school year.

~Alabama NBCT Network

Sunday, May 5, 2013

A View from the Hill: Our First Alabama Hill Day


Our First Alabama Hill Day
On April 17, 2013 a delegation of Alabama’s National Board Certified teachers convened in Montgomery to meet with our legislators. The purpose of our visit was to:

  1. Lay the foundation for future relationships with our state representatives.
  2. Provide a face to the term NBCT.
  3. To help our representative understand the impact the NBCT’s make to the learning of Alabama students.
  4. To thank our representatives for the stipend and to urge its continuation.



Why We Believe a Hill Day is Important
We strongly believe that students taught by an NBCT receive a better education than those who are not taught by an NBCT.  NBCT’s continually reflect on their teaching practice, we see students as individuals not as classes, and we make adjustments to curriculum to support the learning needs of each individual student.  We positively impact the learning of students.

Numerous studies have shown that students of NBCT’s outperform their peers.  They score higher on state assessments, are more engaged in the learning process, have fewer discipline issues, and lower dropout rates.  The impact of an NBCT is particularly impactful to low income and minority students. 
Given the significance that NBCT’s make to student learning, we wanted to educate our state representatives. 

What We Did
Our delegation met with more than 20 of our state representatives.   Although most had heard the term NBCT, few understood the ramifications of having an NBCT leading the instruction of Alabama’s students.  We were especially interested in meeting with representatives who have few NBCT’s teaching in the representative’s district.  We offered to provide training and support for those seeking certification.

Additionally, we had the opportunity to meet with two of Governor Bentley’s aides Blaine Galliher and Emily Schultz.  This conversation allowed us to share our concern that the governor is not hearing the voice of NBCT’s.  As a direct result of our meeting, we now have a new follower on Twitter, Governor Bentley! 

We ended our day on the Hill speaking with our state superintendent of education Dr. Tommy Bice.  Dr. Bice is a strong supporter of NBCT’s and having an audience with him reaffirmed the importance of building relationships with those in Montgomery. 

What I Learned
To be honest, I was terrified at the idea of meeting with legislators.  I am an educator, not a politician.  I really have no desire to mingle in politics.  What I realized was that the voice of an NBCT is important.  These legislators make decisions that directly impact my classroom.  It is crucial that they know me, hear my voice, and support policies that positively impact my students.  Although this was my first Hill Day, it will not be my last. 

 ~Pamela Harman, Alabama NBCT Network President

Thursday, March 21, 2013

We Need YOU!

One mission of the Alabama NBCT Network is to promote best educational and leadership practices among all Alabama educators and preservice teachers. We know that NBCTs have proven that they are leaders within the field of education. Our readership wants to hear from YOU! Do you have a lesson, strategy, or tool that has proven effective in positively impacting student learning? Have you found a way to bring about positive change within your school, district, or organization? We want to feature you on this blog. We know that the best professional learning comes from one another. Share your teaching practice. Please write a 500-1000 word description in a Word document outlining your practice and the impact that it has had on your students, school, community, organization, or district. Then email it to us as an attachment at alnbctnetwork@gmail.com. We cannot wait publish the amazing things happening across Alabama.

photo credit: LizMarie_AK via photopin cc

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Alabama Hill Day 2013


Dear Alabama NBCTs:

One mission of the Alabama NBCT Network is to reach out to our state legislature to build a strong foundation of support for all of us for the benefit of all of our students. With that goal in mind, we realize that many of our legislators may not know the impact that an NBCT can have upon student success. Who better to share this message than for us to meet with them face to face? Therefore, we are planning an Alabama Hill Day in Montgomery for Wednesday, April 17, 2013.

On our Hill Day, we will plan appointments with the legislators who make the policies that impact our ability to teach and provide our students with the best educational opportunities in our power. Our goal is let them know that by choosing to support teachers who pursue the National Board process, they are also choosing to provide Alabama students with the best education possible. Many of these legislators are the ones who supported the reinstatement of our National Board stipend. This will be an excellent opportunity to thank them for their support and encourage that support in the future.

If you are interested in joining us in Montgomery on Wednesday, April 17th, please email us at alnbctnetwork@gmail.com by Friday, April 5, 2013. We need to get an accurate count of participants so that we can schedule appointments and speak to as many legislators that day as time will allow. Once we receive your commitment via email, we will send you more details about the day.

You may be wondering what you can do if you are unable to physically attend Hill Day with us in Montgomery. You can still participate virtually. April 17th will be the perfect day to contact your local legislators via email, phone call, or social media outlets. This is our opportunity to let them know the importance of supporting National Board Certification and how it positively impacts student learning.

We hope you will join us on April 17, 2013 for Alabama Hill Day either physically in Montgomery or virtually. You can stay informed of all of Alabama NBCT Network’s activities through this blog, our Facebook Group, or our Twitter feed.

Let’s reach out to our legislators together and show them the power that NBCTs have in shaping the future of Alabama.

Alabama NBCT Network


photo credit: TranceMist via photopin cc

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

The Truth about the Common Core and Alabama Standards

In our effort to continue to keep the Alabama NBCT Network members informed regarding current legislation, we felt that this graphic breaks down the the bill and sheds light on the truth behind the Common Core (College and Career Readiness Standards).





Saturday, February 23, 2013

A Call to Action

One of our missions at the Alabama NBCT Network is to keep all of our members informed of developments that impact the quality of teaching that we can provide for our students. Following is a message from Tammy Dunn, who is not only one of our network members, but also serves on the National Boards.
I am writing in hopes that we can mobilize the members of the Alabama NBCT network to contact their legislators about the importance of continuing our work with the Alabama College and Career Ready Standards (CCRS).  I do not know if you are aware, but the standards are under intense attack in the current legislative session.  The legislation is in the state Senate right now, Senate bill 190.  This bill would repeal the CCRS and would prohibit the SDE from developing a longitudinal data tracking system for students.

As NBCT’s, we are know the importance of challenging standards for ALL of our students.  We know the value of helping students to conceptualize understanding and to learn the process skills that will equip them to be life-long learners, no matter what course they take upon exiting schools.  While schools, districts, teachers, and students have struggled to learn how to implement the new CCRS math standards during the 2012 – 13 school year, their presence and implementation have opened up new forms of dialogue around how to raise expectations for our students and our teachers.  It would be such a shame for us to take a backward step.

The senators and representatives are hearing A LOT from opponents of these standards.  Unfortunately, they are not hearing much from supporters.  I think the NBCT voice needs to be LOUDLY heard.  We should be one of the groups advocating for our belief that all ALABAMA STUDENTS can learn and deserve to have rigorous standards and expectations.  We also know that student learning is the root of everything we do.  We need to have data tracking systems that helps schools, districts, teachers, students and parents easily see a student’s progress or lack thereof.

I am asking you to help me to contact the members of the NBCT network to ask them to contact their representatives.  Jabo Waggoner, my senate representative, is a sponsor of this bill.  I have called his office three times this morning and finally left a message.  I have asked for him to call me.  I have been told that a call is superior to an email. 

We need to educate ourselves about this potential legislation and weigh in.  We need the NBCT voice to be heard on behalf of deserving Alabama Students. ~Tammy Dunn 

Monday, February 4, 2013

Greeting from Your President


Hello, my name is Pamela Harman and I am so honored to be representing the NBCT’s of Alabama. 

Background

I have always wanted to become a teacher.  Having grown up in St. Petersburg, Florida in a single-parent home in a low-income neighborhood, I was not sure how I would accomplish my dream.  Although I received a scholarship to attend a local, community college, it did not provide enough funding for me to complete my schooling.  So, in 1986 I joined the United States Marine Corps.  I spend 4+ years in the Marines and gained not only funding for college, but also greater self-confidence and the realization that I can accomplish anything I set my mind to.

I completed my BS in education at the University of Alabama, Birmingham, my MS in geoscience at Mississippi State, and am currently working on my Ed.D  in teacher leadership through Walden University. 

I have been teaching high school science for 15 years and am currently working at Spain Park High School in Hoover.  I was honored to represent Alabama as the 2008 Alabama Teacher of the Year.
Professional Practice

I am the first person in my family to attend college and I strongly believe that all students should be equipped with the skills necessary to successfully attend college, if they choose to do so.  Instilling students with critical thinking skills, opportunities to collaborate, and avenues to gain mastery of the content are major tenets of my teaching philosophy.  I also feel that students are better equipped to learn when the teacher differentiates instruction (DI).  I have lead professional development training in DI locally, statewide, and nationally. I feel so passionately about differentiated instruction that it is the focus of my doctoral studies. 

Vision for Alabama NBCT
I feel the mission of Alabama NBCT is to support all teachers in growing professionally, to provide support for future NBCT’s in improving their professional practice, and to inform school systems, the general public, and legislators of the value of having NBCT’s as teachers.   It is my hope that NBCT’s across Alabama will come along side me to make my vision a reality. 

Pamela Harman, NBCT

Sunday, January 27, 2013

See Us "Extending Our Reach"

The 2013 Alabama NBCT Network Conference was a HUGE success. We want to thank all of you who joined us and helped us provide the educators in Alabama with an amazing day of learning, connecting, and networking. We hope you will make plan to join us next year on January 25, 2014, where we will have a member of the first class of NBCTs, Rick Wormeli, internationally known educator, author, and speaker as our keynote.

The slideshow below captures the fun and learning that we all shared.


Saturday, January 26, 2013

2013 Conference: Closing Survey

Stellar Pinning Ceremony 2013

On Friday, January 25, 2013, 30 new NBCTs from school systems across Jefferson County were pinned at the Stellar Teaching Program's Pinning Ceremony at the Alabama Theatre. The new NBCTs were pinned by Dr. Ron Thorpe, president and CEO for NBPTS. Congratulations to all of the new NBCTs. We welcome you to the NBCT family. We invite you to join us to advocate for our students and our profession, build strong relationships between legislators, inservice centers, and school systems across the state, and provide a first-rate education for each and every student in Alabama.



Thursday, January 24, 2013

Only Days Away...Last Minute Notes and Reminders


We now are only days away from the Alabama NBCT Network Conference being held this Saturday at Spain Park High School. 

You can continue to register via Eventbrite up until the 26th. If you plan on registering on-site, please remember that we will only be able to accept cash or check. We do not have the ability to accept purchase orders at this time.

Here are a few additional reminders:
  • When you arrive on Saturday, there will be signs directing you to the entrance. You will enter Spain Park High School on the side entrance. Signs will direct you to the registration area, which is being held in front of the theater.
  • If you are planning on registering on-site, please print out the registration brochure and complete it before you arrive. This will expedite the registration process.
  • Want a morning coffee to start off your exciting day of learning? There's no need to make a stop at Starbucks because Starbucks is providing coffee for our conference. We will also have snacks provided courtesy of AEA and AFT.
  • Since wireless access will be provided at Spain Park High School, feel free to bring your digital devices. If you are on Twitter, please tweet all of your learning throughout the day and add the hashtag, #alnbct, to your tweets so that other NBCTs and teachers can learn from afar.

Remember that this conference is open to ALL educators and preservice teachers. It is always more fun to share your learning with others, so bring your friends and colleagues. If you have any questions for us, please let us know. Our email is alnbctnetwork@gmail.com

We look forward to seeing you on Saturday.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Breakout Sessions 2013

Here they are...the Breakout Sessions for our 2013 Alabama NBCT Network Conference on January 26th at Spain Park High School.  This conference is open to ALL educators. Be sure to register soon and bring a colleague or two with you. The deadline for registering via mail is January 22nd. You may register up until the 26th on Eventbrite.  We look forward to seeing you there.




Sunday, January 13, 2013

Tech Infusion: How 2:1 Laptops Transformed Learning

As NBCTs, we know that we must find a way to meet the needs of each of the unique learners in our classroom. Often the discussion on this topic turns to embedding technology into our lessons. At this year's annual Alabama NBCT Network Conference, join NBCTs, Brandi Caldwell, Sara Wendt and Ginger Freeman, in their session, Tech Infusion: How 2:1 Laptops Transformed Learning.

Technology access is critical in today’s world. Some schools are fortunate to have lots of computers while others are still struggling with out of date devices. Our district decided to embark on a laptop cart initiative with two schools this year. Come join us as we discuss the program, the professional development, and the student learning tools involved when access no longer is the obstacle. See student work, ask questions, and share ideas with two classroom teachers and the technology integration specialist for our district.
Remember, this conference is open to ALL educators and preservice teachers. If you haven't registered, take a couple of minutes and do so now. You won't want to miss out on this opportunity for professional development and networking led by Alabama's own NBCTs.


photo credit: teachingsagittarian via photopin cc

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Strengthen Your Core- Using Tech Tools to Implement Common Core Standards

As we are moving into College and Career Ready Standards in classrooms across the state, many of us are left as to where we should begin. Join Brandi Caldwell in her session, Strengthen Your Core- Using Tech Tools to Implement Common Core Standards, at our annual conference on January 26th at Spain Park High School.
CCRS, Common Core, Quality Core… There are so many ways to say it, but we are all facing new sets of standards. This year it was math and next year English and literacy standards will go into effect. These standards are not just a little different; they are entirely different and require a new way of teaching and student learning. What tools are out there to help you strengthen your core? Let’s look together at ways to integrate technology and uncover the standards. Ready for a workout? Here we go!
This is a session sure to enhance our abilities to meet the needs of each of our learners. Remember this conference is open to all educators. Be sure to take time and register soon. Your registration covers not only your full day of professional development and networking, but also lunch and year's membership to the Alabama NBCT Network. See you on January26th!


photo credit: jerryonlife via photopin cc

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Blended Learning and Collaboration Made Easy...

As we begin a new year, many of us have set goals for our own personal and professional growth. Our annual Alabama NBCT Network Conference is a perfect opportunity to help you meet some of those goals. Join Cameron McKinley in her session, "Blended Learning and Collaboration Made Easy with Edmodo and Google Docs."
Edmodo is the largest, fastest-growing social learning platform for K-12 education in the world. This free, web-based platform provides a safe and easy way for classroom teachers, after-school teachers and tutors, and students to connect with each other and harness the incredible power of the Internet to deliver relevant and engaging learning experiences. School is in session six hours a day. With a single learning platform that can be accessed from any device, the discussions and learning experiences that may begin in the classroom can be fully articulated beyond the walls of the classroom.
This session will demonstrate how teachers can use Edmodo for:
  • posting notes, assignments, quizzes and polls and using digital badges
  • creating, organizing and managing groups
  • joining and participating in professional learning communities
  • investigating and using digital content or “apps”
  • creating personalized learning experiences for students
  • integrating with Google apps for increased collaboration
We look forward to seeing you on January 26th at Spain Park High School for this full day of professional development. If you have not registered, take a minute to do so now. You will not want to miss out of this opportunity to learn and connect with fellow educators.

photo credit: ctkmcmillan via photopin cc

Friday, January 4, 2013

2013 Conference Agenda

Here is the schedule and agenda for this year's Alabama NBCT Network Conference. By taking a  quick look, you can see that we have two extraordinary keynote speakers. Remember this conference is open to all educators. No one will want to miss this exciting opportunity to sharpen their teaching practice. Take a couple of minutes to register as the deadline is fast approaching.

 Stay tuned...Breakout session schedule will be posted soon!