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The ABC’s for the 51st Annual Learning Forward Conference

Educators across the country have implemented new innovative strategies, lessons, and projects to ensure that learning continues for families, students, and educators. Many of these new innovations are learning experiences that provide a variety of sessions that are meaningful, engaging, and collaborative, much like Learning Forward’s Annual Conference. To help you experience the joy of learning from the comfort of your own home or office, we have created a fun list of conference tips to prepare for your journey!

  • Advocate – call, email, and tweet your Senators’ and Representatives to speak up for Title II funding.
  • Be Organized – organize your materials – login information, schedule for the day, note-taking materials, water, and snacks.
  • Connect – meet new colleagues throughout the conference.
  • Develop an Action Plan – create a plan to implement after the conference.
  • Engage – meet new people, virtually introduce yourself, attend networking events.
  • Feedback – complete the evaluation form after each learning session.
  • Get Moving – take time for brain breaks, deep breathing, or take a quick walk in between sessions.
  • Honor your needs – honor your own professional development needs and the time you’ve set aside to be fully present at the Learning Forward Virtual Conference.
  • Involve Your Team – by sharing what you learn at the Learning Forward Virtual Conference, create a presentation for your school, district, university, or organization.
  • Join Learning Forward – if you are not a member go to the website and join today!
  • Key Ideas – explore the best practices from a variety of well-respected educational leaders and researchers.
  • Learning Forward website – visit the Learning Forward website to learn about services, standards, and resources.
  • Make it Fun – select a custom Learning Forward virtual background.
  • Networking Rooms – visit the networking rooms to engage in meaningful conversations
  • Organized – organize your materials – login information, schedule for the day, note-taking materials, water, and snacks.
  • Planning – take time to select your sessions before the conference.
  • Quality Resources – check out the vendor room to explore the latest new resources.
  • Register – attend and donate to Learning Forward Foundation Virtual Walk.
  • Share – take time to share your learning with your professional learning network.
  • Tweet – use the conference hashtag to tweet about your conference experience
  • Utilize – a note-catcher to highlight your big take-aways and ideas generated from the sessions you attend.
  • Visit the Vendors and Sponsors – take a moment to buy a new resource and visit our amazing conference sponsors.
  • Watch Recorded Sessions – take advantage of the recorded sessions that will be available for 30 days after the conference.
  • Xtra Special – we will have special networking opportunities for you to enjoy throughout the conference.
  • YES! – say yes to donating to the Greater Chicago Food Depository, the philanthropic project of this year’s Learning Forward Conference!
  • Zero Reasons – not to attend the Virtual Learning Forward Conference this year and look forward to attending the Learning Forward Annual Conference in Denver in 2021!

If you are attending Learning Forward’s Annual Conference this year, the theme for the conference is “Innovate for Impact.” We invite you to participate in the ABC’s of Learning Forward challenge to help us track impact. Each time you complete an activity from the list above, please tweet the conference hashtag #learnfwd20 and we will be sure to like your post. We hope that you enjoy your learning at the 2020 Annual Learning Forward conference!

Ankhe Bradley is the assistant superintendent for Joliet Public Schools District 86. She has been in education for 20 years and specializes in curriculum development and professional learning.

Lisa Skelly is the director of grants and gifted education for East Aurora School District 131.

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