Workshops

Basic Training in Differentiated Instruction

Ready to start differentiating instruction but don’t know where to start? This session offers a quick overview of the basics of D.I. and tips for beginners and intermediates in implementing a student-centered program. Strategies, examples, and resources are presented and discussed. Bring your questions.

Time: 1-6 Hours:

Audience Options: Teachers, Teacher Support Staff, Future Teachers, Administrators

Cooperative Learning For Generation 2.0

Recent research clearly demonstrates that students who frequently engage in well-structured cooperative learning settings are better prepared to meet the challenges of the 21st century.  This workshop is designed to help teachers set up a learning environment that fosters collaboration and cooperation among class members.

In this session, participants work collaboratively on engaging tasks while practicing basic cooperative learning strategies.  Beginners gain confidence to try it, while experienced cooperative grouping managers acquire new ideas that are aligned with project-based learning and needed 21st century skills.

Time: 1-6 Hours:

Audience Options: Teachers, Teacher Support Staff, Future Teachers, Administrators


Creating A Classroom Culture That Works for You

This session explores emerging brain research on the neurobiology of emotions and its links to learning.  Dr. Debbie Silver demonstrates applications of classroom strategies designed to foster emotional health and enhance students’ ability to learn.  From anti-bullying techniques to suggestions on how to improve interpersonal communication skills with and among students Dr. Silver offers helpful tips on creating a classroom environment that is safe for everyone (including the teacher).  Her ideas can be integrated into any grade level or subject discipline.  Audience participants join in activities that teach empathy, impulse control, and other fundamentals of emotional competence.

Time: 1-3 Hours

Audience Options: Teachers, Teacher Support Staff, Future Teachers, Administrators        

Deliberate Optimism: Reclaiming the Joy in Education

How do teachers maintain a positive learning environment while addressing increased emphasis on standards, new teacher evaluations, and other challenges in education? Dr. Debbie Silver discusses how educators can maintain a sense of self as well as help their students become independent, resilient learners. Through her research and understanding of human behavior, Debbie provides insights into how to maintain one’s sanity while giving every student a reasonable chance at success. Using her well-known candor and sense of humor, Debbie offers participants an entertaining and thought-provoking look at how to empower both teachers and learners.

Time: 1-3 Hours

Audience Options: Teachers, Teacher Support Staff, Future Teachers, Administrators, School Board Members, Parents, and Support staff (bus drivers, cafeteria workers, custodial staff, secretaries, assistants, etc.)

Differentiating Instruction to Provide Every 21st Century Learner with a Reasonable Chance at Success

Based on her best-selling book, Drumming to the Beat of Different Marchers – Finding the Rhythm for Differentiating Learning, Debbie Silver offers her wisdom and humor to answer the question, “How do we engage students who march to the beat of a different drummer?” Debbie discusses how to give students multiple opportunities to internalize information and to demonstrate what they know and understand. She demonstrates how to use components of differentiated learning, technology, and lesson design to engage learners of every sort.

Time: 1-6 Hours

Audience Options: Teachers, Teacher Support Staff, Future Teachers, Administrators, School Board, & Parents

Earth to Educator, Earth to Educator, Are You There?*

This workshop is perfect for anyone involved in education.  It is designed to improve the communication skills of educators in their many daily interactions with others.  Dr. Debbie Silver leads audience members through activities designed to enhance the written and verbal communication skills needed for dealing with students, colleagues, administrators, and parents.  Goal setting, empathy, listening skills, and interpersonal relationships are addressed.

Time: 1-3 Hours

Audience Options: Teachers, Teacher Support Staff.

*A special session for administrators, “Earth to Administrator, Are You Listening?” What Teachers Want Their Principals to Know, is available.

Time: 1-2 Hours

Audience Options: Administrators, Future Administrators

Engaging Parents in Today’s Business of Schooling

Today, more than ever, schools need parents as partners in the matter of educating their children. In this presentation, Dr. Debbie Silver offers proven procedures and basic, sensible methods for engaging parents at every level. Dr. Silver also explores the dynamics of interpersonal relationships when dealing with parents. She offers a twist in perspective in that she has five very different sons who went through the public school system with varying degrees of success. The importance of professionalism, positive interaction, and compassion are emphasized.

Time: 1-3 Hours

Audience Options: Teachers, Teacher Support Staff, Future Teachers, Administrators, School Board Members, Parents, and Support staff (bus drivers, cafeteria workers, custodial staff, secretaries, assistants, etc.)

Fear of Failure- Why Both Gifted & Talented and Struggling Students Stop Trying

Ever wonder why those who “seem to have everything” often fail to maximize their potential? Do you teach students who not only refuse to try but also become obstinate when asked to attempt new or novel concepts? Based on our research on student motivation this session will explore the phenomenon of learners whose mindsets literally immobilize their achievement and their ability to enjoy life. Dr. Debbie Silver discusses emerging research on attribution theory, self-fulfilling prophecy, “mind-sets,” and offers practical solutions for helping students achieve a life-long love for learning.

Time: 1-3 Hours

Audience Options: Teachers, Teacher Support Staff, Future Teachers, Administrators, School Board Members, and Parents

 

Going “Outside the Lines” to Provide Every 21st Century Learner With a Reasonable Chance at Success

Based on her best-selling book, Drumming to the Beat of Different Marchers – Finding the Rhythm for Differentiating Learning, Debbie Silver offers her wisdom and humor to answer the question, “How do we engage students who march to the beat of a different drummer?” Debbie discusses how to give students multiple opportunities to internalize information and to show what they understand. She demonstrates how to use components of differentiated learning, technology, and common core curriculum to maximize instruction for 21st century learners.

Time: 1-6 Hours

Audience Options: Teachers, Teacher Support Staff, Future Teachers, Administrators, School Board Members, and Parents

 

Helping Teachers to “Fall Down 7 Times, Get Up 8”

In this session Dr. Debbie Silver discusses surprising and fundamental ways teachers can help students become self motivated. She offers tips on how administrators can support teachers in their efforts to give every student a reasonable chance at success. While addressing the variance in teacher personalities and approaches, she will demonstrate effective methods for positively communicating with all the adult advocates on staff. Through research, humor, anecdotes, and modeling Debbie demonstrates how best to deal with all types of teachers.

Time: 1-3 Hours

Audience Options: Administrators, Aspiring Administrators, Teacher coaches, Teacher Leaders

Essentials of Classroom Management

This session is a MUST for new teachers, teachers who are experiencing difficulty with classroom management, teachers who need to be “recharged,” or administrators who want to help their staffs work towards being more student-centered. Dr. Debbie Silver offers simple, practical, helpful tips on everything from how to begin the very first day of school to how to trouble-shoot with disruptive students. Included are tips on student-centered discipline along with basic classroom routines and procedures. Teachers in the session laugh, think, and go back to their classrooms with scores of ideas on how to establish a classroom environment that facilitates learning.

Time: 1-3 Hours

Audience Options: Teachers, Teacher Support Staff, Future Teachers, Administrators

 

Fall Down 7 Times, Get Up 8: Teaching Kids to Succeed

In the globalized, digital, common core world of the 21st Century, learners will be required to be more self-reliant and more self-motivated than at perhaps any other time.  Dr. Debbie Silver explores what teachers and parents must do to ensure that students become the independent, resilient learners they need to be.  Based on her new book, Fall Down 7 Times, Get Up 8: Teaching Kids to Succeed, Dr. Debbie Silver offers surprising breakthrough research to both inform and challenge audiences.  Participants leave with a better understanding of internal motivation along with a myriad of ideas for helping students to become successful lifelong learners.

Time: 2 -6  Hours

Audience Options: Teachers, Teacher Support Staff, Future Teachers, Administrators, School Board Members, and Parents

 

Going “Outside the Lines” to Provide Every 21st Century Learner With a Reasonable Chance at Success

Based on her best-selling book, Drumming to the Beat of Different Marchers – Finding the Rhythm for Differentiating Learning, Debbie Silver offers her wisdom and humor to answer the question, “How do we engage students who march to the beat of a different drummer?” Debbie discusses how to give students multiple opportunities to internalize information and to show what they understand. She demonstrates how to use components of differentiated learning, technology, and common core curriculum to maximize instruction for 21st century learners.

Time: 1-6 Hours

Audience Options: Teachers, Teacher Support Staff, Future Teachers, Administrators, School Board Members, and Parents

 

Great Teaching Tips I’ve Stolen From My Friends

In this session Dr. Silver mixes her own considerable classroom experience, her background as a university methods professor, her observations as a supervisor of teachers, and ideas from 100’s of her colleagues.  She offers numerous tips on everything from teacher time management to how to find and stick to one’s own personal rhythm for teaching.  Mixed with both heart and humor this presentation is a wonderful gift for those new to the teaching profession as well as those who wish to be renewed.

Time: 1-3 Hours

Audience Options: Teachers, Future Teachers, Teacher Support Staff, and Administrators

 

Helping Teachers Find the “Beat of Their Different Marchers(D.I. for Grown-ups)

Does working with teachers sometimes feel like you are dealing with students – only they are taller and less flexible?  This session will help you help your staff become true D.I. advocates as they embrace the its key components.  Based on her work with the book, Because You Teach, co-written with Monte Selby, Rick Wormeli, and Kathy Hunt, Dr. Debbie Silver demonstrates activities that can be used to engage all staff members in meaningful discussions about how best to serve students.  These music-oriented tools and strategies can be use for faculty meetings, in-service presentations, small group discussions, and individual assignments.  Come enjoy the fun while learning a few “tricks of the trade” for promoting D.I. to other educators.

Time: 1-3 Hours

Audience Options: Lead and Mentor Teachers, Administrators

Note: This is a great session for anyone who works with teachers

 

Learning Styles and How to Use Them

Even though there is ongoing debate about whether or not learners tend to be one particular style or another, most educators agree that students seem to differ in the ways they best internalize information.  Educators need to be aware of the primary learning styles so they can offer a range of opportunities to enhance student learning as well as appreciate the various ways students and other adults “make sense of their worlds.”

This workshop is designed to acquaint participants with the four learning styles identified and studied by Dr. Anthony Gregorc (abstract random, abstract sequential, concrete random, concrete sequential).  While exploring their own learning styles, participants examine how to interact positively with those whose styles are dissimilar. Dr. Debbie Silver uses humor, role-playing, and anecdotes to demonstrate how best to deal with the varied learning styles of students and the adults who work with them.

Time: 1-3 Hours

Audience Options: Teachers, Future Teachers, Teacher Support Staff, Administrators, School Board Members, Parents, and Support staff (bus drivers, cafeteria workers, custodial staff, secretaries, assistants, etc.)

Note: This is an excellent workshop for those who need help in understanding the learning styles of others! It can be presented with or without the administration of a learning style inventory to audience members.

Additional Items: If you plan to have participants actually take the Adult Style Inventory, there is an extra charge. The instrument used for this is workshop is copyrighted and must be purchased for approximately $3.00 per participant. For more information see www.gregorc.com/instrume.html

 

Middle School Matters

In this celebration of middle school educators Dr. Debbie Silver congratulates those who “go outside the lines” to ensure the best environment for all middle level students.  She addresses the specific developmental levels of young adolescents as well as their unique attributions and peculiarities.  Dr. Silver believes that middle school is “the last best hope” for many of our students, and she is passionate about preparing them for the next phase of their lives. Debbie offers specific strategies, engaging techniques, and proven activities to “go in after” every middle level learner.  Through her poignant stories and humorous anecdotes she connects with the souls of all who have taught, who currently teach, or who hope to teach middle school in the future.

Time: 1-3 Hours

Audience Options: Teachers, Future Teachers, Teacher Support Staff, Administrators, School Board Members, Parents, and Support staff (bus drivers, cafeteria workers, custodial staff, secretaries, assistants, etc.)

 

The Nuts & Bolts of Active Learning: Purposeful, Successful Strategies for Every Classroom

Active learning engages students cognitively and physically in the educational process. It encourages students to generate new information rather than simply receive it. This session is designed to help participants explore, engage in, and reflect on active learning strategies that can be used to differentiate instruction and assessment. Dr. Silver’s strategies can be integrated into any grade level or subject discipline. Come prepared to experience a session of fun-filled learning!

Time: 2-6 Hours

Audience Options: Teachers, Teacher Support Staff, Future Teachers, Administrators

Practicing “Safe Stress!”  Building Resiliency in Educators

Are all the changes going on in education driving you crazy?  Do you feel that you have been stretched as thin as you’re going to stretch?  In order for teachers to have a profound educational and personal impact on the lives of students, they must meet and take care of their own needs.  This session offers practical ideas and tips for recognizing and dealing with anxiety and burnout. This empowering, interactive, and entertaining presentation helps teachers discover the keys to honing their personal strength areas and to lowering stress in the work environment.  New research, audience participation, and humor are used to illustrate how educators can learn to reduce and manage unwanted stress. Learn to laugh, love, and live a more satisfying life.

Time: 1-3 Hours

Audience Options: Teachers, Teacher Support Staff, Future Teachers, Administrators, School Board Members, Parents, Support staff (bus drivers, cafeteria workers, custodial staff, secretaries, assistants, etc.)

Note:  This session can also be used as a KEYNOTE.

 

Revisiting Rewards – A New Look at the Pros and Cons of Extrinsic Motivation

Do your students often ask the question, “What will you give me for doing this?”  Does that bother you? This session is a must for teachers and administrators struggling with the issue of using rewards as reinforcers to motivate learners.  Dr. Debbie Silver offers the latest scientific research on the impact of rewards on long-term motivation.  Some researchers are now saying that extrinsic rewards have an appropriate place in student learning.  Come learn what studies have shown about external rewards and make your own decision about their value.  Participants will laugh, think, and leave with some challenging information on rewards.

Time: 1-6 Hours

Audience Options: Teachers, Teacher Support Staff, Future Teachers, Administrators

 

Science As A Verb

Dr. Debbie Silver is a former classroom science teacher who has remained active in science reform teaching for over 30 years as well as STEMS since its inception.  In this lively session Dr. Silver demonstrates proven techniques for engaging all types of learners in the science processes.  Her belief is that the best science teaching starts with active, engaging learning.  She gives “how to” tips on everything from safety to managing materials to how to set up cooperative groups.  Through the use of technology, integrated instruction, differentiated instruction, alternative assessment, cooperative learning, the learning cycle, discrepant events, and other established strategies, Debbie takes the audience through a myriad of ways to use science as a natural springboard for re-engaging and challenging all types of learners.  She offers loads of ideas, gives helpful technology resources, and models how science instruction supports the common core curriculum.

Time: 1-6 Hours

Audience Options: Teachers, Teacher Support Staff, Future Teachers, Administrators

 

Taking Back the Lounge – Building a Positive Community of Educators at School

The important work of fostering a healthy, safe learning community for students starts with the adults at school.  Faculty and staff need their own supportive, caring environment in order for them to provide a responsive community for young learners. This session is about building positive relationships among faculty and staff as well as negating the influence of those who are not so positive. Filled with both heart and humor this workshop offers insights about adults at school supporting one another as well as themselves. Come prepared to laugh, to think, and to leave with loads of ideas for improving your school climate.

Time: 1-6 Hours

Audience Options: Teachers, Teacher Support Staff, Future Teachers, Administrators

 

 

Welcome to the Most Noble Profession!  Induction Presentation for New Teachers

Dr. Debbie Silver has worked in the field of education for over 40 years as a classroom teacher, staff development instructor, college educational methods professor, and professional development presenter.  Her favorite job is providing professional development for those new to the profession.  Through inspirational stories, helpful tips and strategies, and “down to earth” advice, Dr. Silver connects with those new to teaching.  She gives positive affirmation to those who have chosen this field and challenges them to do their personal best when it comes to students.  Novice teachers laugh and cry as they are motivated to do whatever it takes for this “most noble” profession.

Time: 1- 6 Hours

Audience Options: Mentor Teachers, Teacher Support Staff, Future Teachers, University Professors, Administrators

 


 

Specialized  Topics

 

Want to Design Your Own Professional Development?

Feel free to “pick and choose from the array of topics.”  Debbie will be happy to customize a presentation to suit the particular needs of your participants.  Just ask.

 


 

Student Presentation

 

Finding Your “North Star” – Fall Down 7 Times, Get Up 8!

In this motivational presentation for students, Debbie entertains kids while challenging them to make their own dreams come true. Through demonstrations, audience participation, stories, and comedy she involves participants in creative thinking and risk taking situations. Based on a theme by Fablevision’s™ Peter Reynolds, the message comes through loud and clear is that through choice, commitment, courage, and character, students can set their own goals and achieve them.

Time: 60- 90 Minutes

Audience Options: Students in grades 4 -12