Westwind EA Conference 2016

The registration link for the 2016 EA Conference is here: http://bit.ly/1SiAT8l

The conference is for Education Assistants working for Westwind School Division. We are also inviting Education Assistant students from Lethbridge College who are doing their practicum with Westwind to attend. Any others who may be interested in attending the conference should contact Rick Gilson Asst Superintendent at Westwind.

The Conference is scheduled for Thursday, January 28 at Magrath High School.  The schedule for the day will follow a pattern we’ve established over the last couple of years and looks like this:

The Schedule for the day looks like this:

There will be light snacks available upon your arrival at Magrath High School.

8:45 – 9:35 Greetings and Opening Comments – Tom K gym at Magrath High School.

9:35- 9:40 moving to session one and grabbing a snack.

9:40 – 11:00 Session One – A list of sessions can be seen below and will be in your registration document.

11:00 – 11:45 Lunch – Soup and Sandwiches

11:45 – 1:00 Session Two – A list of sessions can be seen below and will be in your registration document.

1:00 – 1:10 Snack Break

1:10 – 2:30 Session Three – Meeting with your school’s EA’s – Each School will have a room  assigned to meet. Please plan to use this time to review and share what you have learned in the opening and two sessions  specifically look at how what you’ve learned can be best utilized with the students of your school.   As well with what you and your fellow EA’s learned today what can we help you with, what else do you need to help develop your skills and work with our students?  We would like one member of each school to summarize for your school and share that summary. Your feedback the last couple of years has lead to this session time being provided to you.

Room Assignments for Session Three:
Spring Glen Elementary – Rm 93, Spring Glen Jr High Rm – 92, Mountain View Rm 91, CES Band Room,  CJHS – Rm 90, CHS – Rm 81, MHS – Rm 75, MES – Gr 6 Josh Sherwood Portable, RES Rm 74, RJHS -Rm 80, RHS Magrath HS Staff Rm, Stirling Rm 62, Colonies Rm 76.

2:30 On your way home. This early wrap up respects the travel time for schools away from Magrath please plan on staying until 2:30 and maximizing the opportunity of the day.


Band Room – Worry DragonsConrad Boehme (Ed Psychologist) and Debra Gazeley (FSLC) – training in the use of Worry Dragons to assist with anxiety issues with our students.

Room 93  – Fit for Life – Brain Breaks – Active LearningTiffany Wideen  – participants will be provided with effective strategies and activities which can engage the student, support their transitions, and prepare them for learning.  (A related resource: Spark: The Revolutionary new science of exercise and the brain by John J. Ratey)

Room 90 – Waking the Sleeping Giant: Positive Behavior Supports for Junior and Senior High  *Elementary EA’s will also benefit. Lorraine Leishman (Lethbridge College)  and Ranae Hatch (EA MHS)   Description: Come and learn to find that one “tiny” behavior, that if increased, can make ALL the difference. The sleeping giant is our student’s potential. We can wake it up. The presentation will share a current, exciting high school project. Participants will interact, gain knowledge and take initial steps to help to wake their own sleeping giant.

Room 74 – Make Up Your Mindset: Enhancing your own learning and influencing the growth and learning of the children you work with. Nathan Smith – FSLC Ready for a look into Dr. Carol Dweck’s book, Mindset: The New Psychology of Success, How We Can Learn to Fulfill Our Potential? Participants will explore an exciting paradigm for personal and professional growth and learn strategies of learning for both themselves and the children they work with.

Room 76 – Literacy and Communication SupportJulie Gilson – Literacy learning Support teacher  This session will focus on providing participants with strategies to quickly assess while supporting students in attaining the goals for learning, reading and writing as the primary focus, as established by their teachers.

Room 80 – Strategies through speech and communication  – Regan Bikman (SLP) -Working from the perspective of a Speech Language Pathologist Regan will share strategies and approaches to work with students in improving their ability to communicate with others and function in the classroom.

Room 62 – Practical Strategies and Resources to support Literacy and language development in youth with Complex communication needs. Shoba George-Jansen and Jocelyn Roberts (Alberta Health Services)  This session will assist you to build capacity to develop literacy skills of children and youth with Complex Communication Needs (CCN) including those with significant cognitive disabilities and sensory impairment. We will familiarize you with a range of technologies, and a variety of materials and resources that support language learning and literacy development  by students with CCN. We will share a range of resources and  practical strategies that you can use with your students.

Room 91 – Early child development and the role in plays in future learning. Erin Stonehocker (PT) Erin works with some of our schools on the east side of the division. In this session you will gain understanding of key underlying processes of gross motor development that prepare children for learning.  You will be given skills that will help you identify when movement patterns are inappropriate and possible strategies to help.

Room 92 – CPS in Action – Strategies for Skill Building   Kent Hollingsworth, MA, CSFT

Many adults work with children and youth for whom positive motivators and negative consequences do not help in terms of managing their challenging behaviours. Typically, these students also struggle in the areas of flexibility/adaptability, frustration tolerance, and problem solving.

The Collaborative Problem Solving (CPS) approach, pioneered by Drs. Ross Greene and Stuart Ablon, helps adults working with children and youth who experience these difficulties, while reducing the frequency and intensity of inflexible, noncompliant behaviours.

In this brief, interactive workshop, participants will:

  • Review the key differences between the motivation deficit paradigm and the skills deficit paradigm that the CPS model is founded on
  • Complete a Thinking Skills Assessment of a child or youth who requires support and identify areas of growth
  • Review a selection of resources and strategies that help build skill deficits
  • Discuss selected case scenarios presented by workshop participants and apply the 3-Step CPS Approach to Building Skills.

*Participants should have previous knowledge of the Collaborative Problem Solving Approach, (Which Kent has presented on the last couple of years at our EA conference)  either through reading or attending previous workshops.  Participants will be expected to provide some case examples / scenarios that can be used for group discussion  Feedback the last couple of years was that participants appreciated the theory covered by Kent but desired further “practical” examples or strategies.  Rather than work with “what if’s” Kent’s inviting people to think about your students jot down a couple of thoughts – challenges, what has, what hasn’t worked and come prepared to share. 


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