TransformEd "Tea Talks" are back!




This past week The TransformEd Blog turned 8 years old!  A lot has changed in my life over this time, but there is also a lot that has stayed the same.  For instance, my commitment to children and education have both never wavered for a moment!  And even though I became busy raising two infants (who are now 2 and 3 years old), I still managed to post and share some of my journey with you...

As I work towards continuing to transform, I am often reminded of my roots and why I started writing here the begin with!  This blog has served me well as a constant reminder or record to look back and reflect towards the future...  

I look forward to bringing back my TrasformEd "Tea Talks" - a series with conversations about early learning where the "talk topics" are centred on and contributed by participants' own questions, interests, and challenges.  I will facilitate the discussions and guide the talks face-to-face and online with my own insights, reflections, experiences, advice, suggestions, and questions.

Take a look at some of the options for this school year and join one of our next TransformEd "Tea Talks!"  If these upcoming dates do not suit your schedule, I am going to try to record them and offer an option to download and listen at your own time.  In addition to this, private groups can also request one of our "Tea Talks" in their own context (or the studio), where I would be happy to facilitate the discussion on a date/time of your choosing!

And finally, the conversation starters below that I have began to brainstorm, could perhaps be a guide to your own personal reflection or the "talk topics" could be used with a grade team partner/your staff at a local cafe.  I hope that you will find this to be a resource and I am going to think a little more deeply about how I can continue to highlight some of this important learning with all of you...








The TransformEd "Tea Talks" series will 
have four topics this school year:


- October - 
Wednesday, October 16th, 2019
7:30-8:30 p.m.
Back to school: A conversation to support, reassure, and inspire your daily work with young children

Questions, interests, and challenges for each "talk topic" will come from participants, but here are a few of my own (or that I often get asked in email) to help guide our discussions:
  • How is the learning environment supporting your class?  Are there areas that the children aren't using?  Are there areas that are so popular that feel congested where they do not all fit? How do I get the children to respect the materials that I have put into the classroom?
  • What does a typical day look like?
  • How can I begin self-regulated eating (all day dining) where the students decide to eat when they feel hungry?
  • When can I begin an inquiry project?
  • What is your planning process like? (Day plans, long range plans, etc.)
  • What assessments help in creating small groups?  What does small group instruction look like?
  • My class has so many different needs, how do I support all learners?
  • How are you communicating with families?
  • What tools are supporting your documentation and organization to write the communication of learning (report cards)?
  • What are you celebrating since starting the school year? I feel proud of __________.  What is something you hope to try or learn this year? I goal that I have _________.  What are some of the challenges that you have encountered so far?  What is your advice for _____________ ? I feel frustrated or at a loss by ___________.
  • What questions do you have for the remainder of the school year?



- February - 
Wednesday, February 12th, 2020
7:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.
The Reggio Emilia Approach: A conversation to discuss your wonderings about this world renowned educational philosophy 

Questions, interests, and challenges for each "talk topic" will come from participants, but here are a few of my own (or that I often get asked in email) to help guide our discussions:
  • What were some of the newest insights from your recent time in Reggio Emilia, Italy?  Why do you keep going back and why is it such a popular approach internationally? 
  • What are some examples of emergent curriculum projects that the Italian educators shared?
  • Can you describe some of their planning methods?
  • How are they documenting children's learning?
  • What could a Reggio Emilia inspired classroom look like in a public school or educational context outside of Italy?  What can emergent curriculum, planning and documentation look like for us?
  • What questions do you have about the Reggio Emilia approach?


- April -
Wednesday, April 8th, 2020
7:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.
Inquiry projects and planning: A conversation for any stage you may be at in this process that honours the child's interests and questions


Questions, interests, and challenges for each "talk topic" will come from participants, but here are a few of my own (or that I often get asked in email) to help guide our discussions:
  • What does an inquiry project look like from start to finish? (Share some samples)  How long do they typically last? 
  • How do you plan for an inquiry project?
  • My inquiry projects never last more than a day or week.  
  • My students all have so many varying questions.  It is hard to know which interest to follow.
  • My inquiry feels like more of a theme with activities about a topic, rather than deeply researching questions and developing theories.
  • How do we encourage students to ask questions?
  • What is a theory and how do we support students in creating them?
  • What does research look like in various ages/grades?
  • How do we teach skills and integrate curriculum learning within an inquiry project?
  • If a project is with a small group, how do we ensure that the other children can learn from it?
  • What does an inquiry meeting look like?
  • How many inquiries do you have going at one time? When do you support your inquiry groups and for how long?  What does a typical inquiry mini lesson look like?
  • How do you design spaces to support inquiry learning?
  • I have collected a lot of documentation from an inquiry project.  What do I do with it all? How can it support my planning and the students' learning?
  • How can you communicate inquiry learning to parents and or in children's individual portfolios?
  • What questions do you have about emergent curriculum, inquiry based learning and the project approach? 




- July -
Tuesday, July 7th, 2020
7:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.
Celebrating your school year: A conversation to help debrief and reflect while also considering new ideas and goals for September


Questions, interests, and challenges for each "talk topic" will come from participants, but here are a few of my own (or that I often get asked in email) to help guide our discussions:
  • What are you proud of from this school year?
  • What were some of the inquiry topics or projects that stood out that you would like to highlight? Sharing might inspire others who are participating! 
  • How did your learning environment evolve throughout the year to support your students interactions and emergent curriculum?  
  • What were some of your challenges? 
  • What will you try to improve or change?
  • What are some new ideas you had hoped to incorporate that you will try in September? 
  • What questions do you continue to have about early learning?








If any of these topics sound interesting to you, come and join the conversation!  The best part is that we can learn collectively from one another's curiosity/insight and perhaps feel a little more inspired and connected, beyond our classroom, school, or current network.

The TransformEd "Tea Talk" series will take place either in The TransformEd Creative Studio and Learning Centre or online through Google Hangouts.  After you register for your preferred date(s), you will be invited to send along any questions or specific areas that you wish to discuss.  These contributions by each participant will become our "talk topics" and I will facilitate the conversation!

Whether you are enjoying a nice hot cup of tea in the studio, or within the comfort of your own home, we would love to meet you!  And I am certain our online friends from around the world will offer a really unique perspective to our learning!!!




















Format:

  • discussion and studio tour (in person and virtually) 
  • talk topics are created by participants with their questions and areas of interest/need 

This session will include:

  • opportunity to ask what you are wondering deeply about and express some of your challenges 
  • participate in a rich conversation where everyone will share their unique perspectives and experiences (including my own as I facilitate the Tea Talk)
  • a tour of my new studio space and the opportunity to view samples of my current documentation/portfolios 
  • variety of teas and delicious pastries 
  • a new network or support system so that you don't feel alone in your commitment to offering high quality early learning to children
  • a certificate of participation 

Location: TransformEd Creative Studio and Learning Centre - Woodbridge, Ontario (Islington and Major Mackenzie)
















Investment for learning:

$75+HST ($84.75) for Face-to-face - In The TransformEd Creative Studio and Learning Centre with a chance to tour the space and enjoy tea and pastries

$50+HST ($56.50) for Online - Using the Google Hangouts Platform 

Please email me if you would like to participate and let me know which date or Tea Talk you are joining.

You can email transfer the amount to joannemariebabalis@gmail.com or pay below with a credit card using paypal. An invoice will be issued for your records, and detailed email will be sent a few days prior to our workshop with driving directions and any other pertinent information.

In order to keep the numbers small, again please email me to ensure that there is space on your preferred date prior to making payment.  Our sessions fill up quickly, however, I will add more evenings to accommodate everyone's request to participate! 


Face-to-face session and studio tour - credit card payment
Please note that a transaction fee to use paypal with your credit card will be added in addition to the taxes (this administration fee is listed under shipping). To save on this extra fee, consider our email transfer option...

$75+HST and paypal transaction fee:


Please also note: All sessions are non-refundable, as the numbers affect overall planning and coordination.  You may, however, give your spot to someone else and email me about the changes so that I can update my list.  Think of this like a ticket to a concert - once you register, your spot is confirmed.  Thank you for your understanding and cooperation.



Online session and virtual tour - credit card payment 
Please note that a transaction fee to use paypal with your credit card will be added in addition to the taxes (this administration fee is listed under shipping). To save on this extra fee, consider our email transfer option...

$50+HST and paypal transaction fee:


Please also note: All sessions are non-refundable, as the numbers affect overall planning and coordination.  You may, however, give your spot to someone else and email me about the changes so that I can update my list.  Think of this like a ticket to a concert - once you register, your spot is confirmed.  Thank you for your understanding and cooperation.










Stay tuned as more professional learning opportunities will be revealed today for teachers, RECEs, parents, and creative adults!!!





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