Greetings From Project MAST2ER

April/May Newsletter

In this issue...

  • Next step for Mentors- conference opportunities
  • New Kagan summer training!
  • Summer Mentor Training
  • 2013 NY Principal of the Year reflects on opt-out movement
  • Digital learning trends & 'Next Big Thing' educational technology
  • Tips for 'Hard-to-Like' students
  • Tips for Surviving the end of the year

New Opportunity!! Kagan Cooperative Learning Institute coming to Buffalo!

Project MAST2ER is offering our Mentors a chance to attend Kagan's Level 1 Institute. Those who attended the mini-Kagan workshop at the Incubator a few years ago can tell you that Kagan trainers do not disappoint!

We have set aside funds to cover your registration, plus provide a training stipend and mileage. You can choose from the full 5-day institute, or just attend the first 2 days. Unfortunately, just attending the last 3 days is not an option.

Days 1 & 2: June 29-30

Days 3-5: July 14-16

Email Cynthia if you are considering taking advantage of this opportunity:

Two new opportunities for Project MAST2ER Mentors!

Save the dates!! Mentor Summer Institute: August 10-14

Some of you may not have heard: we are now able to fund conference travel for our mentor participants! Choose a TESOL/Bilingual related conference, or attend one specifically in your subject area. We can fund transportation, lodging, registration, and provide a per-diem to defray meal costs! In return for our financial support, you agree to attend sessions, bring back some strategies and ideas to try out, and then share your successes.

New this summer: we have redesigned our summer training! This opportunity is intended to take your mentoring skills to the next level, and guide you towards sustainability! This August 10-14, you will have an opportunity to be coached on presentation skills and development by Karen during our Mentor training, we will provide the time and guidance to help you develop your presentation or workshop, and we also provide some resources to take with you.

Please contact Cynthia Carlson at for links to a variety of professional conferences, Project MAST2ER funding applications, and more info and ideas.

Summer Training for New Mentors: August 11-14

This summer, Project MAST2ER will invite up to 10 new SIOP trained teachers to participate as Mentors. Please encourage SIOP trained colleagues who you would recommend as mentors to contact Cynthia and indicate their interest!

"SAVE THE DATE" for the 2nd Annual Fredonia Science and Literacy Conference!

"SAVE THE DATE" for the 2nd Annual Fredonia Science and Literacy Conference! To be held at SUNY Fredonia, Science Center on Saturday October 3, 2015! Last year's conference received excellent reviews! We had presentations on science, literacy, technology, and classroom management strategies! We had presenters and attendees from Rochester NY - Belfast NY! This year, we hope to spread the word and reach even more teachers about this excellent, local opportunity!

Why the movement to opt out of Common Core tests is a big deal

From ASCD Smartbrief, May 4, 2015:

Click Here!

Some estimates indicate 200,000 students have opted out of state standardized tests in New York this year, New York principal Carol Burris writes in this blog post. Burris -- who has been vocal about her stance against over-testing -- reflects on the opt-out movement and its potential nationwide spread.

What's the next big thing in K-12 educational technology?

From ASCD Smartbrief March 20, 2015:

Click Here!

The use of makerspaces (3D printing) will grow during the next several years, reaching nearly a quarter of classrooms, estimates the New Media Consortium. The group recently previewed findings from its annual report on emerging technologies in K-12 education. Other trends to watch include wearable technology and drones.


Fresh Starts for Hard-to-Like Students

From Accomplished Teacher by Smartbrief, April 6, 21015:

Click Here!

Students with challenging behaviors can present challenges for teachers, asserts Allen Mendler, an author, speaker and educator. In this blog post, he offers suggestions to help teachers connect or reconnect with students, such as by using encouraging statements and treating all students like the best students

Thriving in the Homestretch

From Accomplished Teacher by Smartbrief,May 12, 2015:

Click Here!
The end of the school year can be the most difficult and stress-filled of the year, writes high-school English teacher Nicholas Provenzano. In this blog post, he advises teachers to maintain momentum by teaching outside, taking time to relax, reflect, connect with other teachers and work on class projects.