Lifelong Learning

Jing Ma shared her learning from a Social Thinking conference, particularly the ways mindfulness activities can help students develop empathy.

Jing Ma shared her learning from a Social Thinking conference, particularly the ways mindfulness activities can help students develop empathy.

We want our students to have joyful, challenging days at school. We want parents to join us for PKS学习 events and feel a sense of connection and community as PKS parents. And we want our teachers to be up to date on educational research and at the forefront in the wider world of innovative education.

As part of this commitment to ongoing teacher growth and education, PKS faculty have participated in over 2,000 hours of conferences, webinars, and continuing education courses this year. They do this work on weekends, in the evenings, and online, both near and far.

Allie Chen and the first grade team lead a discussion on inquiry-based science education. Here they illustrate the “tuning in” step, the first step of the inquiry cycle. The group is studying a habitat and trying to figure out what animals would live in it.

Allie Chen and the first grade team lead a discussion on inquiry-based science education. Here they illustrate the “tuning in” step, the first step of the inquiry cycle. The group is studying a habitat and trying to figure out what animals would live in it.

Our teachers have: participated in Harvard’s Project Zero; led sessions during the National Chinese Language Conference; trained at the Bay Area Discovery Museum’s Center for Childhood Creativity; attended SXSW Edu; learned how to build student executive function at the Annual Executive Function Conference; participated in the California Science Education conference (with a focus on Next Generation Science Standards); presented at NiPEN; attended the Youcubed Mindset Mathematics Workshop; and continued their training on project-based learning at the Buck Institute.

We structured our recent weekly faculty meeting as an internal professional development workshop, with teachers running mini-sessions to collaborate and share knowledge gained from their external professional development during the fall and winter.

In one break out group, Yu Sha taught a session on differentiation in math. She showed colleagues how to turn closed questions into open, inquiry based questions to make math both more engaging and more challenging. One example: “How many tens and ones in 85?” can be turned into, “How is the number 85 like the number 100, and how is it different?”

Starting in preschool, we believe one of our most important jobs as educators is to cultivate in our students a lifelong passion for learning and exploration. What better way to do this, than to lead by example.

Haixia Wu introduces strategies she has used to help her students strengthen their executive function1.

Haixia Wu introduces strategies she has used to help her students strengthen their executive function1.

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