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The Connected Classroom

Information On and From EducationPlus' LearningLab

Category Archives: Character Education

DigCit in Schools

In this two day workshop, we will explore the nine elements of Digital Citizenship: Access, Commerce, Communication, Literacy, Etiquette, Law, Rights & Responsibilities, Healthy & Wellness and Security, based on the book, Digital Citizenship in Schools. You’ll walk away with lesson based on the ISTE Standards that you can you immediately. Read more & register here!


Don’t miss our other #METCpd this summer!


Register before May 9 with promo code METC50 and save 50%! Throughout the month of May use promo code METCpd and save 25%!

Google Mania:  Mini Boot Camp 6/6 – 6/7

Flipping Your Classroom & PD

Using Mobile Devices in the Classroom

Adventures in STEM: Learn To Code 

Google Extensions, Add-Ons & More

Google Mania: Mini Boot Camp 7/6 – 7/7

METC Maker Summer Institute: Empowering Creative Minds

Cool Tools and Free Resources for Teachers




METC Teacher Appreciation[1]

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googlemaniaThe Connected Classroom is the EducationPlus LearningLab blog. Here are the top five most visited posts for the past month– did you contribute to the clicks?

(1)  Google Mania Takes Over in July  read it here
(2)  To Thine Own Self Be True: Character Education with Shakespeare  read it here
(3)  St. Louis Summer 2015 Reading Clubs  read it here
(4)  Project Based Learning & 21st Century Skills with LEGO  read it here
(5)  Using Sensory Integration Strategies to Help Students Focus  read it here

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Shakespeare Festival of St. Louis‘ Director of Community Engagement & Education, Jennifer Wintzer, will share at the CharacterPlus National Conference how Shakespeare’s characters have grit. Shakespeare Festival St. Louis’ educational touring ensemble hits the road each school year with 50-minute adaptations of Shakespeare’s plays, companion resource guides and supplemental workshops for students grades K-12. Explore the festival’s theatrical approach to character education with this exciting breakout session. Using key principles of character education, she will guide participants through hands-on, experiential activities to explore the moral dilemmas of some of the Bard’s most famous (and infamous) characters. You will enhance content knowledge and will learn theatre activities that support student understanding of ethical and civic values such as respect, trustworthiness, caring and fairness within the context of Shakespeare’s plays.

SFSTL logo transparent flushJennifer’s presentation at the conference takes place just after this season’s production of Antony and Cleopatra closes (running May 22- June 14 in Forest Park). Admission to all performances is free, and this year marks the 15th anniversary of plays in the park.

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The CharacterPlus National Conference takes place June 16-17. In previous posts, we’ve shared about the pre-conference workshops options open to educators. Here, we’d like to focus a bit more on our two keynote speakers.

kafeleTuesday keynote Principal Baruti Kafele, an award-winning educator and best-selling author, is a leading authority on professional development strategies for creating a positive school climate and culture, transforming the attitudes of at-risk student populations, motivating males to excel in the classroom and school leadership development. His messages include attitude, goal setting, planning, purpose, vision, determination, self-esteem, self-image, decision-making, school behavior, bullying, distractions, temptations and so much more in an effort to motivate, educate and empower students for success. Learn more about Principal Kafele, see his books and videos at Follow @PrincipalKafele on Twitter.


Wednesday keynote Tanya Avrith is an innovation specialist, helping lead change by working with educators, parents, K-12 and college students. While she was the lead educational technology and digital citizenship teacher at the Lester B. Pearson School Board in Montreal, Canada, Tanya was instrumental in the vision and execution of the district-wide Digital Citizenship Program. Tanya presents to educators, students and parents all over North America. She has also been invited to Facebook headquarters to discuss digital citizenship education. Tanya spent the last two years guiding students how to harness the power of social media and will be incorporating this message into her keynote. She is a Google Certified Teacher and an Apple Distinguished Educator as well as the co-host of Follow @TanyaAvrith on Twitter.

Both keynotes will also present breakout sessions. Conference registration is now open. CharacterPlus is a resource of EducationPlus.

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The CharacterPlus National Conference is offering six pre-conference workshops this year. Each pre-con is a half-day workshop, taking place from 9 a.m.-12 p.m. or 1-4 p.m. If a participant is taking part in a morning and an afternoon pre-con, lunch will be provided. Here are two the final two pre-cons being offered, with national speakers! Have you registered?

Pushing Past Mediocre…
(The 7 Ps to Leadership, Legacy & Human Excellence)

Topic: Staff & Student Leadership
Audience Grade Level: High School | Experience Level: All
Presenter: Joe Beckman, Epic on Purpose
Greatness lives within every student. Our job is to unleash it. In this high energy presentation, national youth speaker Joe Beckman identifies how students (and educators) can push past mediocre, and live a life of excellence. The 7 P’s to Leadership, Legacy and Human Excellence will be used including Purpose, Positivity and Potential. WARNING: Due to high levels of fun and laughter, we recommend you fully stretch the muscles in your face prior to attending.

Leading the Character Charge when Followers are Few & Hard to Find
Topic: School Climate & Culture
Audience Grade Level: K-12 | Experience Level: Beginner
Presenters: Madison Tomlinson & Sheril Morgan,
State Schools of Character,
What happens when you seem to be alone or among the few who want to see school culture changed? How can you make change happen when nothing seems to be happening? We will explore the options you have in leading change when you don’t see anyone following. You will find ideas to build momentum in and outside of your school.

CharacterPlus National Conference session

Expect for CharacterPlus National Conference sessions to be hands-on! This year’s conference is June 16-17, with the pre-con workshops, like the ones listed above, on June 15.

CharacterPlus is a resource of EducationPlus. Learn more at To read our previous posts on CharacterPlus National Conference pre-con workshops, click here.


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modified Franklin Library PhotoThe CharacterPlus National Conference is offering six pre-conference workshops this year. Each pre-con is a half-day workshop, taking place from 9 a.m.-12 p.m. or 1-4 p.m. If a participant is taking part in a morning and an afternoon pre-con, lunch will be provided. Here are two of the pre-cons being offered, we will share out more in future blog posts!

Dramatic Play: Giving Meaning to Service Learning
Topic: Service Learning & Community Partners
Audience Grade Level: Early Childhood | Experience Level: All
Presenter: Andrea Walton, ARCHS

Yes! Young children can participate in Service Learning Projects. This session will explain what service learning is and how teachers can incorporate age-appropriate projects into their program through Dramatic Play.

Fostering Student Self-Motivation
Topic: Intrinsic Motivation
Audience Grade Level: Early Childhood-12 |  Experience Level: All
Presenter: Vivian Delia, FICP

Learn best practices and strategies to foster student self-motivation. The ABCs of intrinsic motivation is used to describe the importance of autonomy, belonging and competence to create a healthy school climate and instruction for optimal learning. Participants will read and discuss latest articles along with assessing where they are and where they want to be in this movement.

CharacterPlus is a resource of EducationPlus. Registration for the conference is open. To read our previous post on CharacterPlus National Conference pre-con workshops, click here.

Edited image credit: Flickr Creative Commons

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Make-A-SplashTanya Avrith‘s passion stems from a strong desire to effect change and inspire others to explore how they can use the technology to help differentiate individual students’ needs, provide a vehicle for collaboration and allow for deeper purpose and voice in student learning. Her CharacterPlus National Conference keynote addresses digital citizenship:

Rebranding digital citizenship is not an option. It is an imperative. It is our professional and moral responsibility as educators. We need to rebrand digital citizenship so that it becomes part of our daily practice. The technology itself, and our guidance on its use, needs to have a regular place in the classroom and in our students’ lives at school. We need to empower our students to have a voice and learn as citizens of a connected world.

At the conference, she will also present on the following topics:

  • Harnessing the Power of Social Media & the Web
  • Building Your Early Footprint
  • Helping Parents Embrace their Children’s Digital Life

Tanya holds a M.A. in Educational Technology and a B.A. in Communication Studies from Concordia University in Montreal as well as a B.Ed from the University of Ottawa. Tanya is a connected educator with strong ties to her PLN. She also is a Google Certified Teacher and an Apple Distinguished Educator. Learn more about Tanya and her work at

Register for the CharacterPlus National Conference today; it takes place June 15-17 in St. Charles, Missouri, a suburb of St. Louis. CharacterPlus is a resource of EducationPlus.

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