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"I Teach Middle School - What's Your Super Power!"
Monday, March 11, 2019
8:00 am - 3:30 pm
Marshall Greene Middle School
Birch Run, MI

Pre-Conference Session

The 8th Grade PSAT -
Tips from MASSP on Test Administration and Data Analysis


Presented by:
Tammy Jackson
Associate Director MASSP


Sunday, March 10, 20194:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.

Marshall Greene Middle School
Session Cost:  $80  (includes session materials)


Register Today!


Michigan Association of Middle School Educators
Presents Our 49th Annual Conference
"I Teach Middle School - What's Your Super Power!"

Hosted by: Marshall Greene Middle School
March 11, 2019


Join us for the Michigan Association of Middle School Educators 2019 Conference.  An opportunity for collaboration, professional development and innovation.

Marshall Greene Middle School
8225 Main Street
Birch Run, MI  48415

7:00 am - 8:00 am:  Coffee &  Registration

8:00 am - 9:00 am:  Keynote Address

9:15 am - 10:10 am:  Session 1

10:15 am - 11:10 am:  Session 2

11:15 am - 12:10 pm:  Session 3

12:10 pm - 1:00 pm:  Lunch

1:00 pm - 1:55 pm:  Session 4

2:00 pm - 2:55:  Session 5

3:00 pm - 3:30 pm:  Awards and Prizes

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Award Nominations

Nominations will be accepted until January 4, 2019.

Be a Conference Presenter!

Want to share your knowledge, expertise or journey with other dedicated middle level educators?  Please consider being a presenter at the 2019 MAMSE Annual Conference, "I Teach Middle School - What's Your Super Power!".  Accepted presenters can attend the conference at the reduced rate of just $50.  Don't be shy, complete an application today!

Register Now!

Conference registration form available by clicking on icon above. 

Sponsorship Info

Your company can expand its visibility at this annual event by being a sponsor!

Exhibitor Info

Opportunities to connect with attendees eager to learn more about products and services that will help them excel as Middle Level Educators.


MAMSE 2019 Conference Keynote Speaker

Jim Van Allan


Registration Information

Pricing Info:

Individual Registration - Member $100   Non-Member $150
Student/Retiree - Member $50   Non-Member $100
Conference Presenter - Member $50 (first 2 per session)   Non-Member $100
Group Registration (6 or more) - $15 discount per registration

MAMSE 2019 Conference
Session List

Presentation Title Abstract
Building Your Positive Communication Box This session will focus on building your nonverbal communication in a fun and engaging way.
An Issue We Can’t Ignore:  GLBTQ Issues for Middle Level Educators  

Gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender youth begin their struggle for identity in early adolescence.  Middle level educators can no longer afford to ignore these issues as these youth are at much greater risk for suicide, substance abuse, violence, and school-related problems than the general population.  This session will provide information and raise awareness and sensitivity about these issues.

Creating a Safe Place for GLBTQ Students and Issues in Middle Level Schools  

Establishing a safe, equitable environment for all youth is of prime importance to middle level educators.  However, we don't always know how to do this for our lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender youth.  In this session, participants will explore a variety of approaches, techniques, and materials to help confront prejudice and counter GLBTQ invisibility in age-appropriate, sensitive ways to teach young people respect for everyone, including those with different sexual orientations and/or gender identities/expressions.

Blended Learning in Actual Practice:  How it Works for Us In this session, work with Kim to create a blended learning model for your classroom, which provides opportunities for students to own their learning. This is not a “sit-and-get” presentation, but an opportunity to take a framework that works and adapt it to fit the needs of your students. Leave this session with ideas that work and a digital packet to guide your implementation.
A Flexible Seat is a Focused Seat  

Which classroom would you prefer to learn in? A traditional classroom full of standard desks or a room which allows you to choose between a dining room table or a couch. This presentation focuses on the ins and outs of flexible seating, highlighting how it is being effectively used in a middle school classroom.

Formative Assessment:  What should I do with the data? You’ve given the ticket in the door, what do you do now? What is the stack of responses telling you? Do you move on, re-teach, provide intervention, etc. Every day, the information can tell you something different. Our 7th and 8th grade Math department will share ways they dig in and handle the data from formative assessments in a co-teaching and single teacher classroom.
Using Graphic Novels to Engage Writers  

Get ready to explore telling a story in two languages--the language of words, and the language of pictures. This is a great exercise in creative writing and for integrating graphic novels into your reading and writing curriculum. You will walk away with 2 ready to go activities to use with your middle school students. We will have ARC Graphic Novels and book swag prize giveaways! Bring your creative side and be ready to participate!

Transitioning to Middle School - The Marshall Greene Middle School Approach A multi-layered approach to transitioning students to a new school is vital. In this session learn how MGMS incorporates an approach that goes from the informal get together, to a school day visit, and then finally culminates in a formal orientation. Using the three-legged approach has students ready to learn when the first bell of the school year rings.
Student Engagement Made Easy  

“This class goes so fast!” Time flies when students are actively engaged in the classroom! Join us and learn some easy-to-implement strategies that make students active participants in the classroom and increase student engagement and learning.

Mentor Sentence Warm-Ups The use of mentor sentences for a daily 10-15 minute warm-up or mini-lesson for Language Arts.  The purpose of the lesson is to increase understanding and correct usage of basic grammar skills.  Revisiting these skills each day by using examples from readings, incorporating into free writes, and (continuously) identifying throughout the year, builds a knowledge base that students will be able to draw from and add to as they continue their education.
Making the Most of a 95-Minute 5th Grade Math Block  

This session will focus on the breakdown of our 95 minute math block. Since incorporating this time block and lesson format, our yearly growth has almost doubled. We will share the outline as well as our daily routine, movement, and transition strategies, warm-ups, games and spend time with a Q and A segment

Low Cost STEM Elective Classes Learn about the STEM elective classes offered at MGMS. These classes are low cost and incorporate developmentally responsive instructional strategies like student movement, student talk, student directed, and hands on activities. Hear about classes ranging from Robotics to CSI to Water Quality and many more.
Using Hyperdocs within Google Classroom  

Hyperdocs are a great tool for teachers to use to push a lot of information out to students in Google Classroom

Icebreakers that Don't Suck!  Creating a Safe Learming Environment This session, led by electives teachers, will give you techniques to build a caring culture in your classroom.  You will hear from three points of view, the importance of trust and how having a safe place to learn impacts their fine arts classes.  You will take away from this session several icebreaker activities that have been middle school tested and approved.
Literacy Strategies Across Contents and Interdisciplinary  

Our presentation includes reading, writing, and vocabulary strategies that can be used across contents and will keep students engaged.  We will also share interdisciplinary activities that we’ve done in ELA and SS.  You will be able to take these strategies and use them right away.  Materials can be shared through Google drive so you can use and alter them to fit your needs.

Adolescent Literacy Adolescent literacy is a growing concern among middle school educators. More than half of Michigan 8th grade students were not proficient on last year’s ELA M-STEP. The data is more concerning for students coming from economically disadvantaged backgrounds, only 27.5% were proficient on the ELA M-STEP in 2018. Learn from one school who has systematized adolescent literacy through a series of Tier 1 initiatives and a prescribed Tier 2 approach to adolescent literacy. We will describe our processes and systems as it relates to developing a robust school-wide approach to adolescent literacy. Successes and failures will be shared as a tool for improving our overall state literacy rates.
How to Make Learning Last a Lifetime:  It's Like Riding a Bike  

We have all been told it is our responsibility to prepare our students for the future. We are given standards that allow for college and career readiness, yet all too often in schools we still find ourselves "teaching to the test". We are in search of gimmicks, curriculum, or motivationals strategies that never quite deliver what we are looking for.  We have all heard the saying "Once we learn to ride a bike, we never forget." Riding a bike is a complex task yet we can get our kids to master it before they even enter school. In this session we will use the bike riding metaphor to explore a seven step process that allows student learning to last, just like riding a bike.

Bold Humility:  How to Encourage Risk Taking and Innovation in Staff and Students Based in part on his popular book "It's Like Riding a Bike" Dave will explore the hidden "it factor" that makes a great teacher or administrator. Dave uses the term Bold Humility to describe that often mysterious "it factor" that individuals possess when they are bold enough to try something new, yet humble enough to admit defeat.  Through this session Dave will present to leaders, and those they serve, the process for empowering this unique skill set and giving teachers the power to make the instructional decisions necessary to change lives, even in an age of accountability and increased scrutiny.
Standards Based Grading:  What, Why, How…  

High quality feedback is a key component for effective instruction and student learning, yet in schools we often try to summarize all of our feedback into a single letter grade to communicate with parents and students. In this session, we will explore why standards based grading is a key driver towards student success and the immediate steps you can take in your classroom and school to get the ball rolling.

GED to PhD:  The Story Behind the Data This real-life inspirational story will give you goosebumps.  It's a stimulating account of Craig J. Boykin's inspiring journey from GED to PhD.  In this session, educators will learn how to help at-risk students succeed in their classroom.  Learnn WHY many at-risk students aren't motivated to learn.  Learn WHY many at-risk students gravitate towards sports and not education.  Come learn what you, as an educator, can do to help the Craig's you teach daily.  It's clear that students from poverty are habitually at a disadvantage when it comes to education, and educators can find it challenging to motivate such students to become positively engaged in their own learning.  Craig advises educators to avoid giving up on "difficult" students by deciding that certain students "can't be taught."
Overcoming Cultural Poverty, Disengaged Parents, and Apathetic Students  

Poverty is all too common in America's schools.  What's rare is an opportunity for educators to sit and absorb first-hand from a former at-risk student who dropped our of high school, endured a mother abusing drugs, absent father and learning disability.  Ultimately, repeating two grades.  In this engaging session, participants will unlearn perceived fallacies about students from poverty as well as discover my 4 R's of education.  Educators must be REAL with students and parents from poverty.  Educators must understand that RESPECT is everything to today's youth (which is why when made to feel disrespected they go from calm to irate really quickly).  Educators should make classroom material RELEVANT to the lives of the youth and Educators must form and nurture meaningful RELATIONSHIPS with each student.  Craig's trademark slogan is "GED to PHD", which is a concrete paradigm that educators should never give up on any student.

Preventing Rigor "Mortis": How to Not Kill Your Students' Thinking This session is geared for math warriors wishing to learn how to bring rigor to the classroom.  We will learn how to use open and parallel tasks to increase rigor.  We will examine ways to bring the 8 Mathematical Practices into daily use.  We will also learn how teachers sometimes are their own nemesis by rushing to rescue students from opportunities to productively struggle.
Using Informational Texts to Improve Reading/Scores  

“Using Informational Texts to Improve Reading/Scores” will demonstrate ways that 6th, 7th, and 8th grade Social Studies teachers use informational reading strategies in their classes.  Besides various graphic organizers that are shared among Social Studies and English classes, there will be a strong emphasis on how to incorporate Current Events (researching, reading, and presenting) into classes presented in this session.

Don't Be the UnderDog…Use Flippity Let the Google Ad-On Flippity save the day!  Flippity is a time-saving resource that can be used in any class.  Enter data into a spreadsheet and transform it into something magical.  You can use it to create random groups, generate BINGO boards, create timelines, make a trivia game show board, etc.  There are 20 wonderful, different applications in Flippity.  Learn how to get started today!
Managing Students with Challenging Behaviors  

This session will focus on managing students with challenging behaviors. The core of this session will look at relationship building, building empathy, admiring negative attitudes & behaviors, leaving your ego at the door as well as how to incorporate PBIS.

Teacher Leaders…A Principal's Best Friend In this work, principals and administrative teams can’t do it on their own. To be impactful, create another layer of buy-in and build capacity, it is essential to utilize teacher leaders. Teacher leaders serve as change agents by supporting their colleagues, being subject matter experts and possibly transitioning to administrative teams to continue the work. They are the boots on the ground that helps administrative teams tackle the work of closing the gap in academic achievement! They have the ability to increase teacher effectiveness and ultimately improve student learning! This session will be an opportunity to share structures, systems and resources that help support teacher leaders. We will discuss 1:1 coaching for teacher leaders, teacher leader meeting rhythm and content and data review practices. Participants will also learn different techniques teacher leaders can engage and support their colleagues/teams.
Giving a Voice to the Superheroes of Tomorrow:  the YMCA Youth in Government Program  

YMCA Youth in Government is a civic engagement program committed to raising the next generation of superheroes! Each year, students in grades 6-12 converge on Lansing to elect their own leaders, debate their own ideas and build a vision for a better tomorrow. Students engage with the Core Democratic Values, the MI Social Studies learning expectations and all dimensions of the C3 framework. Join us and learn how to bring democracy to life for your superheroes!

Growing Up in the Digital Age Today’s middle school students have grown up with social media and internet access as a way of life. How can teachers help develop good digital citizenship through their existing curricula? What are the most critical concepts to instill in students to develop positive behaviors and choices? How can a young person use the amazing resources available without endangering themselves?
Can You Break Out?  Collaboration, Creativity, and Critical Thinking with Breakout EDU  

If you’re looking to promote collaboration, creativity, and critical thinking, all while teaching core concepts, then Breakout EDU is for you! We will be explaining and demonstrating how to play Breakout EDU with your students. This highly engaging game challenges students as they work together to solve a variety of content area clues that lead them to unlocking the Breakout box. Breakout EDU can be used with any grade level and subject area.

When One Size Doesn't Fit All - Strategies for Differentiating Instruction Differentiation allows teachers to challenge, engage, and empower all students - and it doesn’t have to be daunting.  Join a former middle school science and social studies teacher for a deep dive into practical strategies he used to differentiate by students’ learning styles, readiness levels, and interests.  The session will include a brief framework for approaching differentiation, specific examples and tips, and time for attendees to share additional ideas of what works for them.
Bring Some Camp to Your Classroom:  Teambuilders, Icebreakers, Games, and More!  

Join the team from YMCA Camp Timbers - a camp, outdoor education, and retreat center - as we share some of our favorite teambuilding activities and challenges.  Leave with detailed handouts and more than a dozen ideas you can use in your classroom tomorrow to develop teamwork, trust, communication skills, problem solving, and camaraderie.  Come ready to participate, learn, and laugh as you try a few challenges yourself!

Math + Technology = Engagement Technology and mathematics should go hand-in-hand.  Come see how technology can be integrated into math class so that students can explore topics and practice various math concepts.  We’ll look at how technology should be used so teachers can get instant data from students too.  Some of the sites we will visit are teacher.desmos.com, thatquiz.org, socrative.com, quizizz.com & classkick.com. If used correctly, technology can enhance your math lessons and make your work flow smarter.
Engagement in the Middle Level Classroom  

Engaging students is becoming increasingly difficult in today’s fast paced world.  In this session, teachers will be presented with strategies that increase engagement within their classroom to ensure all students have the opportunity to be successful in learning.  The session will include hands-on demonstrations of technology and non-technology resources to keep you students at their best.

The Self-Directed Learner This session is not for the faint of heart.  Walk right past this room if you are not ready to put your ego aside and stare in the face of possible failure…all in the name of self-directed growth.  We will be exploring ways in which the collection of objective data can effectively change a classroom of lives and grow your practice exponentially. Looking forward to seeing each of you!  #ObserveMe
Increasing Authentic Engagement in the Classroom  

In order to prepare students for today's ever-changing world, we must engage them in authentic learning experiences.  Students must be involved in real life activities that incorporate communication skills, collaboration, problem-solving, flexibility, and creativity.  This session will explore strategies for students to share their thinking and participate in meaningful work that makes a difference.

From New Pals to Nutri-Pals:  A Program for Nutrition Education With the support of Central Michigan University students and a Covenant Hospital Dietitian, 6th grade science students from White Pine Middle School create nutrition activities that they teach to the students at four township elementary schools.  The middle school students experience all four components of the Middle Schools to Watch criteria in their mentoring experience.  The program also provides mentoring opportunities for the CMU students and adults supervising this experience.
Meaningful Learning for Middle Schoolers!  An Integrated & Blended Model  

Perry Innovation Center exists to explore innovative educational practices.  Our exploration includes the development of courses for middle school students that blend standards from different content areas.  Our interdiscipinary courses, such as "The Amazing World" and "Principles of Design," create natural real-world connections and immerse our students in meaningful learning experiences.  Using a blended learning platform, students can access content online as well as through hands-on labs, field trips, and collaboration with experts.

Chesaning Middle School:  The "new" building turns 43 years old 1973:  Chesaning voters approved a new “state of the art” middle school.  Scheduled to open in 1975, it was delayed one year until operational millage passed.  It opened with a new approach: “the middle school concept.”  The presenter was trained and taught math in the “new” middle school.   Recently he returned to the “new” middle school as a leadership coach for the Institute for Excellence in Education.  Forty years later, surprisingly much remains in place.
Managing Group Talk & Teamwork with Mi-STAR  

Productive talk is an essential part of NGSS and the Mi-STAR curriculum experience. Through discourse and teamwork students will learn to construct explanations and support their thinking with evidence. They also learn to reflect, consider new evidence and reevaluate their thinking. But, how do you ensure that students are focused and actively participating during this time? This session will share some important strategies that will help you build a science community and promote equity and participation among students

Conquering Reading Outside of the ELA Classroom - What to do When Students Can't Access the Reading Assignments Today we are faced with many students who are not able to read at grade level.  Content area teachers assign reading and then become frustrated when assignments are not completed or are poorly done.  Let’s discuss some easily implemented strategies to promote reading achievement for all students in the content classroom. Yes! We all teach reading and writing.
Using Art, Music, and Drama in the Middle School Classroom  

Increase student achievement and have some fun by including art, music, and drama in your classroom.  Do all assessments need to be written?  How can we use art and music to engage students?  What about Reader’s Theater?  These are some of the strategies we will be discussing.

6 - 12 Essential Practices for Literacy Instruction in the Secondary Classroom The GELN Essential Practices for Literacy Instruction in the Secondary Classroom for Grades 6 to 12 recommends research-suported instructional practices that can have a dramatic impact on student literacy achievement and engagement.  Attendees will get an overview of the recently released 6-12 Literacy Essentials and how these practices can support them as they engage their students in disciplinary literacy to grow their content and literacy knowledge.  The session is for administrators and teachers in all content areas.
Increasing Student Dialogue and Discourse to Improve Achievement  

“The one doing the talking is the one learning.”  This quote illustrates the importance of creating a classroom culture where students have time to talk with each other about what they are learning.  Unfortunately, in many classrooms, only one person talks at a time.  Participants in this interactive session will explore the what, why, and how of “intentional talk” and how increased dialogue and discourse can improve student achievement.

Using the Schools to Watch Rubric as a Tool for School Improvement Schools have been using The National Forum to Accelerate Middle Grades Reform School to Watch Rubric to determine a schools readiness to become a School to Watch (STW). Now, with research, the rubric is proven to be a tool for school improvement. We will expore the rubric and show how using it has improved middle schools.
Who I Am  

This session will create a change in understanding of how to get to sustainable behavioral change to support academics in the classroom. The opportunity for teachers to focus on instruction rather than managing student behavior will provide the most significant impact. In these three years, students are learning to function as part of a whole. As they are learning all of this, there is a substantial need for students to find independence and individuality. With that in mind, these years need to be purposefully designed to help students learn who they are; to help them learn their identity.

From Texting to Teaching:  Grammar Instruction in a Digital Age Grammar instruction continues to be more important than ever when we look at the digital landscape our students belong to today. Experts Constance Weaver and Jeff Anderson offer us wonderful ways to infuse grammar into our everyday writing lessons. However, as educators, we need to address how students write in digital spaces. We need to teach them to differentiate between the writing they do in their digital spaces and their non-digital spaces. In this interactive session teachers and educators will learn effective strategies using Google Slides along with social media, that can help students to differentiate between formal and informal writing while learning new grammar skills.
How to Increase Mathematical Discourse Using Math Talks and Performance Tasks  

Our session will be sharing some examples and resources to help you get started on Math Talks in your classrooms. Engagement in the classroom through Performance Tasks are another way to promote “math talk” during classwork. We will be doing what all math teachers love - a performance task, as well as sharing some resources that will help you to find tasks that will interest your students.

Guided Math: What is it all about? Guided math will help you support every child in your classroom at different levels of difficulty within the context in small groups. Come learn about guided math and how to incorporate stations into your classroom. If you struggle with keeping students engaged, this may be the answer.
Rapport vs. Relationship: Moving Beyond Classroom Management and Towards Community in the Middle School Classroom  

We always hear about the importance of establishing positive rapport with our students; however, this is often simply a classroom management tool that doesn’t lead to caring, safe, and healthy classroom communities. In this session, attendees will explore what it can mean to teach relationally and how that can transform our classroom communities. The presenter will offer perspectives and strategies for how to root our pedagogy and our classroom in meaningful relationships.

Making Modeling Meaningful in the Middle - NGSS/Michigan Science Framework Practices This session will offer helpful strategies and classroom management protocols for helping to successfully foster the shared thinking and collaborative work required from students when implementing the science practice "Developing and Using Models." If you're a middle school science teacher (social studies teachers may also find the session helpful) working to integrate the NGSS/Michigan Science Framework into your classroom, this session is for you!
Managing Challenging Boys in the Middle School Classroom  

The behaviors of disengaged and poorly behaved boys are often the greatest challenge to classroom management in middle schools. From constant blurting out, to invading personal space, disorganization and off-task behaviors; challenging boys can derail even the most carefully planned lesson in an instant. This session will allow attendees to process the challenges they currently face in dealing with challenging boys while also offering strategies and perspectives for positive management changes that can start on March 12th!

Trauma-Informed Schools - Critical for Kids in the Middle In recent years the term "trauma-informed schools" has become a widely used label for the way in which educators and whole school communities can and should respond to the wide array of stressors youth face in their lives. Traumatic life experiences can have a negative impact on the school experience of any student from any demographic. This session will explore current research on the impact of traumatic life events on the school success of young adolescents, and suggest classroom practices that can help to mitigate that impact for all students.
Connect, Engage, Inspire  

Connect with other like minded educators. Engage in a critical conversation about your craft. Be inspired by other great teachers and inspire other teachers to be better. Learn how to do it everyday from your couch via TWITTER!

Independent Reading: Making It Fun and Functional We all know the importance of reading, but how do we get our students to do it and not hate it?! This session will discuss different activities to get students excited about reading, help students find a right book, share successes, and different ways teachers can assess or track the reading. Come to learn and share with one another.

March 11, 2019

Marshall Greene Middle School
8225 Main Street
Birch Run, MI 48415



Comfort Inn
11911 Dixie Hwy.
Birch Run, MI  48415

Ask for the MAMSE discounted rate!

MAMSE Exhibitors enjoy direct contact with Michigan middle school educators in a setting unavailable to vendors anywhere else.  Consider how exhibiting at the 2019 MAMSE Conference can benefit your bottom line!

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Michigan Association of Middle School Educators


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