Seminars & Workshops

The Morris Foundation of Fort Worth provided the ANSERS Institute with a gift to fund many of our professional development activities. All of the seminars and workshops described herein were funded through The Morris Foundation of Fort Worth.

As part of the Learning Series component of the TCU Professional Development Model for Educators, we offer seminars and workshops on a various topics in special education. Each event consists of a series of meetings that build off of one another in order to facilitate deeper understanding of the given topic. Participants are encouraged to attend each meeting of the series in order to maximize the full benefits of the content provided. For a list of upcoming events, please visit our news & events page.  To learn more about our recent workshops & seminars, please read below.

Dyslexia: Interventions

As a follow-up to “Demystifying Dyslexia”, Dr. Elaine Cheesman presented “Teaching Students With Dyslexia” during an ANSERS event on April 7, 2015. Participants gained an understanding of the strategies to support individuals with dyslexia, research-based classroom interventions that lead to overall classroom success, and the social-emotional impact for people with dyslexia.

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Demystifying Dyslexia

On October 13, 2014, ANSERS hosted a presentation sponsored by The Morris Foundation. Dr. Elaine Cheeseman facilitated this presentation, which explained the 2003 definition of dyslexia adopted by the International Dyslexia Association. Participants gained an understanding in: foundational causes and prevalence of dyslexia, the primary impact on foundational reading and writing skills, typical signs in oral or written language, the secondary consequences on vocabulary and comprehension, and the social-emotional impact for people with dyslexia. Dr. Cheeseman is an associate professor at the University of Colorado – Colorado Springs. The teacher education courses she developed are among the nine- university teacher preparation program officially recognized by the International Dyslexia Association for meeting the Knowledge and Practice Standards for Teachers of Reading (IDA, 2010).

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calculating-left-rightCalculating with Left and Right

In March 2013, ANSERS hosted a two-day workshop focused on teaching mathematics to students with Down syndrome and other significant cognitive disabilities. Facilitators, Bernadette Wieser and Anita Hotter from the one-of-a-kind diagnostic and training center, “Leben-Lachen-Lernen” located in Leoben, Austria, trained participants on the innovative mathematics curriculum. The curriculum was developed as part of a five-year project titled, “Yes we can!”. This project was a collaborative effort which involved five partnering countries. The curriculum made its U.S. debut on the TCU campus during the workshop. To learn more about the center, please visit their website: http://www.downsyndromzentrum.at/.

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iPad Apps to Support Comprehension Literacy Instruction

On August 19, 2014, ANSERS hosted a presentation sponsored by The Morris Foundation that explored iPad apps that support comprehension reading and writing instruction. This presentation, facilitated by Elaine Cheeseman, Ph.D, highlighted the foundational skills of learning phonemic awareness, decoding, spelling, text comprehension, and written expression. Dr. Cheeseman’s primary research and teaching interests are teacher-preparation in scientifically based reading instruction and the use of technology in literacy education.

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ANSERS Meeting 2Administrator Appreciation Breakfast

On April 24, 2014 ANSERS hosted an Administrator Appreciation Breakfast sponsored by The Morris Foundation of Fort Worth. During this breakfast, Dr. Michael Faggella-Luby gave a presentation titled, “Administrator Appreciation Breakfast: Content and Pedagogy of Instruction for All”. Dr. Faggella-Luby provided Region XI district and building level administrators with information and facilitated discussion on tiered instruction, specifically related to literacy.

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Supporting Students with Autism Workshops

In December, 2013, ANSERS hosted a series of workshops which focused on information and strategies related to students with autism. Dr. Sonja de Boer, autism consultant and expert, facilitated all five sessions which included titles such as, “Teaching Skills Utilizing Applied Behavior Analysis: Providing the Structure Students with ASD Need in Order to Learn New Skills” and   “Interventions & Treatments for Children & Youth with Autism Spectrum Disorders”. Dr. de Boer is a noted researcher, speaker, author and consultant on autism and the inclusion of children in the general education classroom who have Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).  She holds a Ph.D. in Special Education, Psychology and Research in Education. She is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst with over 20 years of experience working in special education, specifically with students with ASD.  Dr. de Boer’s focus is on early intervention, creating and applied behavior and inclusive education programs for students with ASD within school districts.  Currently, Dr. de Boer owns and operates her own corporation, de Boer Consulting and Training, LLC, which provides training and consultation for students with ASD.

Session: “Teaching Skills Utilizing Applied Behavior Analysis”

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Session: “Interventions and Treatments for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder”

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Video Clips from Workshop

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DinnerDataDialogue1Dinner, Data, and Dialogue

As part of our professional development grant for Region XI funded by The Morris Foundation of Fort Worth, we hosted a three-part dinner series during the Fall 2012 semester for administrators that focused on data use and Response to Intervention. Drs. Marla McGhee and Jo Beth Jimerson facilitated the series and have, combined, more than 30 years of experience in education, including leadership roles at the elementary, middle, high school and district level. Both are professors in the TCU Educational Leadership program and have varied research interests, including instructional leadership, action research as a school improvement tool, campus leadership for literacy learning, the role of the contemporary assistant principal, issues related to school leadership, data use, and capacity building.

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autismAutism: Foundations for the Future

ANSERS conducted a three part seminar series on relevant issues related to autism for parents, educators, and administrators. The seminar was facilitated by Drs. Naomi Ekas and Phil Esposito, who together have worked with families, schools, and the community to help others better understand autism in order to improve the lives of individuals and families affected by the disorder. Both presenters are professors at TCU and study a variety of dimensions within autism, including health and developmental perspectives to better understand family dynamics.

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writingstandardsWriting Standards-Based IEPs for Students with Intellectual Disabilities

In July, 2013, ANSERS partnered with Birdville Independent School District to host a one-day workshop which focused on writing standards-based IEPs (Individualized Education Program) for students with intellectual disabilities. The workshop featured presenter, Dr. Ginevra Courtade, Assistant Professor of Special Education at the University of Louisville. Dr. Courtade has worked in the field of moderate/severe disabilities for 15 years. She has been a classroom teacher, a grant-funded project trainer, a research associate, and currently trains teachers and conducts research at the university level. Her work focuses specifically on teaching academics to students with moderate/severe disabilities and preparing teachers to instruct students using the general education curriculum. She has written numerous publications, including journal articles, book chapters, the Early Literacy Skills Builder, Teaching to Standards: Science, Aligning IEPs to Common Core State Standards for Students with Moderate and Severe Disabilities, and Six Successful Strategies for Teaching Common Core State Standards.

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Enhancing Instructional Programs within Schools

Dr. Faggella-Luby helped facilitate a workshop designed to assist educational leaders by ensuring quality, comprehensive programming for all students. The workshop series was conducted over a seven day period with sessions focused on specific competencies, systems change, and the unification of special education and general education as part of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS, 2010) and Connecticut’s Common Core of Learning and Common Core of Leading (2009). This program combined interactive seminars with job-embedded reflection to assist participants with the application of information into practice.

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