Please join Gilman, Roland Park Country School and Bryn Mawr School for the 2017 Educational Forum. The event is taking place on Saturday, October 14, 2017 from 9AM-4PM at Gilman.

This is a day for families with intellectually curious students and anybody who is interested in learning about opportunities designed to support the unique needs of critical and creative thinkers. There are adult sessions and student sessions all day long.

Admission is free and open to the public! You won’t want to miss this opportunity!

To sign up, click here and follow the links to The Baltimore Forum. Then to sign up, click the “Forum Signup” button and follow the instructions.


9:00 am – Doors Open
9:50 – 10:00 – Welcome and Guide to Forum (Henry Smyth, Headmaster, Gilman School, and Patsy Kumekawa, Scholar Search Associates)

PRESENTATIONS – 10:00 am – 4:00 pm
10:00 – 11:00 a. Addressing the Challenges of Modern Parenting

Family roles and priorities are more ambiguous than ever with the constant flux we encounter with social, political and environmental norms. As a result, today’s parents are left to perform with minimal direction, often creating a script with little preparation; families have become more unsettled and many grapple with constant worry and anxiety. While many of the challenges that families face are unique to our time, there are lessons to learn from previous generations. Join with an experienced counselor, and a parent, in a discussion that addresses many of the challenges contemporary families face. Gain perspectives that will help relieve some of the pressures we all face and that will promote a hopeful outlook. Presenter: Armond Lawson, Counselor, Gilman School b. The Importance of Teaching Entrepreneurship Having grown up with the internet, today’s data- and technologically-savvy students are uniquely equipped to handle our fast-paced world. Teaching entrepreneurship synthesizes the students’ familiarity with technology, their sense of creativity and their commitment to positive change for the common good. Explore how young people can research, prototype, and refine products that respond to a specific need they have identified in the world. Entrepreneurship in the classroom celebrates the power of students to be real agents of change, while helping to shape their identities as leaders in their communities. Presenter: Kelsey Schroeder, Entrepreneurship Coordinator, Roland Park Country School. Click to register.

11:00 – 12:00 a. Experiential Learning Explained

It is an educational approach we have often heard of, but of which we may not be completely familiar. Experiential learning integrates social, cognitive, and intellectual developmental factors into a curriculum that has long been proven effective. Montessori and Waldorf schools, based on the philosophies of Maria Montessori and Rudolph Steiner respectively, are well-known examples of the “Experiential” approach. Discover the importance of engaging children’s heads, hearts, and hands for fostering the intellectual curiosity, academic comprehension, and emotional resiliency they need for the future. Presenter: Pat Whitehead, Executive Director, Waldorf School of Baltimore b. The Essential Guide to Gifted Education Join a panel discussion by the educational experts and administrators who have guided the district that has achieved the fastest growth of G&T programs as recently recognized by the MD State Department of Education. Whether or not you hail from the district (Baltimore City Schools), now is the opportunity to understand the trends of gifted education at local, state and national levels. More significantly, tap the expertise that will give you a better understanding of how to deal with the specific challenges that concern you. Come with questions – leave with answers. Presenters: Sean Conley, Chief Academic Officer, Lara Ohanian, Dir. of Differentiated Learning, Dennis Jutras, Coord. of G&T Learning, and Rae Lymer, Educational Specialist for Gifted & Advanced Learning, Baltimore City Public Schools c. Tour of Gilman School — gather at the Gilman School table in the Exhibit Area. Click to register.

12:00 – 1:00 —— LUNCH BREAK Families welcome to meet one another ——-

1:00 – 2:00 a. Developing Voice Through Choice

It is critical that students be provided opportunities to not just apply their knowledge of curriculum but also to use their knowledge in self-directed ways. This is easier said than done with the current focus on standardized testing. Yet, the development of conceptual prowess is just as important as acquiring technical skills for it enables students to transform foundational knowledge into engines that engender broader understanding and applications. Often, in today’s educational environment, it is the art room that provides the student with the widest platform upon which ownership and a strong sense of self, i.e. conceptual prowess, are developed. Listen in on how art and art instructors foster the higher order decision-making skills so beneficial for any career trajectory. Presenter: Dan Sanz, Young People’s Studio Instructor, MD Institute College of Art b. Powerful Ways to Improve Critical Thinking & Writing Explore numerous, proven methods to reach and effectively challenge highly capable children with well-known author and educator Nathan Levy. Come away with a variety of new strategies and specific ideas to help learners become better creative and critical thinkers. Bring your thinking caps and your funny bones. Presenter: Nathan Levy, Educator & Author.  Click to register.

1:00 – 2:00 c. The Value of Civic Engagement in Education

Many schools commit themselves to prepare their students for active citizenship. Guided by this objective, curricular and co-curricular opportunities provide avenues for students to explore socially responsible action linked to academic learning and reflection. These programs provide a real world context for students’ work, allow schools to contribute to their communities, and promote the development of citizens who actively participate in their communities. Explore how schools are incorporating civic engagement work into the lives of their students. Presenter: Rommel Loria, Dir. of Civic Engagement & Service Learning, Paul Worley, Chair Middle School Social Studies, The Park School of Baltimore. Click to register.

2:00 – 3:00 a. The Changing Face of American Education

Globalism and the on-going development of technology are impacting our educational approaches as never before. With technological advances that have enabled greater multi-cultural engagement and information flow, our educational system is being transformed to adjust how we learn and how we prepare with our world evolving about us. Discover how the rise of globalism and the pace of technology are changing how students are being taught to heighten their abilities to adjust and succeed in the future. Presenters: Bart Griffith, Assistant Head of School, and Tye Campbell , Director of Technology, Gilman School b. The Heart of EQ: Tools to Empower Emotional intelligence – EQ – is inextricably tied to cognition, achievement and well-being. Join in this presentation and acquire a variety of evidence-based strategies and tools to cultivate the development of discrete social and emotional skills in gifted learners. Learn ways to avoid the pitfalls of perfectionism, develop optimism, engage intrinsic motivation and enhance emotional literacy while growing healthy relationships. You will leave empowered with practices to support student social and emotional development in school and at home. Presenter: Dr. Kate Bachtel, (Board President of SENG) Learner, Educator, Equity Activist, SoulSpark Learning c. Tour of Gilman School — gather at the Gilman School table in the Exhibit Area. Click to register.

3:00 – 4:00 b. Encouraging Student Ownership of Learning Through STEM

When students are given the chance to explore their passions, they become more engaged in learning. Allowing students to focus on topics that are meaningful to them personally, the depth and direction of their work can far exceed expectations. By using Computer Science and Mathematics principles along with the Maker movement, students can solve personal and meaningful issues/problems, discover ownership of their learning through personalization, and develop an entrepreneurial, growth-based mindset. Presenters: Kristin Kennedy, Dir. of Upper School Innovation & Computer Science Teacher, and Frank Ecker, Upper School Math Teacher, The Bryn Mawr School b. An Argument for Out-of-Level Testing At a time where the frequency of testing is higher than in recent years, it is difficult to make the case for additional testing. However, for instances where the ability level of a test’s targeted group is not aligned with the ability level of a particular student, above-grade-level testing can be informative. Join a discussion that will address common questions and concerns that parents have regarding the utility of this testing practice. Presenter: Frank Williams, Assoc. Dir. of Testing and Assessment, Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth. Click to register.