Including students in conferencesEdit

Retrieved from ISED-L list-serv 11/08, CC3.0 a, s-a, nc license

We do student-led conferences. There is a book available at the NMSA website co-authored by Patti Kinney detailing the techniques. Briefly, here's what we do:

1. Students complete a goals update form in advisory.

2. They self-reflect on each of their courses and each non-course aspect of the program (student government, community service, athletics...). Some teachers use a generic form, others design a specific form for their course.

3. They select a work sample for each of their courses.

4. They assemble it all in a portfolio.

5. They read all self-reflections word for word to their parents, and present the work samples, commenting on why the work sample was chosen and what it shows about their work. Parents may ask clarifying questions, but we try to steer them away from the more judgmental kind of question.

The kids, for the most part, like being more in control, though it does take a lot of preparation time on their part. Most parents like learning so much about what their kids are doing; only the most competitive, achievement-oriented parents (and not all of them) prefer the traditional system.

For scheduling of conferences, please see Scheduling Software & Sites

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