Heather Dowd

Create a Personalized Disruption Plan


It’s easy to maintain the status quo, even if we consider ourselves change agents. This extended session will push us out of the status quo into uncomfortable territory in order to consider new ideas about learning for our students. Drawing from her and her colleagues’ experiences visiting schools in New Zealand, Australia and the USA, Heather will share some of the innovations they saw happening in schools. She will lead us through a series of interactive exercises designed to identify our biases and challenge us to consider some of these crazy, uncomfortable ideas.

Then make a plan to try one crazy idea this year, however big or small. Whether you are a classroom teacher, instructional coach, administrator, you have the power to disrupt something at your school this year. Create your own personalized disruption plan in order to rethink and change your school.

Possible Outcomes
  • Share and learn about classroom and school innovations happening now.
  • Be pushed outside of your comfort zone to consider learning activities and environments that are different from your own.
  • Identify your biases about school and learning and how that influences the choices you make.
  • Identify a disruption, large or small, and create a personalized disruption plan that you can enact this year.
Intended Audience

This extended session is appropriate for anyone interested in disrupting something within their sphere of influence, whether it’s one lesson, one classroom, one department, one school, or beyond.

About Heather

Heather Dowd is a middle school education technology coach at Singapore American School where she loves geeking out with students and teachers. She is a former high school physics teacher who has fallen in love with middle school despite her attempts to not follow in her mother’s middle school teacher footsteps. She has taught in Japan, Illinois, Mexico and Singapore. Teaching English with the JET program in Kumamoto, Japan inspired her to become an educator. While she once hid her excitement for school from her middle school classmates, she now proudly wears the title of “learner” for all to see. When she isn’t involved in some sort of PD course, Heather travels, takes photos, spends time with family and tries to get in touch with her artistic side. You can find her on Twitter and Google+.

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