Offering Number: CEE 0332

The Concordia Summit for Lutheran Teachers and Leaders is a one-day professional conference on August 10, 2023, on the beautiful campus of Concordia University Wisconsin.

Note: You should receive an email receipt after signing up for this offering that will allow you to elect which sections you want to attend.

Group Registration: Schools and Districts looking to enroll multiple individuals at the same time should email continuing.education@cuw.edu to learn more about setting up a group portal, else you may elect to register each attendee sperately.

All time times listed are in Central Time.

Conference Agenda

Sectional A

Sectionals for Everyone (Sectional A)

  1. The ABC’s of Defending Your Faith
    Brad Alles - Audience: All
    Apologetics, or defending the faith, is as easy as ABC: A is for Archaeology, B is for Bible, C is for Christ Jesus…Find out more and get answers to these common questions so your students are always ready to give a reason for the hope they have (1 Peter 3:15)!

  2. The 4 Rs in Education – “Reading, ‘Riting, ‘Rithmetic, and RELATIONSHIPS!”
    Sandy Harris - Audience: All
    Learn and share how to establish relationships with challenging students. Some of the discussion will surround how to keep your toughest students engaged, how to keep them from being a distraction in the classroom, and how to motivate them. This sectional will involve interaction discussion and activities.
  3. Stretched versus Stressed: What’s the Difference and Why Does it Matter?
    Sarah Holtan - Audience: All
    In this reflective session, you will learn to differentiate between good stress (stretch) and bad stress (stress). You will explore personal triggers for stress, identify the level and type of stress to maximize your outputs and performance, and recognize the signs of burnout. You will consider tactics to alleviate stress and help create stretch. This session is designed for anyone looking for insights into themselves or those they lead.
  4. What do you notice? What do you wonder? Molding Math Mindset in our Students and Ourselves.
    Jonny Balsman - Audience: All
    Breaking down the fixed mindset and stereotypes of math in our classrooms can be deflating and defeating. We will discuss how to re-wire the brain, instill soft skills, and foster a spark of curiosity of math in our students.
  5. Current Servants, Future Church Workers?
    Kyle Chuhran - Audience: All
    What do you want to be when you grow up? Instead of asking our students this age-old question, maybe we should be asking: What gifts and talents have you been given and how can you use them to serve God today and in the future? In this session, we will discuss strategies for getting students to understand the concept of vocation and how God is calling them to serve others – maybe even as a future church worker!
  6. Become a Differentiating Dynamo!
    Sara Clemm von Hohenburg - Audience: All
    Here is your chance to explore new ways to engage students in classroom literacy. Text analyzation tools as well as structured, student-centered activities will be presented that you can implement into your classroom with ease. Come learn innovative ways to differentiate that save you time and sanity. You don't want to miss this session!
  7. Strategies for Students with Learning Needs (CANCELLED)
    Wanda Routier - Audience: All
    This session will introduce several teaching strategies to use with students who have learning difficulties in literacy skills of reading comprehension, and writing.
  8. Leadership GRIT: Enduring Essentials for the Church Worker
    Jim Pingel - Audience: All
    A new leadership book is published every seven hours. Everyone knows leadership “is a thing” and important. Whether you are an administrator, teacher, coach, director, or staff person, this session will be applicable to you personally and professionally. We will examine the latest research and Scripture on the importance of personal growth (G), creating deeper relationships (R), identity (I), and being a champion of Truth (T).
  9. Teaching Digital Citizenship in an Age of Social Media
    Sarah Mayer - Audience: All
    Our students are growing up in a world of social media, apps, gaming, and digital learning. How can we teach them to live by the same values online and offline? Let’s talk about guiding them to create a positive presence in the digital world.

Sectionals Focusing on Early Childhood (Sectional A)

  1. Tinkering with STEM in Early Childhood
    Amy Lindgren - Audience: Early Childhood
    How could you design a house for the three little pigs that the wolf could never blow down? Young children are natural designers and tinkerers, solving problems they encounter in play, in books, and in nature. Beloved characters from children’s literature provide relatable STEM exploration opportunities that intrigue and engage young learners. Come tinker and play with STEM ideas sparked by children’s literature! Explore how you can facilitate design challenges in your own classroom, as we reflect on authentic examples of preschoolers, primary-aged learners, and preservice educators using this inquiry-based model.

  2. Integrated Faith-Based Curriculum
    Jessica Koch - Audience: Early Childhood
    Explore this developmentally appropriate, simple-to-implement Lutheran curriculum that brings learning about Jesus and His love beyond bible time and into all parts of the classroom and to all age levels-specifically early childhood centers.  This curriculum was born from the passion to give teachers, who might not be familiar with the Bible stories or Lutheranism, a concrete, consistent way to incorporate Jesus beyond daily Bible time while also meeting students’ developmental needs in creative and exciting ways. Audience: EC

Sectionals Focusing on Elementary Education

  1. K-2 Picture Book Roundup-Some Intriguing Titles to Add to Your Read Aloud Routine
    Heather O'Neil - Audience: Early Childhood/Elementary
    This sectional will share a selection of newly released picture books (2022-2023) linked to various content areas and socio-emotional learning topics that teachers can integrate into the classroom read-aloud. Extension and enrichment ideas will be shared with each book presented.
  2. Building Math Fact Fluency Through Games
    Nicole Muth - Audience: Elementary
    Using games in math can increase student engagement, provide visual aids, give instant feedback, and help students gain automaticity with single-digit fact families.  In this session, you will learn multiple math games that can be adapted to various standards and ability levels that require very little preparation and use supplies you are likely to have in your classroom or home.
  3. Responding to Challenging Behavior with Love and Grace
    Linda Hensel - Audience: Elementary
    Are the challenging behaviors of some students in your classroom getting you down? Have you run out of ideas for managing those students? In this session, we will discuss how to deliver individual supports for students who have the most challenging behaviors while teaching your whole class. We will discuss supports that affirm students as beloved children of God and make you feel good too!
  4. Ukulele 101!
    Katie Nevinski - Audience: Music teachers, Early Childhood, Elementary
    This session is for anyone who has ever thought it might be fun to learn the ukulele or anyone wanting to brush up on their ukulele skills! Learn ukulele basics, even if you have never touched a ukulele.  You will learn how to hold, tune, strum, and play at least 2-3 basic chords that will allow you to accompany hundreds of songs.  Beginning and advanced song packets ready to be used by yourself or in your classroom will be ready for you to takeaway and start to play. Learn why ukulele is one of the most popular instruments (*hint because it’s easy to play!) and how to in host a successful ukulele unit in your classroom.  This course is good for music teachers and any classroom teacher wanting to add music into their class.  Feel free to bring your own ukulele or one will be provided for you.

Sectionals Focusing on Middle School and High School (Sectional A)

  1. Beyond the Test: Innovative Assessment Techniques for Measuring Student Mastery in Math and other Content Areas
    Adam Paape - Audience: Middle School, High School
    Not all learners express their understanding well in the traditional assessment paradigm. While tests and quizzes are one measure of expressing knowledge, there are a whole host of other assessment techniques that allow learners to grow. This sectional will highlight strategies to push our students to increased levels of understanding.

  2. "Ugh, I Have to Teach WHAT?" Tips and Tools for Teaching Writing at the Middle and High School Level
    Jenna Roeske - Audience: Middle School, High School
    For many Lutheran educators, teaching writing is something they HAVE to do rather than WANT to do. Regardless of how much we like teaching it, however, equipping students with writing skills sets them up for success as they progress through their academic (and professional!) careers. The sectional is geared towards educators teaching writing at the middle school or early high school level. It will provide strategies and instant access to activities and resources to build a solid writing foundation for your students. Whether you are teaching writing by choice or obligation, this sectional is for you!
  3. Teaching Science with the Brain in “Mind”
    Tom Saleska - Audience: Middle School, High School
    In this presentation, participants will explore the effect of science instruction on brain structure and function (and thus learning) as it responds to novelty and creative patterns as well as to emotionally impactful classroom activities. Participants will also better understand how each of the following learning components are used to engage students in science: attention, prior knowledge, personal relevance, patterning and organization, storytelling, humor, and retrieval and rehearsal. By the end of this presentation, teachers will be more proficient and intentional at developing and executing a more student-centered science classroom.

Sectionals Focusing on Administration (Sectional A)

  1. Now that you have teachers, how do you keep them: Strategies to Increase Teacher Resilience to Improve Retention
    Chris Scudella - Audience: Administrators
    Teacher attrition negatively affects student learning and the quality of schools. During this session we will explore the top strategies that drive teacher engagement and how to incorporate these strategies into a positive school culture that promotes mentorship, professional development, and teacher retention.

  2. Coaching - Round Table Discussion led by Val Keiper
    Val Keiper, Audience: Coaches, Athletic Directors
    A panel of CUW coaches will share their thoughts about effective coaching practices and building relationships with players and parents.


Sectional B

Sectionals for Everyone (Sectional B)

  1. Truth, Identity, and Purpose in Post-Christian America
    Brad Alles -  Audience: All
    In today’s America we hear there is no truth, a person’s identity is bound in their race, class, and gender, and their purpose is to fight the oppressors. Learn why this has occurred and how to prepare students to engage the culture.

  2. Distressed to De-stressed: Becoming a More Resilient Educator
    Nicole Muth - Audience: All
    Do you feel overwhelmed by perpetual change and increasing demands on your time? All change is stressful, and stress builds resilience, but what can we learn from resilient people about how to move from distressed to de-stressed? In this session, you will apply the skills people use to be resilient and the attributes that help people face change with exercises you use for yourself or with students. Note - You will learn different exercises in the session for educators and the session for students.
  3. I’m Not Biased – I Treat All the Students the Same!
    Sandy Harris - Audience: All
    The sectional will allow teachers to think and talk about their mindset as they teach students daily. What makes a student a favorite student? What makes a student a less favorite student? Do you treat all students the same? These are just a few of the topics that will be discussed.
  4. Manipulating vs Motivating – Ten Ways to Positively Influence People
    Jim Pingel - Audience: All
    Ever felt like you were being used or manipulated? On the other hand, doesn’t it feel great when you are encouraged, supported, challenged, and motivated to use your God-given gifts to the fullest! In this sectional we will examine the cues, signs, and tactics toxic leaders use to manipulate people. We will also explore ten insights and research-based tips which reveal how to bring out the best in others and make a positive impact in other people’s lives. Whether you are an administrator, teacher, or coach at any grade level, the lessons learned will be applicable to you in your vocation.
  5. Partnering with Parents
    Val Keiper - Audience: All
    Engaging parents in their child's education has a lasting impact on more than academic achievement. Social competencies and the emotional well-being of children of also benefit from these positive relationships. Explore ways to positively engage parents and build partnerships with them.
  6. Empowering Females to Lead
    Sarah Holtan - Audience: All
    Everyone is a leader, whether you have a formal leadership title or not. You will discover how the leadership traits of authenticity, collaboration, empathy, emotional intelligence, and vulnerability are strengths in organizations. Learn how to leverage those traits to advance your organizational and professional goals. Explore the challenges of balancing professional roles with off-duty responsibilities, such as child care and household duties. You will begin to develop an action plan for your personal leadership goals. Whether you are a female or work with females, this interactive session is for you.
  7. AT in Your Pocket (CANCELLED)
    Wanda Routier - Audience: All
    This session introduces several native features of Apple mobile devices, specifically the iPhone and iPad, as assistive technology tools.  The function of built-in features provides students with powerful tools to help them in school, in life, and more.
  8. Incorporating Music into the Classroom: Creative Learning Ideas for All Teachers
    Johanna Anderson - Audience: All
    Utilizing music outside of the music classroom is an effective way to increase student motivation and engagement. Since music is a reflection of society and popular culture, it can be used to facilitate interdisciplinary connections between other core and academic subjects and to aid in the discussion of historical and social justice topics. Music also offers pathways to enhance students’ social and emotional skills. Attendees will learn about a variety of practical ways to incorporate music into the classroom, while also having the option to collaborate and share ideas with colleagues. 

Sectionals Focusing on Early Childhood (Sectional B)

  1. Beautiful Oops: Moving Beyond Crafts to Spark Creativity in Young Children
    Amy Lindgren - Audience: Early Childhood
    At this session we will consider how the types of activities that we plan for our classrooms can either promote or hinder a creative mindset. We will experience how product-focused crafts differ from process art explorations in facilitating children’s development. Finally, we will share ideas for modifying existing activities to better promote a creative mindset in all young learners.

  2. Supporting Students with Gifts and Talents
    Jennifer Becker - Audience: Early Childhood/Elementary
    Examine the reasons why teachers need to build curriculum with depth and complexity. Differentiation ideas and resources to meet the needs of the gifted and talented children will be shared so they can thrive in classrooms.
  3. Handwriting Tips and Tricks
    Meghan Watry-Christian - Audience: Early Childhood/Elementary
    This session is targeted for Grades 4K to 4th grade. Hear from a school-based occupational therapist about hand and handwriting development. Learn strategies to improve legibility in your students’ handwriting. We will talk about grip, letter formations, and lots and lots of practical strategies you can take back to your classroom for implementation next week! 
  4. Self-Regulation: The Heart of Classroom Management
    Linda Hensel - Audience: Early Childhood/Elementary
    Is your classroom disrupted by students who are quick to react, get upset easily, can’t deal with the smallest change, threaten others, and/or are oversensitive? These are all trademarks of children who have difficulty with self-regulation. We will discuss what self-regulation is and how to help your students develop more of it! 

Sectionals Focusing on Elementary Education (Sectional B)

  1. Creating the Carnival. Of the Animals!
    Katie Nevinski - Audience: Music, Pre-K, Early Elementary 
    The beloved piece of music, Carnival of the Animals by Camille Saint-Saens has been used by educators for hundreds of years. Learn the many ways to teach musical concepts, instruments, and animals through song. Practical music lessons and classroom lessons will be ready for you to take away. Relevant books, YouTube playlists, and hands-on materials will be ready for you to implement into your classroom the very next day.

  2. Integrating the Science of Teaching Reading into Classroom Practice
    Heather O'Neil - Audience: Elementary
    Are you overwhelmed by the flood of “Science of Teaching Reading” content on blogs, websites, and social media? This sectional will help you learn to navigate the key components of the science of teaching reading and how to integrate those components into your ELA curriculum, particularly phonological awareness, phonics, and comprehension.

Sectionals Focusing on Middle School and High School (Sectional B)

  1. Frameworks for connecting Faith & Learning in the classroom
    Preston Cosgrove - Audience: Middle School, High School
    Lutheran educators have the unique opportunity to bring their faith into the classroom, and given the trajectory of American education, such opportunities are increasingly important. As a result, this sectional will offer 1) A brief overview of six different approaches to how the “faith & learning” task can be applied in any middle or high school class; and 2) substantial reflection and conversation about participants’ ideas, questions, and takeaways.

  2. Mastering Math: Unleashing the Power of Learning Science in Your Classroom
    Adam Paape - Audience: Middle School, High School
    In this interactive sectional, participants will explore practical classroom strategies designed to boost long-term retention of essential mathematical concepts and procedures for student success. The session will cover a range of proven techniques, including retrieval practice, desirable difficulties, spacing, and interleaving, that can be applied in the classroom to support student learning and understanding.
  3. Teaching Science with the Brain in “Mind”
    Tom Saleska - Audience: Middle School, High School
    In this presentation, participants will explore the effect of science instruction on brain structure and function (and thus learning) as it responds to novelty and creative patterns as well as to emotionally impactful classroom activities.  Participants will also better understand how each of the following learning components are used to engage students in science: attention, prior knowledge, personal relevance, patterning and organization, storytelling, humor, and retrieval and rehearsal. By the end of this presentation, teachers will be more proficient and intentional at developing and executing a more student-centered science classroom.
  4. Desmos: The Free Math Software That’s Changing the World
    Jonny Balsman - Audience: Middle School, High School
    In the era of expensive calculators and standardized testing, math teachers can allow access for all, focus on a discovery-based instruction, and augment math in a way that students have never seen before. We will focus on the calculator, the activities, and the curriculum that can make this happen. 

Sectionals Focusing on Administration (Sectional B)

  1. Being Present in Your Leadership
    Chris Scudella -  Audience: Administrators
    As leaders we are often over taxed with any numbers of tasks. How do we stay present to assure those around us we are listening and hearing their thoughts and ideas? What does it mean to be "present" in your leadership? We will explore how a lack of presence in your leadership erodes your relationships with teachers, parents, and students. Next steps you can take to assure you presence in your leadership will be explored and practiced.

Sectional C

Sectionals for Everyone (Sectional C)

  1. An Experience First, Formalize Later Approach to Teaching Mathematics: What Can Students Tell You?
    Jonny Balsman - Audience: All
    Are we training our students to finish or to learn? Our traditional style of teaching can produce disconnected, teacher-led, linear facts. As Dan Meyer says, “If this skill is the Aspirin, how do we provide the headache?” What if our students could truly experience the concepts in math, but also in a way that fits in our tight schedules? We will explore the free math medic curricula and also practice how to learn the skills to make it our own.

  2. Distressed to De-stressed: Moving Students Towards Resilience
    Nicole Muth - Audience: All
    Have you noticed that mental health issues are becoming more prevalent in K-12 students? In this session, you will learn why, and what you can do to help students grow resilience. In this session, you will apply the skills people use to be resilient and the attributes that help people face change in exercises you use for yourself or with students. Note - You will learn different exercises in the session for educators and the session for students.
  3. Understanding Challenging Behaviors and Classroom Management Strategies
    Chris Scudella - Audience: All
    This presentation will focus on the basics behind student behaviors. Improving our understanding of functions of behavior enables us to meet the needs of students in our classrooms and apply specific strategies for the purposes of positively managing individual and group behaviors that encourage and support academic, behavioral, and social learning for all students. Additionally, we will discuss classroom structures that encourage interactions and activities to promote learning, including communication and relationships.
  4. Executive Functioning: What is it and How can I support it?
    Meghan Watry Christian - Audience: All
    This session is targeted for grades K-8. Led by a school-based occupational therapist, learn about frontal lobe development, how to promote students’ self-regulation, support attention and focus in the classroom, and develop organizational skills with your students. This session will include a variety of strategies for improving and supporting executive functioning that you can implement in your classroom right away!
  5. Multimedia in the Classroom
    Sarah Mayer - Audience: All
    Using digital media in the classroom does not have to be flashy or complicated. In this session, we will discuss the principles of good design for learning and accessibility and share tools for creating engaging lessons.
  6. You Can’t Give What You Don’t Have: Research-based Evidence for Your Health and Wellness
    Jim Pingel -  Audience: All
    In order to be a blessing and serve others, you have to make sure you are healthy and well—spiritually, physically, emotionally, psychologically, and mentally. This sectional will provide teachers and administrators research-based tips, insights, and life practices on how to keep yourself healthy and well as well as those whom you serve and work with in ministry.
  7. Breaking Down the Silos in Education
    Laura Hurtienne - Audience: All
    Consider a business owner, doctor, or mechanic using a planner with these headings: Reading, Writing, Mathematics, Art, Music, Physical Education, Science. Then imagine that the individual had about 42 minutes (or 90 if using a block schedule) to spend time with each topic. How would outreach, research, or sales occur? Yet, in education, there are often barriers between skills, creating silos. In this session, you will learn to eliminate silos, increase collaboration, and integrate subjects for a more inclusive, engaging learning experience.
  8. A Template For Creating Concise Bible-Focused Chapel Messages Every Time!
    Mark Newman - Audience: All
    It’s Simple… You’ve likely heard of “The Rule of Three,” in which three is a cornerstone structural number. The human mind is proficient at processing information in groups of three. So when considering how to write a well-crafted chapel message, use a simple three-part structure. It's Logical…Chapel messages should relate biblical truth to real life. What better way to structure a message than to present a Bible verse(s), an example of how it has been lived out/can be lived out, and then a way to apply it? It is a three-step process that makes sense and makes the chapel’s message stick in the listeners mind more easily.
  9. Getting your financial ACT together
    Kyle Chuhran - Audience: All
    Do you regularly discover that you have more month than money? Do you ever feel like your finances are controlling you rather than you controlling your finances? In this session, we will explore foundational attitudes and practices for making sound personal/family financial decisions for today and for your future. Instead of ignoring your concerns about money or letting money worries fester, take the next steps toward getting your financial ACT together.
  10. Mentally Exhausted? Recharge to be Ready!
    Sara Clemm von Hohenburg & Sandy Harris - Audience: All
    Come learn innovative, faith-based techniques to preserve your mental health throughout the school year. Strategies for implementing mental health tools within your classroom will be explored as well as opportunities for you to develop and share mental health activities. Start the school year charged up for learning!
  11. A Universal Foundation: Introduction to Universal Design for Learning (CANCELLED)
    Wanda Routier - Audience: All
    Using Universal Design for Learning (UDL) helps teachers meet student needs without requiring specific accommodations or an IEP because it provides a foundation of access for all students. Strategies and tips will be discussed.
  12. Courageous Kindness
    Katie Baganz - Audience: All
    We’ve all had to work alongside a challenging colleague, interact with *that* parent, or uncomfortably confront someone about an important issue.  In this sectional, we will explore practical strategies for how to directly engage in productive dialogue on difficult topics that we might prefer to avoid or delay.  Tapping into connections and common goals, we can embrace the courageous kindness needed to confront others as we seek unity in Christ. 
  13. AI in Education: How to Teach in a World of Generative Technology
    Jon Oldenburg - Audience: All
    In the wake of the recent AI boom, two of the most sacred elements of education have come under fire: creativity and composition. In this session, you will learn what AI is currently capable of and where it might be going in order to know what to look out for, what our classrooms should continue to value, and how we might be able to work with AI as we navigate this new education disruptor. 

Sectionals Focusing on Early Childhood (Sectional C)

  1. Mini Math Authors: Making Math Books with Young Children
    Amy Lindgren - Audience: Early Childhood
    Children use math skills every day in their daily routines, in their play, and as they engage with children’s literature. Books can provide a wonderful context for children to explore and practice math concepts, creatively problem solve, and make connections. In this session we will discover how making math books with young children can spark even deeper math connections as children playfully practice their skills and express their mathematical thinking. Join us as we create a few different math books intended to facilitate learning in various content areas such as number sense, geometry, estimation, and patterning.

  2. Fostering Critical Thinking in Young Children
    Jennifer Becker - Audience: Early Childhood
    Young children are filled with curiosity, wonder and awe. Explore ways to engage our youngest learners in activities that foster inquiry and critical thinking. 

Sectionals Focusing on Elementary Education (Sectional C)

  1. Dressing up your stories and taking them to the stage!
    Katie Nevinski - Audience: Elementary/Early Childhood
    Everyone has a beloved book or story they love to read to their class and teach the wonderful concepts and takeaways embedded in the story. What if you could take your story to the next level through adding dramatization, sound, simple props, costumes, and/or instruments? Your favorite story can become your students favorite as well as they experience it in a way they can remember. We will dramatize stories I have successfully used in my classroom and brainstorm ways for you to easily create your own. Bring your favorite story or just come with an open mind. This will be great for music teachers and elementary teachers.

Sectionals Focusing on Middle School and High School (Sectional C)

  1. Career Engagement in the Classroom
    Leah Herr - Audience: Middle School, High School
    What do you want to be when you grow up? This may be a question many of your students struggle to answer. As educators, we all play a vital role in this discovery process with our students. We will discuss strategies you can utilize, right in your classroom, to encourage and facilitate the career engagement process.

  2. Moving beyond Romeo and Juliet; Alternatives to the cannon
    Val Keiper - Audience: Middle School, High School
    Engage in a discussion about the cannon, explore options to the cannon, and consider alternatives that could be used to fully engage students.
  3. Transforming the first day of class: Leading with teaching & learning and not due dates & assignments
    Preston Cosgrove - Audience: Middle School, High School
    The purpose of this sectional is to demonstrate one method for transforming the first day of any middle or high school class with a student-led emphasis on teaching and learning. Conventional wisdom holds that the first day of class matters. But far from a mere slogan, there is evidence that an intentional, coherent approach on the first day can have lasting effects. During the sectional, participants will be engaged in an experiential, first-day simulation, followed by a reflective dialogue on their own first-day approaches.  Audience: MS/HS
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