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April 2017
Director's Notes
North Country's STEM Resource Partners Attend Convention
NCES in partnership with White Mountain Science Inc. has been engaging STEM educators in professional development over the past three years through a project funded by the Math Science Partnership. This year's theme was human exploration of space and the search for life in the universe. When planning out this year's sessions, Andy Weir's story of The Martian played a significant role in framing out the content. We were very excited to bring 11 of the STEM Resource Partners to the National Science Teachers Convention where they were treated to Andy's keynote. As bonus they then receiving autographed copies of the classroom edition. We weren't able to organize a full group photo, but Andy was kind enough to pause his autographing for this group shot.
Standing: Lucie Kinney - Berlin High, Patricia Dugan-Henrikson - Groveton High, Lori Langlois - NCES, Ann Guillmette - WMRHS, Sandy Poulit - Berlin Middle, and Nancy Marchand - Colebrook Elementary. Seated: Andy Weir, author of The Martian. Also attending but not photographed were Gorham Middle High teachers Jen Downs, Jen Corrigan, Sarah Clemmit, Keri Wade & Kelly Ruppel and project facilitators William Church and Steve Roberts.
The Andy Weir keynote was certainly a highlight. It was topped however, by witnessing many of our STEM Resource Partners coming to the realization that they are doing great work in STEM and ahead of many of their colleagues across the country in that respect. It's been a pleasure being a part of this project and seeing their eagerness to grapple with the NGSS engineering practices while often tackling content outside of their regular teaching areas. Kudos to our lead facilitators Williams Church and Steve Roberts for pushing us all to be leaders in STEM education.
North Country Student Film Festival
On Saturday, April 8th, the Rialto Theatre will host the 7th annual North Country Student Film Festival. There is free admission to this fun event.  Over 30 films will be showcased and trophies awarded in 10 categories. The festival gets underway at 10:00 AM. We would love to see you there!
Lori Langlois
Executive Director

Successful Inclusion of Students with Unique Learning Needs in Art and Music Classroom
This session is the last in a series for paraprofessionals that has been supported through funding from Jane's Trust. The presenter will be live at NCES in Gorham with video conference locations in Madison, Colebrook, Lisbon, and Lin-Wood.
Cost: FREE and $35 stipend for the first 40 registered paras (must be employed by a NH school).
Presenter: Deborah Stuart
Date/Time: Thursday, May 11, 2017 from 4-8 PM 
This workshop is designed for paraprofessionals and one-on-one aides working with students with special learning needs and with identified disabilities. Music and art classes are often the ones into which students are first integrated; both these areas can be effectively used to promote learning for students with different learning styles and those who do not succeed in core academic areas.
We will look at best practices for making these “specials” work well for all students, at adaptive strategies and tools, and at how to work with the art and music teachers to help them offer a wide array of ways that students can participate and learn, so that all may feel successful and grow in skills and enjoyment
Our look at successful inclusion is based on Universal Design for Learning, a method of approaching teaching and learning that takes into account a wide variety of learning styles and needs and focuses on effective paths to student engagement. It is also a practical and effective basis for offering students different ways to show what they know and are learning.
The workshop will be interactive, using real-life examples which include a wide array of differentiation. Time will be given to addressing questions about specific challenges, and peer exchange will be part of the workshop.
Register here.

Competency-Based Assessment in the Arts
Presenter: Marcia McCaffrey, Arts Consultant, NH Dept. of Ed
Date: May 10, 2017 from 8:30 AM to 3:00 PM 
Location: NCES, Gorham
Cost: $85 includes coffee and lunch
Register: Online or contact the AANNH (see below)
Join your colleagues for an all-day workshop on competency-based assessment in the arts. This workshop has been created in response to the many questions teachers are asking about how to implement and assess the New Hampshire Arts Model Competencies. The day will be a combination of instruction, discovery, learning from each other, discussion, and activity. Emphasis will be placed on applying Universal Design for Learning and multiple modalities as an assessment strategy.
  • Learn what a performance task is and what goes into designing a valid and reliable performance task.
  • Examine Model Cornerstone Assessments and accompanying student work.
  • Respond to resources on Universal Design for Learning and arts assessment.
  • In small groups, discuss main components of a task and analyze tasks to determine what is being measured.
  • Discuss the difference between scoring tasks and grading tasks, especially for students with individualized learning plans (IEP’s)
  • Get tools to help identify rigor and establish alignment of performance tasks.
  • Learn about the New Hampshire Arts PACE work.
  • Practice scoring student work.
  • Get acquainted with task bank resources from other states.
For questions about content contact Marcia McCaffrey at 603-271-3193 or For questions about registration and logistics contact Frumie Selchen at 603-323-7302 or
Presented by the New Hampshire Arts Learning Network as part of the “Arts in Inclusive Learning” partnership of the Arts Alliance of Northern New Hampshire and VSA New Hampshire, offered under a contract with the John F. Kennedy Center. Also offered in Concord on May 4th.

Addressing Problem Behavior in School & Home Settings

Sponsored by the Foundation for Autism Training and Education and White Mountains Community College, Thomas Caffrey will present this this two-day workshop on May 4 and 5 focused on the assessment and treatment of problem behavior maintained by the two most common functions: social negative reinforcement and social positive reinforcement. The institute will take place at WMCC in Berlin.
More details and registration found here. 

Save-the-Dates for STEM PD this summer
NCES has exciting STEM professional development in the works for this summer. More details next month, but hold these dates if these may be of interest to you.
High Altitude Balloon: Edge of Space Institute 
Launch a science experiment to 100,000 feet!
Dates: July 24-26, 2017

LEGO Robotics and Coding
Basic to advanced skill building in mechanisms, sensors, and code.
Dates: July 31 - Aug 1, 2017

STEM Builder Skills
Build your skills to build better STEM projects in the classroom
Dates: August 3-4, 2017

Designing a Culture of Learning - Two-day Institute
In partnership with the Education Resources Consortium, White Mountains Regional School District is hosting two intense days of provocation and possibilities in projects, inquiry, teamwork and leadership on June 26-27, 2017 at WMRHS.
In the traditional “culture of teaching” the educator is primary the actor and the student generally a passive respondent. The times now demand a critical new orientation, an evolution of practice to a “culture of learning”. This conference will engage educators in using problems and projects, infuse technology and inquiry techniques, and develop skills in coaching, connecting, and advising students to push for deeper learning.
Outcomes and activities-
  • Increase teacher skills and knowledge base for inquiry learning, animating STEM programming.
  • Identify key elements of teacher support and supervision in a culture of learning.
  • Design high-interest, authentic projects and thematic units to increase student engagement and motivation.
  • Infuse state-of-the-art technology tools and applications to advance student voice and ownership.
  • Create a positive context for professional culture leading to key next steps in school re-design.
Host: Michael Berry White Mountains Regional High School
Presenters: Larry Myatt, Wayne Ogden & Katrina Kennett from ERC
FOR: STEM & project-learning teachers, grade level & integrated curriculum teams, epartment heads & administrators 
FORMAT: 3-person teams including 1 administrator
COST: $600 per 3-person team
For registration, payment and questions, email


A few slots remain in latest professional development opportunity through the NCES and WMSI partnership. 
Many of you may already be engaging with the "Hour of Code" activity through The intent of this PD opportunity is to give North Country Code Leaders the skills and curriculum ideas to bring back and teach to their colleagues in order to take the school to the next steps beyond the "hour of code".
The purpose of this professional development series is to begin integrating coding literacy in the elementary grades as a key element of developing robust computer science programs K-12. The PD is a "train the code leader" model and focus on curriculum for K-8. Depending on the structure of your school(s)/district, this could involve a high school educator if there is a means for to work on implementation in the earlier grades.
Ideally we are seeking two person teams per school to participate. The commitment would be 8 evenings, one a month at NCES beginning in the fall of 2017.
Principals should contact NCES to reserve seats for their school participant(s). Registration is first-come, first serve.
Learn more

NHSTE Chris Nelson Memorial Grant Program
Intended to fund classroom, school or district projects, these grants can provide funds for equipment, content, professional development, and mentorship.
Projects must have a foundation in the use of emerging instructional technologies to assist and enhance content delivery.
Learn more.

Looking for help with substance abuse or mental illness but don't know where to turn?
Regional Access Point Services is a statewide network, accessible by phone or in person to help New Hampshire residents struggling with addiction, to get the timely, supportive services they need; helping both individuals and families navigate the complex systems of care to real solutions. Call 1-844-711-HELP or visit:

UNH STEM Educators Summit
The STEM Educators Summit.  at UNH Law, Concord on May 6, 2017 will feature Dr. Chris Dede, the Timothy E. Wirth Professor in Learning Technologies of the Harvard Graduate School of Education as the keynote speaker.


Active Shooter Violent Intruder Response Instructor Certification Training
The Lincoln NH Police Department is hosting a two-day training on April 24 & 25th.
Learn more

Interested in CS / Coding Meetups?
The Office of STEM education is looking to host monthly meetups in Concord with weekly virtual office hours for educators, students, parents, and job-changers interested in learning more about computer science (CS) and coding.  
For more information:
Educators can earn CEU’s and start building a portfolio for the new Computer Science educator certification.


The Campaign to Change Direction has made the above rack-cards available to all students and teachers in NH schools. For the North Country, these were distributed through the superintendents. Learn more about this campaign to change the culture of mental health in America. 

Comprehensive School Mental Health System Assessment
“Over the past several years, we have seen the role of the public school system expand to meet the needs of the students who come through the door each day,” commented Mary Steady, Administrator of the Office of Student Wellness at the NH Department of Education. “These needs are often fundamental to the student’s ability to succeed and yet, our system is not always prepared to handle them. In an environment of limited resources, the SHAPE system has been an invaluable tool; supporting districts as they assess their current approach to comprehensive school mental health and to develop plans for strengthening and sustaining these efforts.” 
Learn more at 

The annual reading/writing conference for educators dedicated to the memory and legacy of Donald Graves will be held on Saturday, April 8, 2017, 8:30 to 2:00 at Kennett High School. Presented in partnership by the Arts Alliance of Northern New Hampshire and Conway School District, the 2017 conference features Katie Muhtaris & Kristin Ziemke, authors of Amplify: Digital Teaching and Learning in the K-6 Classroom, published by Heinemann.
Learn more


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Your tax deductible gift helps support the work of the organization in being a leader in providing professional development and educational services, facilitating partnerships and fostering collaborations that benefit member schools, advocating for resources for teachers and students, and continuously creating opportunities that enhance education in the North Country.

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Contact Information
North Country Education Services
300 Gorham Hill Road
Gorham, NH 03581 
NCES  is an equal opportunity employer and provider. 
North Country Education Services  |  300 Gorham Hill Road  |  Gorham, NH 03581  |
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