Institute for Educational Development

With the challenges presented by the coronavirus (COVID-19), all live in-person events from March 17 – May 21 are moving to an online format. Learn More

This event will now be presented as a live interactive online event.

Participants will receive an email with access instructions four to five days prior to the event. Please email us at if you haven't received this email.

Increasing Student Engagement and Learning in FIRST GRADE and SECOND GRADE

NEW Seminar Presented By
Kelly Harmon

Outstanding Teacher and National Presenter

Specifically Designed for First Grade and Second Grade Teachers, Paraprofessionals and Administrators

  • Practical, innovative ways to accelerate the learning of your first and second grade students
  • Enhance the learning environment for your first and second graders
  • Specific ways to develop a growth minded culture and stronger relationships with your students and their families
  • Receive an extensive resource handbook and access to Kelly's e‐handbook packed full of timesaving ideas, tips, tools and proven strategies to develop your students' literacy and math skills while increasing the fun of teaching and learning in first and second grades

Practical Strategies

Learn how to innovate and inspire your first and second graders in this NEW strategy-packed seminar by Kelly Harmon, an international educational consultant with more than 25 years of experience working with primary students. You will discover how to refine your classroom by empowering learners using the most effective, cutting-edge, research-based instructional strategies and activities for increasing student learning in first and second grades.

You will learn dozens of ideas for working with all students, from struggling to high performing, along with ways to continually monitor and adjust instruction based on student results. You will leave this outstanding seminar with renewed enthusiasm for teaching and learning as well as a wealth of ideas for innovating the learning opportunities for your first and second grade students. Join Kelly for fast-paced day packed with the best research-based strategies to increase achievement for your first and second grade students and walk away with an extensive resource handbook packed with dozens of practical, easy-to-implement strategies.

Ten Key Benefits of Attending

  1. Multiple Strategies to Strengthen Reading Skills
    How to accelerate your first and second graders' decoding and comprehension skills … Discover best practices for helping your students become better readers
  2. Effective Ways to Improve Math Skills
    Maximize your first and second graders' learning of math skills … Keys to helping your students be more successful in learning math
  3. Social and Emotional Learning for Better Behavior and Learning
    Learn the next steps in helping first and second graders manage their emotions, resolve conflicts and make responsible decisions … How to significantly reduce classroom behavior issues
  4. Classroom Tested Interventions that Work
    Effective powerful interventions to help at-risk first and second graders … The keys to more effective conferring and small group feedback to help struggling first and second graders be more successful
  5. Strengthen Your Classroom Environment to Elevate Student Progress
    Innovative ways to modify your first or second grade classroom … Discover ways to incorporate flexible seating, independent centers and use technology to enhance learning
  6. NEW Children's Literature Perfect for First Grade and Second Grade
    Discover the best new children's books, perfect for first grade and second grade … New books to increase student engagement and learning across the curriculum
  7. Use Art, Music and Movement
    Practical, fun ways to help first graders and second graders learn concepts and skills using art and music … Proven movement ideas to increase focus and engage your students
  8. Using Games and Student Choice to Elevate and Maximize Students' Thinking
    Maximize your first and second graders' strategic thinking … Increase engagement and strengthen fluency
  9. New Curriculum Integration Strategies to Improve Student Achievement in Less Time
    Timesaving, easy-to-use integration techniques … Use of mentor texts, strategic reading groups and multi-modal text sets to develop student schema, make connections and strengthen your students' skills
  10. Receive a Comprehensive First and Second Grade Resource Handbook
    Examine multiple free materials to extend background knowledge and content … Dozens of free resources to target key skills all first and second graders need

Specific Topics

Here's what you'll learn:
  • Children's books perfect for use with your first and second graders as you teach executive skills, habits of mind, mindfulness and more
  • Use music to energize and reinforce reading, math, science and social studies content
  • How to strengthen your learning environment into a novel, safe space to maximize learning
  • Use quick formative assessments that allow you to take action quickly and close the daily learning gap
  • Create interdisciplinary text sets to integrate all content areas
  • Use quick writing to activate prior knowledge and get first and second graders thinking critically about topics
  • Use math and language games to develop fluency and strategic thinking
  • Create engaging vocabulary activities to build first and second graders' conceptual knowledge
  • Use read alouds to teach the key skill of about mindfulness
  • Teach the critical thinking skills – observing, describing, classifying and identifying similarities and differences
  • Use reader's theater to develop fluency and comprehension with your first and second graders
  • Teach the key social and emotional skills your students need to succeed
  • Learn how to engage first and second graders using an informational book-a-day
  • Organize first and second graders to work more productively in groups

A Message from Your Seminar Leader

Dear Colleague:

Twenty-nine years ago, I started my career in an impoverished district as a first-grade teacher. Faced with students who lacked language comprehension and background knowledge, I resolved to learn everything I could about how to reach and teach every child through creative, meaningful, and fun experiences that capture students' interests and curiosity. Now we know so much more about how the brain learns and how emotions impact learning. As a teacher and instructional coach working with primary grade students, I have learned and refined dozens of innovative, research-based strategies and techniques for accelerating student learning. My goal for this day is to demonstrate the best-of-the-best of these exemplary activities and ideas with you.

During our day together, we will cover dozens of strategies, ideas and activities you can use to teach in ways that will make a significant difference for your students.

  • A wealth of highly effective, timesaving strategies for refining your learner-centered classroom
  • Outstanding ideas, ready-to-use activities and a variety of resources for assessing and teaching in innovative ways across the curriculum
  • Ideas for integrating learning and double-dipping to save time and deepen learning

I am truly excited to offer dozens of ideas, resources, tips and suggestions you can take back to your students and implement immediately. Please join me for a jam-packed day of creative, fun learning experiences that promise to increase all your students' achievement in first and second grade.

Kelly Harmon

P.S. You will learn dozens of specific instructional strategies you can use to greatly increase the success of your first and second grade students.

Who Should Attend

First Grade and Second Grade Teachers, Paraprofessionals and Administrators

Special Benefits of Attending

  1. Extensive Grades 1 and 2 Resource Handbook:
    Each participant will receive an extensive Grades 1 and 2 resource handbook specifically designed for this seminar. The handbook includes:
    • New, classroom‐tested methods that increase first and second graders' math, science, reading, writing, listening and speaking skills
    • Current, innovative strategies for developing a student-centered culture where first and second graders love to learn
    • The latest children's books and multi-modal text resources ideal for use in first and second grades
    • Practical, ready-to-use activities to help your first and second graders meet and exceed your state standards
  2. Meet and Share:
    This seminar provides a wonderful opportunity for participants to meet and share ideas with other educators interested in increasing student engagement and learning in their first and second grade classroom.
  3. Consultation Available:
    Kelly Harmon will be available at the seminar for consultation regarding your questions and the unique needs of your own first and second grade classroom.
  4. Semester Credit Option:
    Brandman University Logo Graduate level professional development credit is available with an additional fee and completion of follow up practicum activities. Details for direct enrollment with Brandman University, part of the Chapman University system, will be available at the seminar.
  5. Meet Inservice Requirements:
    At the end of the program, each attendee will receive a certificate of participation that may be used to verify hours of participation in meeting continuing education requirements.