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Newsletter February 2020

Things are gearing up for What's Your Next Step? Trainer Prep and Presenter Retreat 2020! Applications are turning into registrations and people are making travel plans. We are excited to have a couple of alumni returning as well. (Did you know alumni can return to Trainer Prep in subsequent years and pay only the cost of lodging?) Their experience and perspective will help keep the week running smoothly so we all can make the most of our time together. Preparations continue and anticipation is building. So is our appreciation for you:

...to those who have already registered and paid. Your confidence in us, in the recommendations of past participants, and in the potential for what great minds thinking together can do fills us with joy and optimism about our time with you in June.

...to you who have contacted us to say you're still working on funding. We understand that summer PD is a big commitment of capital, whether yours or your school’s. Please keep us posted. We want to help make it work. If that means paying over time, we'll come up with a plan.

...to all who’ve let us know that you're still wrestling with the calendar, to see how you'll spend your hard-earned summer time ‘off’. We know that there are many options competing for your time, including an embarrassment of CI-focused riches for teachers. Not every successful teacher feels the need to tell or teach others about what they do. But for those who have that itch, Trainer Prep and the Presenter Retreat represent an unusual opportunity for you to share and reflect on why we do what we do and how to make it accessible and appealing to others.

...to those who’ve told us that you're still negotiating with family, to see how you can best share yourself and your time between them and professional experiences that will make you a happier spouse, parent, teacher. Here too, there are many voices vying for your attention.

...to those friends who have told us that this year is not the right time, that they're waiting for What's Your Next Step? 2021. They may not be receiving this email, but we thank them too, for letting us know about their continued interest. Thank you all!


If you got a chance to read the participant feedback we shared last month, you have learned about the space where we'll live and work together in Jamestown RI. And perhaps you've already guessed which dimension this newsletter highlights— It's about...


TIME!


Trainer Prep and the new Presenter Retreat bring together a group of 20 adults for 3-6 days of intensive learning. In late June, most of us have just barely finished the school year. It’s summer. We are excited to be with colleagues and away from responsibilities at home and at school. And we bring 20 different sets of experiences, learning styles, and goals for our time together. So, getting the schedule just right for everyone is a challenge. Here’s what we’ve come up with:


During the three days of Trainer Prep, the four 90-minute sessions each day will be structured combinations of presentation; group, partner, and individual activities; reflection and feedback; and practice. The 2-day Presenter Retreat will follow a similar overall schedule, with groups and individuals choosing how to make the most of every chunk of the day.  For both groups, the evening is intentionally left open, knowing that some will want to continue discussions, some will want to practice and coach, some will want to write and reflect quietly, some will want to play games or do a puzzle, and some will need to get a good night's sleep!


Here are a few timely reflections about the pace and schedule from Trainer Prep participants in previous years:


Having time to do Tai Chi in morning or take a run really helped me to have a moment apart and create space in my head.

I'm grateful that the sessions begin and end organically with plenty of time during the day to take care of personal needs and allow for relaxation, conversation, and processing of all that we are learning.

The longer lunch break was really nice. Honestly, the time flew by. That says a lot about the content and the organization of the day.

Mindfulness breaks, Yay! These enhance our work by hitting 'reset'. They integrate everything we do, since they allow processing of information.

I thought the pacing was good, enough breaks and activities to keep the flow going without too much lecture or down time.



Will you make time for What's Your Next Step? in 2020?

We will have rolling admission until we're full. Please, please, please don't leave your decision until it's too late! When all 20 beds are claimed, registration will be closed.


So... What's your next step?

If you are ready to apply for What's Your Next Step? 2020, here is the application.

Click here for more details about the course, schedule, lodging, application, etc.

Click here to see the 2019 video [N.B. with last year's dates] showing scenes from the training in previous years. Stay tuned for our 2020 video currently in production!

If you are thinking about it but are not ready to apply, do nothing! We’ll continue to send updates to this mailing list until the course has filled (limit 18 participants). We hope to see you in June! Anny & Kirstin Whats-Your-Next-Step.org


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