Welcome to Caravan of Knowledge!

This special event occurs in Kazakhstan to support innovative practices in teaching and learning. Through this event, teachers from all over Kazakhstan are exploring and planning ways to implement powerful practices that bring alive STEM and Project Based Learning experiences so that students build agency skills and take the lead in their learning.

A collection of international expert educators share their experience with implementation and support schools with successful practices in a variety of topics. See the schedule and descriptions below. Resources from these webinars will be made available after the event has concluded.


 Webinar Descriptions – Webinar ScheduleSpeaker Bios

Webinar Descriptions

Project Based Learning Series by John McCarthy

Participate in this series to learn about PBL and build a framework for engaging students in deeper learning through authentic learning experiences. Explore different aspects of what makes PBL a strong vehicle for learning STEM related experiences. By the end of this series you will have an outline for a PBL unit.

  • PBL: Management – Student Voice
  • Post Tasks
    • Watch two new videos from STEM
    • Work on pages 3-4 of the PBL Template


Level-Up Your Online and Blended Instructional Practice Through the Lens of the SAMR Framework by Dayna Laur

Online or blended learning is here to stay, and we must embed high-level uses of technology in our instruction. In this session, explore how online tools have the power to develop learner agency and support teacher practice through the SAMR Framework that redefines learning. The use of these countless free versions of online tools engages and empowers our learners to reach their full potential.


Ignite Learning with STEM and PBL by Cheryl Boes

How can the use of projects inspire students to apply mathematical and scientific thinking? Join this webinar to explore how you can enhance the learning experience for all by incorporating STEM and project based learning (PBL) principles. Research-based STEM instruction promotes critical thinking skills, innovation and science literacy. The latest ed tech tools, strategies and resources will be shared to help you find a learning path to engage your students.


Using Design Thinking to promote student agency in Stem Education by Ted Malfyt

As education continues to promote student centered experiences that build important success skills, it is important to develop tangible tools, routines and structures that support the actual teaching practices. In this session participants will explore design thinking within stem projects to promote student agency. Design Thinking is a structured process that helps support the work of solving complex and difficult problems. As a result, fresh looks into observation, discovery and wonder will anchor the important work of helping each student find their voice and transition into more than problem solvers… problem finders! 

Resources (Handout)

These design thinking sites include valuable methods, protocols and ideas to incorporate into your project sequence.
Design Kit
– Design Thinking For Educators

This website is a great place to access protocols and games to use in your project to help students move from beginning to end.
– Gamestorming 

When it comes to providing students a chance to use their observation skills to drive the process, these resources provide a lot of guidance and inspiration!
Nature Journaling With John Muir Laws
– Investigating Evidence: The Cornell Lab


FOSIL (Framework Of Skills for Inquiry Learning) An approach to learning through Inquiry by Elizabeth Hutchinson

Inquiry-based learning supports independence and critical thinking, but without a process to ensure our students have learnt the practical skills in a structured way it is like asking them to run before they can walk. FOSIL is a well researched and used model of the inquiry process that provides a practical and usable inquiry-based learning model for all year groups and subjects. In this session, we will unpack FOSIL as an approach to learning, demonstrating how the different stages work whilst giving you access to resources and practical ideas to get you started.


  • IFLA. (2015). School LIbrary Guidelines. (S.-J. B. IFLA School Libraries Standing Committee, Editor) Retrieved August 15, 2020, from https://www.ifla.org/publications/node/9512
    IFLA is the International Federation of Library Associations. This website not only gives you access to the School Library Guidelines explaining the importance of school libraries and librarians within the curriculum but also provides a plan of action to ensure they are used to their full potential
  • New York State Information Fluency Continuum. (2020). Assesments by Grade. Retrieved August 15, 2020, from New York State Information Fluency Continuum : https://slsa-nys.libguides.com/ifc/gradeassessments
    This website provides resources that can be linked to the FOSIL resources to give you access to assessment resources needed to gauge understanding in the skills taught. This huge list of assessment resources supports teaching inquiry learning within your topic and guides you to the skills that your students need to succeed.
  • Teentech. (2020). Teentech Awards. Retrieved August 15, 2020, from Teentech: https://www.teentech.com/teentech-awards/
    The Teentech Awards encourages students to enter a competition with an innovative idea they want to explore and share. Students need to demonstrate not only their idea but the research that has gone into it in order to establish if the idea will work.
  • The FOSIL Group. (2019). Home. Retrieved August 15, 2020, from The FOSIL Group: https://fosil.org.uk/
    This website was set up in 2019 not only provides access to the FOSIL cycle and .resources that are free to use and can be edited with credit but also a forum for support. There are now over 200 people signed up to this website which include, teachers librarians and academics who all provide support and advice on moving forward with using FOSIL within the curriculum.
  • Toerien, D. (2019, March 29). Learning to Predict the Future by inventing IT – TeenTech Awards. Retrieved August 15, 2020, from Talking Books: https://slgtalkingbooks.com/2019/03/29/learning-to-predict-the-future-by-inventing-it-teentech-awards/
    Darryl Toerien, founder of FOSIL, explains the importance of inquiry based learning within a STEM project. The Teentech awards enables students to run open inquiries allowing them to use and demonstrate the skills of FOSIL throughout their project to great success.

Edcamp: Empowering Students through Voice and Choice by Janea Menicucci

In this session, Educators will learn the power of EdCamp. How to run an unconference for teachers as well as students. Learn how to set up and successfully run an Edcamp in which the students/ teachers become the teacher. Students/ Educators come with a question, a problem or an idea to share. These are then taken and matched to build sessions. Along with learning about Edcamp, I will share how you can use Flipgrid to empower students’ voices and icorportate this free tool into an EdCamp. 

Resources (Handout)

  • Presentation: View my presentation.
  • Session Board: This is a sample of a digital session board. It is one that can be easily recreated and used with educators and students.
  • Sample EdCamp Site: This is the site we have created in New Mexico for Educators to refer back to for resources and notes from the sessions they attended. 
  • Flipgrid.com: Free resource to use with Educators, Students, Administrators. Use video recordings as a discussion board. Flipgrid: Try it out. Leave me a message. See how easy iHandoutt is. 
  • Slidesmania: These are amazing Powerpoint and Google Slides templates that can be used for educational purposes. 
  • EdCamp Foundation: Learn all about hosting an EdCamp


Open Educational Resources: Open or Free? Which will it be? by Gina Loveless

This session will introduce participants to Open Education Resources (OER). We will explore the difference between OER and Free resources as well as discuss copyright, fair use, and creative commons licensing. I will share stories of why schools that are switching to OER and the benefits for students and schools. 


 Webinar Descriptions – Webinar ScheduleSpeaker Bios

Webinar Schedule – All times reflect the time zone in Astana, Kazakhstan

Time Aug. 17 Aug. 18 Aug. 19 Aug. 20 Aug. 21
8:00 AM Open Educational Resources: Open or Free? Which will it be? by Gina Loveless gloveles@gmail.com  Ignite Learning with STEM and PBL by Cheryl Boes cboes@mac.com  Level-Up Your Online and Blended Instructional Practice Through the Lens of the SAMR Framework by Dayna Laur daynalaur@gmail.com  Using Design Thinking to promote student agency in Stem Education  by Ted Malefyt tmalefyt@gmail.com 
9:00 AM Using Design Thinking to promote student agency in Stem Education by Ted Malefyt tmalefyt@gmail.com  Ignite Learning with STEM and PBL by Cheryl Boes cboes@mac.com  Level-Up Your Online and Blended Instructional Practice Through the Lens of the SAMR Framework  by Dayna Laur daynalaur@gmail.com    Open Educational Resources: Open or Free? Which will it be?  by Gina Loveless gloveles@gmail.com 
10:00 AM Edcamp: Empowering Students through Voice and Choice by Janea Menicucci


    Edcamp: Empowering Students through Voice and Choice  by Janea Menicucci menicucci@explorelearn.org 
11:00 AM FOSIL (Framework Of Skills for Inquiry Learning) An approach to learning through Inquiry by Elizabeth  Hutchinson ehutchinson44@gmail.com FOSIL (Framework Of Skills for Inquiry Learning) An approach to learning through Inquiry by Elizabeth  Hutchinson ehutchinson44@gmail.com
  PBL Series by John McCarthy – jmccarthy@openingpaths.org 
5:00 PM PBL: Introduction PBL: Foundation Steps PBL: Driving Questions PBL: Management, pt. 1 PBL Management, pt. 2


 Webinar Descriptions – Webinar ScheduleSpeaker Bios

Speaker Bios

John McCarthy, EdS – @JMcCarthyEdS

John McCarthy is a teacher, author of So All Can Learn: A practical guide to Differentiation, prolific writer, consultant and advocate for student voice and agency in their learning. He supports school cultures on improving leadership, teacher and learner capacity with instructional practices, including Project Based Learning, Differentiation, and Student Engagement. Over the years, John successfully helps teachers and administrators internationally to design and implement structures that benefit students taking more ownership of their learning and becoming the future leaders and entrepreneurs. He helps them connect pedagogical concepts into practical skill sets for successful implementation. He works with schools across the United States, and internationally, including Kazakhstan. Explore free resources found at his company, Opening Paths – www.OpeningPaths.org 


Cheryl Boes, EdS – @boesca

Cheryl Boes is an educator with over 20 years of experience working with children and teachers. As a classroom teacher, she connected the curriculum with hands-on projects to promote creativity and independence among her students. Cheryl has served as a facilitator for professional development with a passion for helping teachers examine how ed tech tools can improve efficiency and engagement in the classroom. Currently, Cheryl serves as a K-6 media specialist and an instructor for online classes for educators. She is an Apple Distinguished Educator, a member of Discovery Education’s STAR Educator cohort and trained in Franklin Covey’s Leader in Me principles. Cheryl enjoys collaborating with teachers to improve the learning experiences for all students. 


Elizabeth Hutchinson, MSc., FCLIP, BEM – @Elizabethutch

Elizabeth Hutchinson is a Chartered Fellow of CILIP. She worked for the Guernsey Schools’ Library Service from 2003 and was appointed Head of Service in 2014. She is now an Independent trainer and Adviser for school libraries. Runner up in the 2016 LILAC Information Literacy awards and shortlisted again this year. She was awarded the BEM in this year New Years Honours for services to libraries. She is an international presenter, renowned blogger and writes for CILIP Information Professional. She is Vice-Chair of the Great School Libraries working party and in her spare time runs an online CPD forum for school library staff called #LibraryStaffLoveLearning.


Dayna Laur, ABD – @daylynn

Dayna Laur’s arc of professional learning began in 1998 as a social studies teacher and career academy coordinator and grew to include special education, Advanced Placement, and adult education. Currently, Dayna’s doctoral-level work focuses on the research behind connecting learners to technical experts as they leverage their value-added feedback in order to improve authentic challenge outcomes. Specifically, she is interested in the ways in which these connections can occur virtually to overcome the logistical challenges many rural schools experience.  Since 2008, Dayna’s used her diverse facilitation and coaching expertise to interact, globally, with pre-K to post-secondary professionals. At Project ARC, as a co-founder, Dayna strives to empower educators and their learners by implementing authentic learning experiences, a topic she pioneered in her 2013 book, Authentic Learning Experiences: A Real-World Approach to PBL. Her most recent publications Authentic Project-Based Learning in Grades 4-8 (and 9-12): Standards-Based Strategies and Scaffolding for Success were released in late 2019. 


Gina Loveless, MAET

Gina Loveless has over 30 years of educational technology experience in K-12 education in the United States. She has been a coach, teacher, instructional technology coach, data specialist, and technology director. She currently holds a position with the State of Michigan (United States) as an Educational Technology Consultant and oversees the state Open Education Resource platform and Educational Technology Competencies (MiTECS). She is also a current Board member and Past President of the Michigan Association of Computer Users in Learning.


Ted Malfyt, BS – @TedMalefyt

Ted Malefyt is a middle school science teacher for the STREAM school which is a joint effort between Hamilton Community Schools (West Michigan) and the Outdoor Discovery Center Education Network.  STREAM school places students in a gold standard PBL environment outdoors while using design thinking concepts to help drive sustained inquiry and student agency. Additionally, Ted has taught a local program where teachers work with high school and middle school age students solving real world problems at community businesses. Away from teaching, Ted provides PBL support for schools as a National Faculty member of PBL Works and Design Thinking support as a consultant for Advanced Learning Partnerships. Lastly,Ted supports the work being done with the Outdoor Discovery Center in bringing the natural world into the authentic context of teaching and learning in classrooms across the state of Michigan.  


Janea Menicucci, MA – @Janeamenicucci

Janea Menicucci, MA: has been a master educator for 20 years. She works for Explore Academy  as the Director of Informational/ Educational Technology. She helps teachers and schools integrate technology in their classrooms.  She is an Apple Distinguished Educator and Google Certified Educator Level 2. She incorporates her background in Universal Design for Learning in all of her professional development. She is an active member with ISTE, Chair of Professional Development for the New Mexico Chapter (NMSTE),  Co Founder of EdCamp NM and  Treasurer for the NM ASCD chapter.