K-2 Learning Conference: The Most Magnificent Thing
(All NEW Content)

Register now!

April 12, 2016
8:30 am – 3:30 pm
Irving Convention Center – 500 W. Las Colinas Blvd., Irving, TX 75039

Learning is about trying things that don’t always work the first time. Learning is about making magnificent mistakes and making lots of connections. Come learn with us how there is value in not getting it right the first time, how a new perspective can help problem solve, and how to rekindle joy in learning. Help our youngest learners explore the importance of rethinking what they already thought, reexamining the problem, trying it from another angle, and making it their own.

After the opening keynote, we will explore magnificent ideas in
Math, ELAR, Social Studies, Science, Special Education,
and leadership sessions. Anchoring on the state standards,
sessions will focus on how to:

  • access learning by doing something in more than one way
  • create a solid foundation for success in upper elementary and beyond
  • help students make learning their own

Join us for a marvelous time!

Session titles include:

  • The Magnificent Thing about Becoming an Independent Reader
  • Using Shared Reading (and Writing) in Magnificent Ways
  • The Most Magnificent Story: America’s Story
  • The Most Magnificent People in American History
  • The Magnificent Thing About Flexible Thinking in Mathematics
  • Designing Magnificent Mathematics Instruction
  • Ready, Set, Engage, Think!
  • Little Thinkers, Big Ideas!
  • Magnificent in the Making: Special Education K-2
  • Finding Parts of the Wrong Things that are Really Quite RIGHT: Magnificent Mistakes

Scholastic Book Fair

Learn how Scholastic Book Fairs can assist in your plan to increase students success in reading. Find content area resources and fun titles for K-2 in the book fair. Learn more about two free programs available to get your students reading in class and at home. Remember to sign up for the giveaway and you could head home with a basket full of resources to stock your classroom! Everyone is a winner with a $5 certificate to use at the fair. Cash, checks, and credit cards will all be accepted.


7:30 a.m. – 8:30 a.m. Participant Check-in and Coffee
8:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m. Keynote Session –
The Most Magnificent Thing About Young Learners
9:30 a.m. – 9:45 a.m. Break/Transition
9:45 a.m. – 10:45 a.m. Session 1
10:45 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. Break
11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Session 2
12:00 p.m. – 1:15 p.m. Lunch on Your Own
1:15 p.m. – 2:15 p.m. Session 3
2:15 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. Break/Transition
2:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. Session 4


Booking Your Hotel for the Conference


Holiday Inn Express Irving Convention Center

333 W. John Carpenter Frwy, Irving, Texas
972.910.0302 (TEPSA & lead4ward K-2 Learning Conference)

  • $115 Single/Double plus tax
  • Cut-off date: March 28, 2016

Book Now–>


Omni Mandalay, Dallas, TX

221 East Los Colinas Blvd., Dallas/Irving, Texas 75039

  • $135 Single/Double plus tax
  • Cut-off date: March 14, 2016
  • Complimentary internet

Book Now–>

**(don’t forget your tax-exempt forms)


Session Leaders

Ervin Knezek

Texas-born lifelong educator, Ervin Knezek, Ed.D., is Founder, Chief Education Officer, and Teacher at lead4ward. Ervin works with educators at all levels in designing and implementing learning systems to meet ever-increasing standards for students. A driving force in supporting what is best for Texas students, Ervin is regarded as one of the leading visionaries in Texas education. He has inspired and motivated educators throughout Texas with his creative and strategic approaches. Read more–>

Justin Richardson

Bringing years of district leadership experience, Justin Richardson is the newest member of the lead4ward family. He is passionate about engaging, challenging, and supporting educators to create something new and amazing! He believes our purpose as educators is to bring out the greatness in others. Prior to joining lead4ward, Justin served as Executive Director of Curriculum and Professional Development for Canyon ISD. In this role Justin developed and led the implementation of Professional Learning Communities, curriculum alignment, assessment and data analysis processes, and intervention systems.

Nancy Crouch

Nancy is an experienced educational consultant who works with state agencies, education service centers, and school districts in developing and implementing teaching and learning systems. Read more–>

Jodi Denton

Social Studies enthusiast, Jodi Denton, M.Ed., serves as one of lead4ward’s content specialists. Jodi works with teachers and instructional support teams to meet the increasingly complex requirements for student success. Read more–>

Jenna Shinners

Jenna Shinners, M.Ed., has devoted her life and career to sharing her passion of learning. As a lead4ward consultant, she works with school districts and education service centers in the areas of science curriculum and instruction. Read more–>

Amy Anderson

Lifelong educator and learner, Amy Anderson, Ph.D., is an experienced educational consultant who works with campuses, school districts, and education service centers in the areas of curriculum, instruction, and English language arts and reading. Read more–>

Jayme Alexander

Jayme’s vocation has been serving special populations for over 15 years. She has had the pleasure of learning from students with both high- and low-incidence disabilities in settings ranging from resource classrooms and inclusion to consultation and outreach. Read more–>

Session Information


The Most Magnificent Thing About Young Learners


The Magnificent Thing about Becoming an Independent Reader
Have you wondered how to build stamina and independence with your youngest readers? Do your littles apply what you’ve taught them about reading? Come investigate how an independent reader’s mat can support your young readers as they apply comprehension strategies during independent reading. Yes they can visualize, retell important events, and share what they’ve read as they become magnificently independent!

Using Shared Reading (and Writing) in Magnificent Ways
How often do you utilize shared reading and writing in your K-2 classroom? Do you want to rev up this instructional routine to increase rigor and transfer? During this session we’ll think through revisiting a shared text over several days to deepen young students’ understanding. We’ll investigate the structure of 1 text for 5 days with the routines of Share It, Retell It, Study It, Innovate It, Re-visit It – What a magnificent plan!

GENERAL – Using Science Examples

Ready, Set, Engage, Think!
Managing the active K-2 classroom can be a challenge! This workshop will provide easy tips to help organize all the “stuff” that is involved in creating student-centered stations.

  • Participate in over 20 active and engaged stations with a focus on the process standards
  • Learn about how process standards help foster thinking and support STAAR tested grades
  • Use lead4ward resources to help plan integration of process standards

Little Thinkers, Big Ideas!
The K-2 Classroom is full of inquisitiveness and wonderment. Let’s use that natural curiosity to:

  • Anchor K-2 teaching and learning in rigor, engagement, and make natural connections to assessed grades
  • Explore how rigor does not mean “make it more difficult” for the primary learner
  • Model how sometimes there is more than one way to reach a solution
  • Foster creative thinking and questioning in young learners
  • Use lead4ward resources to help with vertical alignment and scaffolding up
  • Participate and make plans from activities and hands-on stations shared in this workshop


Finding Parts of the Wrong Things that are Really Quite RIGHT: Magnificent Mistakes
A principal and team of teachers set out to make The Most Magnificent Thing, but after much hard work, the result is not what they had in mind. How can we persist through the not-right things to find clarity? Join us as we investigate how we respond when we (leaders) make mistakes, how we anticipate (student) mistakes, and explore what resources we can use to make the most of our mistakes.


The Magnificent Thing About Flexible Thinking in Mathematics
According to Albert Einstein, “We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.” Many of our young learners struggle with the use of the traditional algorithm when learning how to add and subtract. Why not “saw, glue, and adjust” that way of thinking to come up with a more “magnificent” way to problem solve. Come “tinker, hammer, and chew” through some alternative ways to view addition and subtraction to foster flexibility, accuracy, and efficiency in the minds of our young learners.

Designing Magnificent Mathematics Instruction
The recipe for a magnificent math lesson is a taste of ACCESS, a pinch of RIGOR, and a sprinkle of TRANSFER. Initiate my learning (ACCESS), let me think more about it (RIGOR), and let me experience my learning in a new setting (TRANSFER) will yield magnificence in a math classroom. This session will model this design by taking the good ideas surrounding the teaching of addition/subtraction and evolve it into one magnificent lesson.


The Most Magnificent Story: America’s Story
“There’s always room for a story that can transport people to another place.” (J.K. Rowling) Going back in history is like going to another place, and America has an amazing story to tell. In this session, we will explore opportunities for students to re-tell the stories of significant historical figures in fun and creative ways utilizing various technology.

The Most Magnificent People in American History
George Washington Carver believed, “when you do the common things in life in an uncommon way, you will command the attention of the world.” Command the attention of your students while teaching about significant historical figures by using artifacts and costumes. Bring history and learning alive! This session will explore historical biographies and historical thinking skills in the most uncommon ways.


Magnificent in the Making: Special Education K-2
Sometime little learners enter our school system with some big struggles. Research tells us that the one-third of entering kindergartners who don’t know all their letter names are likely to become the one-third of 4th graders reading below the basic level. So, how can we start early to support these little learners with big struggles in a way that will impact their growth and learning throughout the curriculum and have the biggest impact on future grade levels? In this session, we will explore strategies that have a big impact for young strugglers. We will also delve into our curriculum to explore specific standards that will have an impact on student growth and learning for years to come.


$195 Registration Fee

  • Make checks payable to:
    lead4ward, LLC
    3400 Coit Rd #261007
    Plano, TX 75026-1007
  • Send POs to:
    512-588-1740 fax
  • Cancellation Fee*:
    more than 5 business days prior to event date: $150
    less than 5 business days prior to event date: $195
    *unless you provide a substitute


Explore Irving

Located immediately adjacent to Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, Irving, Texas, boasts more than 75 hotels, 11,000 rooms, and hundreds of restaurants. As home to thousands of corporations and the global headquarters of five Fortune 500 companies, you’ll discover gleaming skyscrapers, two spectacular master-planned communities, and the state’s only five-diamond rated resort. You’ll also find a charming heritage district and picturesque Main Street, proof that the best of both worlds can co-exist.

Read more–>


Contact Information

Questions about registration, invoicing, vendor information, contact:

512-201-2999 ext 2
512-588-1740 fax

Questions about hotel, contact:


General questions, contact:

512-201-2999 ext 5