For over 25 years, PLTW has been committed to leading and supporting great teaching and learning. There are more than 98,000 PLTW teachers nationwide, and almost all of them have a connection with the Master Teacher who first trained them. PLTW’s network of more than 400 Master Teachers are critical to our mission, providing feedback, ensuring curriculum is relevant, and deepening connections within the PLTW community.
Last month, we were pleased to host the inaugural MasterMinds: A PLTW Master Teacher Conference in Dallas, Texas. This three-day conference provided an extraordinary platform for our Master Teachers to engage in professional development, foster meaningful connections, and celebrate their dedication to education.
Here’s a look at just a few of the key highlights from MasterMinds:
- Introducing Algebra 1 Advantage: Master Teachers had the first opportunity to learn about PLTW’s new supplemental curriculum called Algebra 1 Advantage. This curriculum uses fun and engaging projects and problems to show students how algebra is used in everyday scenarios, connecting what they learn in class to the world around them. Learn more.
- Interactive feedback sessions: Throughout the conference, Master Teachers were invited to share feedback on PLTW programs and products and offer suggestions on how to further strengthen the PLTW experience for students and educators. We are truly grateful for their contributions and look forward to sharing updates and next steps on how this feedback will shape the future of PLTW.
- Unforgettable networking opportunities: Master Teachers seized the opportunity to connect and engage with each other throughout the event. In addition to pathway-specific networking opportunities, Master Teachers were also invited to participate in fun, conversation-generating brain breaks through specially designated areas hosting art, music, and P.E. classes. We also closed the first night with a Texas-themed celebration featuring line dancing, leathercraft, Texas barbecue, and Tex-Mex cuisine!
- The power of the PLTW story: As ambassadors for PLTW, Master Teachers are crucial in helping spread the message of PLTW’s transformative impact. All Master Teachers participated in an interactive session that focused on effectively sharing the PLTW story with their networks and the teachers they train.
- A Behind-the-Scenes Look at Curriculum Development: PLTW curriculum developers showcased the process behind PLTW’s best-in-class curriculum development, including how PLTW leverages its relationships with industry thought partners to ensure that students are learning the skills and concepts they need to succeed after graduation.
- Inspiration (and laughter!) from closing keynote Shayla Rivera: We were honored to have Shayla Rivera, a former NASA rocket scientist, professor, and comedian, as our closing keynote speaker. Shayla brought a unique blend of inspiration, laughter, and encouragement, reminding us all to break free from self-imposed limitations and embrace our full potential.
Our passion for education drives us to continually innovate, inspire, and support our incredible network of educators. We are immensely proud of the success of the MasterMinds Conference and the powerful impact it has had on our Master Teachers. Together, we will continue to shape the future of education and empower every student to be STEM-successful.