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Core Collaborative Campaigns

Taking action for systemic change

We believe quality relationships are essential. Use your Back to School professional learning days to set your school community up for success in Academic Year 23-24.

Back to School Inspiration

Welcome your teachers back to school with keynote presentations that truly inspire and energize! Our Back to School keynote topics range from instructional practice (student engagement, culturally responsive and sustaining formative assessment, deliberate practice) to classroom climate and personal wellbeing for teachers. Each offering was specifically designed to welcome teachers back to school with tools to help rather than more to implement. Our engaging facilitators will set a tone of optimism and excitement that teachers will carry into the weeks and months ahead.




Facilitator: Connie Hamilton

It’s time to put on your thinking shoes and experience active engagement. This workshop is the epitome of learning by doing, as an entire toolbox of engagement strategies for any level of educator will be applied and analyzed. Connie shares practical tips for anticipating potential problems and avoiding them by design.


  • Select talking and learning protocols that engage all learners.
  • Design activities to increase engagement for every type of student.
  • Manage timing of lessons to accommodate flexibility in learning times.
  • Minimize the teacher’s role during student-centered learning.


Get engagement going!

Facilitator: Connie Hamilton

Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) frames what happens when someone in an emotional state of mind meets a person using rational thinking to help them. Connie Hamilton simply calls it a hot mess! Understanding the three states of mind, emotional, rational, and wise helps you be a better communicator and successfully move a heated exchange into a productive conversation. Learn how to de-escalate a situation by validating an individual’s emotions. You will find yourself using these skills with students, colleagues, and even your friends and family.


  • Define emotions, rational, and wise mind.
  • Learn and apply validation techniques to ease emotional mind.
  • Understand how the brain processes threat and how that impacts behavior.

Communicate better!

Facilitator: Connie Hamilton

Are you more likely to say thanks by sending a personal note or bringing someone their favorite treat? How you show appreciation to your school family is likely influenced by your personal love language. Gary Chapman has outlined 5 ways people show appreciation to colleagues. If you aren’t speaking multiple “LOVE” languages, your desire to show thanks might be lost in your delivery. Join Connie Hamilton to learn how understanding love languages can be heard loud and clear.


  • Define the 5 types of love languages and how they show up in schools.
  • Determine your personal love language.
  • Identify ways to “speak” love languages other than your own.

Learn to speak love!

Facilitator: Connie Hamilton

Self-care is more than treating yourself to a latte or taking a deep breath. These are short term options, and educators deserve more than a quick fix. Learn how to tend to the five areas of wellness, build habits to keep you at your best, and choose tools to use when you’re feeling particularly drained. Some level of stress is healthy, but an ongoing level of extreme stress is another story. You’ll leave this session knowing how to truly practice lasting self-care.


  • Identify how 5 areas of wellness impact your productivity and well being.
  • Apply five types of barriers to help say “no” without feeling guilty.
  • Choose strategies to support wellness in various levels of your care.

Lasting wellness

Facilitator: Isaac Wells

Success at the end of the year is the result of decisions made at the beginning. Students and educators alike face rapid changes in and out of school. Uncertainty impacts learners’ social, emotional, and academic capacity. Partnering with students to establish consistent routines increases their clarity, agency, and efficacy regarding expectations, behavior, and academics. Learn how to chart your path to success this school year.


  • Practice co-constructing clear criteria for expectations and behaviors.
  • Outline a plan for the first 3-6 weeks of routines.
  • Describe how to successfully organize and launch partner and independent work in either: Reading, Writing, or Math

Strong all year long

Facilitator: Starr Sackstein

Every educator has the power to truly impact the lives of those around them – in the classroom, in their school community, and in the world at large. When we act with intention, we can create incredible change that transforms not just the spaces we exist in, but also the lives around us. Teachers, leaders, and staff will be inspired to connect to that thing that makes each of them truly unique. Learn how to set, nurture, and reflect on goals in a way that ensures you’ll maximize your impact.


  • Define what impact is and what it looks like
  • Determine what your impact is
  • Set goals to nurture and track personal impact throughout the year

Make an impact

Facilitator: Starr Sackstein

Kids: they’re just like us! When we honor each other’s uniqueness and make an effort to connect, we learn together. In this session, you will be reminded of the importance of belonging and creating environments that promote student voice as a means of engaging every child. The relationships we build with each other and with our students inspire the confidence necessary to take risks and grow as learners together.


  • Determine what impactful relationships look like.
  • Explore how these relationships cultivate meaningful learning.
  • Reflect on our own strengths as learners and teachers.

Create a positive environment

Facilitator: Starr Sackstein

If we expect to be experts in student learning, we must understand how we ourselves learn best. In this session, we will investigate ourselves as learners, so that we can contribute to a culture of learning in our classrooms and schools.  We can’t expect students to take risks as learners if we don’t model this vulnerability. Consider your goals for this year and beyond. Let’s imagine what school could look like if everyone received the support they need.


  • Define a culture of learning.
  • Explore ways that these cultures are developed.
  • Create a safe space for vulnerability and goal setting.
  • Set goals to drive growth for the year.

Set personal goals

Facilitator: Jamie Valenzuela-Mumau

The past few years have brought to light ways in which our current education system and the way we “do school” hasn’t adapted to the current needs of learners. Employers look for young adults who can self-regulate and have self-efficacy as well as skills in collaboration, reflection, and critical thinking. Educators must shift to meet these needs. Together, we will describe what a school that provides opportunities to meet these demands looks like. Discover strategies for partnering with learners to achieve in ways relevant to them and their world.


  • Apply learner-centered classroom differentiation strategies.
  • Create an environment promoting intrinsic motivation.
  • Develop awareness of gamification of learning.
  • Collaboratively construct meaningful next steps for implementation.

Flip the script!

Facilitator: Michael DeSousa

When students enter our classrooms feeling like they can’t, and then leave knowing they didn’t, it creates a vicious cycle where students feel they don’t belong. Conversely, students feel greater belonging when they succeed academically. Systems across the country are working to accelerate academic learning after the pandemic. We must also address the challenges many students face with social and emotional health. Intentionally focusing on students sense of belonging and their learning creates classrooms where students enter feeling like they can and leave knowing they did.


  • Explain the reciprocal relationship between belonging and academic achievement.
  • Determine strategies to increase students’ sense of belonging and accelerate students’ learning.

Accelerate learning

Facilitator: Dr. Ingrid Twyman

By adopting a culturally responsive mindset and enacting Culturally Responsive and Sustaining Education (CRSE), we can better meet the needs of ALL students. Hear about two schools that have undergone a journey to look at their current practices. These schools are building culturally responsive classrooms where they strive to incorporate identity, skills, criticality, intellectualism, and joy into their current pedagogy so that all students have an equitable, meaningful learning experience. Discover small shifts you can make in practices starting tomorrow. Learn how adding a cultural lens and implementing culturally responsive practices can work for your students, too!


  • Identify strengths in your current practices.
  • Explore strategies to make your curriculum and school experience more culturally responsive.
  • Determine next steps to build learner agency.

Joyful shifts
Elevating Learner Agency

Learner-Centered Instruction

Facilitator: Dr. Jeanette Westfall

Do you wish for students to take greater ownership of learning, while equipping them with a toolbox of strategies and engaging them in deep learning experiences? Join us to explore a framework for elevating learner agency featured in Jeanette’s new book, Learner Agency: A Field Guide for Taking Flight. This approach is based on core practices, supported by research, and features practical examples from Liberty School District’s journey. Explore how to get the ball rolling with proven practices, structures, and enabling conditions.


  • Craft a personalized vision to grow learner agency in your classrooms and organization.
  • Explore a framework based on the enabling conditions that promote agency.
  • Develop clarity around your current strengths, prepare to collect evidence from learners, and establish entry points to elevate agency.

Get the ball rolling

Facilitator: Isaac Wells

Time is one of the most important variables in learning. Teachers have little influence over how much time they have with their learners, but they directly affect how that time is used. Incorporating deliberate practice into instruction accelerates learning by engaging students in focused, sustained efforts towards clear and relevant goals. For this to be possible, each unit of study must include opportunities for multiple attempts on all important tasks, as well as time and space for setting, monitoring, and celebrating goals.


  • Establish a plan for “Beginning with Goals”
  • Describe key criteria for a “Unit Check-Up”
  • Review their first unit(s) to ensure deliberate practice can thrive

More time!

Me. We. Community.

Embrace healing for self, others, and community.

The negative impacts of the pandemic are being felt in every community across our nation. Everyone has made extraordinary commitments and dedicated talents and energy to address their community’s needs. Families, caregivers, teachers, and school leaders have been supporting and guiding learners while responding to their own profound challenges.

Through restorative practices, instructional leadership coaching, or a little of both, The Core Collaborative Learning Network can help your school community heal.

Curated, free resources

Learner-Centered Climate

It can be challenging to find high-quality, dependable resources when you need them. The last thing you want is bad advice. That’s why The Core Collaborative learning network compiled a list of our favorite blogs, podcasts, and videos about restorative practices and instructional leadership during times of trauma.

Access resources
Professional Learning - Restorative Practices

Learner-Centered Climate

A school culture rooted in self, healing, and community.

The Restored and Connected framework creates an integrated approach between cultural competency, trauma-informed care, and restorative-resiliency practices. We have team members across the nation available to partner with your school or system. We will listen to your unique needs and co-construct a personalized learning pathway for your learning community.

Learn more
Professional Learning - Leadership Coaching

Learner-Centered Leadership

Our nation’s schools and the students, staff, leaders, and families in them, are collectively experiencing the crisis and trauma of the COVID-19 pandemic. The effects are becoming impossible to ignore. Teachers and leaders are walking away from the system at alarming rates. Substitute teachers have also left the system, putting a strain on those who have persisted.

The COVID-19 pandemic has made instructional leadership feel impossible. But TCC can help. Our leadership coaching sessions cater to your needs, no more, no less. Find out how we can help you overcome the impossible.

Find out more