Indiana District: 2018-19 Curriculum Conversations

Grades 6+ SCIENCE Curriculum Conversation

February 8, 2019

IN District Grade 6-8 SCIENCE teachers met on Friday, February 8 at Immanuel, Valpo.  It was a great day of connecting with and learning from each other!  Hot topics included student-led inquiry, instructional strategies, and classroom technology.

We feel…

From Left to Right:

  • Matt Albertin (Trinity, Elkhart) – ENCOURAGED!
  • David Luster-Bartz (Resurrection, South Bend) – OPPORTUNISTIC!
  • Abigail Unzicker (Immanuel, Valpo) – ENCOURAGED!
  • Andrea Easton (Trinity, Hobart) – EDUCATED!

Grades 6+ MATH Curriculum Conversation

January 18, 2019

IN District Grade 6-8 MATH teachers connected on Friday, January 18 at Immanuel, Valpo.  Hot topics included instructional strategies, iLearn, standard alignment & pacing, and so much more! Getting out of our comfort zones and connecting with and learning from others…it’s a good thing!

We feel…

From Left to Right:

  • Scott Rowsell  (Resurrection Lutheran Academy, South Bend): IMPROVED!
  • Amy Bope (St. Peter Lutheran, North Judson): INSPIRED!
  • Dawn Flatt (Trinity, Elkhart): ENCOURAGED!
  • Holly Candella (St. John, LaPorte): EXCITED!
  • Tim Becker (Immanuel, Valparaiso): AFFIRMED!
  • Phil Sagissor (Trinity, Crown Point): INFORMED!
  • Lois Zimmer (St. Paul, Munster): ENERGIZED!

Grades 6+ ELA Curriculum Conversation

December 7, 2018

IN District Grade 6-8 ELA teachers connected on Friday, December 7th to build community and learn from each other.  The day was packed with many conversation points, including standard alignment, assessment, rigor, and instructional strategies.  A wonderful day of connecting and sharing!

We feel…


  • Sarah Derringer (Holy Cross, Indianapolis):  VALIDATED!
  • Steve Lee (St. Peter, North Judson): PLEASED!
  • Krista Hunt (Resurrection, South Bend): INTRIGUED!
  • Holly Candella (St. John, LaPorte): ENERGIZED!
  • Jodee Price (Trinity, Elkhart): INSPIRED!
  • Candy Mues (Immanuel, Valparaiso): AMAZED!
  • Ellen Prahlow (Immanuel, Valparaiso): INSPIRED!

NOT PICTURED:  Rick Arndt (St. Paul, Munster)

Grades PS/K Curriculum Conversation

November 16, 2018

Early Childhood/Kindergarten teachers from the IN District met on Friday, November 16 to connect and learn from each other.   Hot topics included project learning and classroom technology.  Tried and true instructional practices and resources were shared during break-out times.  What a great day!

We feel….

FRONT ROW (Left to Right:)

  • Becky Veen (Trinity, Elkhart):  INSPIRED!
  • Brianna Neumeyer (Trinity, Elkhart): SUPPORTED!
  • Maggie Combs (St. Peter’s, Columbus):  READY!
  • Tera Lewandowski (Immanuel, Valparaiso): INVIGORATED!
  • Rochella Ransom (St. Peter, North Judson): EXCITED!

BACK ROW (Left to Right):

  • Corey Griesemer (Trinity, Crown Point):  SUPPORTED!
  • Tara Jandura (St. Paul, Munster)
  • Sandra Bangs (St. John, LaPorte): EXCITED!
  • Rochella Ludlow (St. Peter, North Judson):  EXCITED!
  • Mary Ann Moore (Resurrection, South Bend): EXCITED!
  • Jill Fussell (Resurrection, South Bend):  EMPOWERED!
  • Shirley Cronauer (Our Shepherd, Avon): RENEWED!

Not Pictured:  Amy Helmkamp & Tracie Douglas (Our Shepherd, Avon)

Grades 1 & 2 Curriculum Conversation

November 9, 2018

Grade 1 & 2 teachers from the IN District got together on Friday, November 9 for an awesome day of connecting and sharing! Conversation was especially rich having teachers across two grade levels.  Hot topics included instructional strategies, classroom technology, and curriculum mapping.

We feel….


  • Alyssa Bleke (St. Paul, Munster):  EXCITED & RE-ENERGIZED!


  • Julie Heise (St. Peter, North Judson): BETTER!
  • Annette Skibbe (St. Peter, North Judson): READY!
  • Lasea Kusbel (Trinity, Crown Point): AWARE!
  • Sally Foglesong (St. John, LaPorte): CHALLENGED!
  • Hanna Hartman (Immanuel, Valpo): INSPIRED!
  • Kathy Bouman (Immanuel, Valpo): ENCOURAGED!

Grade 5 Curriculum Conversation

October 19, 2018

IN District Grade 5 teachers met at Immanuel Lutheran, Valpo on Friday, October 19 to connect, share, and learn from each other.  It’s amazing what God can do with a small number of teachers!  Topics of interest included integrating the faith, classroom technology, and instructional strategies.



  • Larry Brummet (Trinity, Elkhart): EMPOWERED!
  • Gail Zmierski (St. John, LaPorte): ENERGIZED!
  • Bailey Bosman (St. Paul, Munster): PRODUCTIVE & VALIDATED!
  • Kathy Ickstadt (Immanuel, Valpo): OPEN!

Grade 4 Curriculum Conversation

September 21, 2018

IN District Grade 4 teachers connected on Friday, September 21 at Immanuel Lutheran, Valparaiso.  Small group…big conversations! The day’s discussion topics included technology in the classroom, flexible seating, and instructional strategies.  Another fantastic day of building community among our district teachers!



  • Sara Cunningham (Immanuel, Valpo): THANKFUL!
  • Angie Aquino (St. John, LaPorte): MOTIVATED!
  • Janet Salinas (St. Paul, Munster): RELAXED!
  • Metta Heublein (Trinity, Elkhart): ENERGIZED!

Grade 3 Curriculum Conversation

September 14, 2018

IN District Grade 3 teachers met Friday, September 14 at Immanuel Lutheran, Valparaiso for a day of collaboration and building community.  Hot topics included differentiated instruction, curriculum mapping, and integrating the faith.  It was an AWESOME day!!


Left to Right:

  • Katie Russell (Immanuel, Valpo):  EXCITED!
  • Becca Wenzler (St. Peter, North Judson): MOTIVATED!
  • Kathie Latzke (Resurrection, South Bend): HOPEFUL!
  • Katie Walker (St. Peter’s, Columbus): EMPOWERED!
  • Rhoda O’Connor (Holy Cross, Indy): RE-ENERGIZED!
  • Rebekah Thoelke (St. Paul, Munster): INSPIRED & REJUVENATED!
  • Teresa Blystone (Trinity, Elkhart): RECHARGED!
  • Cara Clausing (Trinity, Crown Point): INSPIRED!



“I appreciated hearing from and sharing with other teachers in my content area. Helped me feel like less of an island.”

“It was helpful to hear what other teachers do and how it works/does not work in their classroom or school. It was nice to not feel alone in what we all do each and every day.”

“Having the opportunity to just talk. No pressure, no expectations, just genuine conversation about what was and wasn’t working in our classrooms.”

“I appreciated just being around other third grade teachers. The day was organized well. I got ideas that I could use immediately the next day.”

“It was planned, but flexible, and really driven by what we said we wanted to talk about.”