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January 10, 2015 - 2015 MSM Annual Conference at Dean College

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MSM Annual Conference

MSM is pleased to be able to offer a high quality conference experience for schools in the Massachusetts area. The most important part of attending the MSM Annual Conference is the valuable information you take home to your community. The ideas and strategies you learn from workshops, roundtables, speakers, and exhibitors can be implemented back home in your own school. The dates for the 2016 Annual Conference will be released by spring of 2015. We are planning to return to Dean College for the conference again next year and are happy to have such a great space.


Dr. Pickering's keynote address is entitled, "Montessori for Learning Differences." MSM is excited to announce that our Keynote Speaker at this year's Annual Conference is Dr. Joyce Pickering of the Shelton School. Dr. Joyce S. Pickering is a 40-year Montessorian, speech & hearing pathologist, and learning disabilities specialist who has devoted her life to addressing the needs of students with learning differences.

Currently, Joyce is Executive Director Emerita of Shelton School & Evaluation Center in Dallas, Texas, the world's largest private school for children with learning differences.

Under Joyce's tenure as executive director (1990 - 2010), Shelton saw significant growth and development, including an expansion of the application of the Montessori philosophy and practice and, in 2009, the launching of Shelton Montessori Teacher Education Center. Joyce also oversaw the creation of an outreach center that annually responds to more than 27,000 requests for information and resources and the development of a unique collaboration between Shelton, the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, and the University of Texas Dallas's Center for Brain Health.

Joyce is the 2013 Living Legacy Recipient for American Montessori Society as well as President of AMS Board of Directors and an active member of several AMS committees. Joyce is also an adjunct professor at Dallas Baptist University, a clinical assistant professor at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, and a committee member for accreditation of the International Multisensory Structured Language Education Council. In her "spare time," Joyce travels the world to present classes and keynote speeches about Montessori education and how to meet the needs of learning-different students.

Gracious and soft - spoken, Joyce is loved by everyone in her wide circle of colleagues, friends, and family, which includes husband Robert Pickering, a former AMS president; 5 children; and 13 grandchildren.


MSM is pleased to offer a range of workshops both across the developmental planes and for administrators. Click here to read the descriptions for the workshops being offered this year.


Registration for the 2015 Annual Conference is now open. We have streamlined registration for conference attendees even more this year. Last year we launch our new registration system with great success and have made adjustments, based on member feedback, to better serve. Conference attendees can register individually or as a group. We highly encourage schools to register their staff as a group to take advantage of the discounts offered.

We kindly request that you read the registration instructions below closely to be sure you register properly and in the most efficient manner.

Member Schools

Discounted rate for registering online by January 5th, 2015
MSM Member Schools: $100.00/person - The new system will automatically calculate a 10% discount if five (5) people from an MSM member school are registering.

Registration after January 5th will be available day of the conference ONLY and the rates will be as follows:
MSM Member Schools: $125.00/person | Non Members: $150.00/person

Member schools should register groups via their school's account page. Registering here will give schools a record of registrations and workshops chosen. Click here to be directed to the member school login area. Registration is now open! When you log into your area you will see Conference Registration on the right.

*** Click here for instructions on how to use the new registration system within your school's account page.*** We suggest you read the instructions on how to register before doing so.
We recommend you print out this page so you can have it available when you do your registrations the first time.

Nonmember Schools & Individuals

Discounted rate for registering online by January 5th, 2015
MSM Member Schools: $100.00/person | Non Members: $125.00/person

Registration after January 5th will be available day of the conference ONLY and the rates will be as follows:
MSM Member Schools: $125.00/person | Non Members: $150.00/person

Registering as a nonmember or individual? No problem, we streamlined that process as well! Click here to be brought directly to the registration page.

If your school is a member please do not register via the nonmember site as the correct amount to be paid will not be reflected.

Payment Information

Beginning this year MSM will only be accepting online payments through PayPal. PayPal is trusted by over 148 million users around the world. We hope that this gives conference attendees peace of mind throughout the registration process.

After you register, via the member or nonmember system, you will be directed to PayPal to make your required payment.

MSM understand that this is not always possible for our public school attendees and we will gladly accept checks from these schools. However, these are the only schools eligible for this exemption. Public schools who need this exemption should contact Margie Smetana at margie.smetana@shrewsburymontessori.org for details on this.


The facilities at Dean College in Franklin, MA, have been so wonderful the last two years that we are returning to Dean College again this year. Centrally located and easily accessible, Dean College's light-filled, modern, well-equipped facilities have helped provide a comfortable and nurturing learning environment for teachers....especially at lunch. The conference will be held in their campus center at 109 West Central Street Franklin, MA 02038 - if you are using a GPS please use this address as it will bring you directly to the conference building. Any other address used will take your elsewhere on campus. Click here for a map of the Dean College campus.


The flow of the day, at this time, is as follows:
  • Registration, 8:30
  • Raffle, Continental Breakfast and Vendors
  • Welcome Address, 9:00
  • Keynote Speaker, 9:15-10:45
  • Morning Workshops, 11:00-12:15
  • Lunch, 12:30-1:30
  • Afternoon Workshops, 1:30-2:45


In response to member comments after the 2008 Annual Conference we have created this section of the site for Keynote and workshop handouts and PowerPoint presentations. Presenters will be given the option to post their information here either before or after the conference date. All materials are provided in PDF, which can be viewed with Adobe Reader.

Documents posted below, from the 2014 conference, will be available for viewing through January 10 2015. If information from a workshop is not listed on this page please contact the presenter directly with questions. MSM does not have copies of presenter materials available.

Songs of Resilience: Music for Early Childhood Social and Emotional Development
GS Core Beliefs - The Power of Words, Music and You - 4 Types of Songs
How Montessori Fits with edTech - Grace Kochanik
Toddler Materials on a Dime - Rachel Dunbar. M. Ed
Toddler Materials on a Dime - Photos - Rachel Dunbar. M. Ed
Essential Books for the Montessori Classroom - Shelley Sommer
Making Math Matter: Connecting Math to the Real World - Ann Mici
Building the Self: Self-Regulation: A Toolkit for Normalization - Biff Maier, Laini Szostkowski and Seth Johnson
Building the Self: Classroom Resource List - Biff Maier, Laini Szostkowski and Seth Johnson
Building the Self: Appendix: Self-Regulation Tools - Biff Maier, Laini Szostkowski and Seth Johnson