LearnFest ’16: The Idea Festival for Education

On March 21, 2016, five nationally renowned leaders in brain science, visual thinking, global competency, schools of the future and education journalism will join forces with one common goal: shaking up Louisville with thought-provoking conversations about how students learn best. Parents will not want to miss this event. Principals and teachers will be inspired. LearnFest ’16 is an Idea Festival affiliate event with five key note speakers, lunch, music, book signings, workshops and inspiring conversations.

Who’s Invited

Everyone is invited! Teachers from Massachusetts, Texas, Tennessee, Ohio and Indiana – as well as those from statewide districts – are already signed up. JCPS teachers have received a school-by-school invitation as has the district’s leadership. The response is indicative of the quality of the program.



Keynote Line Up

Pat Bassett served as the president of the National Association of Independent Schools for 12 years and leads workshops on what constitute great schools, great teachers and great leaders. Bassett was named a Kellogg National Leadership Fellow in 1986, a recipient of the Educational Leadership Award by The Klingenstein Center and global leadership awards from The European Council for International Schools from the Near East South Asia Council of Overseas Schools. He will be speaking on schools of the future.

Annie Murphy Paul has a blog called Brilliant: The Science of Smart. She is a journalist and consultant who studies how we learn and how we can do it better. Her TED talk has been viewed more than 1.3 million times. A frequent contributor to The New York Times, Time magazine and Slate, Paul is the author of several books and is a lecturer at Yale University, where she teaches the craft of writing and the science of intelligence. Her next book, titled “Brilliant: The Science of How We Get Smarter,” will be published by Crown in 2017. The title of her talk is “Brilliance.”

Dr. Judy Willis is a neurologist turned middle school teacher who was inspired to become an educator because she saw so many children being misdiagnosed with ADD. She is the leading authority in the neuroscience of learning. She has been interviewed by USA Today, Euronews, The Wall Street Journal, NBC News Education Nation, ABC Australia Radio, Popular Mechanics, Neurology Today, Education Week and Parenting Magazine. She writes staff, expert blogs for NBC News Education, Nation, Edutopia, The Guardian and Psychology Today. She will be speaking about brain science.

Philip Yenawine is the former education director at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City and co-founding director of Visual Understanding in Education, a nonprofit educational research organization that develops and studies programs that teach teachers to use art to teach thinking and communication skills. He has spent the past 20 years developing curricula and professional development used in hundreds of schools across the U.S. and abroad. He wrote the book “Visual Thinking Strategies: Using Art to Deepen Learning across School Disciplines.” He will be speaking about visual thinking.

Dr. Yong Zhao was named one of the 10 most influential people in educational technology by Tech & Learn Magazine in 2012. He currently serves as the presidential chair and director of the Institute for Global and Online Education in the College of Education at the University of Oregon, where he also is a professor in the Department of Educational Measurement, Policy and Leadership. He’ll be speaking on global education.

Why Attend

LearnFest ’16 will take its place next to other prominent Louisville speaker’s series, Festival of Faiths and Idea Festival. LearnFest ’16 focuses solely on our most important resource – the next generation of learners and leaders. The life’s work of these remarkable speakers and the investment of your time to experience the program can combine to help shape schools in ways that benefit our students for generations. LearnFest ’16 will be held on March 21 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Louisville Collegiate School, 2427 Glenmary Ave. This is a public conference and is open to everyone. Register now at loucol.com or call 502.479.0375.

By Tracie Catlett,  Assistant Head of School for Academic Affairs