Grant Wood AEA logo
Bulletin Board


Grant Wood AEA Innovation Day

May 13, 2014


In this issue:

Groundbreaking is Oct. 11 for Kirkwood Regional Center at the UI
Early Childhood Reading Grant from Target
GWAEA Board of Director Elections
GWAEA Three in 1 K
Download the GWAEA App
Setting Up Google+ Profile
iOS Update
Donations welcome
Like Us on Facebook and Twitter
TQ Professional Development dates
GWAEA Professional Development Opportunities


Agency Advisory Minutes

Grant Wood AEA Staff Openings

The GWAEA Board Book

The GWAEA Board Minutes


Past Issues







Grant Wood AEA


To ensure success for all learners.

Grant Wood AEA Goals:

1. Increase the academic performance of all learners.

2. Increase the percentage of students who perform at the proficient level.

3. Increase student acquisition and application of 21st century skills and knowledge.

Groundbreaking is Oct. 11 for Kirkwood Regional Center
at the UI

A unique partnership centered on STEM education and careers and involving the University of Iowa, Kirkwood Community College, and Grant Wood Area Education Agency will begin to take shape at 4 p.m. Friday, Oct. 11, with a groundbreaking at the UI Research Park.


The event will be held at 2301 Oakdale Blvd. in Coralville, just east of the National Advanced Driving Simulator (NADS). The public and news media are invited to attend.


Scheduled speakers include UI President Sally Mason and Provost P. Barry Butler; Kirkwood’s President Mick Starcevich and trustee Lois Bartelme; Stephen Murley, superintendent of the Iowa City Community School District; and Joe Crozier, chief administrator of Grant Wood AEA.


The center will house Kirkwood faculty and staff, UI faculty and graduate students, staff from Grant Wood AEA and the Iowa Governor’s Southeast Regional STEM Hub, announced by Gov. Terry Branstad last year and which will work to create and evaluate new models of STEM education and teacher professional development. Students will be exposed to several pathways leading to applied science diplomas, degree, or technical certification, and fully transferrable credits to take with them to a four-year university and beyond.

The Kirkwood Regional Center at the University of Iowa will be the fourth in Kirkwood’s service area, following Jones and Linn County and one scheduled to open in Washington County in fall 2014. View more information about the UI-Kirkwood project here.


(The full text of the release is available at The University of Iowa's Iowa Now by University Marketing and Communication, posted Oct. 9, 2013 at

Early Childhood Reading Grant

by Priscilla Polehna

GWAEA Speech-Language Pathologist

Grant Wood AEA and the Cedar Rapids Community School District, received an Early Childhood Reading grant from Target for an initiative called "Read to Me!--Talk to Me!" This initiative aligns with our SPEL team's emergent literacy efforts. Our grant came from Target (north) on Blairs Ferry Road. Target provides these grants as a way to give young children across the country a head start in reading.

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photo 1 rev

Research has told us for a long time that reading to young children is critical to their literacy development. What has become even more apparent is that we need to do more than just read to them. We have to make the reading experience interactive. We need to give children opportunities to have conversations about books. This initiative provides home check-out libraries for all of our Early Learning classrooms. Each book is paired with a prompt card for parents. These prompt cards are designed to help parents build their child's language and literacy skills as they read the book several times with their child. The grant enabled us to purchase about 50 non-fiction and fiction books for each of the 27 Early Learning classrooms and Alternative Kindergartens in CR. 

We were also able to provide a collection of Spanish books for each classroom. We purchased about 1,600 books. Teachers will train parents on how to use the materials and then will begin having children take the books home on a weekly basis. 

target employees

Target not only provided the grant, but they also provided us with five very hard working volunteers.


These Target employees spent the day with us and a few other volunteers, cutting out laminated prompt cards, putting stickers on books, sorting books, gluing word definitions in books and bagging books.

We are very grateful for their efforts and for their commitment to improving young children's literacy. Without them, we would have never had all of the book sets ready to hand out to teachers so quickly.  Thank you!

Grant Wood AEA Board of Director Elections


Randy Bauer, newly elected Grant Wood AEA Board member, takes the oath of office along with (l to r) Pamela Jacobs, Sue Gates, and Marilyn Wirtz who ran for new terms with the Board. Bauer replaces Morris Greenfield as the representative for precincts in the
Cedar Rapids School District and College Community School District.


The board re-elected Lynne Cannon as vice-president. Jim Green as Board president.

Grant Wood AEA Three in 1 K held
Oct. 9

A total of 52 individuals participated in Grant Wood AEA's Three in 1 K as part of the Healthiest State Initiative walk on Wednesday, Oct. 9.


Organizers report that yesterday's walk broke last year's record of 296,000 participants. Congratulations!


(right) GWAEA staff complete the Three in 1 K along 33rd Avenue in Cedar Rapids.





Download the GWAEA app

Grant Wood AEA is introducing a new iPad/iPhone/Smart Phone app. The app features links to the following:


About Us

Information for Educators

Media Center

Professional Development

Special Education


This app is free, and available from the iTunes Store or the Google Play Store by searching for Grant Wood AEA or GWAEA.

For more information, contact Stacy Behmer, GWAEA Coordinator of Digital Learning Technology,

Setting up your Google+ Profile

Take a look at this quick screencast about how to set-up your Google+ profile.  Completely setting up your profile is a great way for you to stay connected in Google+.  Adding a picture allows your colleagues to see you and put a name to your face.  You can also start to organize your Google+ contacts into circles.  Circles will allow you to share only certain information with certain folks, for example your LEA contacts, your GWAEA disciplinary contacts or your family.  To view a complete playlist of Google+ Tutorials click here.



iOS Update- FYI

On September 18, Apple released iOS 7, the latest version of their mobile operating system. This update is freely available to anyone with an iPad 2, iPad 3, iPad 4 or an iPad Mini. It is also available for some versions of the iPhone and iPod Touch. The update can be found by going to Settings > General > Software Update.

Before updating, it is always a good idea to back up your data to iCloud. You should also update any apps that you can to ensure that they work properly on iOS 7. Some apps will not work, unless you update them. Also, be aware that you need 3.3GB of free space before you can update. Go to Settings > General > Usage to check free space. If you need to free up more space on your iPad, read this guide on how to manage iPad storage.

The new update has a brand new look, but although it looks different, everything functions pretty much the way it did before. There are some new features, and you can read about those here, or you can sign up for one of our iPad workshops in October where we will go over some iPad basics and take a look at the new iOS 7. You can sign up for those classes here.

If you have any questions or concerns about updating to iOS 7, please contact Jonathan Wylie.


US Cellular Center, Cedar Rapids

For complete ticket information, see the order form and the accompanying seating chart.

Donations welcome

Bart Mason is collecting jars of peanut butter to donate to Operation Backpack (sponsored by HACAP) and cash donations for the Eastern Iowa Honor Flight.  If you would like to donate a jar of peanut butter or make a contribution to the Eastern Iowa Honor Flight (EIHF), please stop by the NE Region office area with your donation or to get more details. 


When you make a donation to either cause, you will receive a special sticker to acknowledge your support.  For every $20 that is donated to the EIHF, one area Veteran will receive a free ticket to an upcoming fund-raiser (to be held on Saturday, Oct. 12) for the EIHF.  Tickets for this charity fund-raiser are also available in the NE Region office area if you want to purchase one for yourself.  Please contact Bart Mason
(ext. 6793) if you have questions or want more information.   




Stacy Murphy is collecting Pink Yoplait  lids for the Yoplait Save Lids to Save Lives program. General Mills will donate 10 cents to the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation for each lid received.


Stacy has a collection tub in the staff break room of the Sixth Street building or send to her via van mail.

Grant Wood AEA on Facebook facebook logoand Twitter twitter logo

Are you connected with Grant Wood AEA? The agency has a presence on both Facebook and Twitter. Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter. For questions, contact the Communications Office.

New TQ dates 2013-2014

Nov. 13, Feb. 26, May 28
The proposal templates and directions are on the GWAEA Staff Portal under the Teacher Quality Committee link.

Grant Wood AEA Professional Development opportunities


Information for Professional Development National Speakers for 2013-2014 is now on the Professional Development Google Site.  To access the Google site, log into your Google account, click on Sites, and browse sites. 

Mandatory Reporter, Bloodborne Pathogens and/or Chapter 103: Seclusion and Restraint training

Please submit certificates of completion to Tammy Carolan in the Professional Development Office.



iPad Professional Development

There are a series of Google and iPad workshops being offered. See the GWAEA Professional Development site to register.



Smart but Scattered: Executive Dysfunction at Home and at School

Youngsters with poor executive skills are disorganized or forgetful, have trouble getting started on tasks, get distracted easily, lose papers or assignments, forget to bring home the materials to complete homework or forget to hand homework in. They may rush through work or dawdle, they make careless mistakes that they fail to catch. They don't know where to begin on long-term assignments, and they put the assignment off until the last minute, in part because they have trouble judging the magnitude of the task and how long it will take to complete it.

Their workspaces are disorganized, and teachers may refer to their desks, backpacks, and notebooks as "black holes." Student with executive skill deficits present tremendous challenges to both parents and teachers who often find themselves frustrated by children whose problems in school seem to have little to do with how smart they are or how easily they learn.
Number: 19223-13-01
Date/Time:10/21/2013 8:30 AM-3:30 PM

Building Your Digital Toolbox to Support ALL Learners

Living in an age when students are accustomed to having ready access to technology, we as educators need to increase our understanding of available universally designed technologies and built-in supports that enhance instruction. Several technology tools and browser extensions will be introduced that are especially beneficial for students who need a means to compensate for individual reading and writing difficulties. This workshop will demonstrate and provide some hands-on exploration of several technology resources that can compensate for learning difficulties but actually have the potential to benefit ALL students. Participants are encouraged to bring their own laptop computers if possible.
Number: 19204-13-01
Date/Time: 11/01/2013 8:30 AM-3:30 PM

The Zones of Regulation

The Zones of Regulation is a framework and curriculum designed to foster skills in self-regulation, including emotional control, sensory regulation, and executive functions. It is a systematic, cognitive behavior approach that uses four colors to help students visually and verbally self-identify how they are functioning in the moment given their emotions and state of alertness. The model incorporates Social Thinking concepts to help students use perspective taking, to identify how they are thinking and feeling, and understand how their thoughts and behavior impact those around them. Through using the curriculum, individuals become more self-aware and learn tools they can use to regulate to a more expected state.

Books and materials will be available for purchase onsite. Book cost $42, posters $5.
Number: 19222-13-01
Date/Time: 11/05/2013 8:30 AM-3:30 PM

Developing Readers in Disciplinary Literacy

Secondary educators teach in a variety of disciplines, but all are responsible for literacy within their subject areas. The national CCSS standards for Literacy represent a historic shift, requiring that all teachers -- science, technical education, social studies, music, family and consumer education, mathematics, literature, art, world languages, and others -- address reading, writing, language, and speaking/listening standards through disciplinary instruction. Disciplinary Literacy can be understood as the merging of content knowledge, experiences, and skills with the ability to read, write, listen, speak, think critically and perform in a way that is meaningful within the context of disciplinary learning.

During this course, participants will examine literacy practices that boost comprehension as well as mentor students as readers of complex texts as they strive to meet the literacy challenges within the different academic disciplines they study.

Number: 4665-13-01

11/07/2013 8:30 AM-3:30 PM Grant Wood AEA Northern Facility
4401 6th Street S.W.
Cedar Rapids, IA 52404


12/16/2013 8:30 AM-3:30 PM Grant Wood AEA Northern Facility
4401 6th Street S.W.
Cedar Rapids, IA 52404


02/27/2014 8:30 AM-3:30 PM AEA 10 Location
4401 6th St SW
Cedar Rapids, IA 52404


04/04/2014 8:30 AM-3:30 PM Grant Wood AEA Northern Facility
4401 6th Street S.W.
Cedar Rapids, IA 52404

Assistive Technology Consideration and IEP Team AT Resources

This workshop will discuss the requirements for assistive technology consideration during the IEP process and how to include that information on the new Iowa IEP forms. The content of this workshop will also provide tips and methods for carrying out successful AT consideration in an IEP meeting. A form used by many AEAs and highlighted on the Iowa Department of Education website will be highlighted and discussed. Assistive Technology resources and related forms for documentation will also be highlighted. These AT tools and resources are available on the GWAEA AT Website for district IEP teams to utilize as they seek to meet the needs of students with disabilities. Participants are encouraged to bring their own technology device (BYOD) to this workshop in order to access and bookmark web-based resources that are discussed in this workshop.
Number: 19205-13-01
Date/Time: 11/11/2013 8:30 AM-11:30 AM
Number: 19205-13-02
Date/Time: 11/11/2013 12:30 PM-3:30 PM

Section 504 Plans

Participants will learn about the purpose of Section 504, eligibility requirements, due process requirements, and the process to follow to develop a quality 504 Plan for eligible students.
Number: 9185-13-01
Date/Time: 11/11/2013 8:30 AM-11:30 AM

Curriculum Based Evaluation for Reading and Written Language

This course is recommended for AEA staff and reading support staff. The Decoding, Comprehension, and Written Language Curriculum Based Evaluation (CBE) tools have been designed to gather more in-depth diagnostic information about literacy performance. The information can help teams develop interventions, monitor student progress, and make decisions about identifying and focusing resources and support services. The is a $50 materials fee for non Grant Wood AEA staff.
Number: 4507-13-01
Date/Time: 11/18/2013 8:30 AM-4:00 PM
11/19/2013 8:30 AM-4:00 PM
02/28/2014 8:30 AM-10:30 AM

Analyzing Student Work

This two-day workshop provides essential tools and processes for collaboratively analyzing student work, identifying student learning needs, and differentiating instructional next steps to meet identified needs. Participants will learn how to prepare new teachers for the Analyzing Student Work (ASW) process and develop their habits of mind and practice for differentiating instruction. Do not register for this class if you are to be taking the 6 day training "Grant Wood AEA Mentoring and Induction Program".
Number: 9129-13-01
Date/Time: 12/02/2013 8:30 AM-3:30 PM
12/03/2013 8:30 AM-3:30 PM

Staying the Course:
Sustaining Your School Improvement Focus with
Steve Ventura

Feb. 17, 2014 • 8:30 AM-3:00 PM


Audience: PreK-12 Administrators, Special Education Teachers, Media Specialists, Counselors


South Slope Community Center
980 North Front St
North Liberty


Course Number: 19219-13-01

Fee: $60



See flyer for details


Registration Deadline: Feb. 3, 2014, 6:00 a.m.

Steve Ventura from the Leadership/Learning Center has served as a school leader at the elementary, middle and high school levels. This professional learning session will provide participants overview skills to implement the data team model which will provide school teams skills to analyze current student performance, select high leverage instructional practices, create a plan of action and monitor the plan of action.

Evaluator Approval Information

Professional Administrator Licenses require approved Evaluator Approval coursework as a part of the licenses renewal credits.  The course options include Assessing Academic Rigor and iEvaluate. A letter from the DE/BOEE is attached for additional information. Please contact the PD office if you have further questions.

Buy, Sell or Trade

Remodeled our kitchen and now our previous appliances are for sale:

Refrigerator:  Black Kenmore 18.8 cu.ft., freezer on top, interior ice and water.  7 years old. Excellent condition, $250.

Range: Black Whirlpool glass cooktop, self-cleaning 30” electric range. 8+ years old.   Very good condition, $150.

Microwave:  Black Whirlpool microwave oven hood combination. 12 years old.  Includes mounting brackets. Good condition, $50.

Dishwasher: Black Kenmore Ultra Wash III built-in.  8+ years old.  Good condition, $75.

Call Kathy/Bob at 319-378-3116.



GW logoAEA logo

Grant Wood Area Education Agency extends equal opportunities in its employment practices, educational programs and services, and does not discriminate on the basis of color, gender, race, national origin, religion, creed, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, disability, veteran status or as otherwise prohibited by law. If you believe you or your child has been discriminated against or treated unjustly, please contact the Agency’s Equity Coordinator, Maria Cashman, at 319-399-6847 or 800-332-8488 or TDD 319-399-6766, Grant Wood AEA, 4401 Sixth St SW, Cedar Rapids, IA 52404.

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