Advocacy- A Journey Not a Destination with Linda Linn, Brea Burrack, & Hollie Weber (ITAG Parent Webinar Series)

Thursday, October 29 2020 3:25 PM - Saturday, May 01 2021 12:00 PM [CST]

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Thursday, October 29 2020 3:25 PM - Saturday, May 01 2021 12:00 PM [CST]



Helping Your Children Survive and Thrive

 ITAG On-Demand Webinar Series for Parents


Education and “doing school” during COVID-10 has presented parents and gifted and talented students with circumstances that are unique and potentially overwhelming. ITAG’s Webinar Series gives parents time to hear from experts in social-emotional development, learning, and gifted education during COVID-19.  The sessions will provide parents with strategies for helping their gifted learners survive and thrive. Each session will become available for on-demand viewing in November 2020 and will remain available for viewing through May 1, 2020.

This session is Advocacy- A Journey Not a Destination with Linda Linn, Brea Burrack, and Hollie Weber

Session Description: Healthy and timely school and home communications are so important for children’s academic and social/emotional growth. Reciprocal communications need to be based upon trust and respect.  Especially now, we know communication may be complicated.  This session will provide learning and discussions based upon how to be an advocate for your child in the school setting. We will also offer strategies to assist you in your child’s self-advocacy journey.


Other ITAG Parent Webinar sessions that will become available for on-demand viewing beginning in November

Evan Abbey- The Promise and Pitfalls of Online Education for Gifted and Talented Students (available)

It wasn’t supposed to be this way.  For years, online education has posed to gifted-and-talented students promising opportunities for individualized education, acceleration, passion-based learning, and the ability to connect with peers from around the world.  But before those could be fully reached, the COVID crisis has pushed all students back into a one-size-fits-all education, this time online.  Still, there is hope.  This session will focus on how parents can best advocate for their children to receive personalized, challenging learning opportunities in the online space.  We’ll look at what the online environment can offer students and what resources are available for you at home.

Lora Duffy Danker and Susan Wouters-  The State of Gifted: The Power of Parent Groups (available)

ITAG President Lora Danker and ITAG Past-President Susan Wouters focus on the power of parent groups to grow partnerships with home, school, and community to bring change for gifted children. Forming a parent group does not have to be overwhelming. This presentation will share how parent groups can be organized and sustained through engagement, communication, and networking.

Dr. Debra Mishak, The Shelter of Each Other: COVID-19 and Gifted Families

COVID-19 has infiltrated every facet of global society — including the world’s families.   In the current reality of Covid-19, gifted families face some challenges that are universal to the human experience, and others that are unique to them.  During this presentation the social and emotional needs of gifted children/adolescents and their families will be discussed in light of the pandemic, with remaining time for questions and comments from the audience.  Come share with each other, learn from each other, and support each other through this truly unprecedented and extraordinary time.

Dr. Shaun Vecera, Mindset, Metacognition, and Memory: The Three Ms of Effective Learning and Academic Success

 Education often focuses on learning “what,” or the content or names, dates, and other factual knowledge. In addition to content, students also need support in learning “how,” or the skills required for effective learning. This session will address the question: What is the best way to learn? Psychological science has a wealth of knowledge about cognition, learning, memory, and motivation that can point to best practices to benefit students’ academic success. The session will discuss the psychological science of mindset, metacognition, and memory–the Three Ms–with a focus on empirical findings and practical use of those findings. We will discuss techniques that parents and students can use to support more effective learning, in both face-to-face and on-line contexts.

Iowa Talented and Gifted Association

The Iowa Talented and Gifted Association recognizes, supports, and respects the unique and diverse needs of talented and gifted learners through advocacy, education, and networking. ITAG promotes advocacy at the national, state and local levels, pre-service and in-service training in gifted education, and parent/community awareness, education and involvement. ITAG is comprised of parents, educators, other professionals, and community leaders who share an interest in the growth and development of gifted and talented individuals in Iowa. ITAG is a 501(c)3 organization which was organized more than 40 years ago with a vision that gifted and talented children in the State of Iowa should receive an education commensurate with their abilities and needs. ITAG is an affiliate of the National Association for Gifted Children.

Contact the Organizer

Linda Linn
Prairie Lakes AEA

Linda Linn has a passion for family engagement in education. She retired from 34 years in education with experience in Pre-K - 12th grades. She earned a teaching endorsement in secondary social studies and a Masters in School Counseling. She held positions in an alternative school, MS/HS Counselor and elementary school counselor. She then became an Instructional Consultant for Prairie Lakes AEA and worked in the areas of: school counseling, gifted/talented, social studies, equity, anti-bullying, fine arts, and several other content areas. She is a proud wife, mother of 3 gifted adult women and grandmother to 10 amazing grandchildren.

About Linda Linn

Prairie Lakes AEA
Brea Burrack
K-5 ELP Teacher
Waukee Schools

Brea Burrack is K-5 ELP teacher at Radiant Elementary in Waukee Schools. Brea works collaboratively with general education teachers, AEA staff, administration and parents to facilitate communication as well as ensure gifted students’ needs and supports are understood and implemented. Brea chaired the 2019 ITAG conference and presented at many ITAG break out sessions. Brea has planned and implemented professional development to K-12 staff on social/emotional, twice-exceptionality, and intellectual needs of gifted students.

About Brea Burrack

K-5 ELP Teacher
Waukee Schools
Hollie Weber
TAG Educator/Instructional Coach
Central Lee CSD

Hollie Weber has worked with TAG students throughout her 18-year teaching career as a middle school classroom teacher for TAG cluster groups in an urban school and as a program coordinator and single-practitioner in a rural school. She earned her undergraduate degree from the University of Northern Iowa in elementary and middle school education. She completed her TAG endorsement through courses at the Belin-Blank Center and Drake University while also earning her Master’s degree through Viterbo. She returned to her “home” district 11 years ago to serve in the same program she once participated in. She hopes to provide students at Central Lee with opportunities that will enrich, empower, and connect them with a sense of purpose. She resides with her husband and three school-aged children on their family century-farm.

About Hollie Weber

TAG Educator/Instructional Coach
Central Lee CSD