Dr. Michelle Parrinello-Cason

Dr. Michelle Parrinello-Cason

Dr. Michelle Parrinello-Cason has a Ph.D. in English with an emphasis on rhetoric and composition. She has more than a decade of teaching experience including six years as a college English professor. She has designed workshops and classes for elementary, middle, and high school students and is a homeschooling mom of two.

Her passions include pop culture, moral philosophy, essay writing, and reading skills. She designs classes that take a multi-disciplinary, integrated reading-writing approach to make sure learners have context and purpose for everything they create.

During her time as an English professor, Michelle specialized in teaching “developmental” writing, which means she was working with the students who had been deemed unprepared for college-level writing. In that work, she formed a teaching philosophy deeply centered on trust.

She believes that students learn best when they know that their instructor genuinely trusts them to do well. She works hard to avoid assignments and classroom dynamics that create antagonistic power structures. Instead, she wants learners to see her as a supportive guide who genuinely aims to help them reach their own goals.

Michelle is the founder of Dayla Learning, a place for “homeschooling the humanities with humanity,” and the co-founder of SEA Online Classes, a platform for hands-on, engaging online classes.

June 26, 2021
12:30pm EST/9:30am PST

The When of Learning Effectively: Applying Just-in-Time-Teaching to Homeschooling

Trying to think of all the things our learners need to know can be overwhelming. As we sift through standards, our own memories of what we learned at each stage of our own education, and book after book of scopes and sequences, we can be left with our heads spinning and an overwhelming urge to “cover” as much as possible to not fall “behind.”

Of course, one of the most important benefits of homeschooling is that we get to set our own pace and take the time to explore interests deeply. It’s one of the things that many homeschooling families point to as why they do what they do.

It can be harder, though, to know how to handle subjects, skills, and topics that don’t come as easily or as enthusiastically. If our learners are struggling with a concept after it’s been “covered,” we can be left wondering what to do next.

Just-in-Time-Teaching is a concept that comes from higher education and was coined in 1999 — as online education possibilities were revamping the educational landscape. Instead of spending class time covering the material, teachers could assign activities to be done outside of class time, assess where learners needed more help, and spend those periods of instruction really delving into the sticky points at the very moment learners most needed the help.

This model lends itself well to homeschooling, and in this session, I’m going to talk about what Just-in-Time-Teaching is, where its applicable to homeschooling, and how to apply it (using my own experience as a writing teacher for specific examples).

June 26, 2021
12:30pm EST/9:30am PST

Addressing the Elephant in the Room: The Problems with Classic Books
(and Why We Read Them Anyway)

The literary canon is rife with problems. For one, whose voices have been amplified and whose have been silenced means that the canon often fails to be representative of perspectives that were commonplace and valued even in their own time. Reading them in a modern-day context, however, can be even more jarring. Casual sexism and racism, homophobia, and “jokes” that didn’t age well are all major concerns — and texts don’t even have to be that old to display these issues.

Join Dr. Sabrina Weiss and Dr. Michelle Parrinello-Cason as they talk about why they still choose to teach classic texts and how they believe educators and students can engage meaningfully with these texts not just in spite of but because of their problems.

Leave this talk with strategies for choosing books and building in learning activities that help learners engage with these books contextually.