Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Rio Salado PTK Chapter Hosts Water Bottle & Toiletries Drive June 12-24

Image of a young person holding a sign that reads homeless

Take part in the Full Throttle Reusable Water Bottle & Toiletries Drive hosted by Rio Salado’s Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) Alpha Theta Omicron Chapter and the André House to help collect reusable plastic water bottles and toiletries for people in need, June 12 – 24.

Participants can drop off donations at the Rio Salado Tempe headquarters during regular business hours. Bins will be located near the front reception areas of the Tower and Hohokam buildings.

image of volunteers unloading boxes of donations

The PTK team chose to take part in this effort as part of its annual community service project. The proceeds of this drive will go to the André House, which helps hundreds of homeless individuals every day.

“Water is a necessity, but plastic recyclable water bottles often just become garbage, get hot quickly and are hard to refill,” said Rio Salado PTK student president Evea Morrow, who is helping to spearhead this initiative and also serves as an Honors Program assistant for Rio Salado. “By providing reusable water bottles we reduce the need for recyclable water bottles.

Morrow said the hard-plastic bottles can also provide water-proof storage during rainy weather, and storage for leftover food or vitamins.

Other Donations the PTK Team Will Accept:

• Reusable water bottles (non-metal)
• Washcloths
• Feminine Hygiene Products
• Deodorant
• Sunscreen
• Lip Balm
• Razors and Shaving cream
• Shampoo & Conditioner
• Travel size unscented or mildly scented Lotion
• Body wash/bar of soap
• Travel-size toothpaste
• Toothbrushes
• Q-Tips
• Multi-vitamins, cough drops, ibuprofen, aspirin
• Band-Aids
• Combs and hairbrushes
• Sunglasses
• Gallon Size ZipLock Freezer or Storage Bags

Items that will not be accepted
• Hand sanitizer
• Mouthwash with alcohol in it
• Cases of recyclable water bottles (These can be donated directly to André House)

For additional details, please contact Evea Morrow at 480-517-8521 or

We appreciate your generosity and participation!

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

RSVP for Enrollment Express Day June 15!

Poster for Enrollment Express Day.  Maricopa Community Colleges logo.  For New Students.  Thursday, June 15, 2017, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.

All Aboard! Take part in Enrollment Express Day for new students, Thursday, June 15! It’s a quick and easy way to complete enrollment in ONE DAY-- at Maricopa Community Colleges all across the Valley-- including the Communiversity at QC!

To reserve your spot, go to:

  • Apply for Admission
  • Take the Placement Test
  • Seek Academic Advisement
  • Student Orientation
  • Explore Payment Options
  • Register for Classes

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Communiversity at QC Closed in Honor of Memorial Day

United States Marine Corps War Memorial by Felix de Weldon  (Iwo Jima Memorial)  Arlington County, Virginia,

The Communiversity at QC will be closed on Monday, May 29 in honor of Memorial Day

Memorial Day is observed on the last Monday of May to remember the brave men and women who sacrificed their lives while serving in the armed forces.  

The National Moment of Remembrance Act was passed in 2,000 to “encourage the people of the United States to give something back to their country, which provides them so much freedom and opportunity.”   

The Act encourages all Americans to pause at 3 p.m. for a minute of silence on Memorial Day.

flags at half-mass, in front of Satue of Liberty at sunset

There is a traditional way of displaying the U.S. flag on this special day. 

The flag is raised quickly to the top of the staff and then lowered slowly to the half-mast position, where it remains until noon. It is then raised to full-staff for the remainder of the day. The half-staff position remembers the more than one million men and women who gave their lives in service to our country. At noon their memory is raised by the living.

poster with a star with American flag design.  text: memorial day.

Visit this azcentral web page for a list of Memorial Day gatherings in town.

Image 1: United States Marine Corps War Memorial by Felix de Weldon, Arlington County, Virginia.

AZ K-12 Ed Tech Conference Aug. 5. Inspire students to find the joys of STEM!

Poster for AZ K-12 Ed Tech Confrence: Empowering the Student-Centered Classroom. Image of a teacher working with young students and technology.

Learn how to wow K-12 students with Technology!  Learn how to use innovative tech applications and strategies in the classroom!

NSF Logo

Rio Salado College's Educator Prep Program and National Science Foundation Noyce Scholar Program will host AZ K-12 Ed Tech Conference: Empowering the Student-Centered Classroom, an educational technology conference this August.

This conference provides hands-on professional development for pre-service teachers, educators and homeschooling parents who are looking for new ways to engage children with technology. Sessions will focus on leveraging educational technology to impact learning in innovative ways. Presenters are experienced K-12 teachers with a national presence in the ed tech world who will share several tools and ideas you can incorporate into your curriculum and classroom right away.

AZ K-12 Ed Tech Conference
Aug. 5, 2017
8:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
Rio Salado College Conference Center
2323 W. 14th St., Tempe, AZ 85281

Please note: Attendees are responsible for supplying their own laptops, tablets and chargers.

Register Now!

Registration is required. Cost $14, includes catered lunch.

Continuing education credits will be offered.

Learn More
Get the latest event details by visiting or call 480-517-8743.


For additional details about Rio Salado's Noyce Scholar program, visit

Thursday, May 11, 2017

The Secret to Becoming a Better Teacher

Pictured Left Victoria Reid Pictured Right Shawndra Reid holding awards
Shawndra Reid (r) with her daughter Victoria Reid
The opportunity to grow as a teacher is as easy as the click of a mouse, bringing new information to your fingertips. With so many tips and tricks, it can be difficult to know what works and what doesn't. Learn the secret to becoming a better teacher from someone who has experienced it first hand, Rio Salado's Shawndra Reid, Program Supervisor for the Teacher in Residence Program:

I’ve always considered teaching to be a performance profession like actors, professional athletes, or musicians.  In order to become a master of their performance, teachers must continually strive to perfect their craft through coaching. You need someone to watch you teach and give honest feedback with clear pathways to improvement, which did I mention doesn’t have to be your formal evaluator? 

Some of the best feedback I have ever received was from colleagues I invited in to my classroom to watch me teach. You can ask someone to observe to give general feedback or for something specific like questioning strategies, management style, or even how many times “um” slips out during a presentation.  We all have our strengths and weaknesses so take the opportunity to decide what you want to improve and have someone help you! 

We also need to watch ourselves teach. Yes – that means we need record our own lessons and watch them which can be painful, I know. Just remember, our students watch us teach every day, we should be able to watch ourselves teach without cringing! 

When you see yourself doing something amazing, take note so you can be sure to do it again next time. When we watch ourselves doing something clumsy, keep practicing and improving!  We need to celebrate big (think: end zone dance!) when we do well and conversely, we need to own up when we don’t do well (think: awkward TV interview) and reflect on how we will improve. It’s easy to avoid this kind of reflection and feedback because it can make you feel vulnerable, but this is the only way to truly improve – take it from someone who knows. 

Teaching is a performance which requires an audience. Can you imagine a professional athlete who never watched their own games to see how they did? Or an actor who never watched their own plays/movies to analyze their performance? Of course not! True performers are never done learning, never done improving, never done honing their craft.  This type of focus and determination keeps you fresh and on the front edge of the teaching profession. 

So, what’s the next step? Pin point the area you want to improve (most likely whatever made you cringe) and seek out the knowledge and skills you’ll need to succeed.  I typically have two areas of focus at all times, one instructional strategy and one content area and I hope that this technique will work for you, too.

Recently, I have tried Socratic Seminar as an instructional strategy.  It wasn’t perfect, and I will do things differently next time I hold a seminar, but I will keep trying! I have also started teaching Shakespeare.  I was intimidated in the beginning, but I focused on overcoming my nervousness through learning. I read teaching guides and analysis, watched movies, and attended several live performances at the local theatre.  I developed a love for Shakespeare and my enthusiasm spreads to my teaching. 

What will your focus be?  What will you choose to improve? Who will you choose to watch you teach? 

Contributed by Shawndra Reid, Program Supervisor for the Teacher in Residence Program