Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Creating vs Consuming

In my previous blog post I talked about my schools recent revamp of it's tech plan and tech vision. We came to the realization that we want to find ways for students to be creators and not so much consumers. More entrepreneurial and innovative. So to create these opportunities, we are looking at how to incorporate more STEAM opportunities for students in the form of MakerSpaces, an AV studioYour school and Googles 9 Principles for Innovation describes what we are trying to accomplish.  Creativity, Collaboration, Critical Thinking, and Communication are key components. I will keep you posted!
and video broadcasting, robots and programming and even revamping our scheduling of classes. It is an exciting time to be at my school and I am excited to be a part of the planning and implementation of the vision for our students. I feel that this is the right way to prepare our students for the future in order to help them to pursue their dreams and be innovative. This recent blog post:

The Best PD ever

If you want a professional growth experience that really makes you do some self evaluation, sit on a Technology Planning committee and go through a school tech plan visioning. The outcome could be
professionally life changing and refreshing.

My school recently went through its tri-annual self-assessment in this area and I being one of the technology coaches and teachers in the school, was part of this process. This was a three-day process and was facilitated by a professional facilitator. She took us through finding out what our philosophies were, what research was out there, examined other plans, what trends were occurring now in education and technology and in 10-20 years, what we could see students doing when they came to school, and aligned everything to our schools mission statement. Our schools mission statement I am pleased to say, is very progressive and it has guided all of our schools efforts towards improving all its programs. The schools mission statement lent itself to creating an exciting, forward-thinking student-focused tech vision, with the focus being on preparing students to be creative, collaborate, and be effective communicators. 

Although it was tiring and it took my weekend, I found this process to be professionally rewarding and invaluable for guiding my teaching and integration focus in the future. For those that were a bit pessimistic about the process, they to walked away with a sense of accomplishment and knowing they contributed to the schools future. So if you get a chance, do it. Our technology vision is awaiting official approval from our board, but once it receives the final go-ahead, I will publish it here. 

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Using vs Integrating Technology

Ever wondered about the difference between just using tech in your classroom or actually integrating it? Teachbytes came up with the great table below. It details 12 ways to properly integrate technology into the classroom. It is a simple way to evaluate your teaching practices and how digital learning methodologies are being applied in your classroom. I plan on using this as a guide. Hope you like it!

Sunday, May 12, 2013

I am presenting this week with some colleagues from the American School of Dubai at the Learning Technologies MENA conference in Dubai, UAE. The presentation is about how our school uses Google Apps and tools in our daily lives as students, teachers and administrators.
Click here to view the presentation. Working with Google tools has certainly helped our school communication, efficiency and our students to learn.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

A Taxonomy for Tech Integration


Awesome Resource!!!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

iPad Workflow

When using iPads or iDevices, a teacher will be looking for apps that can replace what is done on a computer. The workflow is significantly different when trying to find the right app for the job at hand.

This list of apps that match what a teacher wants to accomplish is very handy. The list is from:

iPad Learning Objectives
  1. I want my students to record and edit video on their iPad. 
  2. I want my students to record and / or edit audio on their iPad. 
  3. I want my students to read class content on their iPad. 
  4. I want my students to annotate course readings on their iPad 
  5. I want my students to be able to read audio books on their iPad. 
  6. I want my students to use iPads as a digitial notebooks / note-taking devices. 
  7. I want my students to use iPads to share and demonstrate their understanding through screencastsscr.
  8. I want my students to create presentations on their iPads. 
  9. I want my students to create digital stories on iPad. 
  10. I want my students to be able to study with iPad. 
  11. I want to use the iPad as a student response system. 
  12. I want my students to create written content on their iPad. 
  13. I want my students to blog on their iPad.
  14. I want my students to create ePubs / iBooks to read on their iPad.
  15. I want my students to create and edit images on the iPad.
  16. I want to use the iPad in order to create a language lab environment for my students.
  17. I want my students to use the iPad to stay organized.
  18. I want to use the iPad to conduct video / virtual conferences in the classroom
  19. I want to control my computer or Interactive White Board from my iPad.

Friday, March 8, 2013

Middle East Google Apps For Education Summit

I am presenting at my first Middle East Google Apps for Education Summit. Wow! I am excited and it has been fun to get ready for. My current school, the American School of Dubai is hosting the event. I am presenting on how to use Google Forms in schools. Fun! About 250 people here, good presenters, nice atmosphere. I have been inspired once again to help my students be inspired, be creative, collaborative, and communicate better. "Creatical"   #gafesummit

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Flipping the Classroom


This article gave some great insight about how teachers can "flip" or front-end load their classrooms. The general stereotype of a flipped classroom is to have videos the students watch as homework before coming into class, then have the students practice in class what they learned where they have teacher and peer assistance. But besides this method, front-end loading can be done with articles, websites, documents and other resources to give students the chance to be prepared for class discussions. Using blogs to extend class discussions beyond the face-to-face environment can lead to greater understanding and interaction of classes and students.
Another great article related to Flipping the Classroom: The Truth about Flipped Classrooms.