Thursday, June 27, 2013

Kids Respond When You Believe in Them . . . Ask Principal Roger Boddie

After 36 years of leading the Hingham Middle School in Massachusetts, Principal Roger Boddie's students surprised him with a flashmob dancing tribute to him on his last day of his term on the job.   It is touching to see how this affects Boddie as well as the students.  Imagine leading a school for 36 years.  That means that he probably had at least 2 generations of students. He became part of their families.

He obviously Made a Difference.  He believed in his students and they responded.  This aligns with the testimonials that I have been hearing all week at the ISTE conference in San Antonio.
  • I heard Kevin Honeycutt talking about his passion for teaching and challenging students.
  • Adam Bellow gave a moving keynote where he talked about Making a Difference in the world. 
  • Jane McGonigal shaws how she had worked with learners and changed their lives through gaming.
There is no greater achievement than Making a Difference in someone else's life.  That is why we became teachers.  We want to make a difference it is when we receive acknowledgement as Principal Boddie received the tribute by his students that means a great deal.

I found this video on the blog of a good friend, mentor and colleague, Vicki Davis - CoolCatTeacher.   Visit her blog to see what she has to say about this.

How have you been acknowledged as an educator?

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Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Making Learning Meaningful for New Gens with Readings, Watchings, Listenings, and Doings @ ISTE '13

Making Learning Meaningful means more than "getting the point across." Meaningful Learning is a transformative experience where learners are building a Relation with what they are learning. Instead of memorizing information that can be recited on a test on Friday morning, Meaningful Learning involves students:
  • Connecting to content because of interest.
  • Finding relevance because it relates to what they already know.
  • Having a great deal of freedom in how they involve themselves with the content. 

Building a Relation with what you are learning involves making decisions about what you are learning and how you will learn it. It doesn't mean that the teacher is not leading the learning process. It means that the teacher is not the center of all content and the purveyor of knowledge to the learner. The teacher learns along with the learner.

Today I am sharing my ideas with educators from around the world at the ISTE '13 conference in San Antonio. This is a huge international event where 20,000 educators from 70 different countries convene to share how they have been teaching and learn new ideas for how technology can be used to support learning.  It is an INCREDIBLE event.

I am presenting on Wednesday, June 26 from 11:45 - 12:45 in Room  217 D. I don't know how many people will be at the conference but you will be able to follow along through a couple of pathways from anywhere in the world.

For all of you twitterers, we will use the hashtag #MLMiste When you tweet, include this hashtag in your message so that others can follow along with your ideas. If you want to see what was posted, click on the hashtag above and it will show you what has been said.

Collaborative Notes
We will also use collaborative note taking. This is a Google Doc that I created and then laid open to the world for anyone to edit. ( This means that you just need to click on the link and it will take you to the Google Doc. You don't have to sign-in but you will be known as Anonymous???? when you are entering your ideas.  Go ahead and add the info that you find interesting.  Go out on the web during the session to find relevant information and add the link to the document.

The Slideshow

I have posted this slideshow on SlideShare.  You are welcome to follow along or use the content later with your colleagues or students.  Just remember to provide attribution for where you found it. =-)

(Will be posted before the presentation on Wednesday.  Never know what else we will add.)

I will begin our discussion with talking about Generations. The world is changing and so are the learners we encounter in out classrooms. We MUST consider that if we are going to Make Learning Meaningful. Here is a small chart that distinguishes the generations.  The rest of the content on this can be found in the slideshow above. 

Readings, Watchings, Listenings and Doings (RWLD)
Readings, Watchings, Listenings, and Doings (RWLDs) are online pages that hold digital  content for topics that you are studying in class. Instead of relying on a textbook, you are providing your learners with Multimedia Opportunities to prepare for the work you will be doing in class.

Check THESE Out!!
Here are some examples of RWLDs that I use in my classes. They are designed for University classes at the University of Northern Iowa, but you could use this same format for 3rd graders. It's just a matter of making a blog posting. 

This is the Flipped Classroom LONG BEFORE there was a Flipped Classroom

You will can learn more about RWLDs at my posting Textbooks are NOT Enough Anymore!

Thank You!!
I hope that this session has been useful for you. I am interested in knowing if and how this material has been useful to you. I hope that this is just the beginning of our connection.
 How else can I help you?  Respond in the comments below.


Monday, June 17, 2013

Tech It To the NEXT Level

I am privileged to be Skyping with Amy Kangas and her wonderful class of educators who are spending the next week exploring what it means to be a 21st Century Teacher.  

While I will just be there to answer questions and share some experiences, here are a few resources that might be useful for our discussion.


Technology Integration Matrix:

UNI Instructional Technology Masters Program

Sunday, June 16, 2013

MY GAWD! It's Saturn thru Google Hangout!!!

There's Saturn. I can't believe it!

Fraser Cain in Courtenay, British Columbia, is SHARING THE UNIVERSE!
He is using Google Hangout to share this image on his telescope with other astronomers from all over the world.

English: Auroras on Saturn. Français : Des aur...
English: Auroras on Saturn. Français : Des aurores polaires sur Saturne. Русский: Полярное сияние на Сатурне. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
I know that the technology is here and I have connected with people all over the world, but this video brought me to tears.  I don't know why, but the idea of connecting people from all over the world to through Google Hangout to see Saturn through a personal telescope in British Columbia, Canada, was incredibly moving for me, the teacher.

Sure, we have seen telescopic images on our televisions or even our computers, but this experience is not being directed by "The Establishment." It isn't something on PBS that someone in New York decided would be good for us to see. It is about a Canadian amateur astronomer connecting through Google Hangouts with individuals in Pakistan, Australia, U.S., Mexico, South America, South Africa and ??. It is an example of people sharing/learning/teaching with one another in a way that wasn't possible even 5 years ago.

This is what 21st Century Learning is all about. It is about connecting and collaborating and exploring on a global basis. It is about using our daily resources to constantly expand our opportunities with others. 

What are you doing in your classrooms to encourage such collaboration?


Happy Father's Day
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