Wednesday, December 12, 2007
I created a wikipage to act as a launch point and have included rubrics and storyboards. I'd love to get some feedback, please take a look!
Monday, December 10, 2007
So how do we foster multi-tasking computer users WITHOUT losing the dreaded "time on task." You create a mechanism for your audience to discuss issues DURING the presentation. You foster the "back-end chat."
David has done this and then afterwards interjects his own comments and posts the chat. Today, I got around to actually reading the chat and clarifying some issues.
Check it Out
and happy Backchatting!
(Oh and I used a program called Pladeo to do this - instead of the Ajax chat client David used.
I am always impressed by the quality of winners from the Edublog Awards, and this year is no exception. Some of these I have heard of, others I have not. I look forward to exploring them all more!
Best educational tech support blog
El tinglado, Josa Cuerva Moreno
Most influential blog post
Is It Okay To Be A Technologically Illiterate Teacher? - The Fischbowl, Karl Fisch (Blogger)
Best group blog
Thursday, November 29, 2007
The majority of my presentations I have placed on my wiki
Please feel free to add your comments and sites that you have found. A big thank you to everyone who came to my presentations. I really enjoy presenting and as exhausted as I am - it was totally worth it.
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
What always surprised me was how smart most of these guys were (very few girls), how little education beyond high school - which embodied all the stereotypes I had come to know - and yet how social and smart and dedicated they were to their jobs. Mind you I know that they were the exception not the rule, but it gave me some insight that I will forever be grateful for.
Now on to my session comments......
David always has a great looking presentation and uses wikis for his Online Handouts.
We are investigating Second Life at State - so I am excited to see that David has an office there and is demoing how to use SL to deliver content. I wonder if this is the future of Course Management Systems?!
Can we teach with games? or learn with games?
I actually responded to this question in the chat. I believe there are definite teachable moments with comparing virtual or historic environments for the real world. Even comparing games that are not historically accurate are important. (I have vivid memories of playing Oregon Trail as a fourth grader during lunch in the computer lab - yes I was one of those).
How is the "video game generation" different?
We are competitive, risk taking and sociable as well as Self-confident! You get to be the Hero! My husband and I actually had this discussion the other day about board games (I had board game night as a kid). He loved play Othello and Stratego while I loved Trivial Pursuit and Monopoly. He prefers much more strategy and long term planning games than I did.
Can video games teach empathy?
I wonder about this. Can putting our students in virtual environments impact them enough to change their views about real life?
Is the line blurring from real life and online life? Do we want it to?
Tuesday, November 27, 2007
I will be Twittering most of the conference - bethanyvsmith
It looks like all my presentations are on the other side of the hotel in pretty large rooms - I'm not sure if that is good or bad! Hope to see some of you at the conference!
Friday, November 16, 2007
Evan says, "Yea! Mommy's blog has over 1,000 hits"
I literally "hit" a milestone today - 1,000 hits to my webpage! This means so much to me - not just because I yearn to be popular (just kidding), but really because it is the conversations that grow out of blogging that are so important and drive me to continue posting. Blogging on a regular basis is an important part of my own professional development, and I appreciate your support.
My 1,000th hit was at 7:24 PM last night from Mountain View, California! How cool is that!
Tuesday, November 13, 2007
PEW - Internet & American LifeResearch on how Americans are using the internet.
Parent & Teen Use in PEW
How do adults "social network?" vs. the way students social network via. MySpace & Facebook
Educators are using Tinkertoys - little tools to help us do our job.
As "adults" (or non-myspacers) we are putting together several tools to facilitate our learning. I embody this idea in my use of Blogger, Twitter, del.icio.us, Google Reader, etc. But I struggle with the idea of 1) Presenting all these tools to my teachers and 2)Should we be using Facebook - since that is where our students live - or will a separate social network work (like a nin). I also worry that throwing too many options - and not scaffolding correctly will bring everything down to the ground.
I really, REALLY want to get a College of Ed Social network of the ground, but how do you get people to come? MySpace in particular has the most horrid webdesign usage- it breaks every usability rule - yet people love it, because of the people. Can we design a great interface and get people to use it? I don't know...
David did mention a new book - that I think I need to read.
Small Things loosely Joined - book on Web 2.0
Monday, November 12, 2007
Now I used to help produce MEGA when I worked for Lisa Grable, and I still feel a strong bond to the project (besides the fact that I presented at it last month). Not only that but David Warlick himself will be speaking about "Redefining Literacy for the 21st Century" & "Classroom Blogging: 2nd Edition". David is an excellent speaker and I am a huge admirer of his work. Linda Perlstein will also be speaking about the "Hidden Lives of Middle Schoolers."
I'm so excited!
Sunday, November 11, 2007
Thanks to Wes Fryer for posting these the other day - as well as drawing attention to his PD videos page - hawesome!
Friday, November 9, 2007
I have decided to really participate in conferences this year - and I am really excited about the prospects already. I have 1 workshop and 4 presentations at NCETC at the end of this month in Greensboro, NC at the Koury Convention Center - November 27th, 28th & 29th. Hope to see you there!
The Power of Podcasting: Listening, Creating & Posting Tuesday 9AM to Noon
Podcasting continues to be a buzz word in instructional technology, but how does one actually create one? This workshop will showcase examples of podcasts across different curricular areas and levels. We will discuss the principal components of a podcast and create one in GarageBand. Come join me in creating a truly multimedia product and discover how to implement in your school!
The Power of Podcasting Prg # E059 Thursday 9am-10am Room:Tidewater
Podcasting continues to be a buzz word in instructional technology, but how does one actually create one? And how do I use it in MY classroom? This session will showcase examples of podcasts across different curricular areas and levels. We will discuss the principal components of a podcast and the tools necessary to create one on both Mac and PC platforms. Come join me as we explore the possibilities of listening and creating podcasts in your classroom.
Integrating Wikis into your Classroom Prg#E061 Wednesday 12PM - 1PM Room: Victoria C
Have you heard of a wiki? Do you want to create them in your classroom, but don’t know where to start? Come explore the wiki resources available online for educators (including PB Wiki), and the unique ways to incoporate them into your lessons. Harness the power of the Read/Write Web for group assignments, thematic units and much more!
The Power and Possibilities of Course Management Systems Prg #E058 Wednesday 4:30-5:30PM Tidewater
What does it take to design a course for a Course Management System (CMS)? How can I take an existing course and put it in a CMS? Can an in-person class utilize a CMS or is it just for Distance Education? Just what is a Moodle anyway?! These questions and more will be answered as we explore the world of Course Management Systems. A CMS can be a powerful tool in terms of creating a safe and secure environment for your students to interact and share information. It can also aid teachers in tracking assignments, as well as student grades and progress through a course. We will discuss how to rethink your existing courses when utilizing a CMS and what to keep in mind when creating new ones. Implementing and using such systems as Blackboard/WebCT Vista & Moodle will be covered as well examples of both systems shown.
The Internet is the new OS Prg # E060 Thursday 10:15AM - 11:15AM Tidewater
Google Docs? SlideShare? RSS? EduBlogs? PB Wiki? What do all of these have in common? They are all part of what we call the Read/Write Web or Web 2.0 and are in essence reimagining what we think of as an operating system. The Internet is now not only capable of handling what we traditional have done off-line, but can take it to another level of sharing and interactivity. In this session we will explore the tools that are out on the World Wide Web, and discuss ways to use them in your classroom.
What do you think - can I pull this off?
"Because it is the Conversation that Counts"
*Special Shout Out to Lisa Sullivan for including me - Thanks!
Tuesday, October 30, 2007
As a follow up we wanted to incorporate visuals and audio for a writing project. I had read about Voice Thread in Wes Fryer's Blog and had also seen it demonstrated during the K-12 Online Conference. It allows for users to combine photos and audio online, but with a twist - several people can have
When I showed it to the faculty member, she was blown away by the possibilities. I'll be working with her students next week and I'm exited to see what they create.
Tuesday, October 23, 2007
Our Wiki is set-up at http://megapodcast.pbwiki.com/ I can't wait to see how it grows!
Sunday, October 21, 2007
Wednesday, October 17, 2007
Activeworlds - more control, hosted, not cross-platform, 30-50 people at a time
SecondLife - v. popular, freely avail, huge community
Google SketchUp - Info System, can set-up virtual space, develop models for Google Earth
Advanced Game Engines - requires programming experience for development
PP315 - Diagnostic Game - Lab environment simulation
Challenges: Accessibility & FERPA
Once upon a SLURL...Learning in Second Life
K-12 Online COnference
“Second Life: K-20 Educators Exploring Virtual Worlds - Panel”
Sunday, October 14, 2007
Here are some excerpts, that I hope to elaborate on later (David's comments are in italics):
Bethany Smith (NC) • 2007-10-08 09:02:39
i vote for looking at products not tests
Monday, October 8, 2007
Seventh grade teachers and career counselors, mark your calendar! The Sixteenth Annual EYH Career Conference for 7th grade girls is scheduled on Wednesday, March 5th, 2008. The purpose of the conference is to expose middle grade girls to science, technology, engineering and mathematics careers. The conference is hosted by The Science at North Carolina State University.
Registration for schools will open on Monday, December 3, 2007 and close on Monday, January 14th, 2008. For more information about the conference, contact email@example.com.
Sunday, October 7, 2007
So when I look at the 21st Century Skills Initiative - that NC is apart of - I'm not surprised to see that this is an initiative driven by businesses and industry. Maybe this is where the flexibility we need to define skills - by business needs and the funding to make it possible can come together. Maybe....
I think Wikis are the poster childs for the entire concept of the Read/Write Web or AKA Web 2.0 (I personally dislike that term). The whole idea of making the web be the new OS, and be our applications has enormous possibilities. Wikis are the best example of this, they are a web page, a presentation, a word processor, all rolled into one.
But how does this make a difference to our students? By giving them the ability to 1) Create a webpage easily and effectively. 2) To share information with their group or classmates as a whole.
In regards to sharing information, have a wiki page for a subject in class, say the history of North Carolina in 8th grade, and build your own wiki page. Have students collect all the information they find into one resource to be shared. Not only have you created a worthwhile project that you can go back to, as a teacher you can view individual contributions and assign different grades for the same product! For those of us that love th concept of group work, but hate the grading of it - this is a lifesaver.
But, this brings up another point - how do we know the info in a wiki, such as wikipedia is factual? Well how do we know what is in Encyclopedia Britannica is factual? We place our faith in a few people that write for Britannica, and ASSUME that it is correct. Just because it is in print, doesn't make it any better, it just makes it harder to correct. Wikipedia depends on a community of people and corrections can be made easily, economically, and quickly. However, ALL sources, print, web or otherwise should be corroberated. In doing research, nothing can be taken for a fact unless two other sources can confirm that fact. Wikipedia nor should Encyclopedia Brittancia be our primary and only source for information - it should be a starting point, but not the be end and end all.
For reference, Nature did a study of Wikipedia vs. Britannica in 2005 http://www.news.com/2100-1038_3-5997332.html
Friday, September 28, 2007
I was worried at first that I would need to start my subscriptions from scratch, and with 80+ RSS feeds I peruse - this was not an exciting idea. However, I discovered an Import/Export feature. I was able to Export form NetNews Wire a .opml file. I was then able to upload that into Google Reader. Now, I did have to reorganize my subscriptions and tag them, but that wasn't too painful.
The advantages of Google Reader include:
-Being able to get my feeds from any computer
-Changing the way I look at my feeds
-Sharing items with others
You can view my favorites here.
You can subscribe to my best of the best feed here.
Wednesday, September 26, 2007
But Second Life? I'm not sure. Second Life to me is a social community that just happens to be in a 3D Virtual environment. But, I'm curious and want to investigate further.
DELTA at NC State has purchased an island to investigate this idea. What can we do in this kind of environment? Can we teach? Can we simulate scenarios? Can we discuss? Who do we want to join us? Who do we want to keep out?
I'm looking forward to what we find. Oh and my SL name is Trillian Kowalski
I'm a big fan of David Warlick and every once in awhile I get the nerve to comment on his blog. He had a really interesting post that just got me so excited. I blogged more about myself than the actual question. I feel humiliated, and in public, on my favorite blog.
It looks like I need to put more time and thought in the things I write - not that I'll stop mind you. If embarrassment stopped me I'd never do anything :)
Thanks for letting me rant a bit. I feel better. Even if I am overreacting a bit.
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
Any recommendations? And is it worth it? I might do a personal site at the same time to make it more cost effective. Or should I go with a local company?
Monday, September 24, 2007
It was announced this week that the One Laptop project is starting a new program. Buy a laptop from them for $400 and they will donate one to a needy child oversees (an you get a $200 tax right off). There have been thousands of people wanting to play with this new laptop and I think this was a smart marketing and fundraising tool - but doesn't it take away from part of the purpose of the machine?
I plan on writing a bit more on this subject later - including some pros on cons that I've seen as well as others.
Friday, September 21, 2007
G-mail (I mean who doesn't love free e-mail that has unlimited space)
Google Calendar (it takes uploads from iCal on a Mac - how cool is that?)
Google Earth (which now includes maps of the sky)
Google Reader (which acts as an RSS aggregator - basically a reader of all of your feeds - I still am attached to NetNewsWire, but this is tempting)
and Google Docs, which has just added Presentations. Although SlideShare is awesome in its ability to post PP presentation. The power of Google Presentations is being able to work collaboratively on a document. It takes a page out of a wikis book and takes it a step further, so instead of a webpage at the end - you get a presentation!
I hope to do my presentations for NCETC this year in it and demo how it works! Come to think of it, maybe I should have a Google Session? Or is that Patrick Crispin's territory?
Thursday, September 20, 2007
Gary Stager happened to be one of the keynotes and I really enjoyed listening and reading about his opinions on 1:1 initiatives. Wes Fryer had some really interesting thoughts about Gary's session and podcast of 10 Things to Do with a Laptop. After the 1:1 Conference last week (that I blogged to death and I promise to be a bit better on).
I have been trying to not only synthesize my thoughts, but also think of the practical applications of such programs. It is all well and good for me in my "ivory tower" to make proclamations of how great something is. And yet, my friend Sharon calls me her "connector" (in Tipping Point terms) and isn't that what blogging does? Connect others together to create excitement or to let others at least know the possibilities? I guess I'm feeling a bit out of the trenches in a university - and missing teaching high school.
Educause article by Bryan Alexander
Horizon report - describe new technologies and their effect on education
O'Reilly Web 2.0 - 2005
127 mill citations of Web 2.0 in 2007
What does Web 2.0 mean? Convenient label - Read/Write Label
The Machine is Us/ing Us - Youtube Video
Principals & Practices:
User participation - not just consumption of information
4 Key ingredients
1) The Web as a platform (we no longer need an OS)
Timeline from MIT SIMILE & Exhibit
2) Harnessing Collective Intelligence
3) Syndication of Content - RSS, Trackback
NCSU - BLERN
Common Craft - Social Design for the Web
4) Tagging "folksonomy" vs. taxonomy - the crowd vs. the info specialist
del.icio.us - Tag cloud
Get your own tag cloud
Web 2.0 Examples
Flickr, youtube, elgg,
2007 Web 2.0 Awards
Tuesday, September 18, 2007
Jennifer Carter - Director of Special Programs
All day workshop in STEM for Girls - (approx. 200)
Glaxo, IBM, etc. involved
Examples: Why Does Choclate make us happy?
Design Jam - Project Mangement and Design
This year on Nov 17th
Camp Mary Atkinson
Looking to connect their girls with other STEM initiatives
We have come quite some way, but we have a long way to go
Born to a Social Worker and a community college counselor
Her mother had dreams of being and engineer and told that was a man's field
They encouraged her so she would not have regrets
Building with legos and said - You can be an architect or an engineer
In 2nd grade I decided I wanted to be a meterologist
Overheard a conversation about tornados
Checked out every book on tornado they could find
Wanted to be a "tornadologist"
Her parents always encouraged her
But School Curriculum was an issue
From a rural area without the opportunities - her passion was never covered in school
Not many organizations available to change that
Coursework - being put on the wrong path - Tracking
When she looked at NC State's requirements she would not have enough Math
Her parents pushed the school to take 2 math classes at the same time
Her school did not think she could do it
What happens when you don't have advocates?
First African American female to graduate with a BS in Meterology in 2000
Saw teaching as a way to help kids - to advocate for them. That science is accessible to them.
It is not a GPA or performance issue
50% of BAs were women - they are in college but not STEM
Who is taking SAT? More boys than girls
Why so few women in STEM?
Girls have higher GPAs in Math and Science
But low interest in science, stereotypes, the "leaky pipeline"
Once in a STEM major they are just as likely to stay
Girls are not in STEM major even with high Math SAT did not find courses of interest in STEM
They are interesting in helping people and do not see that in STEM
Girls prefer intrinsic rewards and boys prefer extrinsic rewards
Girls make lower assessments of themselves
Lack of female role models
May need to be invited to begin a "non-traditional" career
Leaky Pipeline - women drop out of STEM along the way.
How do we fix this?
Give hands-on specific info
Show how STEM can help people - big picture
Have Role models
Website for non-traditional Posters
National Girls Collaborative Project
Getting programs together - more effective if working together
Started at the Puget Sound Center - funded by NSF
Program directory - http://www.ngcproject.org/northcarolina/
MRU Collaborative Project
Share best practices
Listing of needs and resources
Sunday, September 16, 2007
*Everyone emphasized the importance of professional development. Yea! I am so glad that this is was so highlighted. It is such an important aspect of any new project and should not e forgotten
*That 1:1 is a paradigm shift from teacher centered learning (sage on the stage) to student centered learning (guide on the side) (This paradigm shift needs to be apart of PD as well)
*That there are different ways to implement 1:1. It is not a one size fits all solution
*The more you can simplify things by using one vendor, the better you are
*The Books to Read are:
Good to Great
Daniel Pink A Whole New Mind - the future of our students is in creativity
The World is Flat by Thomas Friedman
Malcom Gladwell - The Tipping Point
*That having an enigmatic speaker such as Angus King as your spokesperson is what everyone needs!
Friday, September 14, 2007
Goals for 1:1?
Increase learning thru engagement
1:1 has been successful in Elem Schools - attendance rates have increased and ISS has decreased.
Learn & Earn - How do we take existing PD and what more can the laptop do? How do you integrate and not add.
What kind of PD do our teachers need? and how do we start?
Tech Facilitator needs to be a nurturer
Teachers helping teachers
You need to have a firestarter that can act as a mentor. Get your firestarters together to create a core team and start building.
If the teachers are not ready its not ubiquitious - it is just laptops in a classroom.
Will tech PD supplant all other forms of PD?
You have to have some command over your tool to be an innovator - we have to teach the tool first and then teach the ways to use it.
How does this change assessment? What are our short-term and long-term measurements? Attendance? EOGs? Teen birth rates? low teacher turn-over?
I think I am blogged out......
Over 5 year program
Stud Achiev. 67% to 78%
Stud Grad rate 26% to 84%
2nd to 18th in teen pregnancy
We make decisions about school based on when we went to school - but our schools and cultures are different now
Technology as an Accelerant - Book Good to Great
3 Instructional priorities 1) Literacy 2) College counseling 3) Technology
Context - everything you should be in your context. You know your district and what they need, rural or urban, etc. You can take the best practices and see what you need.
Stay focused with Staff Development - and ongoing.
Partner with Lenoir Comm College to offer an AA degree
20th Century Skills - Blooms Taxonomy (Drill and Kill)
Preparing our students for jobs that don't even exist now - How do we do that?
21st Century Skills
Learning to learn - being adaptable
Technology is no longer an add-on. Not something to be used after your done with work.
PD is essential and they key to every success (they conduct twice a week & do individual sessions) - What would she need? as a veteran teacher?
Smartsheet - directions step-by-step to take back with them. The content is focused on in PD
You must evaluate what you do and have high expectations.
What should 21st Century Graduate look like? Every student has their picture taken in cap and gown and is placed on their computer to see their goal.
Service Learning project through Learn Serve
iChat Reading Conferences
ESL through IM as needed
Instant Advising - chat about issues
Autobiographies as Podcasts
Problem Based Learning
Getting teachers to be able to say, "I don't know how to do this." and allowing a student to answer.
Staff Development is about modeling. Deliver the PD in the format they will need to deliver it.
Its the Content not the Box.
Cary Academy began 11 years ago. English & Foreign language received 1:1 in the classroom first.
Last year went to 1:1 for all subjects. 715 student tablets. Grades 6-12. Essential to outfit students, faculty AND key staff and leadership. Pilot program with toshiba laptop for teachers and switched to tablets for 1:1 based on faculty committee.
Tablets over Laptops
-Screen down mode
Tablet does add $150 to plan
*Classroom management becomes an issue. Students are tempted to use them in ways that you do not want them to. Limit access - block social networking sites. Bandwidth gets eaten up by Youtube.
Daniel Pink A Whole New Mind - the future of our students is in creativity
Largest single district laptop initiative
Success had to do with teachers and their ATTITUDE.
National Education Technology Plan
Technology can blend the art and science of teaching.
The cost of giving each student a bottle of water a day is what it costs to do 1:1
Malcom Gladwell - The Tipping Point - if enough of those lights come on - it will become a standard.
The World is Flat by Thomas Friedman
Are you born smart or do you get smart? You get smart!
Requires superintendent commitment, political commitment, grade level/department chair committment
Sept 2007 - 400 laptops
Total development Sept 2009 - 6000 laptops
The educational search engine
Online formative assessments for prescriptive intervention with ontime relative data.
Importance of imbedded ongoing PD. No drive by PD.
Engage teachers in teaching and learning that impacted student and learning. Strengthen pedagogical practice in Mathematics. Continue to buil dlearning community
2-year PD intervention
Online & face-to-face
Site visits for staff mentoring
Immersion model in face-to-face. Doing activities as the learner and deconstruct in terms of construction.
Online Learning Environment - tied to graduate crdit
Tech integration begins with content goals
-local learning standards
-NETS-S & T
Non-judgemental feedback. Formative assessment provided by technology. Goes beyond online worksheet with yes/no response.
Changes how students talk to each other and engage. Provides a level of exposure that students are not comfortable with - probing thinking, no rote answers.
Edthoughts - what we know about teaching and learning mathematics
Used as many online tools as possible. Cross-platform, flexible and open. Not online worksheets. National Library of Online Manipulatives
Multiple representations of content
GeoGebra combining geometry and algebra.
Get immediate feedback along the way.
Betty Manchester Director of MLTI
The worst you can do is see this as an add-on. What are you trying to do? What are your goals? and how does the technology support that work. There has to be a commitment to change. WHat needs to change at the school, district and state level.
Technology folks need to understand that the technology MUST work. They need to be educated in their role of supporting the school.
A learner centered classroom - proff dev is about the students.
Universal Design - enable students to access info in any way
Proff learning communities - engage admin and teachers. There is no magic answer. Everything is contextual.
Culture of risk-taking. We are in new territory. We are still on a journey.
Lateral capacity building by networks. It is critical to stay connected face-to-face. Created one through First Class and Maine Learns.org. The biggest fear was the teachers would not get the PD. Website supported through NEA
Virtual networks - getting info back and forth. What is working and what is not. Video conf - new level of communication.
Leadership team. Paid a stipend for a teacher leader in each school. Tech coordinator ans chool librarian. They know what is going on and how to build capacity in school for PD.
Student teams - need a student voice on the project. Developed videos, etc. help teachers and students and are part of the problem solving team.
Accountability and vertical relationships. Used 21st Cent Assessment practices. "Assessment for Learning" & "The Black Box" Student engaged in the own assessment of their learning.
Deeper levels of learning and inquiry. Inch thick - mile wide curriculum problem. Less is more and deeper is better.
DEPrivatization of classroom. Have teachers step outside classroom and share what they are doing. You have to be looking at student work.
Vygotsky - zone of proximal development. You want the development to be where students are.
If the building prinicpal was not on board - not a techie but sees it as important. Breakage in building is directly related to building principal. And need to expect that every educator is using technology. The principal needs to enforce this. Build teacher goals and action plans. If you let teachers off the hook it looks unimportant.
PD have to be ongoing!
Every school opted back in and the legislature voted it back in.
Angus King is always an enigmatic speaker and is discussing the Maine Learning Technology Initiative MLTI.
Currently teaching at Bodgen College.
Its not about technology - its about the teacher and the tools we give them
40,000 students have laptops all day everyday
9,000 educators (middle and high school)
Steve Jobs biggest customer (yay Mac!)
Also payed $600 for iPhone :)
Every single 7th & 8th grader
20 out of 150 high schools
Starting with educators and moving to students
The laptop is the "portkey" - from Harry Potter fame. It takes students
Started with 3 insights and a lunch.
1)What is the future of jobs and economy in 20 or 30 years? What is it going to involve? For sure education and technology.
2) National Governors Meeting - everyone was chacing more jobs, higher pay, etc. all in the same way. How is Maine going to get ahead?
You don't get ahead of the competition by keeping up.
3) Everything was incremental. All innovations were small improvements - nothing a breakthru.
50-70 million surplus in 1999
The lunch - Seymor Pappert from MIT
"It is only when it is 1:1 that the power occurs." 1996
People hated the idea.
"Who will own the laptops?" The kids - the reporters referred to it as "The laptop giveaway." The political response was unbelievable.
The e-mail were 10:1 against - these were people with computers!
They pushed through with the public and legislature - took 1 1/2 years. Pilot was a private textile company that matched funds with a rural school in Guilford. You can not appreciate the power until you see it - see the ENGAGEMENT. When they are engaged you can teach them anything.
This is an economic development project - it is being able to compete. The World is Flat is the most important book written in recent history. We are sitting on the tracks with a freight train coming while we watch American Idol and play slots.
It is all about Innovation - innovation is the process of technology and education coming together
Digital equity - a statewide program. If it comes bit by bit, the places can afford it get it first.
Education is changing fundamentally. When you live through a revolution you don't know it. We are generating a mountain of info and cannot master. Thomas Jefferson was the last person in America to know everything.
Education has to be about how to find the information and how to use it. Not the mastering of information. It is about process and the computer is the key.
Not a technology project - an education project. They get hung up on the device. What can the device do?
What have we learned in Maine?
1) It is all about teachers. If you hand out computers without professional development it is not worth it. PD does not start and stop - it is ONGOING. It is about integration in the classroom. 1:1 projects that have failed without PD. It has to be everyone in the school, principals, superintendents, and tech coordinators. Everyone needs the vision.
2) New pedagogy. Old model - the sage on the stage. New model - guide on the side
3) Use a single vendor. Do a RFP. Have a variety in Pilot schools to see what works. $289/student/year 4 year lease. Includes software, hardware, network, batteries, tech support. You want one throat to choke. Your vendor better be a partner.
4)7th grade was a good place to start
Total school budget 2 billion
Project cost 4/10 of 1 percent of statewide school budget
We spend way more of that on snow blowing
Darwin - The fittest were the organisms most adaptable to change. That is who has survived. If it was the biggest and the strongest the dinosaurs would still be alive.
Gretsky - How do you score so many goals? "It's easy I skate to where the puck is going to be. Everyone else skates to where it is." also "You miss 100% of the shots you don't take."
Significant improvement in writing and math. Part of the problem is we are not testing the right stuff. Giving 1980s test for 21st century skills. Accountability is important, but it cannot run the engine.
I will be moblogging this morning and will do my best :)
Thursday, September 13, 2007
How could the availability of distance education courses actually be a disadvantage to those with disabilities? In a way, is it possible that we might be working against our goal of preparing some students for the 21st century?
My response was:
The majority of people I know in the "business world" telecommute. My father does, three of my neighbors do, and my husband used to. (approx. 50% of IBM workers telecommute). Distance Ed classes help prepare our students for not only a new kind of social interaction that telecommuting brings, but also the self-motivation and time management strategies it requires. I think the issue is in those that are bridging into this new world of online interaction, I think those already in that world (say the avatars in Second Life) feel very comfortable interacting over the internet. It brings people from areas where they might not of ever met each other if it were not for the internet. Internet dating certainly wouldn't be the booming business that it is. But I'm getting a bit off topic, for Distance Education to truly be effective in bridiging this gap, the courses need to be designed effectively and with this in mind. Traditional classes can not just be placed online and be walked away from. Classes need to be designed specifically with distance ed in mind.
Sunday, September 2, 2007
Usability: ADA compliance is a big issue in my book. The ability for those with disabilities to be able to get access to the same information as others is imperative, especially in a school based setting. Also, ADA guidelines just ensure good practices, by including alt tags, using headers to designate information, etc.
Navigation: It is key that users can get to the information they need. A hierarchical structure needs to be established that is consistent throughout the site. There should also be an easy way to go backwards, without having to use the back button, etc.
Design: The design needs to not get in the way of the message, but help convey it. Animated gifs, garish clashing colors, frames, all get in the way of getting to the information, they are distracting or cumbersome.
Authority: Using the google model, who links to this site and what sites do they link to. Does the site provide references or links to claims that it makes? Is it ranked in any websites such as digg, technorati, or the buzz? Are author or group credentials provided? When was the last time it was updated?
Of all of the criteria, I believe that having students understand that anyone can put information on a website, and that the fact it exists on the Internet does not mean it is correct or factual. They need to backup claims made on pages and corroborate them with either other methods of evidence, or other authorities on webpages. (On a side note: I would also like to point out that just because something is in a book does not make it authoritative either).
One issue I'd like to get more discussion on. As a general rule you should not have to scroll down a webpage to get information. Do you think that is true anymore?
Saturday, September 1, 2007
We should be discussing privacy concerns in amateur videos. We should learn about and be educated on what is it proper to share and what is not.
I run into this issue all the time as webmaster for my school. Teachers and administrators are constantly wanting to put more pictures up of our students on the site. As much as I love adding graphic elements, I constantly have to remind them of the laws that govern pictures and video. Any pictures or video taken in a private setting (including a classroom), need permission to be published in a public form - like the internet. I am trying to "train" my faculty into getting permission while they are taking pictures. The university helped us create a form for this purpose (which can be viewed at http://ced.ncsu.edu/ltrc/studio/)and it has worked wonderfully (when it is being used!)
In other words, Google finds the most popular pages, not necessarily the pages that have the best or most accurate information.
Friday, August 31, 2007
Joselyn Todd, one of the midlink editors, has an excellent blog up and is a great example of Web 2.0 in the classroom. She uses wikis in such an inspiring way at her school.
Check her out as well as all the other editors!
I'm also trying to decide what to speak on this year. The list is so far:
Wiki - using PB Wiki
Preparing a class for LMS (Learning Mangement Systems - like BlackBoard)
We'll see what I can pair it down to....
Thursday, August 30, 2007
I believe your question on "How do we define learning?" in 21st Century Skills is a huge issue. We are surrounded by such an evaluation (and blame) based society. Last year I worked on a project that was very standards based and trying to find evidence to back those standards. It was one of the most difficult projects I've ever dealt with, because defining learning can no longer be a letter grade. Yet, we are so stuck in one grade or one score telling everything we know about a topic. I have just seen the new Professional Teaching Standards for North Carolina, and it should be interesting to see how they get evaluated now.
Tuesday, August 28, 2007
" If people were to Google you, what conclusions would they make?
This reminds me of being in a workshop with David Warlick about copyright and the Internet. We discussed the concept of ownership and how if students felt they owned their work, they would not want someone to take ownership from them. How sometimes it is perspective changing that makes all the difference.
From observing your on-line communication, what kind of person would they believe you are? What type of thinker are you? What skills do they think that you have?
From looking at your digital self, would people think that you are full of creativity or are you a copy-cat, mimicking the works of others without any new original thought?
What do you do if your work is being misappropriated? What if you discover that there are images of you on other’s sites which are unflattering or potentially damaging?"
This gives me a great idea for a new way to discuss Internet Safety. Now how safe will it be to demo this and google myself in front of everyone :)
My current compromise is to send my faculty to generic workshops that provide basic information on a topic, and then do consulting with them to get it in their classroom. We will see how that works
"EVERYONE needs to be monitoring the pulse of their web-based personna.
What do websites “out there” on the Internet say about you, your children, your students, and people you/they know? Sometimes surprises can be good, but in many cases, if we can avoid a surprise through some proactive conversations and explorations, that can be a good thing!"I can still remember being afraid to drink and be seen by student's parents in town at a restaurant. I can't imagine posting that image of me on a website!
Friday, August 24, 2007
However, I have a feeling my mother will enjoy knowing where I am at all times :)
Thursday, August 23, 2007
I hope to use the Eyetracking Lab at the Friday Inst that I use to work on as part of my data gathering. I start my research hours this semester - wish me luck!
They have just added a new component to Google Earth that lets you search the sky - just like you search the world. How freakin' cool is that! I can imagine a multitude of different ways this can be used. The NYT story discusses the more that one million photographs it took to piece together the sky!
Monday, August 20, 2007
Wish me luck in my new venture!