We read, learned, and shared a lot last week. Including this great quote from Lincoln. About the internet. Who knew? We are swimming in new acronyms, because we love acronyms in education. SAMR and OER. Those are occupying our time a lot lately. We just learned that Amazon intends to host an OER platform. That might be something. And we ran a workshop with all of our building administrators that started with a very simple slide that said SAMR. We gave them 15 minutes to become SAMR experts, using any tools they’d like. Then they shared resources and learning. A 2-3 minute presentation was the concluding activity. And we had some great ones! The blatant contrast in energy and learning, doing an activity like this, compared to us simply reading from a powerpoint was obvious.
On the road again! A number of the TLI leadership team members are off and running, studying, questioning, and learning. All of this work is in preparation for the 1:1 rollout, slated to begin in the fall of 2017. We have visited Sumner, Auburn, and North Thurston school districts. In fact, we visited North Thurston with our colleagues from Auburn. Networking with professional colleagues is one of our favorite things to do. We ask a lot of questions during these visits. Our most important questions center on instructional practice. How do we best support teachers and students in using 21st century skills? Here’s a great quote from one of the books we’re studying, “Technology can be used as tools for consumption or as tools for creating and producing. The first approach assumes that students learn mostly by receiving and absorbing existing knowledge, that they are consumers of knowledge, and that technology is there to help them better take in knowledge and improve their academic outcomes. The second approach, on the contrary, views the most critical role of students as creators. Students learn by creating projects and products, forming new knowledge during the process, and communicating and sharing their experiences, feelings, and ideas, often in a collaborative learning context. The role of technology is to empower students in this process.” While being aware of the first approach, we’re focusing on the second approach!
In the TLI department, we’re reading Digital Leadership by Eric Sheninger. He is an excellent resource for us. Here’s his website. One of his suggestions is to try something new. I’ve added tweetdeck with a variety of hashtags to have PD ideas pushed to me. My current hashtags are #ditchbook (Matt Miller’s excellent book Ditch That Textbook), #transformationalteaching (an idea about which I’m spending a lot of time thinking), and #thegooglegooru (https://www.thegooru.com/). The cool thing about using tweetdeck for these kinds of resources is the instant connection to resources. I have told a number of my colleagues that I would be a better principal already had I taken the little bit of time necessary to set up a twitter account and tweetdeck. I had a twitter account as a principal, but I only used it to push information. An important idea to tell our story. I hadn’t considered using twitter to pull information. I’m not sure I’m using push or pull there correctly.
Anyway, one of Sheninger’s suggestions is to start a blog. I’ve never blogged. So, practicing what I want to preach, I’m trying something new. A blog.
Thanks for reading!