Friday, November 13, 2015
Friday, November 6, 2015
- What are you doing now in your classroom that you could not have accomplished without the technology?
- What steps did you take to get here?
- How has it transformed your instructional practice?
There are three different presentation formats to choose from. Details are outlined below:
- Level Up! Session (These will be 1 hour sessions. ~40-45 min presentation/~15-20 min Q&A/digest information time for attendees). Prepare and share with others how you have used technology to LevelUp! your integration of technology in your instruction. This could be a lesson or unit and how you integrated technology or changed the activity to move it up the SAMR progression. Presentations and additional resources will be submitted for linking to the WaukeshaOne Conference website.
- Poster Session (Informal poster type session to share with your colleagues. You do not need to be present.) We are asking Poster Session presenters to create a "display/poster" showing how they have integrated technology in their classroom. You will also be asked to have a short (3-5 min) video explaining your display and what you did in the classroom. You will not be expected to be present at your display at any time during the day.
- Rock Star Stage (3-5 min presentation) on how you have LeveledUp! your professional practice.
Wednesday, October 28, 2015
Wouldn't it be even better if you could put activities into the presentation for students to engage with (and be able to see their answers)?
Actually, with 1:1 devices in our classrooms, both are possible and easy to get started with.
Apps like Nearpod (and Socrative...there are others as well) do exactly this.
- Create a presentation
- Share the presentation with students
- Students view the presentation live (with the teacher) or can engage in a self-paced review of the lesson on their own
- Collect and review the data
Sign Up for a Nearpod Account:
Nearpod Support Guides
Friday, October 9, 2015
Special Celebration for SDW Tech Integration Now BlogThis our 100th post on this blog. Since our first post this blog has been viewed nearly 17,000 times.
If you are new to the blog or have missed it, dig through the archives and see if you can find any posts that may support your professional learning/practice.
Posts from 2012
Posts from 2013
Posts from 2014
Posts from 2015
Classroom Management in a Technology Rich ClassroomAs schools ready for the introduction of Waukesha One to their buildings, we often hear questions regarding what classroom management will look like in a technology rich, 1:1 iPad environment.
The truth is that classroom management, with or without technology, does not fundamentally change. The foundational rocks stay the same. Offering a safe, respectful, engaging environment that students feel connected to is essential. Building community in your classroom is critical. Offering students opportunities to stretch their thinking, share their ideas, and be heard (by peers and possible beyond) is central.
With that said, there are some unique challenges that come with the introduction of technology in the classroom.
The Instructional Technology Coordinator team has put together a presentation that covers some of the classroom management strategies we recommend to keep kids focused as you work with them.
These are NOT new ideas. They are also not high tech solutions. They are, however, effective and are employed by teachers across the district to keep the focus on teaching and learning.
It may be worthwhile to review this presentation with colleagues, your PLC, in a staff meeting, or as a collegial study just to discuss, calibrate a consistent plan, and learn from others to find out what they do in their work with students.
Slide Presentation: Classroom Management Strategies in a Tech Infused Classroom
Video Presentation of Classroom Management Strategies in a Tech Infused Classroom
Thursday, October 8, 2015
This post is intended to celebrate those Waukesha One success stories that are huge celebrations, even if they will not make the 10:00 PM news.
Students Able to Adjust Text to Unique Needs
Instructor Continues to Teach While Student Receives Formative Feedback
HS Students Eager to Play Five Minute Review Game at End of Period
Elementary Student Supports Peer by Recording Read Aloud
Rollout of Devices Complete; Schools Learning from Each Other
Waukesha One, the personalized learning work that the School District of Waukesha has embraced, and the related decision to provide every student with an iPad to support that personalized learning is well under way. Just this fall the final schools rolled out devices and the district is now are 100% rolled out.
As a result of the distribution process format, schools that were earliest to roll out had the steepest learning curve. Since then, though, leaders from across the district have shared their wisdom, their experiences, and their support related to device rollout, family communications, instructional advice, and resources. The focus on site-based ownership of the process encouraged a larger pool of local experts to share their stories and suggestions with others. The final schools rolling out this fall were among the most ready, eager, and accepting schools of Waukesha One based on this mentorship and sharing.
Both schools were led by principals who had previously experienced iPad rollouts at other schools, yet the rollouts felt unique to the culture and personality of their new schools.
Friday, October 2, 2015
While it is frustrating, there may be something you can do about it.
In short, simply opening up Safari (the web browser on the iPad), opening Google Drive in Desktop Mode/Version, and attempting to open the file from there can be an easy work-around.
The video below gives a short tutorial that you can try the next time this frustrating event happens on your iPad (or your students' iPads).
In my work with staff members in the last two weeks, I was once again blown away by the ideas that have been shared with me by SDW teachers who are working with students. It is evidence that when you provide educators with powerful tools they find amazing ways to use them.
In an effort to inspire others, to jumpstart ideas, and to celebrate the interesting opportunities Waukesha teachers are giving to students to show what they know, I will share two of my favorite instructional practices that utilized technology.
In this case they are teaching letters and letter sounds to Kindergarten students. In order to create interactive lessons that include BOTH an instructional mini-lesson and a place for students to practice in the same file, the teachers are creating the lesson using Explain Everything.
On the first slide of the Explain Everything presentation, they are placing instructional videos (some that they have created or that they have found online) directly on the slide. These are SHORT videos (just a few seconds to a few minutes) that teach the skill or introduce the concept. In some cases they have even placed two or three related videos on the slide (Keep in Mind: Video files can become very large if too long, so select short videos if you want students to have success in getting the files downloaded onto their iPad)
On the following slide(s), the built "prompts" or wrote directions for the students to follow to practice the skill covered in the video. This could be directions such as: "Use the pen tool to practice writing the letter 'D'" or "Type/write/record words that begin with the letter 'M'."
To share the files with the students there are two options.
From Explain Everything you can share the file with others, but you MUST select "Project" file for this to become an interactive lesson for the students.
The teachers at Hadfield are using AirDrop to share the files with their students. If students are in the proximity, this is a great option.
Another option is to send the "project" file to Google Drive, and then place the link in your Blackboard course to share with students.
How about checking on the student work? Well, this can be done a number of ways. A teacher can physically move from student to student, group to group, and look at each student's progress and evidence of thinking. You could also have students package up the lesson and export it as a "movie"
to their YouTube account (they all have one), or as a project or movie file that is shared JUST with the teacher via Google Drive.
- This format closely links a mini-lesson of direct instruction on a skill/topic with some sort of immediate practice.
- The video allows the teacher to bring in other instructional supports - video from another source, a different way of teaching a skill, or even another student who can explain it to students in another way.
- The direct instruction mini-lesson is now reviewable -- the student can play, pause, and rewind the instruction until they truly understand (or can perhaps better speak to the teacher about what they do not understand).
- Once a library of these types of lessons are built up (consider building these with other teach-alike colleagues), you now have a variety of resources students can choose from (and we know kids value having choice).
- No instructional, subject, or age boundaries exist -- this works K-12 (and beyond) and any topic/skill can be broken down and instructed in this method
- The kids can share their thinking with any size audience. In this case, every student is asked to make their thinking visible (to at least the teacher), and can actually share that thinking with a much larger audience if appropriate.
Mr. Hirsch's setup looked like this. In advance, he identified several websites, resources, or Google Docs that would serve as "prompts" for his students to discuss. In this case they were all focused on the topic of heroes, heroism, characteristics of heroes, etc. Then, using a QR code generator (here's an article with links to some of these types of sites), Ken created QR codes, printed them, and set them out around the room.
When the class arrived (with their iPads already installed with a QR Code reader app such as i-nigma), the class was broken into small groups and asked to travel from station to station (in a carousel style, making one full rotation during the 20 minute exercise). They then scanned the QR code, watched/listened/read the video/audio/prompt, and then followed the instructions at the site to begin their small group discussion.
To make the thinking of the group visible, Mr. Hirsch had a place that each group could demonstrate their thinking/conversation so that the group following could make connections with other student's thinking as well. This could have been done digitally in a Google Doc, but I appreciated that it was physically written on the board/paper to create an anchor chart of the class's thoughts/reactions. This was especially helpful in the follow-up conversation Ken facilitated with the group.
- Every student was asked to engage with the topic by shrinking the group size from 25 to groups of 2-3. In small groups there was less room for students to "hide" behind the answers of students more willing to talk to the teacher. Every group needed to write something on the thinking sheets.
- The expert (teacher) was de-centralized to begin the lesson. The students could not wait out the teacher or simply agree with the teacher's perspective. In this case they were presented with a prompt or idea. They had to form some sort of response to it that was original. This is the act of thought that we desperately need our students to engage in.
- The instructional practice of a Carousel Discussion can be continually used and the media/prompts where the QR codes point can be easily changed. This means it will work throughout the year for a wide variety of new topics.
- This format, mixed with intentional grouping, can give the teacher the ability to give students just what they need instructionally when they need it without drawing obvious attention to that differentiation.
Thursday, September 24, 2015
|Now users can add images from the iPad|
Camera Roll, create shapes and colors, with
all of the collaboration tools you'd expect.
|Keynote, the most powerful presentation|
app on the iPad, is built specifically for
use on the iPad, making it easy to use.
Tuesday, September 8, 2015
Sign up for our free, online professional development series, the K-12 Blackboard Innovative Teaching Series, designed to help K-12 educators reimagine education with Blackboard teaching & learning solutions. Our special K-12 series is designed to bring teachers and administrators together to spark conversation around today's classroom challenges and share best practices.
We are pleased to announce that we will be offer professional development certificates for live K-12 Blackboard Innovative Teaching Series attendance. These certificates can be used to document time spent in the webinar to be used to meet continuing education requirements for professional re-certification. While Blackboard does not have official CE Certificate provider status, our certificates are acceptable for the requirements for many states.
Each fall and spring we begin a new season of free, weekly training sessions that offer:
- Strategies to increase educator efficiency
- Pedagogy to improve student achievement
- Tips for innovation and creativity in the classroom
Register for one (or all!) of our fall sessions, and get easy access to past sessions.
Friday, August 28, 2015
These connections do not happen, though, without building a strong, connected community. It is no secret that The School District of Waukesha is pretty big place with a lot of staff members and students. Recognizing faces and remembering names can be one potential concern in a district this large.
Thankfully, there are some things we can all do to bridge the gap and strengthen these connections. This is particularly true with technology, as it is a primary way that many of us communicate. So, here are two suggestions each staff member should consider to make connecting and communicating in our district just a little bit easier.
Create a Gmail Signature
Generally speaking, there are a few items you should consider placing in every email you send.
- Your Full Name (there are a lot of people across the district with your same first name)
- Name of Your School(s)
- Your Position/Role
- Phone Number (avoid personal cell phones...your school number is probably the best choice here)
Add a Gmail/Google Profile Photo
Tuesday, May 26, 2015
Friday, May 15, 2015
Did you miss it? Don't fret -- the beauty of technology is that these types of learning opportunities are on-demand and accessible at a time and place that works best for you!
For the Adventurous Soul
If you are a choose your own adventure fan, you might like to just Click here to find the full run down of topics for both day one and day two.
review the whole schedule and find sessions of great value to your professional practice.
(*Hint: After clicking the link, you may need to scroll down the page to see the full lineup of sessions.)
I'd Prefer a RecommendationIf you are the type of person that won't eat at a restaurant until you uncover at least two positive recommendations, let us provide you with a few recommendations for the online conference. We've prepared a short list of recommended videos cued up to just the point where the learning heats up.
Google Forms for Assessment and Communication
Creating and Using YouTube Playlist
Beyond Genius Hour: Empowering Students All Day
The Best of Both Worlds: Google Apps for the iPad
Moderated by Kasey Bell
Wednesday, May 13, 2015
We have a big announcement to share with the SDW Staff and the community of Waukesha.
Kathy Miller, an instructor at the Waukesha Transition Academy, has been selected as an Apple Distinguished Educator for the Class of 2015.
The Apple Distinguished Educator (ADE) program is a highly selective program that honors educators who have made meaningful use of technology, coupled with high quality instructional practices, in their classrooms to transform their students' educational experiences.
We asked Kathy to guest blog this week and share a bit more about herself, about being selected for this honor, and about what she is doing in her classroom with technology.
Thursday, May 7, 2015
At the same time, for all the benefit that technology can provide, it can also introduce new challenges, dilemmas, and downfalls.
Like anything, as professionals we have to accept the good with the bad, take advantage of the best it can offer, and learn to manage the challenges.
|Courtesy of NEA Today|
One of the most common concerns teachers raise related to Waukesha One and the introduction of personalized learning tools is digital distraction. That categorization fits many different symptoms.
- Students unfocused due to messaging on the iPad/phone.
- Students unfocused due to gaming on the iPad.
- Students watching videos/movies on the iPad.
- Students hiding what they are doing on their iPad/closing apps when teacher walks by.
- Students unable to stay on task when given work time -- doing something "unproductive" on the iPad.
Tuesday, April 21, 2015
- Learning now can take place on demand.
- Learning now can take place from home.
- Learning now can be custom tailored to our unique needs and interests by finding the appropriate offerings and resources (there are thousands).
As we look at warmer weather and a bit of non-student time ahead (let's not pretend our work ceases in the summer, but our daily direct connection to students lessens), here are some resources and opportunities you may want to put on your calendar to help facilitate your professional growth (specifically as it relates to instruction and the role technology can play). You'll notice that both face-to-face and virtual opportunities exist. (For many of us personal connections are still a necessity!)
Virtual - Live
- Google Education on Air - May 8 - 9 (Registration Required)
- This free online conference has sessions for every level, every subject, and every position (admin track, teacher track, IT track, anybody track) and brings together some of the most visible, noted, and interesting presenters to share what is happening in their classrooms (and how Google Apps supports that work).
- Ed Camp Milwaukee - May 9 (Registration Required)
- This free (no, seriously, it is TOTALLY free) unconference brings together educators across SE Wisconsin to share and learn from each other. Participants are encouraged to come with an idea for a session to lead or share in a full day of learning. Sessions can explore anything related to education.
Virtual - Recorded
- Blackboard K-12 Bits Webinar Series
- This series of webinars covers a wide range of topics related to Blackboard's wide range of instructional uses. Get great ideas that you can play with in your own Blackboard course.
- SDW Bb9 - Instructional Strategies course
- Log in to Bb9 and enroll in the instructional strategies course. There you will find a tab called Vanguard Professional Development Workshops. Get recordings of the same PD webinars on the core apps, Blackboard, and Google Apps that your Vanguard team has had access to. PD tailored to the tools you and your students have access to.
- SDW YouTube Playlists for Tech Integration
- There is a lot of content on YouTube. At times it can be difficult to sift through. Let the SDW Tech Coordinator team do the lifting and sorting for you. Here you will find our curated playlists for a wide variety of topics:
- If you subscribe you will receive notifications of newly posted videos that may solve your technology woes or give you new ideas.
Monday, March 2, 2015
Guest Blogger Donna Subotnik: Encourage and Measure What Matters When It Comes to Student iPad Care and Use
Waukesha West iPad Patrol
|Donna Subotnik developed a creative program to engage students|
in the conversation about caring for their school issued iPads.
iPad Patrol was created to acknowledge and reward students who are actively managing their iPads. A couple days a week, I find students in classrooms, the hallways, and in study halls. They are informed that their iPads are being checked for a list of items that I have developed using the acronym: W.I.R.E.D.
Thursday, February 26, 2015
|The One Conference was a day focused on professional learning,|
professional connections, and commitment to using the newly
introduced tools and practices with students in our classrooms.
That's far enough away for the seeds of tools, techniques, and ideas planted at the conference to sprout into using these practices with students.
It is also far enough away to start seeing that day of professional learning and inspiration, the ideas shared, the best intended plans to become a rapidly fading memory.
Which of those two options is your story? If you are in a leadership role, what is your building's story? What do you want that story to be?
Now is the time to take action!
What can we do?
Step 1 - Make the "I Commit..." Posters Present in Your BuildingI just took a long look at one building's "I Commit..." poster today. It was a powerful reminder of the learning that took place at The One Conference. Seriously, if we could each commit to using just one tool/idea/technique with kids, we would make a statement to our students about what teaching and learning can look like with technology in hand!
It is not lost on me, though, that many of those posters have become not particularly attractive wall art. If we do not take a moment to re-engage with the commitments made on those posters, to encourage them to at least be attempted, we send a frightening message: We do not value the commitments we make!
Step 2 - Check In On ProgressWe need a pulse check on the progress of the practices we each committed to. We need to hold each other accountable (in a positive, "you can do this" manner). This is NOT the work of building administrators alone, though.
- Ask at your next PLC meeting -- "Hey, what is your 'I Commit...' practice? What have you done to achieve that? Can we work together on it?"
- Capture evidence of your "I Commit..." in practice (even if it is not an immediate success) and put that evidence some place public to encourage others! (The caption could read, "I did it!")
Substitutes and Assistants:
- Engage the teachers you support -- "So, what is your "I Commit..." concept in this class? What can I do to help support that?"
- Encourage your Vanguard Teams to engage the teachers they support and develop a plan to encourage every teacher in your building to succeed in attempting to use these tools/ideas/techniques with students.
- Partner teachers with a similar commitment and help them find the resources and engage the people necessary to move the practice forward.
- Find a public space to celebrate risk taking as teachers attempt to put their commitment into practice! Bring attention to this in any way you can! This is an enormous accomplishment!
Step 3 - Go Public! (in a thoughtful way)
Committing to a goal and making it happen is an amazing success (even if things do not go particularly well -- that's just the danger of risk-taking). Find ways to help your staff tell their stories. That may be to you, to each other, to the staff, or perhaps even wider. Know the people you work with, understand their comfort zones, and find ways to CELEBRATE THEIR SUCCESS in a way that will not add anxiety!
|SDW staff attending The One Conference commit to |
using one new tool, practice, or technique with students
before the 2014/15 school year ends.
It is not too late!
It is the perfect time to bring these practices to life in our classrooms.
We must take the first step to make it happen!
Thursday, February 19, 2015
Monday, February 2, 2015
How? Failure to launch (not necessarily a reference to that Matthew McConaughey movie)!
Almost every teacher I have worked with has thoughtfully engaged in the instructional planning process. They have thoughtfully selected the lesson they deliver to students for some meaningful, often instructional purpose. Most teachers are even excited to share those lessons with their students. That tends to be a constant -- teachers plan and teachers believe in what they do with students.
So why does it so often happen that students (especially our older students) tend to disengage and find little relevance in these well thought out lessons so quickly and so consistently?