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Showing posts from March, 2019

EdCamp Elmbrook 21

  We had out 5th annual EdCamp this past Saturday and it was a very different PD experience. Due to the pandemic, we help the EdCamp virtually. That meant that anyone across the globe could attend. While we usually only have educators from out region attend, we had educators across the nation and in some in Canada attend. In addition, we had an attendee from Turkey! The conference was conducted using Zoom and Zoom breakout rooms for the sessions. The team did a great job of organization and management. I could go on, but this is my first blog post in a while and I'd like to keep it brief. Below you'll find the session board for the day with notes docs linked. We had some wonderful sessions and the notes documents house some wonderful thoughts and resources. So, I recommend checking them out. Although this EdCamp was only for the morning, there was a lot of learning to be had. We had no technology issues from our end as organizers but I can imagine participants may have had iss

Taking Tech Tips to Heart

We are reaching the end of the 3rd term of the 2018-19 school year. During the 4th term, my students will begin work on their passion projects. As I look forward and attempt to iterate the process for the end of the school year, I’m looking to Kasey Bell’s 20 tech tips for teachers to help me improve the process. If you are unfamiliar with Kasey’s 20 tech tips for teachers,   I would highly recommend checking out her speaking about them on the first episode of here new podcast The Shake Up Learning Show.     The 20 tips are highlighted in the infographic below. As I looked to the tips to drive changes to the process, 3 different ones jumped out at me. Don’t integrate too many tools at once When starting out the project, there are so many different things I want students to do as part of the process. These steps include brainstorming ideas, refining their idea, creating a pitch video, doing research and summarize their research, create a task list with due date, create a projec

What Podcasts do Educators Recommend?

I put out the call yesterday for podcasts featuring conversations with educators. The response was overwhelming.  The Number 1 Podcast by far was Cult of Pedagogy by Jennifer Gonzalez! Below you'll find a slideshow with all the podcasts that got multiple recommendations. There were a bunch that I had never listened to before and am excited to catch up with. Click on the image or name to get more info about the podcast. Yesterday I also created 2 different posts on podcasts. Why Podcasts for PD? Where to Start with Podcasts for PD (featuring some of my favorite PD Podcasts) Here is a complete list of all of the podcasts that were recommended in alphabetical order.  Currently in the process of linking out each one, some podcasts have more of a web presence than others. Some may just take you to iTunes or iOS podcast app. #OnEdMentors " Passionate educators connect weekly with teacher candidates, new and seasoned teachers to address questions, explore

Why Podcasts for PD?

I am loving seeing the shift in educator professional development across the nation. While we still have traditional sit and get PD, educators have to opportunity for more anytime, anywhere PD. I was particularly excited when my school Principal Brett Gruetzmacher approved educational podcasts as an accepted form of Professional Learning hours. I was excited for myself personally, but also for the ability to promote podcasts as a legitimate form of professional development for educators! Podcasts have really changed my PD workflow. I discovered podcasts back in 2005 and have never looked back. Up until about 3 years ago, most of the podcasts I listened to were for entertainment. Now, the podcasts I do listen to have a balance between personal enjoyment (film, cooking, music, news) and educational ones. In the simplest terms, it is an audio program (or it could be video) that is available to download (or stream) to a portable audio player or computer to replay at your convenie

Where to Start with Podcasts for Professional Development

How to Listen to a Podcast Everyone has their favorite podcast listening software of choice. It may also vary based on the device you are using. For those of you using an Apple device, the Apple Podcast app may be the way you choose to listen, but it’s pretty crummy in terms of its functionality. I personally use the Overcast app . It’s free. But there is a premium option, you don’t need to upgrade to premium! As far as Android devices, Google Podcasts may be the way to go. Additional apps that work on both Apple and Android devices are Stitcher or Spotify . Within any of these apps, you’ll be able to browse, stream, and download shows. In my experience, there are 3 different formats for Educator Podcasts. There are shows which focus on a single topic per week and spend the time drilling deeper. This means that the topics can vary greatly from episode to episode. Another category would be interviews or conversations with educators. In this episode the educators are the sta

Keys to Great Learning

Every teacher has that activity that they look forward to. The activity they know will not simply get students engaged in what’s going on but take risks in their learning. Some teachers have more than one activity. But if you think of the one experience that is really out of the norm, you can usually pinpoint it. This activity for our physics class is marble coasters. It’s the type of activity that disrupts my whole classroom space. It causes students from other classes to peek in as they walk by and wonder what is going on. It causes my AP Physics students to be jealous of my Physics students. In marble coaster construction, students use pipe insulation and other materials to construct a rollercoaster for a marble that must have a minimum number of required obstacles. The 2 major requirements are the number of obstacles and that the marble travel the track successfully. What is interesting is that with minimal instruction, students are in groups and off and running. There are m

The Shake Up Learning Show

Tuesday marks the launch of a new podcast from Kasey Bell The Shake Up Learning Show! Kasey is already the host of an amazing EdTech Podcast with Matt Miller called the Google Teacher Tribe focusing on classroom applications for GSuite Apps. Kasey’s new show goes beyond GSuite to focus on EdTech application in the classroom. But is goes beyond simply looking at what tools to use in the classroom. The new podcast has a focus on transforming the way teacher think about lesson design. One of Kasey’s biggest tips for educators when thinking about EdTech is to “shift your mindset.” This means those who don’t think they are “great at technology” to look again. The focus should never be on what you don’t know but the room for growth. I am big on EdTech, but realize that I still have a way to grow in terms of the way I adopt and implement technology in my classroom. There are so many great EdTech Podcasts available. Many of them provide the newest tech tools along with a great way to apply

EdCamp to Learn, Share, & Grow

The EdCamp experience is special for many reasons. It may be your first step into sharing your experience as a professional. It may be a place to learn about something new. It may be a place for making connections with educators who share your passions. If you are and educator who is interested in solutions and taking an active role in your profession, EdCamp is the place for you. An EdCamp is an unconference in which the participants in attendance pitch the sessions for the day. Then participants choose the sessions they wish to attend. EdCamp is a place where your role could shift from session to session. EdCamp as a place to present A traditional educational conference requires presenters to submit proposals months in advance. So presenting at a conference is a pretty big commitment. It is super intimidating. It requires a bit of ego and willingness to be rejected in order to take the time to complete that proposal submission. An EdCamp provides perfect baby steps for someone

EdCamp Elmbrook 2019

Yesterday we held EdCamp Elmbrook 2019. It was our 3rd time putting on this event in our district. While last year we had around 120 attendees, this year we broke 200 in attendance. If you are not sure what an EdCamp is, it is an UnConference model. Attendees come to the event and propose the topics for the sessions they want. While these sessions are being pitched, the schedule for the day is being built. For each session a communal notes document is created for sharing thoughts and ideas for those in the sessions but also for those who are in other sessions or those who can't be in attendance. Below, you will find our schedule for the day along with session notes documents linked The variety of the sessions was incredible. This is due to the fact that EdCamps aren't geared to one specific population. It is not a tech conference, it is not a literacy conference, it is not an administrator's conference. It is a conference that is shaped by the needs, i