Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Panning For Technology Gold

Recently I went panning for technology gold in preparation for a conference presentation.  I was specifically looking for device agnostic math and language arts technologies for grades K-12.  I searched all my usual haunts, Twitter, Free Technology for Teachers, Kathy Schrock's Guide To Everything, Cybraryman's Educational Websites, & Common Sense Media.  I found many great resources but a feeling kept gnawing away at me that I was missing something more.  Then late, late, late one night I had one of those face palm moments.

SmackDowns!  Why had it never occurred to me to search EdCamp SmackDown documents?! For those of you who have never had the pleasure of attending an EdCamp event (something you MUST rectify ASAP), the SmackDown portion is my favorite part!  During an EdCamp SmackDown all attendees are invited to share one website, app, lesson, etc with the group in two minutes or less.  SmackDowns typically last for 30-45 minutes, thus, ensuring a plethora of great information to explore after EdCamp ends.  I started by going to the EdCamp Atlanta website because I remembered mathematics was well represented there this year.  I then moved on to trolling other EdCamp events for their SmackDown shares.

Here are my top five finds:

MobyMax-Math & Language Arts for grades K-8

MobyMax is for all students K-8. Moby's adaptive curriculum creates a unique, individualized education plan for each student, allowing gifted students to progress as quickly as they like while simultaneously ensuring that remedial students get the extra instruction they need. You've never experienced differentiation like this in the classroom.

Some parts of MobyMax are free, however, the price for additional features is extremely reasonable and worth the investment.

Newslea- Language Arts & Current Events for grades 3-12

Newsela is an innovative way to build reading comprehension with nonfiction that's always relevant: daily news. One of the best features is the Lexile scale that students or teachers can slide to the needed level for maximum comprehension, a must with differentiated learning.

Newslea has a free & pro version.

ActivelyLearn- Reading Comprehension for grades 3-12

ActivelyLearn allows teachers to discover already added reading materials or add their own reading materials from the web. Teachers can then embed questions, notes, or videos directly into the text. This gets students thinking, writing and collaborating while reading. This allows teachers to measure student effort and see where comprehension breaks down.

ActivelyLearn has a free & pro version.

Get The Math- Math for grades 6-12

Get the Math combines video and web interactivity to help middle and high school students develop algebraic thinking skills for solving real-world problems. Drawing on conventions of popular reality TV shows, video segments begin with profiles of young professionals, who then pose challenges connected to their jobs to two teams of teens. Viewers are encouraged to try the challenges themselves using interactive tools provided on the Get the Math website before returning to the video to see the teams’ solutions. Students can further explore the same, as well as extended, algebraic concepts through additional interactive challenges on the website.

Get The Math helps students understand how math applies to real world situations, not just an upcoming test.

Get the Math is FREE.

Geddit- Classroom Management Tool for grades K-12

Geddit allows you to know exactly what all of your students understand about the lessons at any given point in time.  As your lesson progresses, students can “check-in” at any time on their own device by selecting their comfort levels on a series of ascending bars. The feedback is private and updates in real time on the teacher’s screen. You can send your pre-made questions directly to student devices whenever you are ready for them to answer them, or pause on key objectives to get students to indicate their current comfort levels with the materials. You can also ask questions on the fly if your lesson takes a new direction or you just want to create a quick poll to vote on student ideas.

Geddit is FREE.


The Peanut Gallery- Creative Writing for grades K-12

The Peanut Gallery is a Chrome Experiment that lets you add intertitles to old film clips using your voice, then share those clips with your friends. It uses your computer's microphone and the Web Speech API in Google Chrome to turn speech into text.

Students could write scripts before recording to match the videos with concepts learned in science, social studies, language arts & math lessons.  The possibilities are endless.  

I discovered this when my librarian friend, Shannon Miller shared it on Facebook.  She is brilliant!

Friday, October 10, 2014

This Week @ Elkmont and Beyond! October 6th - 10th

Kicking It Up A Notch With DPI

Across the country schools are moving to Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) or 1:1 Initiatives. Many teachers are apprehensive about these changes for several reason. One reason for this apprehension is due to teachers thinking the technology is going to interfere with teaching core content. What we are learning at Elkmont is that the technology simply merges with the lessons teachers have already prepared to teach. In other words, technology "kicks it up a notch"!

Another reason some may feel apprehensive about DPI/BYOD comes as teachers from one school compare themselves to other schools in Limestone County. None of the schools are or were intended to do the same things with the Digital Passport Initiative rollout. Each school is different, thus the program is custom tailored by the Instructional Technology Facilitator, Administrator, and DPI Teachers to meet the specific needs of each school. Elkmont High School's DPI Team is doing AWESOME and we will continue to learn and grow together this year. Thank you for being such a wonderful team and being patient as we build our unique version of DPI at Elkmont!

This week our DPI Team has used Google Presentations and iMovie to review nouns, vocabulary, and to work in collaborative teams on National Landmark research. Not only did we learn how to use Google Presentations and iMovie, we also learned how to find elementary school appropriate images in safe search portals like Google Junior and KidzSearch. We also got organized with our MacBook calendars and gClassFolders.

As if that wasn’t enough, we set our new Limestone County Symbaloo pages up as our homepage on both Internet Browsers, Safari and Google Chrome. Now, any time we open an Internet search engine, it takes us straight to Symbaloo and all of the links we use. Use this link to start using LCS Symbaloo:

S.W.O.T. - LCS Instructional Technology Facilitators Meeting

This week the eight Instructional Technology Facilitators in Limestone County Schools meet to debrief, reflect, connect, share and learn. We started by using the SWOT Analysis model to reflect on what we have done as a team during the first full year of the district's Digital Passport Initiative Rollout.

We continued the meeting by sharing resources and coming up with action plans until our next meeting.

Limestone County School District is surrounded by school districts who are also implementing 1:1 initiatives, but where Limestone beats the others is in realizing the critical importance of having Instructional Technology Facilitators embedded in each school. I credit this forward thinking to our District Technology Director, Karen Tucker and Superintendent, Dr. Tom Sisk.

Cool Tech Finds of the Week

Cool writing prompts that provide grade 5-12 students with an authentic audience and global connections.

Writing prompts for K-4 students that also provides an authentic audience and global connections.

Gone Google Story Builder does is creates a video of your writing process. You can have characters, writers, and etc... You type in the windows what each person or character says and the Gone Google Story Builder builds a video. You can even add music! You really have to try it for yourself to see it.

Ideas for Gone Google Story Builder:

  • Great way to teach students the process of writing.
  • Great way to visually see a story/writing come to life.
  • Great way to Collaborate.

StoryBird is committed to sparking user imagination by providing a variety of colorful and vibrant Illustrations that ignite creativity. First, choose which photos you want to include in your book, then incorporate your very own dialogue -- before long words will be pouring onto the page. Although this is a great site for younger children, users must be 13 years of age to become a member. If a child is younger than 13, he/she must provide a parent’s email address, and then the parent is immediately notified that their child has become a storybird.

Staying Current w/DIY Professional Development

TL Virtual Cafe: The amazing Shelly Terrell and Jake Duncan presented, Saddle Up & Rope ‘Em In! Codes to Teach Like a Cowboy/ Cowgirl

This session was perfect for librarians AND classroom teachers! 

Teaching can feel like trying to conquer the Wild West. We need inspiration and advice from trailblazers used to rough terrains. Two Texas educators invite you to join this campfire conversation in which they will share some practical ideas and tips for handling anything from fundraising to teaching with little technology. Giddy up! Get your boots on and join us for this adventurous ride that’ll get you fired up and equipped for the school year.

SimpleK12:  School Libraries: Remaining Relevant in a Digital World

Are you looking for ways to keep your school library relevant in an ever changing digital landscape? Would you like to increase student engagement and fun within the library, while still maintaining academic and educational focus? Join Nikki D. Robertson as she shows you how to evaluate and manage your library's digital footprint and where you can get started improving that footprint. She will share how to get connected with others like you in order to share and learn new ideas. Nikki will also suggest ways in which you can increase student engagement in the library by incorporating makerspaces, robotics, and gamification for a fun, interactive, and educational library.

#iCONNECT Tech Tips SMore Newsletter

Saturday, October 4, 2014

This Week @ Elkmont & Beyond! September 28th - October 4th

Elkmont DPI End of Month Report

  • Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) began at Elkmont 
  • Established Professional Learning Communities (PLC
  • Training of 3rd - 12th grades on LCS GAFE Account 
  • Established a weekly DPI time for each 3rd and 4th grade teacher to ensure DPI teachers/students are receiving at 75% of Instructional Technology Facilitators time each week 
  • Established a weekly DPI blog post highlighting Elkmont’s progression with DPI and BYOD 

Word Mosaics with Nouns

Ms. Bates and Ms. Adams' 4th Grade students had some fun learning nouns by making word clouds with them. This is just the first step the DPI Team will take using word clouds. Our next step is to use word clouds to assist students with identifying main idea and writing summaries of text.
Word clouds, also called tag clouds or a weighted list, are a visual depiction of the frequency tabulation of the words in any selected written material, such as lecture notes, a
textbook chapter or an internet site. Font size is used to indicate frequency, so the larger the font size, the more frequently a word is used. (

Illustrating Vocabulary Words with Google Slides

Mr. Hobbs 4th Grade students illustrated their vocabulary words from the story, The Secret Messenger, using Google Slides. During this lesson students learned how to create a Google Slide presentation, how to choose a slide theme, how to edit text, how to add images, and how to share the presentation with others.

Our next steps once we master using Google Slides (formerly Google Presentations) is to:

  • work collaboratively in groups within the classroom on a single Google Slide Presentation 
  • work collaboratively in groups with students in other classes on a single Google Slide Presentation 
  • work collaboratively in groups with students in other schools on a single Google Slide Presentation 

Ms. English's 3rd grade students worked in collaborative groups using Google Slides to create presentations about National Landmarks. Students learned how to find and add images and edit text. Because of the collaborative nature using Google Slides this activity ranks in the Redefinition part of the SAMR Model.

Student Directors Premier at Elkmont

Ms. Bates & Ms. Adams 4th grade students traded their desks for the director's chair this week. Continuing with their language arts focus on nouns, students used KidzSearch to safely search for images of nouns. Once students had gathered a minimum of 10 nouns they created their own noun movie using iMovie.

Ms. McMunn's 3rd grade students integrated their math lesson about grams and kilograms by creating an iMovie with items that represented each unit of measure.

This lesson is on the Redefinition level of the SAMR Model.

Professional Development with Technology In Motion

Michael Pepper with Technology in Motion came to Elkmont High School on Friday, October 3rd. Mr. Pepper comes around at least once an month and assist teachers with any technology questions they might have.  Mr. Pepper runs from one area of the school to another meeting with teachers during their 30 minute planning time.

3rd grade teachers had questions regarding the new Promethean Boards in their classrooms. Mr. Pepper was awesome and helped the teachers learn great new tricks to do with their boards.

Personal Professional Development

WLMA (Washington Library Media Association) held their first Google Hangout broadcast on Saturday, October 4, 2014 to wrap up their annual conference.  Special guests included Joyce Valenza, Doug Johnson & Jennifer LaGarde.  Kudos to Craig Seasholes and the WLMA Team for venturing into new territory with using Google Hangouts.  I love this example this sets for others to not be afraid to try! 

#iCONNECT Tech Tips Newsletter

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

This Week @ Elkmont and Beyond! September 22nd - 26th, 2014

Professional Learning Opportunites

TL News Night - Monday, September 22, 2014 started the 2nd season of TL News Night with special guests from the Association of Indiana School Library Educators (AISLE).  The "hot topic" was The Power of Networking. 

ISTE Librarians Network - Wednesday, September 24, 2014 kicked off the new season of professional development webinars via the ISTE Librarians Network.  If you missed this webinar you can watch it HERE.

Google Classroom & Khan Academy= Technologies of the Week at Elkmont

Students and teachers from grades 3 - 12 focused on learning Google Classroom and Khan Academy. Both of these technologies allow for continuous formative assessment and relationship building when used properly.

Linda Schmidt's students kicked off the week by completing a mathematics writing assignment that Ms. Schmidt had prepared and uploaded into the Google Classroom class she set up for students in advance. Once students had completed the writing assignment they moved on to learning how to access and move through Khan Academy with their Ms. Schmidt as their coach.

Ms. Gaston's 6th graders were next up to learn about the magic of Google Classroom. Ms. Gaston had prepared a writing assignment where students had to tell the steps for completing long division. Ms. Gaston's class also explore how students can use the comment feature to ask questions or engage in a two way conversation with Ms. Gaston. Next, Ms. Gaston's students were introduced to Khan Academy and began working on their individual learning paths within Khan.

The Dynamic 4th Grade Trio of Ms. Adams, Ms. Bates, and Mr. Hobbs steadfastly tackled using Google Classroom with their students this week to write a persuasive paragraph about what kind of business best would benefit the community. Students had to provide at least three reasons why the business they chose would benefit their community. Using the OREO graphic organizer, students were able to organize their writing.

O- Opinion
R- Reasons
E- Example
O- Opinion

This Daring Trio also dove into Khan Academy with their students! The 4th grade students enjoyed the freedom to move at their own pace and teach themselves rather than remain passive in the learning process. All agreed it was nice to have to power to pause and rewind when needed. Too bad our Dynamic Trio doesn't have a pause and rewind buttons!

Welcome to Elkmont!

Next week Mr. Hobbs, 4th grade teacher, will have a new student as part of his classroom family. Moving from one school to another school is often a hard transition for students to make. They are leaving old friends behind and going to a new place where they don't know anyone. Fears of will I fit in, will I make friends, what is my teacher like, what is our schedule, etc plague students before a school change. To help ease the nerves of this student and to help him feel a part of the class before even coming to Mr. Hobbs' class, we Skyped with his current classroom. Teachers and students from both classrooms were able to see each other and talk to each other. Participants in both classrooms asked questions and by the end of our Skype session Mr. Hobbs' students were sad to say goodbye and can't wait for the new member of their class to arrive!

Rewindable Learning Continues for Teachers at Elkmont

New tutorials were created this week for teachers wanting to move forward using Google Drive, Google Classroom and Khan Academy on their own and at their own pace. You can find all of the tutorials HERE.

New tutorials include:

  • Google Drive Basics- Google Documents
  • Google Drive Basics- Google Presentations
  • Google Drive Basics- Google Spreadsheets
  • Google Drive Basics- Google Forms

Other tutorials available include:

  • Google Classroom- Student Sign In
  • Google Classroom- Teacher Sign In & Set Up
  • Google Classroom- Setting Up A Class
  • Google Classroom- Enrolling Students with a Class Code
  • Google Classroom- Creating Assignments
  • Khan Academy- Setting Yourself Up As A Coach (Teacher)
  • Khan Academy- How A Student Signs Up & How A Student Adds A Coach

If there are any technology tutorials you would like for Ms. Robertson to create please email her HERE.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

How To Create A Google Hangout Lower Third Custom Overlay: The EASY PEASY FREE Way!

Have you ever wondered how to make a customized lower third but found nothing but technical, photoshop based explanations?  Me too!

I finally figured out that you can make your own customized lower third very easy, free and without photoshop or being a photo editing genius! 

All you need is:
  • Pixlr Editor
  • Size of Hangout Screen- 640 x 360
  • A small image (200 x 50)
  • PicMonkey- if you need to resize an image
If you have any questions about how to create a customized lower third after watching the video please let me know.

What's Your #Jenniferism?

This summer at the ISTE Librarians Network Breakfast, Jennifer LaGarde caused the air to be sucked out of the room when she said during her keynote, in a room filled with librarians, that the Dewey Decimal System is not a life skill and that librarians shouldn't  spend valuable instructional time teaching it.

If you are not a librarian you are probably thinking, "What's the Dewey Decimal System?"  much to the chagrin of your Elementary, Middle and High School librarians who spent countless hours and volumes of worksheets teaching you the Dewey Decimal System.

If you are a librarian, the Holy Grail of all things library has just been relegated to a side note, thus, the massive loss of air in the room that morning.

I agreed with Jennifer's statement.  Way back in 1997 when I first moved from the classroom to the library I was annoyed at many of the things I was taught in "library school" and expected to "teach" in the library.  Have you ever seen those awful worksheets where kids have to draw a line to show where the book goes on the shelf?  How B O R I N G!

I determined back in 1997 that the library I organized would be a break from the rigors of the classroom, a place to talk, play games, help and learn. The library would be an oasis in the middle of worksheets, homework and tests.

At the elementary level, in the library I ran, students rotated to activities in centers that included a game center, book center, music center, video center, research center (which NEVER used a worksheet), etc.  There were always carefully planned "lessons" in each center disguised as fun.  The center that students loved the most was the Library Helper Center.  Starting in the 2nd grade students in this center worked behind the circulation desk.  They checked books in, checked books out and put the books back on the shelf.  Because all the other children were working on their center activities I was able to work with the Library Helpers, teaching them how to put the books on the shelves correctly so that the books would be easy to find.  MUCH better than a worksheet because the skill wasn't taught out of context and they could see why having the books in a certain order was helpful.  

The library as oasis continued to be my theme as I moved to the high school level.  My concentration was to teach for relevance as well as give students a place to relax, regroup, socialize, and recharge (themselves & their devices) before heading back out into the world of academia.

This year I started a new job as an Instructional Technology Facilitator.  It feels strange to not be in a library, but I am loving every day.  This past Friday, I pulled a Jennifer!  While teaching a group of English teachers how to use Google Classroom and Google Drive I mentioned that students could use Google Templates to pull up an MLA formatted Google Document, thus eliminating the headache of trying to format their own paper.  When confronted that students needed to know how to format MLA style on their own, I caused the air to be sucked out of the room when I replied that spending countless hours teaching students how to format their research papers/essays to MLA format was a waste of valuable instructional time and NOT a life skill.  The content and knowledge shown within the paper is the life skill that teachers should be focusing on.

This philosophy also applies to works cited.  Students no longer need to learn the excruciating, complicated, confusing foreign language of works cited.  Sites like EasyBib, Citation Machine, etc will make sure all your periods, commas, spaces, etc are in the right place.  What is the life skill learned with works cited?  Is it knowing when to use a comma, a period, indentation, underlined, italicized, etc?  OR is it knowing the importance of giving attribution to a source used in the paper?

Don't even get me started on the Reader's Guide To Periodical Literature!

My challenge to you this week is to take a hard look at yourself and your teaching practices.  Is there something you are teaching that is antiquated, unnecessary and NOT a life skill?  

Once you discover your Jenniferisms please share them on the Padlet below:

My dear friend Elissa Malespina created this great Infograph  about being a rebel in the library. Tweet us at #Jenniferism or add to the Padlet above to share ways you are a REBEL LIBRARIAN!

Friday, September 19, 2014

Two Weeks @ Elkmont & Beyond! September 8 - 19, 2014

Moving Forward at Elkmont!

Ms. Hardiman used Kahoot! with her students as a test review tool. The kids were completely into the game and learning at the same time! With Kahoot! teachers and students can create and play quizzes, discussions or even surveys using any device with a web browser… including a laptop, iPad, iPhone, iPod, Android, Chromebook, Windows Phone or PC and more.

Google Classroom is an awesome new resource for teachers, especially those in 1:1 or BYOD school like Elkmont. Ms. Horton, Ms. English & Ms. McMunn have bravely moved forward with learning Google Classroom & Google Drive and getting their students set up using their LCS GAFE account and connecting them to Google Classroom. The kids loved that they could carry on a conversation with their teacher in real time using the comments feature in Google. Students were also amazed that their teacher could see what they were typing! For teachers using Google Classroom there is no more papers without names, "I forgot bring my homework", "The dog ate my homework", etc. Teachers can see in real time their students progression throughout an assignment. Google Classroom is the ultimate formative assessment tool and relationship builder for teachers.

The Mathematics Department, Ms. Holt & Ms. McMunn tackled Khan Academy this week. For teachers, there is never any question as to how your students are progressing in math with Khan Academy. Once you become a coach in Khan Academy, teachers and coaches can access all of their students' data. You can get a summary of class performance as a whole or dive into a particular student's profile to figure out exactly which topics are problematic. The coach reports let coaches glance at their dashboard and quickly figure out how to best spend their time teaching. Khan Academy provides teachers with constant, real time feedback as to student progress which is a perfect formative assessment tool for the mathematics classroom.

Below are some introductory videos to both Google Classroom and Khan Academy. If you would like to get started with either of these technologies in your classroom please contact Ms. Nikki D Robertson to book a day and time.

Google Classroom Tutorials

Creating Assignments in Google Classroom (Step by Step Tutorial Coming Soon)

For a SlideShare Tutorial for Google Classroom click HERE.

Linda Lindsey has compiled a list of 12 of the BEST Google Classroom Tutorials HERE.

Elkmont Connects the Dots for International Dot Day

On Monday, September 15, 2014 Elkmont High School made their global mark by participating in International Dot Day. Ms. Tessa Hardiman's 5th grade classes participated in several different activities for Dot Day, but the activity they loved the most was connecting with other students around the country who were celebrating Dot Day too!

Using Skype and Google Hangouts, students from Alabama, Georgia and New Jersey connected and shared information about what makes their school and town awesome. It was exciting to watch as these kids connected, shared, learned and grew together during our Dot Day activities. One really fun thing we did using Skype was Mystery Skype.

Mystery Skype is a 45-60 minute critical thinking challenge that your class takes part in while Skyping with another class somewhere else in the world. Your students' goal is to guess the other school's location (country, state, city, school name) before they guess yours.

Learn more about Mystery Skype and other ways you can use Skype in the Classroom click HERE.

In addition to our fun with Skype, students also made Dot Day Trading Cards and recorded their dots using FlipGrid. Learn more about our Dot Day activities HERE.

Elkmont BYOD Gets A Boost With Google Classroom & Khan Academy

Mary Jane Hobbs empowered her students to become masters of their own learning this week by introducing them to Khan Academy. Khan Academy enables students to practice math at your own pace with our adaptive assessment environment. You can start at 1 + 1 and work your way into calculus or jump right into whatever topic needs some brushing up.

Each problem is randomly generated, so you never run out of practice material. If you need a hint, every single problem can be broken down, step-by-step, with one click. If you need more help, you can always watch a related video.

Teachers and coaches can access all of their students' data. You can get a summary of class performance as a whole or dive into a particular student's profile to figure out exactly which topics are problematic. The coach reports let coaches glance at their dashboard and quickly figure out how to best spend their time teaching.

Ms. Hobbs also got her students started on Google Classroom and Google Drive. Students no longer have to worry about losing a USB Stick, not being able to access an assignment because it is on their computer at home, etc.

Classroom is available to anyone with Google Apps for Education, a free suite of productivity tools including Gmail, Docs, and Drive.

Classroom is designed to help teachers create and collect assignments paperlessly, including time-saving features like the ability to automatically make a copy of a Google document for each student. It also creates Drive folders for each assignment and for each student to help keep everyone organized.

Students can keep track of what’s due on the Assignments page and begin working with just a click. Teachers can quickly see who has or hasn't completed the work, and provide direct, real-time feedback and grades right in Classroom.

Elkmont 5th Graders Collaborate With Google Drive

Ms. Missy Bailey's 5th grade students embraced the power of collaboration using Google Slides to work on their Project Based Learning presentation. The kids were so excited as they worked on groups on their MacBooks but on the same Google Slides. It was exhilarating to watch Ms. Bailey's students as they shared, talked, engaged and produced their PBL slides in Google.

One of my professional goals is to help teachers use technology as an efficient and effective tool for student learning instead of using it as an add on to the end of a traditional unit of study. Google Drive tools are well-suited for use as a starting point to help teachers begin to break the barriers of traditional methods of tech integration and design student driven learning experiences that require students to construct knowledge as they create, an idea supported by the Common Core State Standards (CCSS).

The features available in Google Slides make it a useful tool for helping students begin to develop digital literacy and engage in the types of learning experiences suggested by the Common Core. With Google Drive tools like Slides, technology and research are seamlessly integrated into the learning process as students are engaged in problem solving, critical thinking, communication and creativity.

Anytime Anywhere Anyplace Professional Learning

One great thing about technology is the ability to learn anytime anyplace...even in your PJs! Elkmont High School's Instructional Technology Facilitator, Nikki D Robertson, has been creating video tutorials for technologies taught to teachers and students. Additionally, Ms. Robertson offers this service for other technologies that teachers or students would like to learn. Watch our list of video tutorial resources to grow through out the school year HERE.

Do It Yourself Professional Learning

TL Virtual Cafe: Back To School Special - I always look forward to the beginning of a new season of TL Virtual Cafe.  I love that this awesome community gives everyone the opportunity to have a voice.  Be brave this year. Step forward, out of the stack and share with somebody, anybody, something great that you do in your library.  The more we share our story the more the public perception of libraries and librarian will change to a positive one.

#TLChat LIVE! Season Two- Season Two of #TLChat LIVE! tackled the topic of MakerSpaces in the Library.  The conversation was lively and the ideas shared provide all with something to take back to their schools to try.  

The #TLChat LIVE! Archive link click HERE

View a "Replay" of the chat via Nurph HERE

#GlobalTL: Librarians Without Borders- A Joyce Valenza production, #GlobalTL kicked off it's inaugural broadcast Thursday, September 18th with an all-star lineup of guests.  A great conversation regarding connecting, collaborating and librarians role in helping teachers with this took place.  If you missed the live broadcast you can watch a recording of the show below.

Saturday, September 20, 2014 at 12 pm ET

Have you ever wished that you had more time for hands-on work, collaborative projects, or labs during class? Perhaps you have heard about the Flipped Classroom concept, but weren't really sure what it is or if it could work in your classroom. In this webinar, you will learn not only what a flipped classroom is, but also how it can support Response to Intervention (RTI) Tier 2 and Tier 3 intervention strategies. Join Nikki Robertson as she shows how it fits within the Rigor/Relevance framework. As an example of what can be done, she will explore the Khan Academy and show ways in which their pre-made materials can be used in your Flipped Classroom. Lastly, she will share ways you or your students can produce customized Flipped Classroom materials from your own classroom.

EdCamp Atlanta: You Never Know What Will Happen!

This tweet from Andy Plemmons sums up EdCamp Atlanta!  You really just never know what is going to happen at EdCamp Atlanta or any other EdCamp because every EdCamp is different, yet the same.  Different because EdCamps are organically created on the day of the event by the participants who attend the EdCamp, thus making the experience and learning uniquely tailored to attendees, not contrived by what a school district thinks educators need to learn.  The same because the basic structure of an EdCamp is the same.  

Soapbox Alert:  Many schools and school districts have started what they are calling "EdCamp" professional development sessions.  These PDs often do not follow the EdCamp guidelines and often turn into the same boring and dreaded professional development that teachers hate and learn almost nothing from.  

The point of an EdCamp event is for it to be completely separated from any and all association with a school/district so that teachers can get outside of the school/district bubble and be exposed to new or different educational pedagogies. There should also be NO sessions or presenters planned in advance.  The point it to be completely participant driven.

EdCamp Atlanta prides itself on providing this for its attendees.  For the last three years, EdCamp Atlanta has provide a place where public, private, charter, home and university level educators can learn and connect with each other in a relaxed atmosphere ripe with learning opportunities.  

If you attended EdCamp Atlanta this year please add your reflections to our EdCamp Atlanta FlipGrid HERE.

Did you miss the EdCamp Atlanta SmackDown?  Check out all the cool resources shared by EdCamp Atlanta attendees HERE.

We need your help!  EdCamp Atlanta moves venues every three years.  This was Woodward Academy's last year to host EdCamp Atlanta.  We are extremely grateful to WoodWard Academy for opening their doors to us.  If your school would be willing to host EdCamp Atlanta 2015 please contact Wanda Hopkins McClure or Nikki D Robertson.  

Want to be a part of planning EdCamp Atlanta 2015?!  We would love to have you on board! Contact Wanda or Nikki to volunteer! 

EdCamp Atlanta sponsors were incredibly generous this year.  Without their contributions we would not have been able to provide breakfast, lunch or door prizes to attendees.  Please take a moment to thank our sponsors.

#iCONNECT Tech Tips Newsletter for Elkmont High School