Thursday, March 15, 2012
The Best Thing About Twitter is the F2F!
Heard County Middle School
Twitter, as many of you know, has completely transformed my professional life. I have been able to virtually connect, learn, and share with some of the most innovative, forward thinking educators from around the world. The best thing to come from these virtual connections besides the vast amounts of knowledge from collaborating is the opportunity to meet these friends F2F (face to face).
I have meet some of my favorite tweeps at conferences like EdCamp Birmingham and the Georgia Educational Technology Conference. Others, I have made special arrangements to travel and meet, even sharing a kosher meal with my tweeps family.
Recently, I had the great privilege to be invited to visit my tweeps at their school and participate in an Open House honoring their school library and librarian for being EXCEPTIONAL. You know that I jumped at the chance to visit my tweeps!
When I arrived at Heard County Middle School I immediately understood why Heard County Middle School received such a distinguished award. The office staff greeted me with such warmth and kindness. Then I arrived at Glovis South's (@Bravesread) exceptional library and saw students playing Words With Friends on iPads (acquired with a grant) with principal, Mike Roberts aka: @mikeroberts1973, school superintendent Jerry Prince and Representative Nix. Students can earn access to the Internet Cafe located in the library where they can play games on iPads, enjoy beverages and other perks.
New friends were made during this visit as well. One new friend that I know I will be able to collaborate with and learn from is Sabrina Thompson (@TigersRead), librarian at Temple High School with the Carroll County School District and daughter of librarian extraordinaire, Glovis South! Be sure to check out Sabrina's kitty cat widget here: http://ths.carrollcountyschools.com/MediaCenter/tabid/7622/Default.aspx . I can't wait to get to know her better and share ideas for our libraries. Teachers were in and out of the library throughout the day. I was able to talk with a special education teacher who shared her ideas for using iPads in the classroom to train students for using an iPod Touch (which is smaller & not as cumbersome) to assist with real world tasks like grocery shopping. Follett Representative, Ben Myers, showed me the Titlewave app which I can't believe I didn't know about! Now when I'm perusing the bookstore and find a book I think would be great for my school, I can scan the ISBN and it will automatically save it to my Titlewave account. How easy is that?! Follett must only hire the best people because I love my Alabama Follett Representative, Chip Gillikin! JC Barb, a representative from Barnes & Noble, showed me a variety of ereader devices which are available for students to check out from the Heard County Middle School Library.
As Glovis showed me around her charming library I gathered several ideas I hope to incorporate into my own library next year. Don't miss seeing the great Weebly Glovis South designed for the Heard County Middle School Library: http://bravesread.weebly.com/ I really like the Morning Show crew that reports school news, sports and weather each morning at 7:45. I also think Ms. South's incorporation of QR Codes into her website is a great draw for students who love technology. A must see, however, is the entertaining Mr. Spock Library Tutorial made using Xtranormal!
It should be noted that Glovis would be severely limited in her ability to be as innovative as she is if it weren't for the complete support of her principal, Mike Roberts. Mike Roberts is also a published author. His book, One-On-One With America's Most Inspiring Teachers: Conversations on the Art of Teaching, is a must read for educators (http://www.amazon.com/One-One-Americas-Inspiring-Teachers/dp/0615511856). Mike Roberts' blog, Americas Most Inspiring Teachers (http://americasmostinspiringteachers.blogspot.com/) is one that should be added to your RSS feed.
There just isn't enough good I can say about Heard County Middle School, Glovis South and Mike Roberts as well as the rest of the staff and new friends I made while I was there.
I have quickly thrown together a slideshow of my day and hope to add more pictures soon! Enjoy:
at 5:02 PM