Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Learning and reflecting

Yesterday I spent the day with colleagues from other district at #DLDMedfield.  Whenever I decide to present I always spend a great deal of time thinking about my the audience and how to make the session meaningful and work for all participants.  I reviewed my last year's presentation on Adobe Spark and thought I would just tweek it for this year.  Instead the night before I ended up watching a Tips and Tricks Video on Adobe Spark in the Classroom and learned about all the new features they added this week.  Guess what?  We ended up completely redesigning our presentation and make it more current and relevant.  When providing presentations it makes you stop, think and reflect on your most authetic projects and how to share the reflection along with the tool.  

In addtion, I was able to attend a Cooper Hewitt's presentation @cooperhewitt  on Design Thinking with a group of colleagues.  I have been intrigued with PBL and Design Thinking for the last few years and I enjoy not only learning about Design Thinking but actaully experiencing the process using materials provided in the presentation.  

As I return to school today, I am reflecting on the process of taking the time to showcase student work and celebrate teachers that are willing to take risks and share.  Last fall we had a great experience sharing out PLT on PBL at MassCUE and I think I will collaborate with my colleagues to see if we will showcase PBL and Design Thinking again next fall at the conference!


Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Digital Day of Learning - Medfield #DLDmedfield

Next week is Medfield's Annual Digital Day of Learning! #DLDmedfield I will be co-presenting on Adobe Spark with my colleague Craig Sheil.

Last year we featured the new product, Adobe Spark showcasing the basics.  This year we will reflect on some of our projects over the last year and share the importance of telling a story using visual media.

Here is the link to the Adobe Spark Page - Getting Creative with Adobe Spark Projects
along with a new Spark Post image for the session!

 Adobe will be announcing new feature and Adobe Spark edu that will not cost teachers to upgrade.  I need to explore how the new accounts will work within a school domain.

I am looking forward to seeing @gcouros   he delivers inspiring presentations.  His book  The Innovator’s Mindset: Empower Learning, Unleash Talent, and Lead a Culture of Creativity has been on my to-do list for the last year and I hope to read this summer.

We have been discussing have a book club on it next year. He always gives us plenty to think about!
Innovation Does Not Happen in Isolation 

Friday, March 2, 2018

Flipgrid Overview

I will be gearing up for a Flipgrid PD session for teachers in a week.  Although I have used Flipgrid with teachers in my graduate class I have not explored all of the new features.  I will be collecting resources along with Flipgrid's presentation and customizing with permission for my
PD session on March 9th. Link  

Flipgrid is a video response platform where educators can have online video discussions with students or other educators. Teachers can provide feedback to students and better yet students can provide feedback to one another. With Flipgrid One (Free) you get ONE grid with unlimited topics.  If you have multiple classes or subject areas as we do at the high school you can just create a different topic for each and share that topic code.

With Flipgrid Classroom (subscription based $65 per year or there a building special) you get unlimited grids, topics, responses and replies to responses. You can definitely do a lot with the free version so check that out first and if you decide you need more you can update your account.
(Want to try Flipgrid Classroom for FREE? Sign up and use promo code provided MARYMAROTTA for free access for 45 days, after that you can pay to upgrade or it will revert to a free Flipgrid One account.)  Need ideas to get started?

A Flipgrid Walkthrough
A 2-minute video that will take you through the steps of creating your first Grid and Topic.

Quick Walkthrough Video from Flipgrid on Vimeo.

Get started with Flipgrid
  1. Create a discussion board and share the link with your class. (With the classroom account you can embed fully functional Flipgrid cards or a grid in Google Classroom, Haiku, Blackboard, Canvas, Schoology along many other sites or in an LMS)
  2. Students record their video (Flipgrid can be used on ANY device) iOS download for phone!
  3. You and your students reply to one another and take the discussions further.

Hyperdoc The 411 on Flipgrid Explore-Explain-Apply HyperDoc

Ways to use outside the classroom  Book Clubs!

Tweeted out this week: @flipgrid The Educator's Guide to Flipgrid FREE eBook 📗 2nd Edition
Packed full of resources 💡 to help you blast off 🚀with awesome ideas ⚡️ and take flight 🛫 with NEW features

Friday, February 23, 2018

Learning from students by shadowing a student

When I return to school next week I will lead a second session on Design Thinking.
Last month we got to experience and overview of DT by playing the extraordinaires game. I thought it was a great way to experience the phases of design thinking. I also presented at our leadership meeting a road map to transforming a lesson connected to teaching in a 1:1enviroment. I’ve been thinking about how to connect the two elements and basically arrived at the process should start from a student perspective.

As I went to my go to PD, twitter I found the following post
A quick summary  “The global Shadow a Student Challenge (designed by School RetoolIDEO, and Stanford’s can be particularly helpful and enlightening as it provides methods (including a free toolkit) and a network. The Shadow a Student Challenge is a journey that starts with seeing school through a student’s eyes, identifying opportunities to improve the school experience for students, and then taking action to create change. The Shadow a Student website provides resources that help to ensure that the shadowing experience will be meaningful, including email templates and permission slips. There are tips for creating learning goals for the shadow day, choosing a student, and coordinating with the student, parents, and staff.” 

There is an open invitation to join the 2018 challenge, which will run from February 19th to March 2nd. Spread the word to your networks, and remember to share about your experience on Twitter and Instagram with #shadowastudent!

Should this challenge start with building leadership and department chairs? What an interesting way to start a conversation! Or maybe it’s a group option for my PLC/PLT next week!

Friday, February 16, 2018

Transforming Lessons with Technology - Models for Designing Lessons that Utilize Digital Tools

At our leadership meeting this month we discussed several technology topics.
  • Chromebook Survey (Grade 9 & 10) will take this month for updated and relevant information.
  • 1:1 Initiative (grades 9-10) and moving forward
A Roadmap to discussing Transforming Lessons with Technology using a Hyperdoc model presented here

Other options discussed was to “Shadow a Student” and start with empathy to truly understand our students and the way we teach and technology being one of the components. This connects back to design thinking and a topic that we should explore more deeply to address school culture.

Other ways we are using technology can be found using Twitter with the #nashobalearns

Friday, February 2, 2018

Digital Hall Passes? Research

During a staff meeting a few months ago teachers were very frustrated with students not returning passes (wood blocks) to their classroom.

I knew there had to be better way to track students in the building when leaving your classroom and going to another location in the building.  My first thought is student ID cards and the ability to scan your card exiting the room. I inquired last spring with our yearbook vendor and reached out again today.  I would tend to think the student ID and our SIM system should be able to talk to each other.  I am still investigating.

In the meantime, I remember view posts on using Google Forms and QR codes to track in a spreadsheet.  I did a little research today and found a few posts and examples to try out.

I actually found a company e-hall pass talking about the wood block example.
I also found a few twitter posts with a sample1 and sample 2. I ended up creating my own example to test with a business teacher next week. I was looking for a way to sign the student out of the class but also record their return time.

Stay tuned!

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

PLT on Design Thinking for Nashoba teachers

Our PLT shifted to Design Thinking this month.  I used the Extraordinaire Design Studio game to allow teachers to experience the Design Thinking process during our PLT today.

This will be one of three sessions that I facilitate over the next few months!

Design Thinking in Education. Design Thinking is a mindset and approach to learning, collaboration, and problem-solving. In practice, the design process is a structured framework for identifying challenges, gathering information, generating potential solutions, refining ideas, and testing solutions

The  Extraordinaire Design Studio game allowed teachers to experience the process of design thinking as they worked together to collaborate and pitch their product.  In our next session, teachers will begin to plan activities that incorporate design thinking into their teaching.

Presentation below
Session 1 - January 31st 2017 - Also posted in PLT Google classroom

Feedback from teachers was very positive that the "pitches" each team made
were collaborative and creative!