Thursday, December 1, 2011

Professional Development options

I had the opportunity to present at the  2011 Christa McAuliffe Technology Conference this week.  I enjoyed attending the conference and following many of the great links and resources.  I plan to spend time this week and review all the great resources.  I am also planning on following the  2011 K12 Online Conference this week.  There are somany great presentations.   If you busy checkout many of the great teasers.

I came across an interesting article on Digital Learning Enrollment Triples: U.S. Department of Education.

Learning about the following this month:
Shell Center/MARS, University of Nottingham & UC Berkeley (math)

Common Core Curriculum and Massachusetts
Teacherdomain with Common Core
My Group Genius 

Common Core APP in itunes

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Why present at a conference?

It's that time of year again when I find myself preparing to present at the 2011 Christa McAuliffe Technology Conference at the end of the month.  I am fortunate to present with my good friend and colleague, Nicole Tomaselli, we have been co-presenting since 2005 at this conference.  As I worked on my presentation, a few teachers mentioned to me they would love to present but it's so much work and asked me why I continued to present,

The answer, this is my professional development.  A time to reflect on the impact I had on teachers and students over the past year to plan several of my next projects.

As I updated my Web 2.0 Social Media Glogster poster from last year I added my blog post for my Skype Project World Read Aloud Day that I did with Nicole's studentes.  I also connected one of my special education classes with another group of students in a near by distict.  I found this project on twitter with a post from Angela Maiers.

I also plan on presenting on Classroom Collaboration Using Googles Apps for Education, based several projects that I did with teachers and students last year.

I am hoping that participants at this years conference not only attend the sessions but walk away and put into practice many of the great ways they can engage students in the classroom with Web 2.0 technologies and social media tools. 

Maybe some of the partcipants from last year will share a classroom success story based on inspiration from the previous year.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Pearson and Google Jump Into Learning Management With a New, Free System

Pearson and Google Jump Into Learning Management With a New, Free System
October 13, 2011, 10:25 am
By Josh Fischman
One of the world’s biggest education publishers has joined with one of the most dominant and iconic software companies on the planet to bring colleges a new—and free—learning-management system with the hopes of upending services that affect just about every instructor, student, and college in the country.
Today Pearson, the publishing and learning technology group, has teamed up with the software giant Google to launch OpenClass, a free LMS that combines standard course-management tools with advanced social networking and community-building, and an open architecture that allows instructors to import whatever material they want, from e-books to YouTube videos. The program will launch through Google Apps for Education, a very popular e-mail, calendar, and document-sharing service that has more than 1,000 higher-education customers, and it will be hosted by Pearson with the intent of freeing institutions from the burden of providing resources to run it. It enters a market that has been dominated by costly institution-anchored services like Blackboard, and open-source but labor-intensive systems like Moodle.

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Thursday, October 13, 2011

Generation Wired

An interesting article in this weeks Boston Globe - Parade Section
Generation Wired Article Oct 7, 2011
They text (and text and text). They have hundreds of “friends” they’ve never actually met. They game for hours. How to keep your kids safe and healthy in a hyper-connected world.

How Exactly Is All This Affecting Young Brains?

A 2010 study by the Kaiser Family Foundation found that students 8 to 18 spend more than 7.5 hours a day engaged with computers, cell phones, TV, music, or video games. Forty percent of kids in middle school and high school say that when they’re on the computer, most of the time they’re also plugged into other media. The effects this multitasking has on still-forming brains can be positive and negative. “The prefrontal cortex, which is essential for social behavior, planning, reasoning, and impulse control, is not fully developed until the early 20s,” says Jordan Grafman of the Kessler Foundation Research Center. “Its development is largely dependent on what activities you do.”

Studies have shown that multitasking can lead to faster response time, improved peripheral vision, and a greater ability to sift through information quickly. But it also results in a diminished ability to focus on one thing for long. “You get better at the physical and visual motor parameters of what you’re doing, but not the deeper, thoughtful aspects,” Grafman says.

How will the generation coming of age now—less accustomed to sustained concentration—be affected? No one’s sure. Dr. O’Keeffe recently spoke to a group of college students. “They said they feel really bombarded, they’re not sure they’re learning effectively, and they’re not sure how to turn it all off. We need to learn from what they’re saying and help our current teenagers as well as younger kids learn to disconnect.” For parents, that might entail modeling a bit of self-discipline, like refraining from making calls while you drive or sneaking off during family gatherings to check your email. But the payoff—real conversations in real time—just may surprise you, and your kids. Who knows? They may even like it. Of course, you may need to check their Facebook page to find out.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Showing Google Blogger to class and Audioboo recording

Welcome !

This morning we are showing Google Blogger in class.  Tutorial

AudioBoo - Recording Audio on the Web
Audioboo in Education (mp3)

Learn more here

My first Audio Boo
Audioboo test (mp3)

iphone app download and recording
Mmtestiphonr (mp3)
Appears to be only 5 minutes??
iphone app and info link

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Quabbin PD - Day 2 and 3

Good Morning -
I hope everyone had a chance to create a blog and post.
Remeber you can also upload images and link to other locations on the web, such as Quabbin.

Topics for Day 2 and 3 ---- Listed below are a few examples 
  1. Google +
  2. Google Sites
  3.  or Tagxedo  (note silverlight install needed)
  4. Animoto/Education  (Apply as a teacher/get student accounts and video)
  5. Glogster  
  6. Skype download (webcam and mic)  
Other Options
  1. Storybirds  or Littlebirdtales  (your images)
  2. Edmodo  (Grades 7-12 Facebook type interface for the classroom)
  3. Blabberize  
  4. Xtranornal - Make animated movies 

Monday, August 1, 2011

Quabbin PD

Welcome to Professional Development at Quabbin.

We will be covering the following topics today
  • Google Accounts (igoogle)
  • Blog
  • Word Cloud

Monday, July 25, 2011

Web 2.0 Class (Part II)

Welcome back!

Some of the topics we will cover this morning:
- Blogging
- Word clouds (with images) using or
- Little Bird Tales (or StoryBird)

Registration for FSU - Forms due Tuesday.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Exploring Google +

What is Google +  more info

An interesting article on Google Plus and Schools
To use Google+, you need a Google Profile, a feature not yet available with Google Apps for Education. However, a Google spokesperson assures me that that's coming soon and that "we're working to bring features in the Google+ project to Google Apps users in the future." Indeed, Google Enterprise's Dave Girouard posted enthusiastically on Google+ that "Can't wait to get Google+ out to some of our Apps for EDU schools!"

Along with a video overview of Google +


Some great Diigo Bookmarks from Patrick Larkin
Interesting Ways* 
This all looks very interesting and I plan to integrate into my next class and test out the features.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Teaching this summer and my own learning

What a wonderful week teaching on the Cape earlier this month.  I had the opportunity to meet many new teachers and administrators and managed to fit time into my schedule to visit the beach and many fine restaurants.

It's always so exciting to introduce new digital tools to improve teaching.  The first few days of the class everyone is taking in so much information and I am sure everyone feels overwhelmed.  By the time we hit the middle of the week it's great to see everyone applying many of the tools directly to their curriculum.  I had a great time with the first group of students and I am looking forward to the second group of students at the end of the month.

I plan on reading a few books this summer for my book club, spend more time learning more about Google + (The Google+ Project: A quick look  overview) along with learning more on using my ipad II  in the classroom.  In addtion, I will be with preparing to teach a few more classes summer.

I am looking forward to my vacation on the Cape and time with my family this summer.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Getting Started with Blogging - Session 1 (Cape Group One)

Welcome to Blogging.  I am excited to introduce you to several Web 2.0 tools to hopefully, engage students with 21st Century learning.  I hope you enjoy this learning adventure this week.

Please post a comment and tell me a little about yourself.

Today's Agenda
1. Create a Google Account
2. Create a Blog
3. Use Twitter
4. Explore Web 2.0 Tools

Friday, June 24, 2011

Wrapping up the school year

It's hard to believe another school year has come to an end.  I am sad my principal is leaving to work in another school district.  When you work for an exceptional leader for a number of years the anticipation of a new principal can be unsettling.  Our district has decided to go with an interim principal and re-post the position in the fall.  I am remaining optimistic.

I am now shifting gears by getting ready for my summer professional development classes.  I am looking forward to teaching on the Cape next week.  I was fortunate to teach there last summer and excited that so many of the teachers in my class spread the word to their colleagues.  I found it so rewarding to hear from students throughout the year.  I will be teaching at a number of school this summer and back at Northeastern University in July.  Follow along in the blog and learn with us.

I am also feeling sad I will be missing the #ISTE11 Conference this year, especially now that everyone is tweeting about it. I am thrilled that two of my graduate students will be attending for the first time.
If your not attending the annual ISTE Conference like me, you can still experience and participate by joining the ISTE Unplugged sessions.  These sessions are organized by Steve Hargadon, ISTE Unplugged is a series of presentations that happen at ISTE and are streamed live through Elluminate. You can watch and participate through the Elluminate stream for free.  I attended these sessions during the last two ISTE conferences and found them to be very valuable.  

So let the summer begin!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Presentation and slideshow tools

Our classes are experimenting with a few new presentation tools this month.
  1.  Animoto for Education - Turns photos, video clips and music into stunning video slideshows which can bring your lessons to life.  See a sample of our senior tribute this week.
  2. Drop Mocks works with your Google account anda very simple tool to use. All you do is just drag your  image file on to the web browser screen and that's it! Drop Mocks only works in the latest versions of Google Chrome or Firefox 4. Also, you can only use common image file formats such as jpg, png, gif, and tiff.  Each drop mock generates a URL for easy sharing, but no embed codes at this time, see a sample from my desktop images
  3. Moving Beyond Slides with Prezi .
    This Prezi, created by Adam Somlai-Fischer, is both a great prezi example that explains how Prezi’s are different than traditional slideshows. Overall, Prezi allows you to break a way from bulleted text and sequential viewing of your slides. You can still use images (and bulleted text) and you can even embed video.  If you work best brainstorming and organizing with mind maps, then Prezi may feel very fluid and natural to you.
On the horizon to try ...
  1. VuVox lets you do a lot, without needing a lot of high-tech know-how. Students and teachers can generate impressive multimedia collages and panoramas of their work.  VuVox can easily import RSS feeds, and your photo collections
  2. myBrainShark is the individual, free version, of the Brainshark product suite. Brainshark allows you to upload PowerPoints, MS Word documents, and pictures that you can then narrate and share with friend, co-workers, students, etc (you get the point). The site also provides a podcast and video recording option too.  And, you can add your Prezi into Brainshark too. Brainshark is a  great option if you are looking to personalize and add audio to your work, but do not require responses or audio feedback from your viewers. This is an excellent tool for students to generate presentations in as well. Presenters can even record audio by calling in on their phones. The downside: to use the free version you must leave your content  viewable to the public.
  3. VoiceThread is an “audio/visual discussion board.” Voicethreads are a great tool to  facilitate discussion about a topic. This is a favorite site for educators desiring a way to create more engagement, interaction, and feedback on academic work. This is also an excellent tool for students to present their own content and solicit feedback.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011


Please take the class survey before leaving.

Agenda - May 17th 2011 Session 4

1. Blogger (posting)
2. Twitter
3. Google Sites posting and updates

4. Google Log into your tiger mail
    and enter the following Enter    (Customizing the page)
    See handout with add stuff
5. Google Form/Survey
6. Edmodo (currently down 5/17)
7. Presentation Tools (Prezi or Google Docs/Presentation)

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Community Learning and Web 2.0

There are many tools that you can use to collaborate and share information.  
Over the last few weeks you have been exposed to a variety of tools to use with students: 
  1. Blogs
  2. Twitter
  3. Google Sites
  4. Google Apps/Presentations
We will continue to use the tools each week, in order to become comfortable with the process and more importantly connect to your content areas.
Prezi along with examples
examples that I made on  Bullying, 21st Century Learning
and other examples more using "Community people"

Addtionally, we will review some addtional tools:  
Please post a comment with any feedback.  I will work with each of you to customize your lessons and needs over the next few weeks.

Are you interested in summer session on using Web 2.0 or Google Apps?

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Session Two

Today's class will review
- Twitter (#EDCHAT - Tuesday Topic @7:00 PM)
- Blogger (comment moderation)
- Google Site (Presentation)

Monday, May 2, 2011

A few tips for blogging,Twitter and Google Sites

I hope everyone has been posting to their blog this week and following twitter.
Just a reminder, when you setup your blog you should moderate your comments. Here is a link to help you set this up. You can find the comment moderation setting on the Settings  Comments tab, along with all of the other comment settings: Selecting "Always" will automatically enable comment moderation for all incoming comments on your blog. If you enter your email, all posts will go to your email account.  You can then determine if you would like to publish the comments.

Remember to update your page on the class Google Site with your blog link and twitter name.  You will then have the opportunity to comment on your colleagues posts.  To learn more about Google Site click here.

I have emailed everyone in the class with a reminder about class tomorrow and to post to your blogs.
Feel free to click on the  "Post a Comment" link below to share what you have learned this week.

Session 2 - May 3rd 2011

  • Blogger - Class Postings and Class Blog
    - Moderate - Comments
  • Twitter Review #maynard and #edchat
  • Google Site Add link to Page
  • Introduce Google Presentation Site/Wiki for collaboration

Monday, April 25, 2011

Blogging and Social Networking - Getting Started

This week I will be working with a group of teachers to introduce an overview of Web 2.0 and Social Networking tools for the classroom and for personal learning.  For more details and dates, click on the Social Media tab above.

Here are some tutorials to Blogger to help you set up your blog and get started blogging. You will post two topics to your blog each week and incorporate some of the Web 2.0 tools into the Google Site and/or blog. Each person will create a blog and post two topics per week.  We will comment on each other blogs.  Adddtionally, we will follow bloggers in our content area and use Twitter (a microblogging tool) to connect with other teachers and content areas. 

Below is an image with a collection of Web 2.0 tools organized into an interactive pyramid of the Bloom's taxonomy levels of Remembering, Understanding, Applying, Analyzing, Evaluating, and Creating.   I am familiar with some of the tools covered in the pyramid.  I found it to be a good visual reminder of both the Bloom's levels and Web 2.0 tools.   We have been exploring several Web 2.0 tools as part of this class.

In the 1990s, one of Bloom’s students, Lorin Anderson, revised the original taxonomy. In the amended version of Bloom’s Taxonomy, the names of the major cognitive process categories were changed to indicate action because thinking implies active engagements. Instead of listing knowledge as a part of the taxonomy, the category is divided into different types of knowledge: factual, conceptual, procedural, and metacognitive. This newer taxonomy also moves the evaluation stage down a level and the highest element becomes “creating.”

Bloom’s Taxonomy can be used across grade levels and content areas. By using Bloom’s Taxonomy in the classroom, teachers can assess students on multiple learning outcomes that are aligned to local, state, and national standards and objectives. Within each level of the taxonomy, there are various tasks that move students through the thought process. This interactive activity demonstrates how all levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy can be achieved with one image.
In order for teachers to develop lesson plans that integrate Bloom’s Taxonomy, they write their lessons in the language that focuses on each level. The United States Geological Survey provides a list of verbs for each level of Bloom’s Taxonomy for teachers to use when developing lesson plans. (Although the list is designed for environmental science teachers, the examples will work for any discipline.)  I thought the review of the pyramid along with the Web 2.0 tools covered in class would be helpful in planning your activities.

Enjoy exploring!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Santorini Greece

We spent the last two day in Athens. The weather has been cool and rainy.  We visited the Plaka then toured climbed the hill to visit the Acropolis. The rain held out until the afternoon.  The kids are having a great time.
This morning we took a five hour ferry to Santorini.  The island is beautiful and the hotel has a great view.  We are off to dinner this evening and plan to spend the day touring the island tomorrow and off to Mykonos on Wenesday.
To see more about the school trip go to


Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Greece April 2011

Our school trip to Greece sponsored by Teach by Travel departs this Friday. 
Here is a link to our travel blog

We will be visting Athens, Santorini and Myknos.
Athens: Hotel Stanley
Santorini: Hotel Majestic
Mykonos: Myconian K Hotel travel info

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Poetry and Video

Class, April 5th - Showcase Glogster Posters
- Google Site (link posters to Google Sites)
- Poetry Project for April
- Prezi Overview
- Other Video editing, converting and posting options

Reminder of upcoming class
Social Networking and Web 2.0 in the Classroom
April 26th, May 3rd, 10th, and 17
3PM - 6PM Maynard High School - MHS

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Poetry, ipad and Oprah (April in National Poetry Month)

Each year sophomores in our high school prepare multimedia and movies on their favorite poems. I downloaded the Oprah app for the ipad and the April app is filled with tools to help you express yourself with words, like the "Poetry in Motion" page, where you can create your own poems. Plus, see video clips from guest editor Maria Shriver's interview with poet Mary Oliver. The app also features 16 entries from Oprah's personal journals—11 of them are exclusive to the iPad! think I will share the app with students next week as they select their favorite poems.

Poetry and the ipad (April National Poetry Month)

More from O
I enjoyed the multimedia interaction while reading and watching Maria Schriver interview Mary Oliver, an American poet who had won National Book Award and Pulitzer Prize. Influenced by both Whitman and Thoreau, she is known for her clear and poignant observances of the natural world. Her creativity is stirred by nature, and Oliver, an avid walker, often pursues inspiration on foot. Her poems are filled with imagery from her daily walks near her home in nearby Provincetown. Oliver has also been compared to Emily Dickinson, with whom she shares an affinity for solitude and interior monologues. Her poetry combines dark introspection with joyous release. Although she has been criticized for writing poetry that assumes a dangerously close relationship of women with nature, she finds the self is only strengthened through an immersion with nature. 

I hope the class enjoys this edition of Oprah's Poetry on the ipad.  It has also inspired me to think about some alternative assignments next week. There are 71 sample poems to watch on the site and you can submit your own poem.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

April is National Poetry Month

What is National Poetry Month?
Inaugurated by the Academy of American Poets in 1996, National Poetry Month is now held every April, when publishers, booksellers, literary organizations, libraries, schools and poets around the country band together to celebrate poetry and its vital place in American culture. Thousands of businesses and non-profit organizations participate through readings, festivals, book displays, workshops, and other events.

30 Poets, 30 Days: Throughout each day during National Poetry Month, a selected poet will have 24 hours to tweet his or her daily insights before passing the baton.  Poem Flow/App   

What is National Poetry Month?: Frequently asked questions about NPM.
30 Ways to Celebrate: A month's worth of poetry activities that any community can take part in.
Celebration Highlights: Reminisce about Academy events and promotions of Aprils past.
Poem In Your Pocket Day: Join thousands of individuals across the U.S. by carrying a poem in your pocket on April 14, 2011.
Poetry & the Creative Mind: Each April, The Academy of American Poets presents a star-studded celebration of American poetry.
30 Poets, 30 Days: Throughout each day during National Poetry Month, a selected poet will have 24 hours to tweet his or her daily insights before passing the baton.
Poem-A-Day: Great poems from new books emailed each day of National Poetry Month. Sign up for your daily dose of new poems from new spring poetry titles.
Spring Book List: Check out the new books of poetry available each spring.
Poem Flow for iPhones: Available through the iTunes store, this innovative mobile app features daily poems presented as both fixed and animated text.
National Poetry Map: Find out what is happening in your state by visiting our redesigned and updated National Poetry Map. Massachusetts

Use Technology, Collaboration, and Creativity to Inspire Students for Poetry Month
Poetry Lessons, Ideas and Resources from Edutopia

If you have been looking for lessons, new ideas and resources, and maybe a little inspiration to ignite your celebration of National Poetry Month
Read/Write/Think – I’ve been a long-time fan of this NCTE (National Council for Teachers of English) site and have come to expect outstanding teacher-tested, research based resources like the ones posted for National Poetry Month. I recommend checking out the “interactives,” such as Diamonte Poems or What’s an Acrostic Poem? and then move on to sample some lessons, such as Poetry Portfolios for your primary students, Composing Cinquain Poems with Basic Parts of Speech for elementary students, or Is a Sentence a Poem? mini-lesson for secondary students. In addition to hosting the Read/Write/Think site, NCTE also posts a National Poetry Day page with podcasts from last year’s entries.  More links

Prom - Choose your Adventure Video

Earlier this month I wrote a blog post about learning from others on twitter. Pat Larkin @bhsprincipal at Burlington High School, and Greg Kulowiec @gregkulowiec from Plymouth tweeted about creating 'Choose Your Own Adventure' using YouTube/Spotlight, to learn more about the technique go to  "How to Make an Interactive Lesson Using Youtube" On the site is an example of a "GMAT Choose Your Own Adventure".

Two students in my graduate class (Amanda and Craig) created Adventure videos for math.

A student in my high school, Courtney created an Adventure Video on Prom ChoicesAlthough this video was not part of the contest, it was an alternative assignment, allowing students to further explore the choices and consequences of drinking and driving.  The assignment was motivated by the  Dance Don't Chance video contest that is part of the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security (EOPSS), in partnership with the Registry of Motor Vehicles and the Department of Public Health that aims to make the prom/graduation season safer for teens on Massachusetts' roads. 
The Adventure Video allowed Courtney to create and link several videos together to show students have choices to make around drinking and driving.  Her message, drinking and driving is illegal and stupid. I would have to agree.

It was great to take an idea that Greg tweeted and blogged about and apply directly to the classroom.
I believe the class plans to incorporate more Adventure videos into their assignments.


Watch Apple unveil iPad 2 at a special event on March 2, 2011, in San Francisco. iPad 2 is thinner, lighter, and faster with two cameras for FaceTime video calls and HD video recording.
I have started a new page on this blog

Friday, March 25, 2011

Learning Goals

Today I am attending a Professional Development day in my district.  Tom Daccord is presenting on Assessment 2.0  Follow along with me on twitter!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

ipad Apps for Special Education, Adventure Videos and more

In a graduate class over the weekend Bob Tucker showed the ipad and several Apps for Special Education. MEPSA will be offering Spring Classes on the ipad2 for Special Education, Administrators and Teachers.

I was impressed with an app called Proloquo2Go. It is an application which provides adaptive communication for non-verbal individuals. I have a particular student in my school that I believe will benefit from using this technology on the ipad.  I plan on connecting with her speech therapist and teacher.  Note: I believe the cost is under $200.00. Some of the other Apps we reviewed Life Skills Sampler, Bob's Books and Mathination.  There is a Special Education Section in the itunes Store that I plan hope to explore with teachers.  I am hoping I can figure out how to get the ipad/iphone to work with the SMARTboard and plan to checkout LogMeIn Ignition.

In addtion, I was able to view many of the great projects students created.  Some students were inspired by a Social Studies teacher Adventure Videos in Tube, check out Greg's Social Studies blog post modeled after The Knewton Edtech Blog which  has a great walk through and example on how to make these videos.

I enjoyed the YouTube Advenure video by two math teachers in my class this month Parallelograms with Sheil and Benware.  I have a few high school students workin on adventure videos and hope to post soon, 

Monday, March 21, 2011

Reading on the ipad

I belong to a neighborhood book club.  We normally share books.  My neighbor had a gift certificate for the Barnes and Noble so she downloaded the Nook App for her ipad. This month's selection,  The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night -Time . She was kind enought to let me borrow her ipad yesterday in order to read. The book was only 120 pages and I was able to breeze through reading the book on the ipad.  It was interesting to see firsthand how I could change the font size, highlight, take notes and hyperlink within the novel. 
  Learn more about iBooks – A novel way to buy and read books.  You’ll be even more well read once you get your hands on iBooks. Download the iBooks app from the App Store. Load up on books from the iBookstore. Take them to more places than you’d ever take a regular book. And right when you pull one out on your iPad, you’ll be pulled right in.

Learn more by watching

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Happy St. Patricks Day - Design for Global Learning Conference

MassCUE and METAA’s 6th Annual Technology Leadership Symposium 2011 - March 17th, 2011 - College of the Holy Cross, Worcester, MA
Design for Global Learning - AGENDA - Follow on Twitter #TLS2011

Morning Panel Discussion

Sunday, March 13, 2011

21st Century Traits and 10 Elements of High-Quality Digital Learning

I was following Twitter this evening and came across a post from Derek Keenan on the Developing Education blog.  Derek lists 5 traits that are essential for teachers who are working with changing students and practices.

5 Traits of the  21st Century Teacher  
  1. Driven to Learn - Educators absolutely must be driven to learn in order to teach effectively in the 21st Century. It is no longer acceptable to teach only from a textbook, to rely on the same worksheets an methods year after year without at least questioning them and researching why they are the best resource available. There is simply too much new information, too many new strategies, and new learning available to us to ignore the implications it may have for students in our classes.
  2. A Media Creation Expert - Whether posted online or simply used in the classroom, our materials must be highly engaging and effective. Powerpoint and Word are becoming antiquated as newer and more powerful presentation and editing suites become available to teachers. It is our responsibility to compete (where necessary) with the quality of video games and media construction in order to hook students into great learning. As media conscious teachers, we can win student attention by working with them, not against them, for their learning.
  3. A Digital Navigator – Not many teachers would consider themselves digital natives, but we must understand enough about digital content and how it is used to effectively operate in our student’s world. This means having social media accounts and understanding how they are used, even if you don’t use them specifically for learning. We must be familiar enough with the new digital landscape that we can help students navigate their journey online, even if we don’t (or can’t) join them.
  4. An Empathetic Mentor – Gone are the days when teachers dole out assignments and send students on their merry way. A modern educator realizes the plethora of factors impacting students in our current world, and strives to tailor learning where possible toward individualized needs and interests. This student-centered focus also creates learning opportunities for the teacher to learn with students, developing their teaching and collaborative skills.
  5. A Technology Harmonizer – As teachers of our time, we must realize the implications of pervasive technologies such as smart phones and highly mobile tablets/computers. In addition, we must find ways to ‘make it work’ with technology, which may include enlisting students to help or (as in trait 1) learn more about the technologies we are using. One of the keys here is that we work at making the technology work (in the best way we can) so the lesson becomes about the learning instead of the management of machines
I was thinking about the number of PD and graduate classes I have taught over the last few years and I've been impressed with the way teachers are driven to learn, especially after being introduced to twitter and social media tools.

Another new source to review
What are the 10 Elements of High-Quality Digital Learning ?
The Digital Learning Council has just released the “10 Elements of High-Quality Digital Learning” which recommends major changes to state education policy that include eliminating seat-time requirements, making a move to competency based learning and assessment, reconsidering funding and tools we provide students for example, funding and providing infrastructure for the real tools of the 21st century for those without access i.e. netbooks rather than textbooks, internet for all, and harnessing the power of tools students already own such as cell phones.

Upcoming Live Webinar -
Harnessing the 10 Elements of High-Quality Digital Learning for Your School District
Wednesday, March 30, 1 p.m. EDT
Also available "on demand" any time 24 hours after the event.

Free registration is now open.