Thursday, April 28, 2016

Carousel Digital Signage - Tightrope Media Systems

Earlier this year the seniors were looking at providing signage options in the builing and I bebegn to explore what other schools are using.  I learned about Carousel and was able to determine we had an existing service in our distirct.  We were able to upgrade the server and configure the library Flat Screen display with a player and a pre-made channel. Learn more about  Carousel Digital Signage - Tightrope Media Systems and pre-made channels. Our next steps will be to configure a device in the lobby and for the Senior class gift a unit in the cafeteria, hopefully before the seniors graduate. Stay tuned for more details.

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Motivating teachers for PD and changing the culture

I love showing teachers new ways to integrate technology into their teaching practices.  It is particularly rewarding when you have the opportunity to teach a graduate level class over an extended time period and therefore, teachers are able to make an investment in the course, assignments and projects.  Those teachers are able to quickly and effectively implement the tools in their own classrooms and are rewarded with student engagement and results.

The problem is trying to teach teachers ways to integrate technology into their classrooms within the time restrictions of a school day and in addition to all of their other daily responsibilities.   It is a challenge to engage teachers who may not be technologically savvy; who may not appreciate the value of technology; or who are overwhelmed with their many classroom responsibilities.  The best way to accomplish this is to try to motivate and build momentum.  This month I was given the opportunity to hijack our school staff meeting.  My challenge is to figure out what I can do in one hour to get teachers to think outside the box.  My method was to adopt the Edcamp model and allow teachers choice in professional development topics.  

 How do you do this?
  1.  Find a group of teachers that are using technology or are willing to take on a lesson or a project.
  2. Help design and facilitate the lesson.
  3. Use the EdCamp model, or at least stage it the first time by providing choice.
  4. Listen to what they want and at the same time show them new option.
  5. Collect the information using Google forms to showcase.
  6. Create a signup for a PD session form and post to a Staff Google Classroom and share the results.
  7. Create the session slides and share with presenters, as editors.
  8. Build momentum, one tweet at a time.
  9. Tweet out an image of their slide and tag the next presenter.
    What if everyone is not tweeting?  
  10.  Provide options, post to padlet and comment in Google Classroom.
  11. Work with a teacher and market their session in three minutes and use a building hashtag #nashobalearns.
  12.  Make it fun, provide a raffle to encourage engagement and collaboration.
  13. Promote what teachers are doing, encourage and support.
  14. Share by inviting stakeholder to the sessions.
  15. Remind staff it does not have to be perfect and thank them for taking a risk.
  16. Get teachers behind you and support each other.
  17. Remind them that the only way to implement change is to drive the change.

Most importantly, show teachers the possibilities and keep moving forward!
Here are a few is a great article and resources (5-Minute Film Festival: Taking Back PD with Edcamp) describing the Edcamp model from Edutopia.

I am holding my breath for our session tomorrow, but I am feeling optimistic. Follow us on Twitter #nashobalearns!