Saturday, December 31, 2016

Wrapping up 2016 and thinking ahead to 2017

This school year Sept-Dec 2016 has been an exciting one with Freshman/9th-grade students arriving with Chromebooks. Our district piloted with 8th graders last year and students arrived ready to use! Teachers were onboard and ready to use this year.  We now have two grade levels that are 1:1 and I hope to see the high school expand next year.

For PD I introduced the EdCamp model to the high school staff, last spring and again this fall which included teachers and students sharing best practice and learning web-based tools to support the Chromebook initiative.  Many teachers used twitter to showcase their work and connect with their colleagues during our EdCamp and the momentum has continued.

I expanded my own professional development by teaching a class on G-Suite and Project-Based-Learning (PBL) and proposed our PLC during our late starts to focus on #PBL using the guidelines from the Buck Institute of Technology (BIE/PBL).  We even participated in a twitter slow chat with ASCD on #PBL.  While exploring PBL began connecting #designthinking and gaming techniques to offer teachers and student more voice and choice in assignments. I am currently reading Launch: Using Design Thinking to Boost Creativity and plan to implement with lessons over the next few months and I plan to incorporate into a spring graduate class to promote design thinking.

I also had the chance to test out "THE BREAKOUT EDU EXPERIENCE" with a few teachers this month. The Breakout EDU creates learning games and experiences for all ages. Games (Breakouts) teach teamwork, problem-solving, critical thinking, and troubleshooting by presenting participants with challenges that ignite their natural drive to problem-solve.  We even reflected on the process recording students using Recap. December was the perfect month to test out some of these creative lessons with students.

For the upcoming 2017 year, I will continue to encourage teachers to use twitter, blog and thoughtfully integrate technology into their curriculum by modeling techniques, like the one below using Thinklink with links to resources to try for the upcoming year.  By clicking on the image and circles in the images,  it may inspire you to grow professionally this year!
What will you make happen this year? Click on the image and circles on the image for some inspiration (or here is the link )

I am looking forward to the new year and plan to continually work on my own learning in order to help my teachers and students grow during 2017!

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