Learning to be a Learner: Why My Next Step is a Coding Bootcamp

PART 1: I AM OUT OF MY LEAGUE

How did I end up here?

About a year ago, I was on a speaker panel I shouldn’t have been on. Don’t get me wrong – I was grateful to be there – but I realized very quickly that I was the least impressive and least qualified person on that stage.

Other speakers included one of the lead engineers at YouTube; the global head of diversity programs at Google; and the first Read the rest

Words Matter: Are You Talking About Technology, or are You Talking About Learning?

This blog post was originally posted on the Connected Educator Month blog.

I still remember the first time I held a voluntary workshop on Google Docs for a staff of 100 teachers. I called it “10 Ways to Use Google Docs in Your Classroom”.

Five people showed up.

A week later, I was eating lunch in the staff lounge and heard a colleague say, “They always have an excuse for not turning their work in. They forgot to bring … Read the rest

Valuing Non-Traditional Pathways in #ProfDev

I’ve spent the last few months working as a project manager on a “digital badges” initiative. It’s been a ton of fun, and I’m learning a lot! Here’s a selection from a post I just wrote on Edutopia

The way we find, access, and share information has exploded in the last 20 years, and the pursuit and acquisition of knowledge is no longer reserved for the elite few. Now, anyone with an Internet connection can gain entry to the … Read the rest

My Limited Perspectives of Education Reform: Life as a Student, Teacher, and Administrator.

In the last decade, I’ve seen the education world through four different lenses: as a student, a teacher, an administrator, and (now) from a policy world.

When I was a student, I thought the world could be changed if we had more engaging teachers.

When I was a teacher, I thought the world could be changed if we had more support from administrative leadership.

When I was an administrator, I thought the world could be changed if we had more … Read the rest

Technology Integration: A Vision, Framework, & Strategy for Districts

I very recently was given the opportunity to present the technology integration work I was a part of in the Kettle Moraine School District. The video below shows the presentation I gave at both the Wisconsin D.P.I presentation at the Wisconsin S.L.A.T.E. Conference and for a CESA 1 P.A.C. meeting for the superintendents of southeast Wisconsin.

In the last year and a half, I was given the awesome opportunity to hold a leadership position within a school district of nine … Read the rest

Library Media in the 21st Century: How we Shifted Perceptions

In my role as a Director of Learning, Instructional Technology & Library Media at the Kettle Moraine School District, I’m lucky enough to work directly with a team of six library media specialists. Over the past year and a half, we’ve worked together to try and develop a common vision for our program, as well as develop our instructional technology skills to meet the needs of our staff and students.

When I was a kid, I was obsessed with reading. … Read the rest

Push My Thinking: TPACK or SAMR or ?

**Update 4/26/14: I LOVE the responses to this post; they made me consider a lot of different ways of looking at TPACK and SAMR, and really stretched my thinking. If you read this post, also read the comments- and check out the links that some people have included!

I’m going to preface this post by saying that I think both TPACK and SAMR are incredibly useful frameworks- and I use them a lot in my work with education technology. While … Read the rest

The Ed Tech Challenge: A Professional Development Framework and Resource Website

I have been working on a technology integration framework and MOOC (massive open online course) for my teachers for the last year with some of the most passionate and intelligent educators I know. The lead design team consists of Chad Kafka, Robert Pronovost, Kelsey Vroomunn, and Caroline Haebig, and the contributors consist of people I’ve met through the Google Certified Trainer & Teacher programs and through networking.

The project we’ve been working on, the Ed Tech Read the rest

Personalized Learning for Teachers Too: Professional Development Should Reflect Learning, Not Seat Time!

“… so, in conclusion, you can provide personalized learning opportunities for your students right now! You can build a blended learning environment to support anytime-everywhere learning! You can track student growth through portfolios! And you can support a growth mindset by encouraging students to reflect on their journey and set personal goals!

Thank you for listening. Also, I was told to inform everyone that this session counts as two hours towards the required twelve hours of in-district professional development. Please … Read the rest

K-12 Digital Citizenship Hangout on Air

Here’s the Hangout on Air I did Monday night with Elizabeth Calhoon, the Academic Technology Specialist in Santa Clara County (California), and Tanya Avrith, the Lead Digital Citizenship Teacher for Lester B. Pearson (Canada). We talked about a lot of great K-12 resources for digital citizenship. I’ve always been super impressed with Tanya’s work in Canada, but I didn’t know that Elizabeth actually helped with the digital literacy curriculum put out by Google! Both of these ladies are super knowledgeable- … Read the rest