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Yep. I said yes. Now I really have some work to do. This and two presentations scheduled between now and March 4. This wordy girl has some work to do! Won’t you join us there in Greenville, SC?

I’m loving the SCBA Group created in Goodreads. It’s for all grade levels for any year our state’s SC Book Award Program.  Don’t you want to join in the conversation??

 

SCBA
SCBA 29 members

SC Book Awards Program

Books we’ve read

 

 

Firebug
Firebug
by Lish McBride
Start date: January 30, 2016




View this group on Goodreads »

For our lunchtime bookclub, we try to find themes for August and January that will draw students in. These particular meetings are designed to be a “bring your own book” meeting, so students won’t feel pressured to get the title we are reading, but instead allow students to check it out and see if it is something they might want to become a part of.  Our August meeting was literally a “bring your own book” where kids could bring any title. We wanted to change up the January meeting while maintaining the byob format, so we came up with the theme, “Books @ the Movies.”  For our January lunch time book club, our kids are encouraged to bring any book that has been a movie. We have se t no other limits.  During this meeting, which happens this Friday, we hope to hear a resounding reminder from all the participants that the books are always better than the movies!

We have designed a Kahoot using pictures from the films based on books, and see who can the fastest with accuracy identify books based on a scene or actor in character.  We’ve selected  which have books physically sitting on our shelves. There are plenty more.

B@M2

Want to see which ones we’re using? Click here.

We plan to do another surprise BYOB lunchtime meeting in March, as we explore interest in Manga and graphic novels too. We are going to ask the kids to bring any title to this meeting to share with the group. That should be interesting, and maybe even grow into a separate book club/film group.

I always try to attend at least one of Leslie Fisher’s sessions. Sometimes that winds up being in the exhibit hall at a booth. But I made sure to attend her Group Smackdown. I always learn something new that I can use immediately. This session did not disappoint.

My favorite take away:

Mac users who present can be caught in the middle of playing a video and discover the volume needs adjusting. Using a Mac, that’s an easy fix, just quickly tap the increase volume key on the keyboard. While that does fix the issue, it comes with an annoying “wonk-wonk-wonk” noise. To increase or decrease the volume of your Mac computer while playing a video WITHOUT the annoying sound, all the user has to do is hold the shift key at the same time as making the adjustment, and the annoying noise is eliminated! SCORE. I did not know that.

Other take-aways:

I love to see videos that emphasize a point or make me laugh. Here are a few I really enjoyed from Leslie’s session:

Teens React to Books

 

Selfie Stick Abuse

Leslie has a great website and a treasure trove of content from her presentations not to be missed over at LeslieFisher.com.  Since many educators wear lanyards, Leslie also encouraged us to share a funny school lanyard story. Read some of the hilarious posts folks have shared here.

 

Special Thanks

I am appending to this post a special thanks to the South Carolina State Library and Halie Brazier for accepting my application for a funding source for travel and attendance at this conference, the Future of Education in Technology Conference. My funding is directly attributed to the Library Services and Technical Services Act and the U.S. Institute of Museums and Library Services. I am deeply appreciative of the opportunity to attend this professional development opportunity.

 

I feel like Steve Anderson is like a next door neighbor. I mean seriously, he’s from North Carolina, just above my own home state. Because I’ve been so close geographically, I’ve managed to never see him in a presentation until Friday, January 15, at FETC. It’s weird to realize I had to travel so far away from the Carolina’s to finally sit in on a session. But it was so worth it.

 

No Time Wasted

His session, titled above the post here, wasn’t really something relevant for me. I just wanted to hear him speak. I do not have a voice to even recommend observation strategies for administrators in my teaching context. But having been married to an administrator and having all these years of experience as a teacher and school librarian, I figured I would attend anyway. I was not disappointed, and actually I was pleasantly surprised. Not only did I gain some insights about administrators, educational technology, and walk through observations, I also filed away some presentation strategies, specifically, engaging the audience through conversation and brainstorming.

 

Just Numbers

Anderson shared his assignment at the district level to help administrators track “walk through” observations. He shared his story of working diligently to design the perfect walk through observation form, and then shared with his higher up how to analyze the data to empower an administrator. Using data analysis from the form, administrators could tailor leadership to the identified needs as revealed through data analysis. He was disheartened to learn the only interest was to make sure the right number of walk throughs had been done.

 

The result of brainstorming and conversation

The conversation then turned to redefining the principal as the lead learner. Most in this session agreed in many places a walk through is just numbers for their admin. As a group we brainstormed the true purpose of a walk through and these were some of the comments shared:

  • Inspect what you expect
  • Connect with kids
  • Gain insights on teaching methodology
  • Establish role as an instructional leaders
  • Becoming  familiar with instructional practices
  • A walk though should be crucial in looking for bloom’s level.
  • A walk through is a way to see where the PD needs to come from.
  • Walk though a can tell you how effective the PD is.
  • Admin have to be model users of PD
  • Walkthroughs are not evaluations, they are opportunities for growth
  • Coaching must be “on-going and on-growing”

 

Opportunity for more

I love presenters who give me as a participant a chance to be part of the body of knowledge shared and then find a way to share their material after a session.  Steven Anderson provided this via Twitter. It’s not the actual presentation, but it does offer links to deeper knowledge. The session gave me a lot to think about.

 

 

Special Thanks

I am appending to this post a special thanks to the South Carolina State Library and Halie Brazier for accepting my application for a funding source for travel and attendance at this conference, the Future of Education in Technology Conference. My funding is directly attributed to the Library Services and Technical Services Act and the U.S. Institute of Museums and Library Services. I am deeply appreciative of the opportunity to attend this professional development opportunity.

After such a filling Thursday, it was difficult to imagine that I could add “one more thing” to my brain.  Friday wasn’t as stellar a day as Thursday. My session choices fell flat for me, though Adam Bellow’s One More Thing was a great start!  The session, while entertaining and lively, and a great way to begin my day, especially after a snafu checking out at my hotel causing me to miss the Friday keynote, was filled with brutal truths in the form of nonstop one-liners.  I was glad to hear him say “slides are free,” which was his warning that he had a lot of slides! No worries, they were all good slides with lots of presentation zen. Of course I knew he would hit it out of the park. A perfect session to choice to make up for the hotel checkout snafu at Las Palmeras. Happy to report sessionwise, I started and ended my day well.

Someone else has a good recap

I love that the author of Education Viewpoint(Eric Miller) has posted a thorough recap of Adam Bellow’s Session, One More Thing. I did attend the session, but my notes were scattered. If you hang around his site/blog, you’ll find more recaps.

Lesson Learned

I had wanted to attend all of Adam’s sessions, but I tried to spread my attendance to other featured speakers. I did however notice Twitter was afire for the Session Adam led titled “Double Click to Edit: Hacking Keynote.”  I skipped it because I figured I already knew a lot of this. I forgot though how much I enjoy his humor, wit, and presentation style. And I knew I was missing good stuff when I realized the participants were actually interacting with him as presenter, adding to his already great material. Sigh. Note to self. Do not miss Adam Bellow at conferences, in formal or informal spaces.

 

I think this Tweeted graphic says it all!

 

 

 

Special Thanks

I am appending to this post a special thanks to the South Carolina State Library and Halie Brazier for accepting my application for a funding source for travel and attendance at this conference, the Future of Education in Technology Conference. My funding is directly attributed to the Library Services and Technical Services Act and the U.S. Institute of Museums and Library Services.  I am deeply appreciative of the opportunity to attend this professional development opportunity.

This concurrent session at FETC Thursday, January 14 was extremely inspiring. I’ve listened to Speaker Sylvia Martinez at a number of ISTE Conferneces, at Educon, and now at FETC and she is, with or without hubby Gary Stager, a force to be reckoned with. If you don’t want to feel inspired, skip her sessions! From her bio, “Martinez started her career designing high frequency receiver systems and navigation software for GPS satellites.” It was nice to hear her share this anecdote about her first job as a GPS designer, and how she left the position to do something that she felt made a difference.

I believe she is spot on with her observation that we are living in and teaching during another American Revolution. The Industrial Revolution, more than about steam engines, was about how people changed the way they “organized.”  The revolution we are experiencing now is no less the same. Consider how the tools we have available today, the ones we use on a daily basis, have changed the way we work and live. I wonder what this “revolution” will be referred to in the future? The technology revolution? The “invent to learn” revolution?

Sylvia Martinez gave us much to think about. Today’s mindset of sharing everything, creating, building, learning independently, the growth of the maker movement, and how we have grown into a “show and tell” society are shaping the future. As educators we need to encourage this mindset in our youth.  Sylvia was not the only session where I heard the promotion of her book Invent to Learn, or the concept of the maker movement. It was nodded during the opening Keynote by Reshma Saujani, again in Howie Diblassi‘s session I attended later, and throughout the exhibit hall and smaller conversations in the conference venue. Sometime back I got her book, Invent to Learn as an ebook. Little did I know then it would become known as “the bible of the classroom maker movement.” I am now inspired to load it up and read it, and even implement some kind of maker space in my own teaching context, the library.

Invent to Learn Website

My cover shot/screenshot of my ebook:
Screen Shot 2016-01-18 at 5.18.32 PM
I also chose to attend Howie Diblassi’s concurrent session that afternoon titled Creating MakerSpaces in Schools: Hands-On, Minds-On Activities. His session was energetic and fast paced! Visit his site  (and here) where you can download all 172 slides (mind you he only had 40 minutes for this session) and at his site, you will get all content that he referenced in his pres. While I’m not sure I picked up a lot of new material or inspiration, I definitely found a wealth of material to come back and look at in my leisure.  His enthusiasm was contagious as well.

Some take-aways (other than the book!)

I’d never heard of Sylvia’s Super Awesome Maker-Show, but it was repeated in several sessions. Started when Sylvia was 9yo (I think), the now 13yo is an invited speaker to some of our edtech and education conferences. What!!? Quite inspiring. This is an older video, way before she was 13. Check out this cheeky kid.

Some resources I need to look into include:

Arduino – an open-source electronics platform based on easy-to-use hardware and software. It’s intended for anyone making interactive projects and Raspberry Pi – touted as the $5 computer to build.

 

Special Thanks

I am appending to this post a special thanks to the South Carolina State Library and Halie Brazier for accepting my application for a funding source for travel and attendance at the Future of Education in Technology Conference. My funding is directly attributed to the Library Services and Technical Services Act and the U.S. Institute of Museums and Library Services.  I am deeply appreciative of the opportunity to attend this professional development conference for educators.

I really enjoyed Gabriel Carrillo’s #FETC session on App Smashing with these three tools at the FETC Conference Concurrent Session January 14, 2016. Gabriel, an AZ School District Tech Specialist showed us how to create audio files (narrations, announcements, even singing) and then fiddle with them to have background music with a variety of themes. The app, Ujam, works well with Google Drive, so your final files will be in your drive. It is a robust cloud based app too, and it can be found in thein the Google Play store (plugin or app, not sure which.) He just used UJam directly online (ujam.com). It was very interesting to see and realize the variety of ways it could be used in a classroom. It has a look and feel that is similar to Garage Band from the Apple side of creation tools, but this one is asynchronous, working well on any device, even mobile ones. Gabriel then used a narration (no singing!) that he made with pleasant background music to add to a video montage of just pictures. Very clever.  Ideas for using this in school setting included sharing field trip pictures with narration, leaving student directions for a substitute to play, and more. The video software he used with UJam was very simply WeVideo. All of this is cloud based and works extremely well, practically seamless with Google Drive. Terrific session and terrific take-aways! Check out a few tweets below about the session. It was nice to see examples and ideas while in or immediately after the session.

 

This tweet that includes a video shared via Twitter. The attendee, Barbara Leidahl used UJam and WeVideo right there during our session to create a brief recap of one of her FETC workshops. Just goes to show how simple and quick this “app-smashing” can be learned and used. 

 

Video link 

Checkout Ujam’s Youtube channel

 

Special Thanks

I am appending to this post a special thanks to the South Carolina State Library and Halie Brazier for accepting my application for a funding source for travel and attendance at this conference, the Future of Education in Technology Conference. My funding is directly attributed to the Library Services and Technical Services Act and the U.S. Institute of Museums and Library Services.  I am deeply appreciative of the opportunity to attend this professional development opportunity.

Just wanted to share the SWVBC if you are curious as to how it works.  Bssically we have around a dozen schools who are “member” schools, and we have teens come in on a Google Hangout (a single group joins via a laptop/desktop/ipad/iphone/device of their choosing) to talk about a title. One school acts as facilitator each time. We record and share our videos publicly afterwards if the discussion doesn’t get too personal (and sometimes that happens.) These are the member schools, and anyone is welcome to join us–just ask.  Sometimes we have even had authors of a selected title join us. Here are the schools who have participated this year, though not all at one time. A Google Hangout can have ten live participants, so we ask for an RSVP the day before.  The RSVP’d librarians get the live link to join. Typically of our doze or so schools, five join. We offer he live link as a second option for hose who would like to have students join from home (east coasters usually have to make a special trip back to school, so that second live link can come in handy for us.

The hosting school picks the book a month or more in advance, and you can see our schedule and plans for this school year at the end of this post. Here is yesterday’s meeting.

This is our schedule for this school year. We’d love to have others join us live or even “lurk” live. Contact me for details–>Cathyjonelson at gmail dot com. Notice the two openings we still need filled with a title and host!

SWVBCScheduleasof12_2

Android Garden – Google Mountain View Office by Anthony Quintano, April 2, 2014 via Flickr.

The window of opportunity has arrived for the next wave of what used to be called “Google Teacher Academy.” The application is now open for the new and improved program, “Google for Education Certified Innovators.” By far one of the most rewarding experiences of my professional career, I would love to see MANY more librarians in the mix. In my own opportunity (GTA-ATL14) there were four librarians out of the fifty participants.  Let’s increase that!

We need to inundate Google with “Librarian” applicants! Librarians touch every facet of the curriculum and school program in most schools. So consider applying for the next Google for Education Certified Innovator Program (formerly known as the Google Teacher Academy)! And how awesome is it that this next one is at the main Google Headquarters in Mountain View, CA?

Key dates:

  • December 2, 2015: Applications open
  • January 11, 2016: Applications close at 11:59 PST
  • January 18, 2016: Applicants notified of selection to program
  • February 24-26, 2016: In-person Academy in Mountain View, California, USA
  • January 18, 2017 or before: Launch date of new innovation projects

Here is the link for details again–> http://googleforeducation.blogspot.com/2015/12/the-new-certified-innovator-program-is.html  You have from now THROUGH Christmas break and then some to get your application in. It is so worth the work to apply!

 

Image Attribution:
Quintano, Anthony.Android Garden – Google Mountain View Office. 2 April 2014. Online image. Flickr. 2 December 2015. https://www.flickr.com/photos/quintanomedia/13607388294.

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