Thursday, August 23, 2012

Notes from the Connected Educator Webinar

Does the wise use of technology and rich information really boost both teaching and learning?

It is not really being measured yet because we don't have a metric. Joyce Valenza is  seeing better writing
now, former students are professional bloggers and film makers.

New type of reading that Valenza is seeing is not being measured..."underground reading"...students are attached to author blogs and responding to them.  We don't know how to look at this type of informal learning and connectedness.

We are not celebrating many of the achievements of students beyond high school who are using technology in very rich ways.

Michele Luhtala adds that we need to get apps on student mobile devices in order to get moving. The first things we have to do are mechanical, getting everyone connected.

Gwyneth Jones is a middle school librarian who brings in mobile apps in different ways because cell phones are not permitted at that level. If parents sign permission slips to bring app-rich phone to school to work on projects, the students can bring in their devices.  She uses QR codes to promotes books to students by putting a sign on bathroom walls: "do not scan this".  This  ensures that students will scan these codes and ask for books to check out.

How to evaluate information seems to be more important than helping kids to find information.

David Loertscher uses Google docs for collaborative writing which is a high level enriching experience; it is amazing how much more students can learn in a short time frame using the collaborative tools.

Joyce Valenza:  On Curation Efforts

We are losing so much evidence of good student work.  The librarian is in a perfect spot for portfolio curation to collect good work/reflections on that work.  Products such as papers, digital stories, artwork, etc can be put into the "right" containers so that we do not lose this work.  Google apps such as Google sites could work for this curation.
Check end of Valenza's curation slides on
See also:

Curation now seems to be "the new search". It's about evaluation. Discover who the best people in a field are and then look at for kids who can build their own knowledge centers. can also be a learning experience. Students choose 10 feeds to include in their and then choose #hashtags.  Choose a person? an organization? a business?  Choose the feed of a curation expert.  If I don't curate for a particular project, things don't get discovered.  If you curate collaboratively, knowledge gets built.  We curate for ourselves just to feed our own thinking.

Gwyneth Jones on creating a positive digital footprint:
Everyone is so concerned about safety and privacy issues, that not enough is being done to start creating positive digital footprints.  High schoolers should not have their work hidden in private places.  We need to promote the idea of positive digital publishing as they enter college and the job market.  How are we modeling if we are not publishing and contributing online.
see: Transparency is the New Black

Michele Luhtala:  agrees that students publish in the real-world.  It steps up their level of investment in their work.  It changes the way they feel about their work.

Joyce Valenza:  "Give a Kid a Camera" idea is a way for students to shine who are not the top honor students.
Students who are great designers, musicians, theater, stagecrew are now those with the best YouTube videos.  There are students who don't care about being in the top ten percent of their class who are doing terrific work worth published online.

Loertscher:  Three levels of participation in the work/school world
1) my own participation
2) cooperative work
3) co-collaborative intelligence: build together creatively, which is where real innovation happens

In the chat window: (zmidler)
The statement "We will publish your work to the world", has been one of the most powerful & motivational things we have ever said to our students. Publish, publish, publish, that's our focus (and we are getting publication quality work).

Dr. Rita Oates, ePals #2

Find allies in high school in student newspaper, yearbook adviser, broadcast/tv teacher. They advocate and DO have students publishing in multiple places.

Edmodo is not enough.

What challenges and what recommendations do you have for the school environment?

Michele Luhtala
describes her school as a "Choose Your Tool" school. It's very difficult to test tools, to get kids excited and to push the boundaries using technology without support of administrators who are supportive.

Gwyneth Jones:  We need to push with our "Ninja ways" of getting around obstacles. We need to get beyond the "Banned Websites" .

Banned Sites Awareness Week is October 3:

Joyce Valenza:  stop doing things that are a waste of time.
TL Cafe is planning a back - to - school special.  TL Chat will be live on Monday or Tuesday nights.
More info on the Back to School Special September 10:

1 comment:

Linda Straube (Ms. S) said...

Thanks so much for posting these comments. I, too, found the webinar to be very inspirational for the start of the school year. I particularly liked the specific examples of new tools to explore like Symbaloo or Thinglink. Here's an example that could be readily adapted for a language or Geography class.

The ideas about using or creating feeds with were intriguing and could certaily help us to teach evaluation skills. It will be fun to experimant with these and LiveBinders this year. LOts to learn together with students!