Edcamps have been second only to Twitter in empowering me as a teacher-learner and leader. The basic format is one based on an unconference, which has attendees as presenters. It is teachers teaching teachers and completely need-driven. The rooms are set up, the time slots are arranged on a board, and then slots begin to fill. You can choose to walk in or out of sessions as you please. It is all about the experience, and it works very, very well.
I was lucky enough to have two Edcamps in New England in two days. I went to Keene, NH on August 17th and Simsbury, CT on August 18th. All Edcamps are free. Here are some of my sometimes focused, sometimes literal, and sometimes tangential notes on those two conferences. Please let me know if you have any questions.
I would love to do this in New Bedford, and am planning one in my head already.
Google Doc notes here
Education… challenging times (Dean, KSC, Teacher-preparation program)
- Politics and perceptions (negative)
- Higher Education Act (expectations tied to funding, even for higher ed)
- State expectations
- Teaching effectiveness
- accreditation expectations
- standards achievement
Changing Landscapes offer opportunities ahead…
- 10 states selected at the national level for a focus on ‘excellence in education’
- Focus on teaching and learning
- Community of practice rather than isolated enterprise
- Network of educators develop solutions and leverage opportunities
- Deepen learning
- Engage new strategies to share in creating knowledge
Instructions on the sessions… (#eck11)
||Using Jing as assessment
||Coalition of Essential Schools
||Doc scanner on the cheap
||Extend learning opps
|Seven revolutions (civics)
||Engaging students in deeper understand
||Classroom Respsonse Systems (clickers)
||Using Blackboard (engaging students)
||Using Cell Phones
||Tech in lower elementary
||Skype in the Classroom
||Information Literacy Skills
||Top 10 mobile apps
||Dropbox & Youtube with Mobile Dev.
||Teacher reading groups
||Using & Creating Video
||What the hell? Ipad?
||Mapping & Presentation (room 264)
Session 1: Leveraging Twitter in the Classroom
What is Twitter?
Twitter requires you to be yourself. No false identities.
K-12 should send permission forms home for identity.
Search for your own hashtag. Make your own.
Assign students as hashtag monitor. They summarize & critically think.
Consider the authority/credibility of the poster. Trace back and learn.
How do you protect your students from being followed by inappropriate individuals.
Assignment: Ask them to find information being tweeted. Add to the hashtag.
Assignment: Ask them to follow current news.
Session 2: Flipped Classroom
- Repetition on the same lesson vs. adapting the learning to the student.
- How do you deal with missing units via Khan Academy?
- Voicethread, Screencast-o-matic, Jing, Camtasia, podcast, soundcloud, ishowuHD
- What about the application of learning on the other side of the flip?
- What about equity issues for those who don’t have computers or net or mobile device?
- How do we assess that students actually learned the content at home?
Google forms can be used for formative assessment. Polleverywhere.com is also good for feedback.
Session 3: Engaging Students for Deeper Understanding
Introduction: How do we engage them to invest their being in the classroom? Tom pulled together a framework that he uses. He works to convince them to share themselves and their mental energy. You can’t just tell them. How do you help them to develop the tools to engage the material? Jon Vanderwall defines understanding. Understanding is a measure of the quality and quantity of connections between what they know and what they want to learn. Students need help to do this. Finally, there must be an environment for deeper learning.
1. Convince them to share themselves
2. Develop the tools to engage
3. Help students along the way.
4. Shape an environment for deeper learning.
Trust is important to create this relationship. Name activities help to create a community.
Handout: Characteristics of Engaged Learners (Behaviors, attitudes, actively processes information, characteristics of the engaged classroom, characteristics of an engaged teacher.
What is compliance and what is engagement? Define ownership.
What is a dysfunctional class?
Model to students that each one matters. I/thou vs I/it.
Session 4: Developing Information Literacy Skills
Watching a YouTube video on challenges in information literacy… Students expression frustration with learning via online research, writing, accessing information. (Source: Project Information Literacy) PIL InfoLit Dialog, No 3: Frustrations
What are issues or challenges which we notice from students…
- How to access information
- How to analyze what they access
- Something other than Google
- Lack of “peer review”
- “surface level, not just regurgitating”
- Credibility, validity, opinion, bias
- Skills disappear
- Low literacy skills
- Do students care?
- Authority, credibility, truth – distinguishing between…
- Cut and paste
- Asking students what is missing?
Students are looking for what is ‘right’ vs. something that adds to a discussion,
Book: Academically Adrift…
CRAP – Currency, reliability, authority, performance (test)
What do we use in classes to address these skills?
- Multiple words meaning the same thing. Broadening our search terms.
- Stress that this is a process, not a right or wrong answer.
- Wait time for critical thinking.
- CARE Context, assembly, reliability, error (Quantitative literacy)
Key Point: We tell students not to plagiarize, but we don’t tell them what to do to prevent plagiarism. Many of the resources focus on process.
Session 5: Dropbox and YouTube for Mobile Devices
Information is stored at two places at once. (cloud storage)
Is there a way to filter files that go into Dropbox? Yes (set permissions)
You can create a teacher account or one for a class.
Session 6: Smackdown!
- Keram Erkan
- Wolfram Alpha
- Simply Noise
- The Scout Report
- Google Lit Trips
Google Doc notes here
Session 1: Using Video in the Classroom (@gregkuloweic)
Comics: 5 blocks of classroom (day of stroyboard, day of prep, day of writing, dry runs, film)
Comicraft is used as a basis for the film (no privacy issues)
All videos used with flip cameras.
RSA: Similar to the RSA videos. Use a dry erase board. Do voice overs.
Write your script but remember to only have one word on the white board at a time.
Uses iMovie to erase the audio from the video. Speed the video 3X.
Choose Your Own Adventure: on YouTube
Within YouTube, you can block off a box in the video, and you can link it to something else.
Example: Comparing the French and Egyptian Revolution
Kids hold up dry erase boards to make a selection spot. Each video is very short.
Youtube. Edit. Add annotation. Choose spotlight. Choose location. Choose link (blog, website, other video, etc.)
- What is the level of engagement, and how did the students learn content? Greg didn’t give a test in the entire year. His students performed slightly better than all other 9th grade history students.
- Can other phones bee used to record video? Use handbrake to switch video formats so it can be used in iMovie.
- Block comments on YouTube. Schooltube is an alternative. Teachertube is also good if YouTube is blocked.
- Assessment has to meet rubrics. Key words have to be included. Assessments should be done up to the final project, but not including the final product. Assess the process, not the product. Stuff gets better along the way. Don’t punish students on the first attempt.
- How do you do voice overs on iMovie? You can edit the audio separately. Turn it down to zero. It goes to 3,2,1 and then you layer a voice over over that. You can also add music over that as well.
Using Video in the Classroom (Frank, Physics teacher)
- Video is used as a hook.
- MathTrainTV is a screencast of problems solved made by students.
- The presenter is sharing some video links from his Diigo account.
- Greg is going to uplink all of these sites to the EdcampCT Posterous.
- Conversations that students have when making video engages their misconceptions and deepens their learning.
- Comment: Students with LD can learn a lot by making videos. Self reflection is powerful.
Session 2: Social Networking, Global Classrooms and the Flipped Classroom
Connection with other classroom doing the same engineering PBL through Skype. Students were grouped in 2-3. They worked on the same issues. They can communicate via video and audio or both. You can share screens and desktops. You can also record Skype through other programs. You have to have the IT people unblock (question: is it the IP address?)
Skype in the Classroom: website for teachers to connect with other teachers. Language acquisition definitly
CILC.org is a Chicago organization that brokers relationships for vitrual fieldtrips. The federal government also allows that work to take place via NASA.
Global education Ning is set up to connect teachers around the world. globaleducation.ning.com (Lucy Gray?) is the contact person.
Intel’s website has an education tab with resources for teachers who want to do things electronically. You can find teachers of similar disciplines. Teachers use common rubrics that they came up with together.
Question: We tend to focus on the technology, but what about the content?
- Timeframes with project based learning (calendars) help enormously.
- Skill development has to be prioritized over content.
- Activities help students advance to higher levels.
- Students have to know how to do it first, and that takes time.
- Have students self-assess through the process.
Teachers have share time in their faculty meeting. They also have a blog just for teachers to share the learning they do in their class.
Question: What changes as a result of flipping the class in the learning process?
- Students do more at home then some teachers expected.
- Block scheduling helps support project based learning.
- Daily journals can be integrated as a formative assessment.
- Flippedschools.com is a site for teachers screencasting. It’s run by a principal in Michigan who actively supports. “Students are more likely to have a phone than a parent helping them.” Clinton-Dale School
- One English teacher does blogging at home and reading in class. She’s flipping understanding in class. 80% of students were happy doing online work at home.
Session 3: Bring Your Own Device School…
School system that is moving to 1:1 (purchase of 100 netbooks)
Presenters are from a small school and district in CT
Moving towards all rooms have all smartboards.
Demographics show that almost all students have smart phones.
Filtering in their AUP policy focuses only on school time use. If they bypass the filter on their own time, the school is not responsible.
CT school and Burlington MA will share their AUP for other districts to see. CT school got their AUP from somewhere in GA. They switched logos and made it theirs. Very comprehensive.
In Burlington, MA they have a SUPT who is completely behind the ‘open everything’ approach. They did the Edcamp model every TUE. They will run a digital literacy course. They will also have a freshman academy that is only digital, so they absorb the citizenship concepts there before they move on to other grades.
Session 4: You’re Innovative, but your Administration isn’t
Having creative solutions discussion around institutional and cultural barriers to innovation.
(Kerpoof! Elementary school students create movies and greeting cards)
Strategies for Overcoming Resistance:
- Ask forgiveness and not permission
- Aligning innovation in the classroom with the school mission/vision
- Business Model Solutions
|Paying Out (Cost)
||Getting Back (ROI/Impact)
|65% $ for running technology (i.e. electricity)
|20% $ growing as an organization (i.e. wireless)
|15% $ transformative (i.e. changing HOW you’re doing things)
Gross/Margins on X axis
Volume on Y axis
How much do we do because it is policy? Back up your ideas with research.
Sometimes support for innovation only goes so far with the administration. They reach a point where the support may stop.
Great ideas are born in design but live in implementaiton.
Session 5: How to bring Edcamp Principles to your District…
What are the things today that made today worthwhile?
- Self driven
- Teacher driven
- No paid keynote
- No 40 mile expert
- Needs driven
- Choice in sessions
- Voice in sessions
- We do what we say
Often for paid keynotes, there is someone in the building who is knowledgeable and cares.
Build your own in house expertise. Otherwise, you’re going to keep needing help.
The way a school does PD says a lot about what they expect their school to be.
Dan and his district has done their own PD in Edcamp format.
Tired about PD for the lowest common demoninator.
CT passed a law that mandated that teacher committees create PD opportunities.
October 1st EdcampNYC