Tag Archives: PETE&C

Not Using QR Codes?…Are You Qrazy?

chartLast week I had the pleasure of presenting a session at the Pennsylvania Educational Technology Expo & Conference (PETE&C) about using QR codes in education. I had a fantastic time in my session…the audience was eager to learn, which lead to some great questions, comments, and ideas about using QR codes. I wanted to make my resources available to others that might read this blog and were unable to attend the conference. The following link contains my slide deck and my LiveBinder of links and resources.

Not Using QR Codes?…Are You Qrazy?


Three Days of Learning @ PETE&C

I wanted to share with others what I learned for three days while in Hershey. The following post is a compilation of key thoughts, resources, and session highlights. I am hopeful that this collection of ideas delivers a little bit of PETE&C to the doorsteps of those who were unable to attend. For other attendees, please feel free to comment about a session you believed to be valuable that I did not attend or mention.

PETE&C Ning Site – here you can find presentations, interact with presenters, and continue conversations from the conference

Opening Keynote – Sir Ken Robinson:
What stood out to me…

  • business leaders are complaining the kids coming out of education can’t: think creatively, work collaboratively, and be a member of a team
  • too many distractions in education… political in-fighting, building code, architect interests
  • we have to think differently about human talent and human potential
  • the dogmas of the quiet past are inadequate for the stormy present – as our case is new we must think anew and act anew – abraham lincoln
  • Wrong perception in education:

Going to school is all about going to college…it’s okay, but it’s not what we should be preoccupied with- we need to remove the stigma of not going to college

Chris Lehman:
Keynote recording – I highly recommend you take the time to listen to this!
SlideShare of presentation – not the exact one he used, but pretty much the same. Some great quotes and thoughts here!

LFS & Technology
If you search for LFS resources you won’t find much because it’s locked down!
Technology INFUSION – not a culminating activity at the end
PBL – if you give a test at the end of a PBL then you’re not doing PBL
Do you have a sharing place for your teachers to share lessons/graphic organizers/etc.?
Podcasts as an activating strategy, Wordle, Writing Prompts (Discovery Ed), WallWisher, Blogging

Partners: LFS & Technology – presentation resources – nice job of matching infusion ideas with each part of LFS

SAS: (Standards Aligned System)
This online tool allows you to locate specific standards, anchors, and eligible content based on subject area and grade level or course.
It also provides lesson plans, links, activities, primary source documents, essential questions, and resources

SAS site

Web 2.0 for Reflection and Assessment:
Mindmapping, word clouds, google forms
Mindmeister – collaborative – edit & view (free and paid versions)
Wordle – examples of classroom use:
Place Shakespeare excerpt into Wordle to look for words they don’t understand (it’s not actually very many)
Place poems into Wordle
Paste a writing piece into Wordle to look for too much repetition in text – then edit writing piece
For review – journal entries to look for common themes

Presentation Link

Staff Development: Winning Trust & Ambition
This session was more of a discussion session about the disconnect that exists between what teachers value about PD and what actually occurs at PD sessions in school districts.
The following are some ideas about how to make PD more meaningful:

  • PD needs to be ongoing – can’t have 1/2 day session and expect teachers to be experts
  • How do you involve those that want to be involved? Be intuitive…you can read it from teachers
  • Approach the negative attitudes with offering extra help rather than being confrontational or taking it as a personal attack
  • Teachers need a change of pace – get them out of the district – rejuvenation=motivation
  • Make pete&c part of staff development??? – this is an interesting idea
  • Provide time to work with the technology! Time to “play”

The following are ideas about how to allow teachers input into the PD process:

  • Teachers propose courses to be covered or taught
  • Surveys are a good way to get input from teachers about what they want to learn (Survey Monkey, Google Forms)
  • In-service planning committee w/ a grade level rep
  • Cafeteria style staff development (included in district vision)
  • Teachers teaching teachers has more of an impact than outside “experts”
  • Administrators will conduct building walk thrus to look for “experts” in their own buildings and utilize them.
Motivating the Secondary Reluctant Learner:
Here are some ideas the presenter feels are important to use with reluctant learners:

  • Set goals for students – they need steps that are attainable
  • Give them encouragement and a safe place to work
  • These students have to feel some type of control over their learning
  • Give them choices!
  • Provide them the opportunity to self evaluate
  • Provide reinforcement!
  • Set ground rules – without them they will take advantage.
  • “I don’t know” from them is not acceptable – they must at least explain why they don’t have a response

Google Apps: Have students share docs w/ teacher
Book trailer
Book discussions, weekly essential question (Google Form) linked in Moodle
Review of favorite reading strategies

Presenter’s Documents

Filtering Social Websites?
Some key discussion points from this presentation:

  • The environment you create in your building/district is important
  • Administrators are key in modeling the use of technology for teachers!
  • Teaching students how to use social sites is very important! Let them make mistakes in a safe environment and teach them
  • Derry Twp. MS principal shows how CoverItLive was used night before a test. At 7 pm, student asks: “What do I need to know about Stamp Act?

Presenters’ Session Link
Patriot News story from this session and Scott Snyder’s backchanneling session

Disruptive Technology: Cellphones in the Classroom:
Assign homework using cell phones…banned in school, but not at home
Presenter had participants complete several tasks using our own mobile devices – very effective!

Cellphones in the Classroom Wiki
CoverItLive session that was held during the session – good links and resources

Some other Resources picked up throughout the course of the three days:
The Missing Manual for integration

60 Tools in 60 Seconds Wiki

Science PowerPoints

ipadio – ipadio allows you to broadcast from any phone to the Internet live.  Phone blog, collect audio data, record and update the world.

Erase the Technology

Picture courtesy of Flickr/partsnpieces

Picture courtesy of Flickr/partsnpieces

I have read in several places recently that perhaps there is too much emphasis being placed on using technology in the classroom. My first thought was there’s no way that’s possible. And then I started to really think about that statement. Is it possible that we (the ed. tech. community) have pushed so hard to get teachers to use technology as a tool, that this urging has now become irritating to teachers. Do they really believe our only interest is to have them use computers in their classroom? So I thought about that for a bit too. I continued to go back and forth between the fact that some teachers are probably getting tired of hearing they should use technology more, and some teachers will need to hear that message over and over again until they actually do use it! And sadly, some will probably resist until its use is mandated.

Contemplating this took me back to PETE&C this past February when I attended a session on the last day called “Erasing the Technology”. The presenters of this session were Ben Smith and Jared Mader (the EdTechInnovators). They profess that we are currently in an environment where 21st Century skills for students are essential to become globally productive citizens, and we have to be careful not to over-emphasize the tools of technology. Ben and Jared state that “We need to help teachers understand how to integrate tools invisibly in a technology-enriched collaborative, communicative, and creative learning environment.” Just like the State Farm commercials say…I am so there! My goal is not to push teachers to use technology just for technology’s sake. My goal is to provide teachers with tools they can use to teach, demonstrate, and/or assess concepts and student work. And these tools need to be just another aspect of the classroom; invisible. We need to “erase” the emphasis that we’re actually using technology and let it be just another aspect of the classroom. It needs to be the norm and not a special event!