COETAIL, Course 3, Professional Development

Remixing Professional Development

Although I’m currently teaching three MYP French classes, my normal job as a technology integration coach involves more time in front of teachers than in the classroom with students. When I saw that this week’s topic was the remix culture, Scott McLeod came to mind. His copyright is one of the most impressive examples of open sharing that I’ve seen.

Open innovation and open source innovation: what do they share and where do they differ?

Creating professional development sessions and workshops for our staff and for conferences is part of my job. Quality PD takes a lot of research and time to put together: the perfect chance for some remixing. If the ideas and resources are already out there, why spend time recreating everything when I can, instead, spend time remixing?

I was recently asked to present at a conference in Kuwait in January. The theme of the conference is 21st century learning and teaching. Among other topics, they’re looking for one 90 minute session for administrators. Although I’m currently in the UKSTL program, I haven’t every created a session specifically for admin. I reached out to Scott and Jayson Richardson (one of my current profs) to see if they had any advice. Jayson pointed me towards Scott’s workshop resources and we brainstormed a little during a Hangout. Scott has also agreed to chat sometime. I’d like to remix previous workshops Scott has done with activities that I’m learning from Jayson in class. I’m really excited for the possibilities of this session!

A question for you
Are you a school admin? What overarching message do you think is important for school leaders (re: technology)? What do you think admin need most? Thank you!

COETAIL, Collaboration, Kuwait, Professional Development, Social Media

#NESA_SEC 2013

To be honest, I attended the NESA Spring Educators Conference this year because my husband was chosen to present. Instead of wondering around Bangkok by myself for 3 days, I decided to pay (a lot) to attend the conference in the hopes of mediocre professional development. What I got was much more than that!

Networking: I had the opportunity to meet Dana Watts and Scott McLeod in person (and attend their sessions). I’ve been following them on Twitter for awhile and have a bit of a blog-crush on Scott’s Dangerously Irrelevant. I also found many new international educators to follow – my list is still primarily US-education based and I’m ready to expand my PLN! The discussions that took place on Twitter were equally as valuable as the sessions I attended.

Sessions: I really enjoyed the idea of the 4-hour workshops. Scott McLeod’s workshop blew my mind (as did the keynote). I was inspired & challenged by the content Scott delivered and by the collaboration that I participated in and witnessed. Check out the unit/lesson plan my group made (we had approx 25 minutes to create it). We then presented the lesson to another group who gave us feedback (and vice versa). I was completely overwhelmed at first (and didn’t like the constraints  but then it got me thinking -if we could do this in 25 minutes, what could teachers who actually teach this content do in an hour (or more!)? And I ended up really liking the fact that Scott had given us constraints – it focused us and was much closer to reality (we all have standards…). If I had gone to nothing else, these two sessions would have made the entire conference worth it.

Decisions: Scott & Jayson handed out fliers for the School Technology Leadership programs at the University of Kentucky during the workshop. My first instinct was to set it aside without really looking at it. The longer I sat in Scott’s workshop the more I felt that piece of paper calling to me. I listened to Scott and Jayson talk about the program and did a little of my own research. Wow. Even though I’ve already started my Masters with COETAIL, I felt pulled to the UKSTL Masters. Scott, Jayson and Dana were nice enough to answer a few questions for me…and my mind was made. I’ve been (quickly) assembling my application ever since (due May 1). I’m really excited about the possibility of being a part of the next UKSTL Masters cohort (I’ll still complete the COETAIL certificate, but won’t do the Masters). The more I sit on my decision to apply the stronger the pull becomes to be a part of ‘it.’

So…the Spring Educators Conference was a success. I am bummed that I missed out on the opportunity to meet Doug Johnson and attend his sessions. Next year the conference doesn’t back up to Spring Break…but if there’s a good line-up of presenters I might just pony-up the cash and go again. 🙂