Friday, October 23, 2009

Instructional Technology Rocks!

Wednesday was an early release day for us at school. That means that we sent the kids home at 11:55 a.m., half-day, and we had staff development in the afternoon.

Okay, so I hear the moans and groans from those of you that have sat through the endless staff developments at your schools and offices.

Well, since I was one of the organizers of THIS staff development, I can assure you that it wasn't a groaner -- and the fact that like a dozen of my teachers have been energized and enthusiastic about technology and have requested equipment and time and space speaks for itself!

Thanks to the generosity of our administration, we have a number of SMART boards on campus and we knew that to get the most out of them everyone needed to be trained. Yes, some people are never going to touch a SMART board again. But others were knocking down the library doors to checkout the rolling interactive white boards. How cool!

While everyone rotated through the SMART board training, folks also attended two other sessions. We've got folks excited about using flip cameras -- my favorite is the family and consumer science teacher who is going to video yourself doing laundry to use with her students. We had folks amazed at all the extra stuff they can with their ELMO document cameras. (I didn't know you could make movies with it!?!) We also have folks clamoring for the student response systems -- the clickers -- to use for preassessment activities. Way cool!

I was responsible for introducing educational blogging to folks. I directed them to my blog first. Not sure how smart that was! Do I really want my colleagues following my every opinion? Maybe it'll start so incredible dialogues with other educators! Maybe....

I also sent them to the 100 Best Blogs for Teachers and pointed out some of my favorites. Overall it came back to time -- just having the time to explore Web 2.0 tools and instructional technology. Oh, and it didn't hurt to have some pretty awesome colleagues to step up and present some of these really cool tools!

Thanks, folks, for creating a great professional exchange!

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