Today is a Snow Day! We are in the middle of a bombogenesis! That is a blizzard that brings a quick drop in pressure, strong winds, and LOTS of snow. We will probably get 14″ in under 12 hours today! The first week back from vacation is always tiring as we adjust to the schedule, so it’s nice to have a mid-week break!
M and I set up our iPad to capture a timelapse of the snow. It was tricky figuring out which window to use. We decided on a front view of the house, on the top half of the window because the screen on the bottom ruined the picture. M’s been better about checking it than I have – she made sure the battery is going and we just plugged it in. I love that she’s thinking about these digital literacy skills!
Yesterday was incredibly busy, so I didn’t get a chance to journal. I was up late Tuesday night working on a presentation for the school board about our tech program. Then, of course, I woke up early yesterday morning with a mind full of edits that I wanted to make. After a working prep meeting with the Head of School, I have a good idea about how I want to organize the information and make the presentation more interactive. (And we realized that the meeting is actually two weeks away, not one week away! Phew!) After working on the presentation most of this morning, I can see it coming together nicely. I will pass out a handout and do an intro of edtech pedagogies and practices, then look at pictures of students using tech at DCD to identify which pedagogies and practices we currently employ. Then we will finish with a discussion about where we’d like to see tech in our school go, and how the board can help support that movement forward. I’m trying to get away from slideshows, so I like that this meeting will be discussion-focused. Slides will just offer some visual support. I’ll share the presentation once I finalize it.
I also ran the first set of mini-PD sessions yesterday. The topic was Google Photos – our CIO liked the topic because people are personally attached to their photos. So taking the angle of “preserving our holiday photos” was a nice way to engage faculty and staff in learning a tool that will benefit them at work and at home. (I think that’s why I love my job so much! The things we do at home I can bring into the tech lab, and the things we do in the tech lab, we can do as a family at home!
I think the mini-PD sessions will work as a model. I ran the 25 minute session four times – during each of our lunches and right when school got out. We had about 20 of 75 faculty/staff attend total, so about 25%. Nobody from the middle school attended, except for the MS Division Head. So still working on ways to increase that division’s buy-in with tech….
I’m not sure how often to run these mini-PD sessions. Originally, I thought one per week, but that might be too much for faculty and staff. Maybe every other week? Attendance will also fluctuate depending upon the topic, so I want to stay close to our survey results for the first few sessions, to keep attendance up. At the end of this post, I will include pictures of the survey questions and results. Ironically, the same percentage of faculty/staff replied to the survey as attended the sessions yesterday, although different individuals participated.
In between sessions and board presentation prep, I co-taught two classes. Fifth grade is researching artifacts that we will see at the MFA during our field trip next week. Each student gets an artifact, engages in some Visual Thinking Routines and light research, and then creates a slide in a class slideshow with a picture and information of their artifact. They will be the experts on their artifacts when we visit the museum!
After lunch, Kindergarten came by the tech lab for a quick visit. We made another video entry into their digital portfolios – the topic was “What is your new years resolution?” The videos were short and sweet – I’d love to ask them a more challenging question, or have them reflect on a piece of classwork next time!
That’s it for now. I’d like to think a bit more about Kindergarten tech curriculum and mini-PD offerings….
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