Showing posts from June, 2011

10 Peer Coaching Tips in 10 Minutes at ISTE

I was asked to present ten coaching tips in ten minutes at ISTE . Here are the ten I presented today: 1. Building relationships is key . It takes time and energy to build those relationships, but it's the key in coaching. 2. Work with the willing . It is more effective to work with those who are willing, and forcing someone won't get the results the students deserve. If this were an ocean, I probably couldn't turn a whale. However, I can focus on turning and working with the leaders in a school of sardines, and the rest will eventually follow. (Thanks Jon Castelhano for giving me that imagery). 3. Cater to their readiness . It's the same idea as individualizing for your students -- pre-assess and adjust to their needs. I ask questions to assess their comfort level, if they use it primarily to teach, or use it for students to learn and create. In other words, is technology something that is used? If so, how? Is it used mainly by the teacher or also by the studen

Connecting in PLNs

The Edublogs PLN Teacher Challenge #2 gives me an opportunity to ask what questions I have about PLNs and share some insight. Connecting I want to connect with innovative educators who are passionate about learning-centered classrooms. I am rewarded when I learn and can help others grow, because of the impact it makes on the students. Developing PLNs are like developing friendships. It takes time. It's easier when I have similar goals and common things to discuss, or can respectfully challenge each other with new ideas. I need to contribute as much as I take, otherwise it's an unbalanced relationship, which won't last. My One-to-One PLN Needs My job title is "Technology Integration Specialist" for AJUSD. I spend over half my time in K-12 classrooms working with students and teachers. The other half of my time is spent helping teachers with resources, project based learning, creating/facilitating professional development, and setting goals for future

Fail Forward

I was reminded what it felt like to be incredibly frustrated with technology. Perceptions of Failure I had everything ready for my first BlackBoard Collaborate webinar where I was a guest of Shelee King George for Peer Coaching . My computer was ready, and just in case, I had Plan B set up -- my laptop was booted up with the URL typed in. When it was time to start, my computer crashed and my laptop froze. Panic. Anxiety. I ended up using our System Admin's computer because neither of mine would reboot. Pictures by AJUSD's Brian Killgore I was taking a risk and trying something new, but didn't feel like I was connecting with my audience because I couldn't see nor hear them. Plus, I didn't feel like my calm collected self after the technical errors. I easily could have dismissed the whole experience and told myself, "I guess it's just not the medium for me, so I'll never try that again."   Time Gives Perspective, even Inspirati

Beyond 4 Walls -- Building PLN

I'm filled with excitement as we move beyond the four walls of our classroom to build our Personal Learning Network (PLN). What is a PLN? Watch this fabulous 2 minute interview of Steven Anderson explaining the difference between a PLC and PLN, and its power. Our Growth In the past year, almost 70 AJUSD educators joined Diigo to start sharing resources. Approximately 100 AJUSDers subscribed to blogs in Google Reader , and roughly 30 educators started Twitter accounts, including me . One-to-One We started moving to a one-to-one environment at Cactus Canyon Junior High (CCJH). Our professional development (PD) throughout the year focused on pedagogy, which naturally included differentiating instruction with technology. Therefore our PD modeled our beliefs. Skype Beyond 4 Walls When we focused on engaging students with authentic purpose, we discussed blogs. There were three PD options for our CCJH educators tiered to their needs. Since this is so new to u