Showing posts with label digital learning. Show all posts
Showing posts with label digital learning. Show all posts

Sunday, November 11, 2018

Creating a Digital Culture

This week I am welcoming some guest bloggers. This one is from Clint Winter and Chuck Bell.

As a School Superintendent and as a District Technology Coordinator we both are often asked “How and why did your district decide to go 1:1?.” Our school district has been 1:1 in some form or fashion for a number of years. Initially funded through a grant through the University of Georgia we were able to give Windows devices to students in the 11th and 12th grade. As the grant ended and expenses began to mount and as Google established a strong presence in K-12 education it became clear that we needed to make a commitment to Google Chromebooks. We were able to fund our Chromebook initiative through money collected from a special local option sales tax. Also, it helps us meet the state of Georgia’s mandate for 100% online state required testing.

When we made the commitment to Chromebooks we also are making a commitment to collaboration and creation. We wanted to connect our students and teachers with both curriculum and new opportunities. Actually, that is a big reason we decided to get Chromebooks! Our Chromebooks booted up faster, we have unlimited storage, and we are able to collaborate in real time all the time. Students are also able to access their documents offline. Keeping with the theme of collaboration and creation We wanted to alleviate fears by letting teachers know that from a District prospective. We knew they will have both success and failures with the new devices in their classroom. We also wanted to remove barriers by offering tools such from Texthelp and GoGuardian. Also, we wanted to make sure that we were using best practices and have worked with AmplifedIT to maximize our Google Admin Console.

For Professional Development our school district embraces the SAMR model. It is important that our students Chromebooks are being used intentionally. We offer personalized paths for our teachers to learn and lead about using technology for more than substitution. Some of our teachers go through Google Certification, others attend Edcamps, we are promoting building our own Personalized Learning Networks.. Our administrators are offering teachers to choose professional learning in the building and also encouraging their teachers to screencast new things that they have learned. We tweet the good things we are doing in our classroom and use the hashtag #Bluewayondisplay to expand our audience and learn from educators across our region, nation, and world. We are continuing to build a culture that supports Every student Every Day and know that this cannot be accomplished without the support of our students, community, teachers, technology staff, and administrators. Building a dynamic culture that encourages risk taking and embracing new styles of learning is truly a team effort.

Chuck Bell is the Superintendent of the Elbert County School District. You can follow Chuck on twitter @Chuck_Bell_

Clint Winter is the Instructional Technology Coordinator for the Elbert County School District. You can follow him on Twitter @ClintWinter. Clint is the author of TheFridayTechTip which is updated every Friday during the school year. You can listen to the Edtechrewind podcast he co-hosts with Dr. Lee Green.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Interactive Textbooks via iPad

A Guest Post: by Erin Klein 

As a middle school teacher and mother of two young children, I am always excited by the innovation technology offers our leader's of tomorrow.  Still in my twenties (for a few more months at least!), I'm often perceived by my colleagues as being a tech savvy teacher; however, I consider myself as a teacher rooted in sound pedagogy - if technology is a tool that enhances a particular concept, great... if it simply adds 'bells and whistles,' I wouldn't endorse the merit of integration via web 2.0 tools, multimedia, an and iPad use.  Recently, I've embraced the idea of adopting iPad technology not only to assist students with special needs or to add an interactive element to a lesson, but to actually be the main medium used between the teacher and the student.  The following two minute film segment, created by two of my seventh grade students, summarizes my rationale for iPad inclusion versus the use of textbooks.

My kids would love for you to 'click here' to add a 'view' to their video.

Inkling 'brings the world's best interactive learning content to iPad.' Inkling is, in my opinion, a superior company who just signed the following textbook companies: McGraw-Hill, Pearson, and WW Norton (plus many more). Their 'Content Architects' help to develop the best possible relationship a student to 'text' could have through rich pedagogy and unparalleled interactive media: 3D image and diagram rendering, embedded multimedia, and social collaboration capabilities. The following film further explains the revolutionary capabilities Inkling is exploring:

A Brief History:

Growing up, I always wanted to be 'current' when I got older. I looked up to my own parents who seemed to remain relevant when technology began to infuse itself into our world. As a mother and teacher, I still want to remain relevant in the children's life I influence and effect. Looking back five years, I can recall having a flip phone and a television with a large 'back side.' My district didn't have any SMARTBoards and very few had document cameras - most used overhead projectors with transparencies. Now, my classroom has: a SMARTBoard, document camera, 4 ipods, 10 iPads, a flip camera, and many other digital devices (wireless mice, etc). My instructional methodology has changed, my practice has been streamlined, and I'm covering more content while my students are actively engaged and collaborating not only with each other but internationally as well. Please view my post on my vision of tomorrow; I think you'll be inspired. Additionally, if you'd like to peak into our Social Studies Skype session with South Africa, click here)- thanks, Mrs. Brandeberry!

Join My Network:

I'd love to have you as a part of my Personal Learning Network, PLN. Please follow me on Twitter and subscribe to my RSS feeds at my site, Kleinspiration. Also, you can 'like us' on Facebook.

A Technology Give-Away: 

Lastly, this weekend, I'll be hosting a give-away to my 'blog followers' for not 1, not 2, but 3 subscriptions to TechSmith's Camtasia, a screen casting and video editing software - a $299.00 value each! Click here to read more about how to integrate this software into your classroom, and please 'follow' my blog by adding your photo on the right side scroll to be eligible for the give-away. Winners will be asked to create a short post on how they plan to integrate or experiment with the software. Thanks!


Erin Klein
author of Kleinspiration: a technology resource sharing blog
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