Saturday, August 4, 2012

Gearing Up For Back to School

It's been quite a summer for me.  I jokingly call it the laziest summer of my life.  The weekend that school let out, I was hospitalized with Guillain-Barre Syndrome and spent the rest of the summer recovering and recouping.  Needless to say, school was the last thing on my mind for most of the summer.

In less than two weeks, I need to be at an inservice day, so it's time to start thinking about school starting.  Get ready for some random thoughts.

I have been given the title of Tech Lead this year, which means that I get a five hours a week to read about technology happenings in the world and try to implement them in our school.  My first job in this role is to lead a round table discussion about our acceptable use policy for technology.  Please feel free to read what we have and make comments on the Google doc.  

If you've been reading this blog, you know that we are an iPad school.  The iPads were used well in 5th and 6th grade, but we found that they were not quite so well received in middle school and high school.  Also, we had a number of 6th graders bringing Kindle Fires and other technology.  For this reason, we are morphing into combination of iPads and BYOD.  Here is an interesting article about how BYOD is working in other schools.  I intend to sit down and read this closely, taking copious notes, before school starts.  I think it will be a good foundation to build our program on.  Your thoughts? How does your school focus on BYOD?

My course load has changed a bit.  I will be teaching Advanced Math for 5th and 6th grades.  You know that I struggled last year to excellently integrate technology into my math curriculum.  I will be using Kid Blog as an online math journal for kids to take notes.  As we get comfortable in this setting, I expect to be able to use this in a flipped classroom model as well as having students use Educreations to put their examples on their blogs.  How do you use Kid Blog?

Question?  Does your school issue email addresses to each student?  What is the benefit of each student having a school-issued email address?  Since we are using Google Drive this year, I am pushing for each student (and teacher) to have a school-issued gmail address.  Can you give me any ammo for my discussions?

Finally, I thought briefly about having no posters on my walls this year... just QR Codes to poster links.  Then, I realized that it's probably not aesthetically pleasing.  Oh well!

Enjoy the last few weeks of freedom.  Thanks for reading and commenting!

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