What is the purpose of this blog?

"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." - Arthur C. Clarke

Friday, March 11, 2011

This is what grass looks like

For those who may have forgotten. Don't despair, Spring is just around the corner...

Like that Pink Floyd song

Is there anybody out there?

Hello? Keith here in Nashville, do you copy? Come in?

Minneapolis, we have a problem...

Q Codes: One of my favorite conference additions

Want to know what's going on in a certain room? Just use your Q Code app reader (free) on your smartphone and it will pull up all the relevant information... Love it

Last day at the conference highlights: MOBILE is the hot topic everywhere

I still need time to collect all the information I've been exposed to at the conference. Been so good I haven't really had that much time to post a lot of stuff, but will put together a best of when I get home... Highlights today:

-Data Collection Using Mobile Technology

-Mobile Technology in the Classroom presentation (more and more we're seeing cell phones, iPads, iTouch being used) We really should have some exceptions for using cell phones in classrooms, for one thing it saves us supplying students with another computer. They already have on in their pocket)

-Cyberbullying Symposium

-Using Technology to Impact Student Motivation (duh)

-Popped in for a few minutes on the "Hiring and Teacher Online Certification Programs"

A very awesome demo of Hyperstudio (nothing like the old program)

Looking forward to the closing keynote titled "The Great Economic Reset of 2011: Mobile"

We need to be thinking mobile mobile mobile and all tangents and implications...

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Neil Seeley says hi from Nashville!

He was at the conference too... Cool

Concentrated on the Assistive Technology Playgound today...

I went to the "Electronic and Assistive Technology Playground" today. There were several cool programs for kids with learning disabilities. Figured you'd appreciate it Elaine. Kurzweil software was of course one of the big contenders, but there were others. I got the contact info for you :-)

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

How's this for a conference title?

"Impediments to Technology Integration: Individual Factors, School-Based Factors, and System-Wide Factors Identified by High-Using Technology Teachers"

Ok, thought it might be interesting but I'm figuring out the longer the title the less interesting the presentation. I mean c'mon, look at some of these:

"Launching a Hybrid Ph.D. in Educational Psychology and Educational Technology: Lessons Learned from Faculty Deliberations, Student Experiences, and Technological Challenges"


Process vs. Product: Rethinking Assessment in Teacher Education from Self Assessment to Teacher Work Samples, Digital Stories to E-portfolios

I mean what the heck?!

Oh well, not all presentations are bad, just couldn't find one this afternoon, although I am impressed by the quantity and variety of teachers here. People really want to know and learn about technology...

Open source tools and technology certification

I must admit I didn't attend this presentation for the certification aspect but more for the "Open Source Tools" they were advertising. Open source is cool because it is free and the fact that programmers out there are constantly working to support and improve these programs. Some of those tools are Audacity for sound editing, GIMP for photo editing, OpenOffice for word processing and Tux Paint which is a kid friendly graphics program. I also found out about free educational software organizations like OFSET, SourceForge and the Open Source Initiative. These are all valuable programs and resources and I definitely suggest taking the time to check them out.

This website was referenced often: http://educationtechnologies.com
Open Source = Free and Awesome... so what are you waiting for?

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Printing a Human Kidney

Yes, you heard that right. A 3D printer that uses living cells to output a transplantable kidney. See the TED talk by clicking here.

Integrating a Live Medical Simulation into A High School Anatomy and Physiology Curriculum: CyberSurgeons

I thought I should mention the CyberSurgeon sessions. During a live simulation students connect with a chief medical officer via videoconferencing to diagnose and treat researchers and patients aboard a research ship stationed in a Brazilian rain forest. Way cool...

"To complete the mission, students become part of the fictional CyberSurgeons remote trauma unit on a mercy ship. The simulated ship is equipped with a high-tech hospital and medical research capabilities, state-of-the-art high-end communications systems, and dedicated satellites to relay information.

The mission is conducted through a web/ videoconference hookup from your classroom to the Challenger Learning Center at the Center for Educational Technologies at Wheeling Jesuit University in Wheeling, WV."

Here is the website for all you science teachers: http://site.cybersurgeons.net

Keynote a smashing success

Yong Zhao gave a very spirited, interesting and funny starting talk to the conference. A very good pick. Much of the talk centered around the prevalence more and more in the US of teaching to take tests and how in Asia (although teaching to the tests was the emphasis) they are actually moving away from testing emphasis. China is increasing its number of hours for electives and PE while we are cutting them out and doing too much standardized testing. My favorite quote "The US is trying to close the testing gap. China is trying to close the thinking gap."

Food for thought... His zhaolearning.com has a plethora of articles and videos and presentation slides from his talks and they are well worth checking out if you are interested in some of his thoughts on current global educational dynamics. And here is a link to what looks to be an excellent book on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Collateral-Damage-High-Stakes-Corrupts-Americas/dp/1891792350

Only at a technology conference...

Would the internet keep going in and out!

Ugh... Doing the best I can. May have to post some updates from my phone...

Whew, made it!

That was too close for comfort! But I'm here... For you!

Waiting on Yong Zhao the keynote speaker. His topic "Students as Global Entrepreneurs: Why, What and How?" Here's a link to his website for now: http://zhaolearning.com

Almost there! Hiding in the bushes...

Running from hillbillies... the things I do to get you guys the latest in technology

Monday, March 7, 2011

Backstage passes

Yeah, these workshops are only for rock stars...

"Today's kids are born digital"

These were the words that the presenter began this afternoon's workshop with. She's right. And we have to adapt. She also pointed out that the most important component to using technology in the classroom is TEACHER PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT.

All I could say was well "duh"... But how do we find more time to train teachers who are already so busy with lesson plans, curriculum maps, benchmarks and on and on? Yes, how? Tell me? I want to know the secret magic formula...

Well one nice thing is that she put a list of classroom items like these on the screen and asked which of our school's could supply them. I was the only to raise my hand in a room of 100 people:

Ceiling mounted wireless access point
Ceiling mounted projector and data drop
Projection screen/ whiteboard
Teacher workstation
VOiP Phone
Data Drop(s)
Printing/ scanning capability

So I guess Minnehaha Academy rocks hardware-wise, but what about that professional development? Going to put out a survey asking you some big tech questions soon so hit me back... Here are some interesting PowerPoint presentations she spoke on: http://mytechtraining.com/2011_Presentations.html

More Web 2.0 Tools from this workshop

The 21st Century Classroom

Was hoping for The 22nd Century Classroom but I guess this will have to do... Details soon...

Nashville Conference Day One - First Workshop notes...

Today's first workshop titled "The Best FREE Web 2.0 Tools and Suggestions for Use in Classroom Learning" highlighted many of the Web 2.0 tools I was already familiar with and just as importantly suggestions for immediate implementation into classroom learning. I could try and sum it all up but I know you just want the goods so here is a link to the presenters website. Useful in the classroom examples.


Taking the long road to the conference