Tuesday, September 16, 2008

My New Pride

I have noticed something of late. Not only do I find myself very busy, I have a new, greater sense of pride and excitement in what I do at work. In my role as in-school technician and network administrator, I have spent a number of hours teaching myself, experimenting, and creating. In my experiments and as my wife would say, playing, have taught a number of incredible skills.

I know use these skills to teach both students and staff, and the odd parent or community member, how to use the new internet. Web 2.0 has changed my teaching, changed my routines in life and given me a new perspective on my career.

Recently, I have been very proud of my staff for their involvement in learning and using new Web 2.0 tools along with new technologies in their teaching. I can't wait for the conversations I have with staff about our school content management website, their class blogs, or pictures and videos they want to make.

Each week I host a "Tech Tips" clinic in which staff, both teaching and non, are invited to learn how to use new web 2.0 tools. Last year there was a real focus on our new school website, which happens to be very wiki-like. This year we are pushing for classroom blogging. Once that is set up we will use our weekly meetings to organize, refresh ideas and share.

This is what brings me my new found pride. I would like to share with you some of my staffs greatest accomplishments so far:

1. School website - Nearly all staff maintaining their own site.

2. Staff Class Blogs

Grade 2

Grade 4

Grade 9

Grade 10

CPT 20

3. My classroom wikis.

IP 10


I hope that people will follow my colleagues and our students as they embark on this new learning journey. I am very proud of what we have done so far and look forward to doing so much more, with so many more people, so much more often.


Tuesday, September 2, 2008

It Begins

Wow, the school year has started and a whole new list of challenges are upon us. Here is the run down of my year so far;
1) Network Restrictions, 2) School Website, 3) Student Blogging, 4) Staff Blogging, 5) In-Tech duties, 6) Personal Training, and finally my wish list.

1) This year our IT guys have attempted to make life easier for the network adminsitrators by locking us off of our servers and attempting to fix all problems themselves. So far, I think they have been overwhelmed with requests. Many problems are fixed easily and quickly, while other easy quick fixes are taking forever. I have confidence in the philosophy but many kinks will need to be worked out.

2) Our school website (Drupal) is up and the staff are working ferosously to get their websites updated. I love to see my staff work on their own to make our school website look good. I am proud to have been a part of bringing in this new style of website and I will promote it along with our awesome staff until I am blue in the face.

3) This year I have made a real push for student blogging. By Christmas, we should have grades 1 to 3 all blogging along with a mix of other classes. I find this to be exciting and the prospect of passing the students blogs from one grade to the next even more exiting. An educational career electronic portfolio already started. I am personally blogging with all of my classes, ELA, Information Processing and CPT. I anticipate some of my students blogs to be very interesting.

4) Staff blogging is kind of my lowest priority goal for this year. I had hoped to have staff blogging last year so they could learn before teaching. This year some will teach and learn at the same time. Our school has instituted a weekly PLC and I hope to incorporate blogging in this.

5) With the change in network admin. I have been given the ok to use my free net. admin. time as an In-school Technology Teacher. I have mixed my preps and net. admin. times together to free up one hour every day that I am available to staff and classes for training. I hope to do a lot of one-on-one work with staff as well as get into some classrooms and co-teach. After two days of school my schedule is starting to really fill up. Who needs preps anyway? (I will regret that statement)

6) Personal training. I am hoping to learn as much as I did last year but I am not sure that is possible. With the guidance of Donna Desroche, I hope to continue catching conferences both on-line and not to increase my abilities and interests. I will begin with the K-12 Online conference this October.

7) Finally, my wish list.
  • Smartboards in the school.
  • Laptop program every year.
  • I phone (personal)
  • Macbook (personal)
  • Motorized webcam to stream school sporting events
  • Faster internet
  • Backchatter that is reliable for my class.
  • Flatclassroom projects coming out of my school.
  • and of course "health"