Today started off a little behind, that happens sometimes when I have a very challenging 7-year-old boy who…. well it varies from day to day what he does or how he does it but it can delay things at times… 😉 As I was running late I was rushing to school for a site visit from Digital Promise (really looking forward to working with this company), when I arrived the scheduled had been mixed up so I was able to join my boss and the DP coach at another site visit at a local school! So…
What I learned today:
- Everyone makes mistakes, has mix-ups but usually it all works out for the best at the end of the day…
- There are some really amazing things going on fellow/sister schools that I was completely unaware of (I plan to now tap these resources)
- Oklahoma Centennial Mid-High has a YouTube channel where a student-produced web show is shared!
- Technology in OKCPS is in abundance (to the point of excess) at some schools, but they need help/support implementing it. (hopefully where the awesome team I am a member of comes in!)
- I wrote excess above and then as I look back and think, when can we have excess technology?? There cannot be too much just an increased urgency to support it at these schools… (hopefully you get what I am saying here)
- How exciting it is to have people outside the district versed in Ed Tech come into our building (JM) and feel the climate and warmth from our students, staff, admin. I tell everyone it’s like another home and the Bears are my family, but you don’t really understand until you come for a visit! Just ecstatic the DP coach felt it!
- I am helping some teachers…
- Draftback is one of the coolest Chrome extensions I have ever seen, plan to make a screencast about it’s awesomeness!
- It is okay for me to get overly excited about tech and tools and geek out in front of everyone!
- Families with students that receive free lunch at school can get Cox (high-speed internet) for $10 with the Connect To Compete Initiative.
- The Learner First is going to be a great thing for OKCPS, it will take time but using multiple assessment points to draw conclusions about our students being prepared for their future in and outside of school will be well worth the work we are putting in! “One size fits one”, ask me why.
I so did not feel like writing today/tonight, but these moments really help me to process my day… I know I still have tons to learn and plan to do so!!
We got a new puppy over the weekend so adjusting to her has been a change but she is a great new addition! I also decided to add a lil color to my hair with some red underneath and a couple peek-a-boo spots! I am pretty happy with the results. Riley and his team won their last outdoor soccer game Saturday and I started to feel “better” so that is good. Today was a fairly usual gloomy fall morning, lots of drizzle and dark most of the day…. but overall it didn’t turn out to be a bad day….
What I learned today:
- People will appear as helpless or competent as they choose depending on who they are talking to….
- Our students are amazing and intelligent! I interviewed one of our 9th graders today about her experience in her 1:1 classes and her overall opinion of technology. (It was awesome and I look forward to talking to more students)
- Classcraft is making really positive changes in our 7th grade ELA class!! I walked into get a couple shots of students FA working and to check in with and felt how the climate of the classroom has changed… It has been less than 2 weeks and I can see and feel it in the class I observed!
- Digital Promise is pretty awesome! We met with 3 coaches all well versed in education and technology implementation who really illicited some great conversation for some stakeholders in OKCPS and our ETS team.
- I am super lucky to be a part of our OKCPS ETS team!! We truly are a great group of intelligent, passionate educators.
This is Riley (my 7 yr old) and Layla our 7 week old Rottsky!
I’m Back or beginning!
Since creating this site, I have made one post (I was seriously excited about that) but now I am hoping to commit to this, maybe once a week at least (fingers crossed). Well a lot has changed for me in the last few months professionally and it has been amazing, exciting, and taken some brain power! I was a classroom Science teacher at John Marshall (JM) the last 5 years with a focus on middle school kids and I loved it but my passion for technology in my classroom has grown and thus a new position/offer came about and I accepted. I am now an Educational Technology Integration (ETIS) Specialist for Oklahoma City Public Schools and my focus is my home school of John Marshall mid-high serving grades 7-12. My role has changed from serving the students of JM to serving the teachers as an Ed Tech coach specifically focusing on the 1:1 Initiative JM is piloting this year!
The JM 1:1 Initiative
The JM 1:1 initiative began it’s life as a $100,000 donation from Gardner and Tanenbaum, a real estate company who bought the original John Marshall and it’s property to build a new housing community in OKC. As a teacher at JM when we received this donation I was stoked, the goal was to get tech into all our students hands at the 1:1 level asap! We began holding meetings about what to do and how to do it almost immediately after receiving the donation. As the team discussed its options we found out $100,000 was an awesome gift but at the same time not nearly enough for ALL students to have 1:1, so how do we pick and choose who can be involved not wanting to leave anyone out of possible. A few meetings later the plan we are now piloting was created and thus the “Chromebooks in the Classroom Grant” for teachers. Looking at costs and our budget in this first year we were able to purchase 8 Chromebook carts with 30 devices a piece in the carts and now we had to decide what teachers would be participating in this rollout. It was decided that it would be an application process and 8 lucky teachers at JM committed to integrated technology in their classroom at the 1:1 level would receive these carts! The applications went out on July 6th, 2015 and on August 7th we announced 7 of the recipients! Along the way a new position was created in OKCPS for a Tech Coach to be at John Marshall and be integral in implementing these devices, working and coaching these teachers and making this pilot a success.
I am now ETIS…
I interviewed for the position and was chosen as the best candidate to be JM’s tech coach or ETIS! I have never been so excited and scared in my life! I knew what to do as a classroom teacher and actually was awarded teacher of the year 2014-2015 for John Marshall and a top nine finalist for the entire OKCPS district! Which was a great experience and honor for me in only my 5th year as a teacher, thank you to my fellow bears and OKCPS for choosing me. Realizing this, I still knew I wanted to do more with tech and helping my fellow teachers in a greater capacity than I have in the past and was and still am so excited where this new career is going to lead me! In this new position I am now a year-round employee (no summers off) which means I started work on June 16, 2015 and have been super busy since day 1. I began with some overall information/training excited and at the end of June went to ISTE 2015 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania! I have dreamed of going to ISTE since I began using tech in my classroom and it was everything and more! I felt like I was surrounded by everyone who loved ed and tech together and everything that I thoroughly was interested in and wanting to learn about!! (I think I’ll stop here and do a 2015 ISTE reflection sometime soon) Upon coming back to OKC I attended our local Education conference called EngageOK and added a few more tools and ideas to my belt. I worked every weekday this summer trying to plan get things ready for the upcoming year including my office/website, resources all of which I am still working on…. 🙂 The ETS team began the school year by training all New Hires to OKCPS at NTO where I spent a day working with teachers new to the district on how to use their grade book, not the most exciting but definitely important info. I started training w/ our teachers the day before with a mini-training on many of the tools, information and resources that OKCPS and JM have to offer the day before. The teachers reported back to JM on July 29,2015 and it was a welcome back kick off for teachers like none I have seen prior, the principal rolled out the red carpet and made being a teacher at John Marshall the best thing any teacher could want to be!! I took some time that day to introduce myself and give some information about what my new position was and how I could help the teachers, the key point was teacher Ms.G used to try to fix things and now April/Ms. G would no longer be fixing things, my role is to coach, plan and empower our teachers to do amazing things with technology in their classrooms and I wanted them to know that! We had a great convocation with the district the 30th celebrating all staff at OKCPS! Overall I have done a lot, learned a lot, and I am super excited to get to work and plan to update as my learning continues! ( I realize I have so much more share and reflect upon since starting this post, look for more to come)