Sunday, September 10, 2006

A Middle School's Approach to Learning and Using Technology

Our middle school principal create a schedule so that almost all the teachers have two breaks during the day. The first break is for the teacher and the second break is scheduled by her. All teachers must attend the second break activities, called CAPS time. Every other Monday, I am teaching technology integration to all teachers. The principal or assistant principal sits in on all meetings to support the instruction. So far we have worked on setting up gradebooks correctly in STI, individual SharePoint websites, and SAS training. Tuesdays through Thursdays are spent with grade level meetings, designing engaging work, parent communication, and more. Because the teachers are having so much professional conversations together, I am seeing that teachers are impacting other teachers thoughts and ideas quicker than at any other school. A few teachers attending this summer's blogging workshop and are beginning to try blogging through our private SharePoint websites, discussion boards. I am getting more requests to help teachers set permissions for their discussion boards, understand exactly how discussion boards can enhance their curriculum, and basically hold their hands. Regular classroom teachers are not the only teachers interested in discussion boards. I worked a week ago with a middle school Special Ed teacher who wanted to use this first discussion board as a Book Study. To model, she will take the students to the computer lab once a week to make sure they understand how to post a reply. I am very interested in following not only her discussion board, but those of others at the middle school. The High School is beginning to become interested in discussion boards also. A Physics teacher and Health Education teacher are begining to create discussions for their students. More to come!

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