Closing Keynote from #MACUL13 in 5 Memes

Mar 24, 2013 by

The annual conference for the Michigan Association of Computer Users in Learning (MACUL) came to a close last Friday with a rousing call from Steve Dembo (@teach42). He urged educators and schools to dare to be first; first with new ideas, first with destroying traditional classroom notions, and first with charting new paths to digital learning and collaboration. Somewhere between Steve calling out the “crazies” amongst us as being the ones with the greatest potential for positive change and being urged to avoid policies dictated by fear, I got an idea. I decided to have a bit of fun and “meme-ify” some of the main elements of the closing keynote. I brought up the MemeGenerator site and brought up a few choice image memes. A word of warning, it’s probably not a good idea to use MemeGenerator with your students; while the site attracts some of the funniest users...

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Reflections on MACUL 2012 – Respecting Fear

Mar 12, 2012 by

This year at the annual MACUL Conference there were a number of firsts. We had over 3,900 educators from around the state and the Midwest attend, making it one of the biggest conferences in many years, over 1.2 terabytes of data was transferred from attendees devices to the internet and back, and I was actually able to attend a session in which I able to chat with the featured speaker afterwards over lunch. I’ve always been a fan of the idea of “exploratory learning”. Had I not possessed this undying devotion to working in public schools, I might have sought out a teaching position at a private Montessori school, where I could have helped students nurture their own independence and curiosity in a much less “standardized test craze” environment. As it is, here I sit, in a public school building, excited and humbled that I can work with amazing...

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Video Story Problems 101

Mar 1, 2012 by

Traditional story problems are dull, disconnected, and often don’t offer much opportunity for students to work with material and challenges from the real world that may connect with them in an affective or meaningful way. Video story problems are an attempt to capture curiosity and examples of math and science from the real world, and bring them into the classroom, where students can provide narrative structure around their learning. I’ve been blessed to present this concept for the 2012 K12 Online Conference, the annual MACUL conference in Michigan through the REMC association, and will hopefully be able to continue developing the concept in the months and years to come as school districts tackle integrating more social media and digital literacy into their learning environments in hopes of amplifying student voice. These have been greatĀ opportunities for me to reflect on why I started playing around with the concept of video...

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I’m presenting at NECC08…..sort of!

Jun 26, 2008 by

Yes, yes, I know, the blog has been dormant since school let out. It’s a nasty habit of mine to enter a complete communication blackout for a few days after the school year ends, and then it’s difficult to get back into the swing of things. Thankfully, after a conversation this morning with the executive director of MACUL, I’m really excited to be tele-presenting this Saturday at NECC08 as a part of the day-long pre-NECC ISTE Affiliates meeting. From roughly 1:30 until 2:30 central time, MACUL will have center stage during the affiliates meeting, and several of the leadership wanted to show off how we’ve been using Ning to network with our members, carry on conversations outside of the conference, and share resources throughout the year. Since I’m the defacto Ning-guru in our little PLC of MACUL leadership, I’ve been asked to Skype in during the meeting and show...

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