Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Another super day! I was feeling rested and thinking that I had a couple of areas on which I yet wanted to focus. I am thinking that there are specific teachers, subjects, and students that would be perfect fits for so many of these Web 2.0 tools that I've been exploring. I can see quality learning experiences for students, but not before it happens for the teachers. I feel much more of an obligation now to wade through much of this so that I can offer concrete suggestions to staff. RSS feeds and Social bookmarking was my mountain today. I think I might have ascended about half way. I looked at a number of articles on the feeds and then went back to the Will Richardson book, Blogs, Wikis, Podcast and Other Powerful Webcasts to get a clearer picture of them. I thought that I understood what they're about and I really do and really want them to be something that I use so that I can share with staff and , eventually, with students. I set up RSS feeds from Google Reader, Furl and Bloglines. I intend to use Pageflakes also and then determine which of those I think does more of what I want. Unitl now I have utilized the Davis Drive Middle School Media Center Web Page as the location for users to access weblinks. I can see the RSS feeds as an adjunct to me better utilizing the web page and possibly the social bookmark site as taking the place of some of those weblinks that I locate for research projects. I am still not convinced that is my first choice, but I haven't completely ruled it out.

I think we all felt our own pressure to make even more of our last full day here. We pretty much worked non-stop today---we had been asked to meet at 4:00 this afternoon to give a presentation to the other group and the directors of the Teacher Scholar Program. We'd been told it was relaxed and that's what we needed to hear. As we got closer to that hour, our perfectionistic tendencies were rising to the top and everyone (but me) finalized their contributions to our learningteammiddle wiki for our grand finale. Debbie and Kim did a terrific job at faciltating and introducing our presentation. Everyone else jumped right in to share their contributions/specializations. We were well received by our audience and came away feeling satisfied and downright proud of ourselves!

The group of teachers from Mooresville Graded School District we re the other Teacher Scholar group and they shared their very thorough curriculum linked technology integration plan that they developed to take back to their staff. They are the beneficiaries of a $250,000 grant from Lowe's Charitable and Educational Foundation for their 21st Century Digital Conversion, in which all of their students within the next two years will receive a laptop compu ter! Their work this week certainly paved the way for their teachers being able to easily incorporate this technology windfall!

Tomorrow we head home after finalizing our project with the Teacher Scholar Program. The ride back will likely be filled with much reflection and discussion on the possibilities we'll be taking back with us.

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