At a recent county meeting I went to, I was shown a document that was being used in another state as a matrix to analyze technology integration in their lesson plans. I’m not sure if that particular document is the one I want to use next year, but I definitely see some room for improvement for us in this area. I want to talk about the NETS standards and other important documents in edtech that can help us understand what we’re supposed to be doing before we are doing it. I can only hope that teachers are willing to participate and that we can use some of these documents to make a lasting change around here.
That’s what the early edition of today’s #edchat was on. Deep, right? I heard a lot of great ideas from people about ways they had made changes around this in their schools and ways I might do the same in mine.
I think one way for me to improve for the rest of this year (and really, next school year), is in reaching out to teachers and not waiting for them to come to me. With all the other demands on teachers’ time, I didn’t want to get on their bad side by requiring them to give up their already-limited free time for me. But now, I’m not so sure. As long as what I’ve got to offer is meaningful, worthwhile, educational, and exciting (no biggie, right?) maybe it’s worth it to schedule mandatory tech PD stuff. Clearly, the choose-your-own philsophy isn’t working, as evidenced by my recent Twitter class, where I bought three-dozen locally-handmade doughnuts with my own money and had six people show up.
Something to think about.
As I mentioned yesterday, I am very interested in finding ways to increase my marketability and grow, both personally and professionally. Along with researching grad schools, I’m also looking at new skills I can attain that are more universal.
One area I wouldn’t mind focusing on are professional certifications in technology. I looked yesterday at some Microsoft Learning courses and might be interested in some of those. There are some that play into what I do now, like the Microsoft Office Specialist certification, that would be fairly easy for me to get. I don’t think Microsoft or Microsoft Office are going anywhere anytime soon, so I feel pretty safe that anything I do with them will be valid for a long time.
But I also am interested in things like HTML, which are truly universal and independent of platform or computer. That makes it hard to find recognized, acceptable certification agencies, since pretty much anyone can offer whatever they want, but finding a reputable place and learning some web programming-type stuff might be a good move for me too. I randomly thought about looking at the tech school next door for summer classes–we’ll see.
Hopefully soon I’ll be able to sit down and figure out what the right track forward is for me.
I want to go to graduate school so bad it hurts. Here’s what I want:
- Must be 100% online unless extremely local (and even then, must be 95% online).
- Must offer a masters’ degree in instructional technology.
- Must be a versatile degree which will work for K-12 as well as the private sector (If I’m paying for it, I want something versatile).
- Highly prefer programs that don’t require applicants to take the GRE. The GRE is not an effective measure of my ability to learn. Plus, I hate math and the GRE has some of the craziest math questions I’ve ever seen. I’m worried I wouldn’t pass.
- I prefer programs that have some sort of simple-ish project at the end, rather than having to write a big fat thesis. It’s not about writing. I love to write! It’s about the time commitment that would be involved in putting together something that massive while still working during the day.
I think that’s pretty much it in terms of academic requirements. And I’ve found a small number of degrees that appear at first glance to meet most or my requirements. But it turns out a masters’ degree is so expensive! The worst part of this is figuring out how I am going to pay for this whole ordeal. Especially since I continue to owe plenty for my bachelor’s degree and it will be a long, long time before I get out from under that.
But at least there are choices out there–that’s something, I suppose.
As I’m sure everyone else has heard by now, Whitney Houston has died. Nobody knows how, and it might well be natural causes, but at 48 years old and with such a well-documented history of drug abuse, it’s suspicious to say the least.
Depending on how the news plays out tonight and tomorrow, I wonder if there’s any way this can be used as a “teachable moment” with our students. Anyone got any ideas on what they might do?
Yesterday, I spent the entire day at the county office, previewing (among other things) the first components of a new county-wide system, scheduled to start coming out to schools by the fall. I have to say, I am pleasantly surprised and encouraged by what I have seen! It looks great and has almost all of the things that teachers have been asking for. Furthermore, the attitude is right on this one, and it was described as “a teaching and learning initiative, not a technology initiative.” I left feeling highly motivated and excited–I can’t wait to get my hands on it this summer!
P.S.: this is my first post from my phone’s WordPress app…we shall see!