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Showing posts from May, 2011

PBL is not Project Oriented Learning

Many people confuse project-based learning with project oriented learning. I like how this High Tech High video explains the difference:

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Main Point

Doing a project at the end of a unit is project oriented learning, and that is not project-based learning.

What is PBL?

Project-Based Learning is authentic learning that is focused on answering an essential question (or driving question).

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Digital Footprints

After reading Kathleen Morris' post about digital footprints and LinkedIN, I thought very carefully about the digital footprints of educators.

What are Digital Footprints?

During my first year of marriage, my front yard was the Pacific Ocean. Everyday I took a walk along the beach and loved feeling the wet sand on my feet. Even though the footprints I left would wash away, I loved looking at the path and trail I left.

Digital footprints are similar because they are the imprints made in the digital world. They are different because they are the permanent mark left in the digital world by individuals.


Why do Digital Footprints matter?

They are the permanent record of your online behaviors, which reflect your attitudes and beliefs. Once digital prints are made online, it's fossilized for the world to see. The world can pay attention now or later because your fossil does not erase -- even if you delete it.



Where do we leave Digital Footprints?

They are left anywhere there is a digital…

Reflection of a Peer Coach Facilitator

I learned so much this year about what it takes to launch and sustain success in peer coaching. We wanted to highlight the "collaboration" needed in successful peer coaching; hence we don't call them peer coaches, but rather "Collaboration Coaches."

From the Beginning

Our district made the decision to tap into teachers who naturally collaborated with colleagues, engaged kids with 21st century thinking, and created student-centered classrooms. The idea was to train them so their strengths became even stronger.

Why Collaboration Coaching

Peer Coaching was sponsored by Microsoft on Microsoft's Partners in Learning Site. The facilitator training by Peer Ed's Shelee King George was superb, and it provided me with a tried and true floor plan for training others.

We took that training and blended it with our District Vision and Plan. The training builds skills to foster the culture of collaboration because there was an expectation for collaborating with peers,…

Innovative Learning in High School

This is the second post in a three part series to highlight some awesomeness, and to ask for others to share or provide more ideas.

Coaching Chronicles

The following Coaching Chronicles was created by our High School Collaboration Coaches as their reflection on the 2010-2011 school year.
Collaboration Coaching at AJHS has allowed us to better use our instructional time and resources to effectively engage and inspire students. Through training sessions and frequent interactions, we have been able to share ideas, receive encouragement, and seek guidance on lesson plans. In looking forward we anticipate creating a stronger support system, increasing student achievement and accountability, and discovering resources to better teach 21st Century skills.

Created by Elizabeth Francois, Sandy Rollefstad, and Jerry Paterson.

What I appreciated was their understanding for collaborating and building professional learning communities. Prezis spread like wildfires in the classrooms because the…

Inspiring Elementary Learners

Our year is wrapping up, and as it does, I'd like to dedicate the next several posts to celebrating some fabulous educators and incredible learning, starting with the AJUSD elementary level.

Celebrating Collaboration

As a reflective piece on our school year, the Elementary Collaboration Coaches worked together to create this "Coaching Chronicles" during our Microsoft Peer Coach Training:


Elementary Collaboration Coaches from Shauna Hamman on Vimeo.

This Vimeo was created by Shauna Hamman, Gina Fraher, Amber Moore, Mary Kate Robertson, and Erica Modzelewski.

Their video captured the essence of our focus to engage kids.

21st Century Research Report

Watching the 5th grade kids at Four Peaks Elementary School collaborate on 21st century state reports reminded me of Reflections of a Techie's post about the importance of digital research to survive in the post K-12 world.

Hamman's 5th grader discussed the quality of sites by looking at the URL to see if it was a .edu or …