Passion for Teaching Ignited at the FETC Conference!
This is just a quick post to get myself back in the habit of blogging and to greet anyone who might stumble upon my blog and think it is dead. I spent last week in Orlando at the FETC conference and my mind was blown on a daily basis! I ran from session to session as fast as I could, frantically making notes and gathering information. It will be difficult to focus on mundane tasks this week, because all I want to do is dive into the new skills and concepts I picked up while I was there!
I am trying to sort it all out and focus myself a bit. As I like to tell my high-achieving students: You can do ANYTHING but you can’t do EVERYTHING. With that in mind, here is my list of obsessions, that I will need to whittle down to a manageable list of goals:
- digital portfolios: this is an old one, but now is the time to make it happen. I plan on piloting a project with a handful of graduating seniors this year as a reflective exercise for them. However, I am also interested in using portfolios for assessment tools, now that I have tried it in my summer course.
- video video video: now video editing is so easy even I can do it! Screencast-o-matic lets you make “how-to” videos for students (and colleagues) easily and effectively. Popcornmaker lets you customize video for your own purposes and meograph allows you to “tell a story in four dimensions” by adding pictures, videos, maps and narrations to a timeline. The possibilities for our students are truly limitless!
- getting organized: I am determined to become an Evernote expert and get the most out of this powerful tool.
- Google Tools: like with Evernote, I know just enough to be dangerous. Luckily, one of my students is a big fan, and is doing screen casts about how to use Google tools already.
- authoring iBooks: I’m itching to create a living, breathing textbook for our freshman bio class! Stay tuned for more about this effort in the near future (like in the next two weeks)
- personal learning environments: passion-based learning isn’t just for teachers — it is great for our students as well. As Will Richardson reminds us, our students are already online, searching for information and experts and creating their own curricula — we need to help them do that. What are the best ways to accomplish personalization of student learning environments?
That is it for now — I have a ton of grading to do. Bear with me as I sort through all this in a public forum. Ideas? Questions? Comments? Help? Please participate!