An Educator’s Response: The Screens in Schools Time Editorial

Time.com recently posted this alarming editorial in its Education section:

Screens In Schools Are a $60 Billion Hoax

As an educator and parent, of course this caught my attention.  Should I panic? Hoax? Going with the Wikipedia definition of “deliberately fabricated falsehood made to masquerade as truth,” I was curious as to this thesis and the supporting evidence provided by the author, Dr. Nicholas Kardaras.  At least one editorial challenging the Time piece has emerged and it focuses more on the studies cited regarding educational outcomes.  For me, the editorial seems to have at least four main points which deserve further consideration:
1. Technology now dominates the educational landscape and has greatly changed pedagogy (how teachers teach).
2. Students suffer clinical harm from the use of technology in school.
3. ADHD rates have exploded in the 10 years and that may be in part due to use of digital tools causing hyper-stimulation.
4. Adults (teachers) assume everything should be done on a digital device.

Let’s examine each these four assertions by Dr. Kardaras, and what further information might be needed to substantiate the claims…

The screen revolution has seen pedagogy undergo a seismic shift as technology now dominates the educational landscape.

When did the “screen revolution” begin in schools? After the advent of personal computers and the rise of Apple in the educational market in the 1970s, schools did begin acquire computers for educational use with increasing frequency in the 1980s and 1990s.  It is only within the last 8-10 years that schools have pursued 1:1 environments (ratio devices to students).  A good summary of the landscape of computer use in schools was published by the National Center for Educational Statistics in 2008.  It is only in the last five years tablets emerged in education (by 2011 after the iPad was developed) and provided a means for schools to acquire devices in a more cost-effective way than the previous three decades.  Despite almost thirty-five years of screens in schools, many teachers still struggle to integrate technology into daily instruction.  That is to say, while the availability of technology has become widespread, “seismic shifts” pedagogy may not be as widespread as Dr. Kardaras asserts in this quote.  From practical experience as an educator whose school has only recently move to a 1:1 environment, I can tell you teachers have not scrapped traditional pedagogies when adopting technology in the classroom.  It is only in the last few years that robust technology integration pedagogies have like Dr. Reuben Puentedura’s SAMR model gained traction.

Tech in the classroom not only leads to worse educational outcomes for kids, which I will explain shortly, it can also clinically hurt them.  I’ve worked with over a thousand teens in the past 15 years and have observed that students who have been raised on a high-tech diet not only appear to struggle more with attention and focus, but also seem to suffer from an adolescent malaise that appears to be a direct byproduct of their digital immersion.

Another editorial addresses the first sentence of this quote (and the selective use of research), so I will not do the same in this piece.  Instead, I want to focus on the “clinical hurt” claim.  In this particular case, Dr. Kardaras (Ph.D, LCWS-R) is touted in his Amazon.com bio as “an internationally renowned speaker, one of the country’s foremost addiction experts, the Executive Director of the Dunes in East Hampton NY—one of the world’s top rehabs, and the founder and Executive Director of Hamptons Discovery–a progressive adolescent treatment program. A former Clinical Professor at Stony Brook Medicine, he has also taught neuropsychology at the doctoral-level.”  An Licensed Clinical Social Worker is someone who fulfills the requirements of the insurance law for supervised experience providing psychotherapy-not a medical doctor.  You can find his education credentials at his LinkedIn page.  The Dunes is East Hampton NY is advertised on its website as “a luxury rehab center,” so he is treating a very small and affluent section of our society.  Additionally, he is selling a book, “Glow Kids: How Screen Addiction is Hijacking Our Kids-and How to Break the Trance.”  I admit I have not read his book (or know if there are any peer-reviewed studies or case studies based on his work).  I do know from living with a pediatrician that her experience with thousands of teens over 20 years does not support his hypothesis that teens “seem to suffer from an adolescent malaise that appears to be a direct byproduct of their digital immersion.”  Scientists (my background) would call his statement a hypothesis, and would expect documentation be submitted to professional journals (not for profit)-and be able to duplicate and support his work with other studies or observations.  In this instance it appears a Ph.D therapist claims he has identified a correlation and hypothesized a causal relationship based on a small subset of the population while Time.com and Amazon.com are touting him to be an expert.

ADHD rates have indeed exploded by 50 percent over the past 10 years with the CDC indicating that rates continue to rise by five percent per year. Yet many researchers and neuroscientists believe that this ADHD epidemic is a direct result of children being hyper-stimulated. Using hyper-stimulating digital content to “engage” otherwise distracted students exacerbates the problem that it endeavors to solve. It creates a vicious and addictive ADHD cycle: The more a child is stimulated, the more that child needs to keep getting stimulated in order to hold their attention.

Dr. Kardaras does link to Centers for Disease Conrol (CDC) website with ADHD data for 2003 to 2011.  The data is very interesting when you break it down.  If the hypothesis linked to is a “direct result of being hyper-stimulated” by digital content, then this raises some further questions.  Since computers (screens) have been present in educational settings for almost three decades, why is only their use being attributed to a rise in ADHD in the last ten? The iPad debuted in 2010 and has only made it into widespread school use in the last 3-4 so how would that impact ADHD rates throughout the country-especially if not uniformly deployed? If computer screens were the cause, why would we see rates of diagnosis staying the same or decreasing in many states?  If screens are a major issue, why does the CDC not reference any studies on such in the articles and key findings section of the website?  As for the assertion that “many researchers and neuroscientists believe this ADHD epidemic is a direct result of children being hyperstimulated,” note the link provided takes one to the online article “Electronic Screen Syndrome: An Unrecognized Disorder?” at the PsychologyToday.com website.  The author, Dr. Victoria L. Dunckley, hypotheses that Electronic Screen Syndrome (ESS) is a new emerging disorder.  Note, no current medical diagnosis tool lists this as an actual disorder.  Note she is also selling a book, Reset Your Child’s Brain, and Psychology Today is a for-profit (.com) venture.  If “many researchers and neuroscientists” have peer-reviewed studies to support such assertions, it would be best if Dr. Kardaras could link to something other than commercial sources.

We are projecting our own infatuation with shiny technology, assuming our little digital natives would rather learn using gadgets—while what they crave and need is human contact with flesh-and-blood educators.

Finally, this sweeping generalization by Dr. Kardaras about educators is just untrue.  Good teachers know “they don’t care what you know until they know you care.”  School is a relational “business.” Master teachers build relationships with their students and choose the best tool (technology) for the task-they do not simply assume everything should be done on a device that has a screen or that kids are “digital natives.”  Calculators were not adopted by schools to replace math teachers or so we could quit teaching math.  Similarly, the use of computers (in any form) does not signal the end of teachers or good teaching.

As parents, we all face a brave new world with technologies that were only just emerging when we were children.  I have not doubt that too much screen time can have impacts on sleep, fitness, and focus. But the assertion that the problem is simply an edtech industry induced phenomena (“the hoax”) ignores complex parenting issues (like access and modeling) involved here–issues Dr. Kardaras does not address in his editorial.  I would be curious to hear his thoughts on Alexandra Samuel’s thoughtful blog post on What Kind of Digital Parent Are You?

 

Be Present: Classroom Management in the Digital Age

Providence Day School is now a 1:1 iPad school in grades 4-12.  While we have embarked on a new digital citizenship initiative with our students, we have also invested a great deal of time and effort into creating practical resources for our teachers (and parents).  You can find a link to our (free!) teacher resource at the bottom of this post…

As teachers, we want our students to be fully engaged in the task at hand.  Some argue that the iPad presents unique challenges for classroom management.  Does it? If a student is “off task,” have you really considered why?  Is your problem more technological or psychological?

Practices to help students “be present:”

I. Before class. Plan in advance for transitions and setting clear expectations for use.

*Display Signage.  If there are some rules for iPad use in your classroom, clearly display them. Keep it simple.

*Plan warm ups. Put a prompt on the board for students to start on when they enter your room until all are assembled and you call roll.  How do you get students engaged from the start (a “hook”)?

*Plan “check in” time.  Do you mind if kids check email or messages? If not, give them a “check in” time at the start of class. Put a timer up on the screen.  Make it clear when this time ends.

*Course expectations.  Did you discuss and publish your expectations at the start of the year or semester? Did you discuss what “be present” means in your room? Did you discuss the “myth of multitasking” (see our resource guide chapter 1)?  How much control are you willing to give the kids on setting group norms (may vary by grade)?

II. During class. You first duty as a teacher is supervision. Are you actively supervising students and establishing natural and logical consequences for off task behaviors?  If students are not engaged and escaping into the iPad, what can you change about this lesson or their behavior?

*Airplane Mode, Do Not Disturb, Notifications (off). Technical solutions do not get to the root of the problem (lack of engagement), but there are some for students who get distracted easily by alerts or leave the app to surf the internet. In Settings, you can ask students to…

…turn on Airplane Mode. This will disable wireless access.

…turn on Do Not Disturb mode. This prevent sounds and vibrations from incoming texts, face time, etc… (could be their parents)

…go to Notifications, and turn off “allow notifications for Messages, Facetime, or other bothersome and distracting apps

*Take it and keep moving (punish in private).  If a student is off task or not meeting a class expectation/rule, just walk by and take it without any drama and set it on your desk. Talk with the student after class and/or discipline.

*“Apples up.” Notice the Apple logo on the back of the device. An easy, non-threatening way to say “time to be present” is to say “apples up.”  This means flip the iPad over!

*Proximity. An old teacher trick. Stand near the person off task-make eye contact-don’t say a word.  You can’t teach from your desk.

*Model the behavior you want to see.  Leave YOUR cellphone in airplane mode or in your desk/office.  Do not make calls in class or in the hall between classes.

III. After class.  Take time to process what is going on in your classes. What can you control? What do you need help with?

*Why do you think students were off task? What can you do in terms of lesson design? Does everything revolve around you? Can you design lessons that are more student-centered?

*When to call an Admin? Do you see a trend developing with a certain student regarding the inability to monitor their iPad?  Have you already disciplined the student? If you find yourself repeatedly issuing a consequence to a student, it is time for your to call your backup.

*When to call the counselor? Some signs of iPad addiction can range from deception to missed opportunities.  Are you noticing students who are deceptive of their iPad usage? Are you observing a student who withdraws from social opportunities and demonstrates a clear lack of control with their device?

Bottom line…have a plan A, B and C!

IV. Resources

You can access the PDS Digital Citizenship Resource Guide online (web version) here. The menu is in the upper left hand corner of the home page and Chapter 1 is about “Be Present.”

Web article: How to manage Notifications..on your iPad.

Web article: 5 Best Practices for Managing a 1:1 iPad Classroom

 

2014 iPad Summit Reflections: Pursuing New Literacies

This past week PDS Director of Technology, Matt Scully, and I had the opportunity to participate and present at the EdTechTeacher iPad Summit in Boston.  We were honored to have the chance to present the PD Digital Citizenship Compass and related teacher and parent resources.  You can get a better sense of our process and products in this previous post.  Our presentation slides can be accessed here.

If you have not been to or heard of the iPad Summit, it is a nice mix of vision sessions and workshops. While the title seems to focus on a particular tech tool, the focus is on effective tech integration.  There was a small group of PDS teachers at this conference, which provided valuable ideas and training for them in implementing our “One to World” initiative.

We all had the good fortune of hearing a keynote speech by, Heidi Hayes Jacobs.  She spoke of curriculum development on digital, media, global literacies. Heidi is one of a growing chorus of voices over the last few years calling for new curriculum pieces for our students-curriculum that advances “21st Century Skills” including creativity, collaboration, and communication (online and multi-media).  The message was illustrative of curriculum work that has been ongoing since our last self-study (2009) and will be advanced by our most recent self-study completed this year.

I also had the good fortune to sit on a panel that was discussing iPad integration in middle and high schools.  One of the main topics for discussion was the value of using the iPad as a tool in schools.  Some in the audience wanted to know if the goal was raising test scores.  PDS, like other independent schools, is mission driven and not test driven.  Of course we DO want our students to be prepared and perform well on standard measures of “traditional” skills of critical thinking and problems solving in reading, writing, and mathematics, but we are also driven to pursue literacy in these new areas of emphasis.  At PDS we are leveraging this tool primarily for communication, collaboration, creativity-not raising test scores. 

 

Digital Citizenship-More Resources & Upcoming Presentations

In my last post, I discussed the process and products related to our new digital citizenship initiative at Providence Day School.  In the last month, we have made a new web-based version of our digital citizenship teacher/parent iBook resource guide for non-Apple users.  You can access the website here, and please note each of the chapters on the seven points of the PD Digital Citizenship Compass can be accessed in the upper left corner of the site by clicking “menu.”

Matt Scully (PDS Director of Technology) and I will be presenting on “Creating a Culture of Positive Digital Citizenship” at the Southern Association of Independent Schools Annual Conference in Atlanta on October 20th. We will also present “A Novel Approach to Enculturation of our Digital Natives” at the EdTechTeacher iPad Summit in Boston on November 13th.  Additionally, we will host the Twitter chat #isedchat on the topic of digital citizenship November 13th at 9pm. We hope to see you in person or in the twitterverse!

Digital Citizenship-Process and Products

In my last post, I unveiled a graphic, the PD Digital Citizenship Compass, which is a visual guide for our community members to “navigate” the world wide web.  In this post, I would like to give you some sense of how we arrived at this poster which now adorns the wall in every classroom and common space:

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PDSDigitalCompass (full size pdf)

As our school witnessed the influx of smart phones and moved through two years of piloting 1:1 classes (iPad), we became more and more aware of issues created by near universal web access during and after school hours.  Last year, we engaged our parents in a “town hall” meeting process monthly through a program called Parenting in the Digital Age (created by our Technology Director, Matt Scully).  We found parents eager to learn more about the impact of social media on their children’s digital footprints.  Along the way, we keep notes and explored resources like digitalcitizenship.net .  I was especially impressed by clear definitions of the 9 elements of digital citizenship and the concept of “REPs” presented at the site:

Respect Your Self/Respect Others
Educate Your Self/Connect with Others
Protect Your Self/Protect Others

This lends itself nicely to saying, digital citizenship is about protecting your “REP” online!

A wonderful site, but a meaty list of 9 elements and their definitions seemed too much information for students, teachers, or parents to hold in their heads.  We looked to develop simpler, common language that could be remember as “nuggets of wisdom”-like the sayings your grandparents and parents have passed on to you.

We assembled a group of deans, assistant heads, technology staff, and our librarian to develop this language and a process to vet in within our community.  We developed a list of 7 precepts (pictured on the poster above) and then ran the list by focus groups of students in lower, middle and upper school as well as teachers and parents.  In the end, we developed a tool we hope will help be a catalyst for conversations and lessons on digital citizenship.

Additionally, we developed an iBook format teacher and parent resource guide to supplement the posters.  Teachers received a copy two weeks in advance of the return of students this school year.  As we launch this year’s Parenting in the Digital Age sessions, we will distribute the book to our parent community and offer one session a month for 7 months-one for each point (and chapter in book) on the compass.

As mobile devices become ubiquitous in our schools, we cannot shy away from these topics.  At PDS, we are confronting the issues of digital citizenship head-on and trying to engage our entire community.

*Matt and I will be presenting on this process and product at the 2014 SAIS Annual Conference in Atlanta October 20th.

Digital Citizenship

In my last post, I wrote about the “challenging challenges” independent schools are grappling with in regards to academic programming.  Independent schools have always been mission-driven and are now working through the idea that college prep is not enough.  One of those topics that is a challenging challenge for all schools in the 21st Century is digital citizenship.

With a quick search, you will find no shortage of resources on the topic.  In some cases, governments (Australia) have tackled the task of delivering curriculum and resources.  In other cases, non-profits (namely Common Sense Media) have tackled this task.
As our school transitioned to 1:1 (we prefer and have adopted Alan November’s “One-to-World” proposal) iPad mini tablets in grades 4-12 over the last two years, we have tackled the issues of digital citizenship head on with a new curricular and co-curricular initiative.
According to www.digitalcitizenship.net , digital citizenship can be defined as “the norms of appropriate, responsible behavior with regard to technology use.”  Just because our “digital natives” are often more familiar with digital tools doesn’t mean they know “appropriate and responsible” behaviors.  A large part of the problem, in my mind, is our lack of common or shared expectations.
In order to help students avoid negative consequences of online use, many schools have developed a set of rules (contract) for use-an Acceptable Use Policy (AUP) for students to sign.  While such an approach seems to “cover the bases” in terms of due diligence or legal liability, it puts students in a “gotcha” situation with teachers and administrators.  Essentially, the student promises to obey the rules in said signed document and when caught, will accept the punishment.  Human nature says the student will hide unsanctioned use behaviors and/or lie when caught.
The PD Digital Compass (graphic below-click to enlarge) and related resource guide is meant to take a different approach to the traditional AUP.  These seven precepts were developed by our community to be common language within our community.  Constant use of this language with our students by teachers and parents should help shift culture from one of reactive punishment for infractions to proactive guidance about positive use.

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PDSDigitalCompass (full size pdf)

The seven precepts are:
1. Be present.
2. Nothing is private
3. There is no delete
4. Credit others
5. Manners matter
6. Be real
7. Protect yourself

Notice that this language is not specific to any technology or app on the iPad.  This is by design-we want language that focuses on desired behaviors, not the tech tools. You do not have to be” tech savvy” to give this advice!  As the graphic on your new classroom poster suggests, these precepts are meant to help function as a “moral compass” for our students as they operate in the virtual world.  The goal is not to scare our students, rather, to inform and guide them.
Why? Because we want students who internalize sound advice and smart practices instead of memorizing rules. Enculturation is the process by which an individual learns the traditional content of a culture and assimilates its practices and values. At PDS we have embarked on creating a culture of positive digital citizenship by developing common language and practices for all grades.  Parents, teachers and peers are all agents of this enculturation process.  It is imperative that everyone in our community understands and uses the language on the classroom poster-it cannot just be another decoration on the wall!

In my next post I’ll explain how our technology director, Matt Scully, and I, created a process to get to this poster and the other product-an iBook digital citizenship teacher resource guide.

Notes:

*Article that was our inspiration for our One-to-World program.

*Lesson plan that was our inspiration for our own custom digital compass:

 

When pilots die and programs are born

As September 2013 closes, I am launching my 4th and final iPad pilot class (is it really a pilot after the 1st?) while our school rolls out iPads in grades 4, 6, and 9-with plans to add the remaining grades between 4 and 12 next year.  In May of 2011 I started my first pilot with 6 students 1:1 with the first generation iPad.  That seems like the distant past, but it was just over 2 years ago.  We were just starting to grapple with the idea of the iPad tablet as a “digital backpack” that could replace many traditional physical school tools.  I remember reading a post by Ian Jukes on what iPads can NOT do and writing this rebuttal.  Curious how that Jukes post now seems to have disappeared from the web…

It is so exciting that this time has come.  This year is the launch of what we are calling our “One to World” program, adopting language promoted by Alan November in his recent article, Why School Must Move Beyond One-to-One Computing.  In a nutshell, November argues that many of the schools that have rushed to put devices in the hands of students have unfortunately focused on the tool.

As I am now moving into the Academic Head role, I was intrigued by November’s points about leadership in implementing 1:1 programs:

Leaders must be given the training to:

  • Craft a clear vision of connecting all students to the world’s learning resources.
  • Model the actions and behaviors they wish to see in their schools.
  • Support the design of an ongoing and embedded staff development program that focuses on pedagogy as much as technology.
  • Move in to the role of systems analyst to ensure that digital literacy is aligned with standards.
  • Ensure that technology is seen not as another initiative, but as integral to curriculum.

Leaders also must learn how to support risk- taking teachers and creating cohorts of teachers across disciplines and grades…

Thanks to the vision of our Technology Director, Matt Scully, and the support of our Headmaster, Dr. Glyn Cowlishaw, we have tried to structure our implementation program to include these components:

  • We promote educating worldly-minded students that we are preparing for global citizenship, and the “one to world” language encourages use of the device to connect and collaborate with others around the globe.
  • Our senior leadership team all carry devices and have been working to model use the tool to collaborate and communicate with stakeholders.
  • We have developed internal professional development programs that focus on pedagogy (particularly the SAMR Model), as well has pushing key leaders to attend the best national workshops and conferences.
  • We are developing TK-12 digital literacy curriculum in the context of digital citizenship.  Additionally, we are inviting parents in to “town hall” style meetings on a monthly basis to discuss issues of digital citizenship.
  • We see the tablets as a tool to help continue work on 21st Century Information, Media, and Technology Literacy Skills and not a separate initiative.  Additionally, we are empowering faculty to see the transition as a “both-and” approach, and not an “either-or” approach (see this great article by Milton Chen).
  • We hope to start inter-divisional and inter-disciplinary professional development cohorts in the coming year.

Again, these are exciting times.  What we cannot lose sight of has been expressed so eloquently by Bill Ferriter, that “technology is a tool and not a learning outcome.”  I think his simple, hand-drawn chart should be kept somewhere that a teacher can reflect on it daily:

iPads Abroad Revisited

As I mentioned in my last post, I just returned from leading a travel course in Costa Rica.  Two years ago I was fortunate enough to take six students to Costa Rica for a Tropical Ecology course for the first time.  I was also really fortunate at that time to take six iPad 1 tablets and image them as “digital backpacks” for school work.  This was my first attempt at a paperless classroom.  Seems a bit strange to read my posts from the first trip now.  So much was unknown–it was so exciting to see what was possible.  This time around I knew what was practical.  This time I knew the core apps we needed (glad to provide a list if you want) and much more about workflow.  This time we had a iBooks format digital text and did not have to carry a printed version.

Blogging on iPad2 tablets in Costa Rica

The last time around, I was not aware of the SAMR model of technology integration (good summary of the model here).  I was really just focused on substitution.  As time has passed, I think taking the iPad2 tablets has allowed me to augment and modify (maybe redefine) traditional tasks.  You can check out some of our project work at our class blog and decide for yourself.  While I built the template for the blog, the kids did all the writing in WordPress using pictures they took in country.

iPad2 camera use in Costa Rica rainforest

I think it is interesting to compare the student feedback from the last trip and this trip.  Two years ago, none of the students owned an iPad or had considered using one for school work.  You can read their impressions here.  Compare them with comments from this year’s group below (note it is not all positive).  Here is the prompt: How did the iPads change the way you learned or completed course work? What were the positives and negatives of bringing iPads instead of a traditional notebook? Did they enhance your learning or provide too many sources of distraction? Was it convenient to have all course materials and communication in Charger (Google) Apps? Why or why not? If you have trouble, imagine this course without the iPads-how would it have to be different?

I think everything was done well and in our best interest. I have nothing to complain about.

It was a little hard to do project work on the iPad.

Less heavy in my backpack. Liked how we did quizzes and tests

I think the iPads were great. They provided easy easy access to the textbooks, and made it easy to check the hw and work on projects. It helped my learning because I could literally take it out and go straight to the textbook. I also liked it because I could highlight things and watch videos in the textbook. I liked having all the info in one place and not carrying a bunch of notebooks around. This way, I wasn’t able to misplace or lose anything important. I think not having the quizzes made everything a lot less stressful. Overall, I’m very happy we had the iPads instead of traditional paper and pencil.

They helped in some, but hurt for actually learning – I couldn’t write stuff down. It was helpful for pictures and blogging.

I hated the restrictions, as I previously stated. It was definitely useful to be able to search the textbook though.

Could be an easy distraction, but was very good at consolidating info.

I liked the iPads to consolidate what we learned and have it all in one place, I would rather be able to actually write notes in it rather then take pictures, and its also easier to see your notes while looking at the book with traditional notebooks, I liked the projects, but I would like to have quizzes just to get practice and review

The IPads were super helpful. It was all in one place and all we had to worry about was charging it.

As our school approaches going “1 to global” with a tablet in each student’s hands, I am more confident in my ability to help students use the device for work and to help teachers use apps to transform learning.

Collecting data in the field on iPad2 tablets

What are your experiences? Is there anything the students said that resonate with you?

Conference Reflections: iPad Summit Atlanta 2013

I have been fortunate to attend (and present at) the 2nd EdTechTeacher iPad Summit over the last two days. Much like the first summit in Boston last fall, the EdTechTeacher crew tried hard to create conversations more around the “why” of technology use rather than just the “how.”

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Of course there were workshops where teachers could learn tips on good apps or workflows, but the most of the keynote speakers (in my opinion) dealt with creating the conditions for innovation that are necessary to have quality instruction using the device: Angela Maiers spoke about passion, Greg Kulowiec spoke about defining the problem (before using the tool), Justin Reich spoke about creating a culture for change, and Tom Daccord challenged attendees to define what learning looks like.

One keynote stands out, and that is the “Chicago Crew” (my nickname), the group of talented young educators from the National Teachers Elementary Academy in Chicago (names linked to blogs/class pages): Jennie Magiera (Digital Learning Coordinator), Autumn Laidler (Science teacher), and Anita Orozca (Director of Curriculum/Special Ed). They  once again delivered a fast-paced prezi presentation chocked full of powerful examples of transformational teaching using technology (not just iPads).  While Angela Maiers led an inspiring pep-rally on passion, these ladies modeled passionate teaching-bringing their kids into the room to explain projects with video clip interviews.  As in Boston, they shared the work of Dr. Ruben R. Puentedura, who developed the SAMR model for selecting, using, and evaluating technology in education.  While they showed many examples of projects using the iPad and Apple apps, they always brought us back to the reason for choosing a tool and the metacognitive task the student would engage in when completing the project.

Learn more at their presentation Google site here.

Again, kudos to the EdTechTeacher team for putting practicing educators on the stage to illustrate passion and purpose!

*Here are links to my presentation Google Doc (with hyperlinks to my projects) and my slidedeck.