A few months ago I wrote a blog post titled I Want My School TV and was very surprised that it generated so much interest. Educators from around the world sent me questions pertaining to the logistics of making this possibility a reality. Below you will find ways that we tell our school's story through this powerful device........
I would like to thank Becky Keane, one of our outstanding 7th grade Biology teachers, for being the inspiration behind this blog post. At least once a week Becky will call my office and ask me to come on down and visit for a Tweetable moment. As I entered the classroom I could see that the students were collaborating on a learning activity involving Legos. In fact, they were using Lego blocks to represent amino acids to build proteins. What a great moment to capture with my mobile device and tweet out to the entire world from the @BlackRiverMS Twitter handle. Each and every day I am fortunate to encounter many Tweetable moments due to the outstanding faculty and students we have at Black River Middle School in Chester, New Jersey. Over the past few weeks I was able to tweet out innovative learning experiences that infused tools like Google Drive, Blogging, QR Codes, Quizlet, Mobile Device Integration, Socrative, SmartBoards, ThingLink, Online TextBooks, Robotics, Video Curation, and many others.
Tweetable moments are contagious. They provide a sense of pride and a "virtual archive" documenting all of the outstanding things that take place on a daily basis in your school. Not a user of Twitter and worried that you will never be able to see these Tweetable moments? No problem. Many schools provide a link or button on their website that provides access free of charge. Informing stakeholders and promoting student and staff achievements has become so easy with the evolution of Twitter in the school setting. It's imperative in this day in age to "tell your story" and promote the success of all students. What will be your next Tweetable moment?
2013 provided me and others with many opportunities to explore innovative best practices, infuse emerging technology, commence new programs, collaborate with outstanding educators, and continue the global conversation on what's best for kids. It was truly inspirational to see students, colleagues, and other stakeholders immersed in STEM, Coding, Flipped Instruction, Blogging, Expanding PLNs, BYOD, ChromeBooks, Mini iPads, Nooks, EdCamps, Web 2.0 Tools, and sound pedagogical learning experiences. Often these accomplishments were overshadowed by the continued hyperfocus on H.I.B., PARRC, and the new teacher evaluation law. It's nice to know that we have only scratched the surface with many of these tools of the trade.
As we move into 2014, I would like to see everyone, including myself, dig deeper and push the envelope to accomplish what was once thought of as impossible. Here are some examples.....
There is no doubt that the educational landscape in 2014 is very much exciting, yet frustrating. We must stay positive and continue focus on what's right. As Todd Whitaker once told me "focus on what you can control. Always remember it's people, not programs." So take a look at that surface you scratched in 2013 and dig a little deeper in 2014.