Saturday, August 29, 2009

Spontaneous Combustion?

Under the threat of closure for Swine Flu, the HS teachers have been anxious about the potential of going to virtual school. In order to prepare, the Principal gave us a PD day last Friday dedicated entirely to Tech Development under the auspices of learning some tools that are useful in a virtual school environment. The teachers were the most willing and active audience you can imagine, and were eager to learn about our homegrown collaboration network (DragonNet) as well as Jing,, VoiceThread, Diigo, Wikis, Podcasting, RSS and some in-house tools.

Watching the teachers get all excited about these tools was such a rush. Everyone was bubbling about what they were learning (what is it about mastering tech tools that is so exhilarating?) and since then, the fire hasn't gone out. This morning, the Math dept spontaneously decided to share some tools (SmartBoard recording, and Jing) with each other in a formal setting, and tomorrow a teacher is holding a workshop to share how to use the ZipScan (a scantron-like device).

I really hope to see this self-directed enthusiasm continue: I think the key to our tech development and movement toward becoming a 1-1 Mac laptop school next year will be home-grown training and sharing, and its great to see it already underway.

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