Next friday (May 20th) our school board is hosting a Minds On Media session for one teacher from every school. We’ve worked with the “makers of” Minds On Media, Brenda Sherry and Peter Skillen in the past to run a small pilot at one high school. The response was overwhelmingly positive, so we’ve decided to do it with a teacher from each school (with permission and wonderful support from Brenda and Peter). I wrote about the small pilot here and here.
My concern with this fridays MoM event is that we are working with one teacher from each school and then sending them back alone. That is always difficult when you don’t necessarily have the support and collaboration when you return. In this instance, we do not have the option to release two teachers from each school because our system is so large and there aren’t enough supply teachers to cover that many releases. Our work around for this is to help support collaboration among Families of Schools. This has been a year-long goal and the hope is to continue developing local support systems.
Back to Minds on Media… in planning for Friday we have created a wiki as a place to store links, resources and share ideas. We have booked a million laptops and projectors. We have put a call out to get as many extension cords and power bars. This is going to be our biggest barrier yet – getting enough power to support the stations and teachers neediing to power up. We are lucky that our big conference room has power drops in the floor at regular intervals. This will help tremendously. We’ve also got our hands on chart paper to put on the walls as projection screens (makeshift solution). The IT department knows about the day and graciously offered to have technicians and technical folk on hand for the first part of each session (we have 2 half-day sessions).
We have chosen stations that look at tools that are universally accessible in our school board. For example, voicehtread, blogging, networking (twitter, evernote, livebinders), pod casting, digital storytelling, WordQ and SMART technologies (focus on the notebook software which is on every computer not the hardware which isn’t available in every classroom) and ABEL/Learning Connections (we have a board-wide ABEL license so every teacher can access ABEL or Learning Connections).
One teacher is creating signs for the stations, we have an opening message that will include the guest wireless password and link to the wiki, we have an exit ticket (google form).
Any suggestions? Have I missed anything?