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Showing posts from July, 2013

A Fragrant Candle, and a Pair of Million Dollar Arms

Last week, despite temperatures in the high 90s, Natalie and I decided to reduce our collection of clutter by hosting a garage sale. Saturday morning sales had slowed to a crawl, and we agreed to start packing up the remaining clothes, roller blades, and glassware for donation. That's when an old, rusty, Chevy Suburban pulled up and parked at the end of our driveway. A very large, old man with a pronounced limp walked slowly towards the garage. At one point, the man tripped and I was afraid that he was going to fall face-first into our front yard. The handle on his cane was shiny and smooth from years of use. My wife closed her iPad case and went inside to fill her water bottle and check on our dogs. Likewise, I closed my iPad case and greeted our lone customer of the hour.

"Good morning. Is there anything in particular that you 're looking for today?", I asked.
(Most of the older gentlemen seem to be shopping for hand tools or yard gnomes.)

In a low, weathered, voi…

ISTE 2013 Still Resonating

Almost two months later, the ISTE 2013 Conference still resonates in my mind and in social media.  I have seen some terrific "take-aways" in the blogosphere - here's my perspective on the prevailing themes from our time in San Antonio. First, the statistical breakdown of the conference from ISTE.




Over 13,000 participants74 countries represented by 1,855 international attendees373 Access ISTE participants (our new, one-day virtual conference)Over 4,500 exhibitor personnel499 educational technology companies representedOver 1,200 volunteers, and nearly 1,100 presentersMore than 50,000 tweets using the official #iste13 hashtag making it one of the top trends on Twitter during the conferenceMore than half a million pieces of digital content were created during ISTE 201314,000 downloads and activations of the conference app with 178,000 opens and 18,000 hours of combined use.Here are a few other "take-aways" and related "tweets" that I think are important …

What Does Meaningful Learning Look Like?

Last night, a classroom full of well-educated teachers were discussing their best hopes and worst fears for embarking on a 1:1 learning adventure with their students. As you would expect, many interesting comments and questions were shared among the group. The concern that I shared was that we as educators often get caught up expending a lot of energy, emotion, and time over things that ultimately contribute little or nothing to student learning. Why is meaningful learning important? How can technology best support meaningful learning experiences? What does meaningful learning look like?

I had planned to write a few well-developed paragraphs on this topic, when George Couros appeared in my Reader for the second time today. What's this he's sharing? A graphic by Bill Ferriter (@plugusin) that illustrates what I had intended to explain. This image is so concisely appropriate for this discussion, I think that I will just let it speak for itself. Enjoy.

Related Readings
"Gadg…

Exposing My Inner Tech Minimalist

First off, a sincere thank you to Tony Baldasaro (@baldy7) for helping to explain so eloquently the important educational contrast of "tools and gadgets". As a school Technology Coordinator, the assumption is that I should be swimming neck-deep in instructional gadgets. But allow me a few minutes to expose my inner technology minimalist to you. I have learned through my PLN, when speaking in terms of learning, the size and health of your digital footprint is significantly more important than the size and health of your carbon footprint. Although I contend that both should be measured and monitored. Here comes the elaboration.

The Minimalist Office - In my office at school, I have an office phone and a district issued HP 3115 Netbook. There are no printers, scanners, or additional peripherals of any sort, and frankly, my life would improve without the office phone! I also have my personal iPhone and iPad with me at all times. Oh yea, I have to point out this tiny bit of detail…