Palm Pilots and Global Education

Palm Pilots and Global Education

A few weeks ago I had the pleasure to chat with The Edupreneur Podcast. A quick 30 minute conversation about the Palm Pilot program I rolled out in Saudi Arabia in 2002, Gamification of Education and Global Education. Always a great time talking with...

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COETAIL Registration Open!

COETAIL Registration Open!

It’s that time again as we’re about a month out from another COETAIL Cohort starting. Excited that Ben Sheridan is the lead instructor for this cohort. Ben is currently in Kentucky doing his PhD in Online Learning…could you ask for a better pairing? To get a glimpse of Ben’s thinking in action you can check out our latest COETAILcast where he wastes no time at all getting into whether the “hour of code” movement is the right movement for education. At the writing of this blog post there are about 20 spots left for this cohort. As we start 2016 think about starting a PD journey that time and time again educators have said this is some of the best PD they have ever done. If you need more convincing here are some final projects from COETAILers that just finished up in December and their final projects after 18 months of transformational learning. Mark Mouck: Collaborative Notetaking in 9th Grade English Mark has captured his students talking about collaborative notetaking in class warts and all. I really enjoyed and appreciated the variety of their reasonings for doing (or not doing) notetaking in this way.  His project is both student-centred and student-driven. Annie Hall Paulson: Technology in PE Class What I really love about Annie’s Course 5 project is that despite the challenges, she demonstrates a growth mindset and flexibility. Her students make cute appearances all through the video sharing their learning with us all.  This project will definitely inspire you to try technology in a curriculum area that you may not think you can. Sonya terBorg:  Student Blogs in the Junior School If you are wondering how to blog with students – especially in the Junior School, then you really need to watch Sonya’s Course 5 project! Even with a number of obstacles, often times, beyond her control, Sonya remained flexible and with her growth mindset, was able to work around those challenges.   You’ll hear from both students and teachers and gain some really great tips that apply to anyone working with students/teachers and technology. Colleen McCabe: TourBuilder in Literacy A very student-orientated Course 5 project! You’ll get to hear students talk about what they did in Colleen and Angela’s combined TourBuilder Unit. There’s great modelling of the tool and the task and what’s even cooler is that the students want to continue to learn in this way....

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Learning2 Expand

Learning2 Expand

It’s been an amazing summer here in Seattle. Amazing in the fact that we haven’t had much rain at all and set all kinds of records for temperature and days above 80(F) degrees. As great as this summer has been weather wise, it’s the things going on behind the scenes specifically with Learning2 that excite me the most. Learning2, the little technology conference started in 2007 by four educators and a committee of passionate educators has grown up. The Learning2 Story This summer has been a learning curve for all of us at Learning2 as we worked our way through the paperwork and organization of taking this conference global and turning it into a Not-For Profit (NFP) company. I’m proud to say that Learning2 is officially a 501(c)3 corporation with a mission to: “Innovate social learning globally” With Learning2 becoming it’s own NFP it has given us the opportunity to create a board and hire staff in order to expand. This coming school year we will be running three conferences: That’s a great start for our first year as a NFP and we’re already looking ahead to the 16-17 school year and starting to have conversations with schools in the Middle East and South America. If you haven’t had a chance to attend a Learning2 Conference I highly recommend it. I present at a lot of conferences around the world and still to this day have not come across a conference that puts social learning first and foremost. A conference that makes the presenters (all hand picked by the committee) to push themselves out of their own comfort zone and do Learn2Talks like this and this. The conference schedule includes 3 hour long Extended Sessions as well as time to just talk and be social with others in your grade level or department. It’s a conference that understands that learning happens through social interactions and so the entire conference is created putting those interactions first. Although Learning2 started out as a technology conference it has become a Learning and Innovation conference. We now have strands that have nothing to do with technology, technology is very rarely the focus of any of the learning and instead the focus has shifted to what learning should look like in 2015. What we can do when we have every student connected, and how we need to teach differently to this generation. I hope you can...

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Institutes and Conferences

Institutes and Conferences

As the school year comes to an end….and I know it’s coming to an end because all my teacher friends are busy monitoring, agonizing and stressed out about the testing happening this time of year….and those are the teachers…wonder what the kids feel like? To help take minds off of the endless hours watching kids take tests, I thought I would share PD opportunities that I am directly involved with either in creating, organizing or advising on. Eduro Learning Summer Institutes July 2nd – Eduro Learning Summer Institute in Seattle Hosted at the Bell Harbor International Conference Center, this 1 day institute looks to inspire educators to be creative. Check out this venue! We chose this place because too often we find that educational conference venues are dull and boring and do not spark that innovative, creative feel. Being on the pier on the Seattle waterfront you can not help but feel inspired. Follow Eduro Learning on Twitter and look for promo codes to save some money! July 6-8 – Eduro Learning Wired with Wine Institute A brainchild of mine when my wife and I were wine tasting in Walla Walla a year ago, I just kept thinking that there is no reason why professional development for educators can’t be fun!  This 2+ day institute offering the same strands as the Seattle Institute just allows us to go a whole lot deeper in thinking and creating when we have more time together. Hosted at the historic Marcus Whitman hotel and within walking distance to 70+ tasting rooms this event will be fun on many levels. Check out the schedule and I really hope to see you there! What’s the difference between a conference and an institute?   Learning2 Conferences Registration is now open for the fall Learning2 Conferences. This year Learning2 will be hosted in Manila, Philippines and Jo’Burg, South Africa in the fall and we’ve just announced Milan, Italy a year from now. If you have questions about any of these please contact me or leave a comment...

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Learning @Learning2

Learning @Learning2

There are different ways to measure success. Last week at the first ever Learning2 Africa conference that was held at ICS Addis Ababa, Ethiopia we measured it in a few different ways. 118 of 119 of the participants on the survey said they would recommend the conference to a friend or plan on attending next year. Before we left the conference we had a school step up wanting to host it for 2015 We had inquiries from other schools in Africa to host the conference in 2016. Now there are a lot of ways to measure success and when you get responses like this from the participants from the first ever Ed Tech specific conference on the continent you’re doing something right. It’s crazy to go back through my blog and read about this conference over the years. The things we have tried, the failures, the successes and how a little conference that was suppose to be a one off in 2007 in Shanghai, China has turned into a yearly conference that sells out in a matter of months and is slowly spreading….is well….I pinch myself. What makes this conference so successful? I believe it’s the values of the conference that we try and hold true to every year. Learning is Social: The majority of the money for the conference goes to social gatherings. At the recent Learning2 Africa conference that included taking all 150 of the participants plus committee members and presenters out to a local Ethiopian restaurant for dinner. It means finishing every night with a social event with free flow wine and beer. It means giving space during the conference for people to talk and bounce ideas off each other.  This is also why we run a “cohort” strand through the conference. An hour each day for those that teach the same subject to come together and talk about what they are learning at the conference, share resources from different sessions, and set up a way to connect even after the conference is over.  We know learning is social and so we make social a large part of the conference Learning is Participant driven: Matt Kelsey, one of this year’s Learning2Leaders in Africa, wrote a great blog post about this as he reflected on the conference. Less than half of each day’s learning is driven by the conference timetable. The 3 hour “extended session” where participants...

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Learning 2.014 Africa or Asia

Learning 2.014 Africa or Asia

It’s time for Learning2! There have been a lot of changes and updates however one thing remains the same….our commitment to being different, being social, and participant focuses. Learning2.info We have created a new central website to keep you up-to-date on the latest developments around Learning2 conferences. This website will act as the central area where you can see the latest social networks in action around the hashtag #learning2 as well as where and when the next Learning2 conferences will be taking place. Learning 2.014 Africa We are so excited to be running Learning 2.014 Africa this year. Our first conference expansion outside of Asia and we couldn’t have picked a better place to start than Ethiopia. I think back to the struggles we had running the first Learning 2.0 conference in China in 2007 and how we could have picked a much easier country to start this conference in. The same holds true for our first African conference. We could have started somewhere that is more connected like South Africa or Kenya. However, that just wouldn’t be the Learning 2.0 way! That’s what makes this conference different and amazing. We push ourselves, our participants and technology to its limits. Read More: Transforming Africa I strongly encourage international educators in Africa, Europe and the Middle East to consider putting this on your PD list for next year. It is going to be an amazing conference in an amazing country. Ethiopian Airlines (who I have flown a lot in the past two years) has great service into Addis Ababa on some of the newest planes being built today. If you’re lucky you’ll get to fly on their new Boeing 787 and experience the comfort and future of air travel. Learning 2.014 Africa is running a special promotion for those people that register in the month of May. You will be entered to win either a GeeksPhone or an Kano. GeeksPhone is the first smartphone of it’s kind that will boot in both Android and the new FirefoxOS system. You can’t get this phone in stores yet. Imagine your students opening a box and building their own computer. Plug it into a TV and you’re ready to start gaming, creating and coding! That’s the Kano, a brand new computer developed in the UK. The conference is already about 40% full, so if you are looking to not only explore where Africa and...

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