September Posting

By September 20th, please post the progress on your Action Plan Project. Perhaps you have implemented your project with your class. Perhaps you have a new assignment created for your class. In just a few sentences share your progress. This will technically "end" the Summer Institute course for 2009.

Include your NAME, and a PARAGRAPH about your PROGRESS.

Hi everyone,
We are off to a great start in 2nd grade this year! It has been a bit hectic as we do all of the necessary review of classroom behavior, appropriate uses of materials, etc. Needless to say, not much writing has happened yet, which is what I need my students to do in order to get them started on a photo story project, and later in the year hopefully we'll do some podcasting. I am excited to get this going and should be at that point in a few weeks. I have, however, had two successful trips to the computer lab with my class (my first time ever having to have this responsibility)! Take care! Wendy

Hey Laurel and Everyone! I've been trying to use but mostly thinking about using what I learned this Summer. I've been trying to get my union to use Yammer to communicate more sensitive issues, as there has been a fear that administration has access to our First Class NEA conference, but we haven't switched yet. At another class I took in July, (a class for training mentors to mentor teachers) I created a wiki on wikidot for Vermont Mentors. It was used minimally so far. I tried to get my daughters to play with Alice but they "just weren't that into it!" I've told lots of peeps about Moodle, but no one is interested. Finally, I'm still working on getting approval for me to use a .Mac account and iWeb for my music web page, but I'm being dissuaded from that to google web pages, (like google docs) which is free but totally boring!

oh well! hope your news is better.
good thoughts to all you folks!
Mike Turk

Hi Everyone!
Wow! What a busy start to the school year! We have been working to get reacquainted and reviewing our classroom rules and routines. We are gathering pictures and starting to write for our summer adventure podcasts. The students are very excited to use Photostory to share their summer adventures with their friends and families. We also plan on using Video to share our favorite books later in the year! Have a great school year.
Bridget Hackett

As promised in June, I was going to focus on implementing a Moodle site as a means of communication between my students and I outside of my AP Stats class. When I talked to them about it on the first day of school, they seemed genuinely interested in participating, however, my students have just been given their logins and passwords today, so we haven't had a chance to communicate much! It will eventually replace my website as the primary means for receiving updates, posting HW assignments, a calendar of important events, and links to other websites useful in my class. Another piece of technology that our school (BHS) is trying to getting everyone on board with is SnapGrades, an online grade book that students and parents can access to get up to the minute progress. I find it very user friendly and was able to do any command that my old Excel spreadsheets did, if you get a chance to check it out, do it…
Good luck all,
Marcel Girouard

Hi Classmates-
Marcel and I spent the first two weeks of school trying to get our Moodle server up to speed, and in only 8 days longer than it took Apollo 11 to make it to the moon, it got done. So my calculus students are now all writing an assignment on the site for me to read, and I am EASILY posting their assignments. Life is good. In fact, so good that I have decided to do a Moodle with my 3 geometry classes since all of them have computer access. I predict that Moodle will be the method of choice within 5 years of all teachers since it is so much easier to use than web-pages. On another note, I, too am using Snapgrades now- wow. What a difference- easy to use and simple to set up.

Good luck to you all this year!

David Rome

Hi everyone, Well, I am no longer so afraid of computers. I am planning to do the photo story in October with my advanced German students. I have begun practicing Snapgrades, there is a good option for someone like me, which is to enter all information but not to have it go "live". I will practice and make my mistakes this quarter and "go live" next quarter. I also have begun entering my assignments through google calendar which has a link to my web site (!). So, things are going fine for this technology . I hope you are all well and that the school year started on a positive note . Take Care, Leesa

Hi Everyone,
Things have been going well so far. My kindergarten team presented a new power point with a photo story ( the one I started during class) to our kindergarten parents at their orientation. It turned out nicely. We have added links to our web site and now we can post our monthly newsletters to the web site. We are planning to do photo stories with the kids as well. This summer I was given two computers for my classroom and we'll be using them soon. Small steps. Take care, Marian

Hello everyone,
The administrative staff was very excited to see my pitch to make our newsletters interactive, along with reducing the amount of paper needed to print them each month. The distribution list for parents is taking awhile, but we are getting there. The children are very excited to implement this new element to the student paper. Photostory is another popular activity going on in the classrooms. Faculty and staff did not respond favorably to Moodle. They want to stick with a small page attached to our boring webpage, which we are in the process of reworking. We are also trying to do weekly podcasts… and some vodcasts of smaller current school events. I have to admit, I really haven't used Twitter as much as I thought I would. We are filtered at school, so I can only check things at night… which doesn't have much time in it. Just this week our school pulled together a 5th and 6th grade Technology leadership team to help with some of the various school wide projects that require technological knowledge. It is great seeing the students help not only fellow students, but also some of the teachers. I hope the year goes great for everyone.
Lisa Cacciatore

Hi fellow classmates,
I returned to CVU with every intention of trying to work on my website (as this is something that interests me- to learn and to use), and was greeted with a complete technological overhaul of our entire system. Instead of Groupwise email we are switching to Google everything: calender, email and docs. However, the only way to access it is through Moodle. Our school wants everyone to use Moodle for classes, clubs, advisories, teams, work groups, etc. So, now the only way to access your email and calender is through Moodle. The transition has not been smooth, and, so far, there has been many misunderstandings, as we cannot send group emails out. Instead, we now need to check the forums in Moodle. However, there are 4 forums to sift through with more than 20 posts a day. I am having a hard time seeing how Moodle is going to simplify communication amongst our colleagues when there is suddenly 6 different places to check (moodle, the forums, google, google calender, attendance) and login into. Apparently, they are working on a one login system. It's an interesting and innovative idea, however, I am having a hard time finding the efficiency and the improvements. We'll see.

I suddenly feel like a digital immigrant! However, my students reassure me that they too feel a little lost in the transition.
Hope that you all are doing well, and enjoying the starts to your school year!

Hello ALL!

Basically, I have worked on creating my moodle sites for my 9th grade Global Studies and 11th United States History classes. I have had the 9th graders basically create accounts and work in one forum. However, the 11th graders have participated in many discussion forms and I have posted links and additional resources as well. In the future, I would like to do more on wikis and quizzes. Still working on the "nuts n' bolts" on how to stop having the students get all of the email messages send directly to their students' emails, yet we are working through it. A few bugs to still work out… I figured this would happen. Many BFA colleagues (non Summer Instit. people too) are now working or at least developing a format of moodle. We do have great technological support so I believe Moodle will still be developed over the next few years. Additionally, Mike Campbell has created a moodle site that we are regularly using for our Advisory as well.

- Sara Howard

Greetings. Coming into the year I was excited to get my students rolling with Moodle from teh first week. As always happens, however, the hectic reality of a new school year hit. Thus, I have not yet revealed the moodle I created to my students, however, I continue to update and revise it. Ideally, it will contain all the information, assignments, links, etc. for my classes before the students get involved. With the outstanding tech support we have here, that should not be a problem.

-Keith Carlton

Thanks to Keith, I can now update the wiki. The moodle I started is still a work in progress. I hope to have it running for the second semester at BFA.

Geoff Murray

I have completed my power point on the Israeli-Palestinian Confllct
which I will use in Senior Seminar on Tuesday. I will also attend the Nov.4-6 conference on Technology at Killington.

Larry Trombley
DON'T REMEMBER HOW TO POST? Click on "Edit" at the top of the page. Scroll down to a box where othe
have posted…word process your update and click "save" at the bottom of the page.

Hi folks,
I'm actually taking the year off from teaching in the classroom (Gabriel Ernesto was born on August 16th!), but have continued to think about the lessons learned in the Summer Institute. I have yet to return to Twitter and don't really imagine doing so in the classroom unless all of my students have accounts and are interested in using the resource. I do, however, see myself using podcasts, Photostory and Moodle and will likely use the first two later this year as I plead my case in the peer review process for Spanish certification. Good luck to everyone this year!
—Kari Hoose

My project focused on using Photo Story to create social stories for individuals with Autism. It took a few months to get the program downloaded onto one computer thanks to HowardCenter's IT dept. When I finally got the okay for it and it was up and running, I had a few days left before my resignation. In that time I was able to write instructions for everybody to use the program and create a few sample projects - one I created and the other I had a co-worker create by following the instructions I wrote. All seemed well. Not sure if they're using the program, but they should be! Now I'm at Shelburne Community School where resources are plentiful and we are getting new smartboards, so I am looking forward to playing around with those.
Hope the rest of your summer went well and the school year has started off smoothly.
~Melissa Audette

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