Wednesday, February 29, 2012

On my way to NAISAC12 and edcampIS...

if the snow doesn't stop me. This would be the one storm of the entire winter, on the day I am flying to Seattle for two great conferences, the National Association of Independent Schools Annual Conference (NAISAC12) and the first Independent School edcamp (edcampIS). I'm looking forward to both, and hoping I get there tonight.

The theme of this year's NAISAC12 is "Innovation." That seems to be the buzz word of the year. I really like their sub-title: "imagine, invent, inspire, dream." Those are great verbs and I'm hoping to do all 4 out in Seattle.

Here are some of the sessions I'm excited about:

  • Disruptive Innovations: Lessons Learned from Mobile Learning Devices
  • How to Move Tradional Faculty Members to Innovation Using Their Strengths
  • Re-thinking Professional Development: Inspiring Meaningful Teacher Growth
  • Innovative Schools, Innovative Students
  • You Say Tomato, I say Tomahto: Just What Does Tech-Saavy Mean?
  • Measuring What We Value: 21st Century Assessment Tools

If nothing else the titles are great!

And then I head to the much anticipated (by me) edcampIS, a brain-child of mine last year, that is finally coming to fruition.  It has been amazing to me to organize this conference from 3,000 miles away. It would not be happening if hadn’t been for Ben Lee and The Northwest School’s generous donation of their space, and local orgainzers, Jac de HaanAnthony McGrann and Greg Bamford who have done all of the serious legwork on the ground in Seattle. I can't believe I have never met Jac or Greg in person. I feel like I know them so well!

I can't tell you what sessions I will attend at edcampIS, because they don't exist yet! That is one of the best parts about un-conferences, the spontaneous nature of the experience. Because we post our sessions on the day of the event, we have the opportunity to hear from people who might not have presented or been accepted to present at a typical conference (like me, who's NAISAC proposal was denied).  I'm really looking forward to seeing what unfolds.

I just hope the snow holds off for little while longer!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Digital Ethics - Exploring how kids use Digital Media

I attended an interesting workshop about digital ethics, given by Katie Davis, a youth and digital media scholar based at Harvard Project Zero. I am always searching for digital citizenship resources that acknowledge the positives of student use of social media and don't try to scare the pants off of kids. Katie presented a very interesting perspective and posed some great questions for discussion with students. Her work is part of the Good Work Project, where you can find an extensive unit for use with High School students. I'm hoping to work some of this into my curriculum next year.

I struggle with fitting this kind of instruction into our school day. We don't have a computer class built into our schedule. How are you teaching digital ethics? Do you have any good resources to share?