Posts tagged classroom tools

Summer Time is Learning Time for Teachers

Two Summer Institutes are planned for the Tampa and Detroit areas this year.  Dunedin Highland Middle School located in beautiful Dunedin, Florida, is the host site for our four-day event, July 23rd to 26th. The prestigious Cranbrook School in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan is the site for the Summer Institute, held August 23rd and 24th. Hundreds of teachers are expected to gather and work in Professional Learning Communities and create engaging strategies that support higher-order thinking skills for their students. And the cool thing is they will be learning how to use the latest in classroom technology at the same time!

Registration is currently open for both events.  To learn more about the Summer Institutes, select one of these links:

Summer Series Events

This year’s Summer Series event locations have doubled!  There are four areas where you can learn more about integrating technology into your teaching practice during three-hour sessions.  Topics will include:  SMART Notebook Software,  SMART Response software, iPad apps for education and creating digital content for your classroom.  Select the links below to see what you can learn this summer!

Websites for a Digital Makeover

Join Our Webinar (Feb. 28): Enhance Your Presentations With the Right Tablet Apps
During our Feb. 28 webinar (1 p.m. EST), NEC Display tackles the latest tablet apps and software, and demonstrates the ways that display technologies are changing how we communicate with employees, students and visitors. Click here to register today! »

I had the privilege of seeing Cheryl Conley’s sessions on the 21st Century Teacher at FETC in Orlando a few weeks ago.  Cheryl is a former Florida Teacher of the Year, and I can see why. She was so engaging and enthusiastic!  Cheryl shared examples of technology-integrated lessons that she has used with her 4th graders that really bring learning to life. The following are a few examples of websites that Cheryl shared to help teachers start or continue their Digital Makeover.— This website organizes iPad apps by subject and grade level, allowing you to search for curriculum-related learning apps.  Appitic is a collection of more than 1300 apps organized by Apple Distinguished Educators.  If you have iPod carts or access to even one iPad that you can use in your classroom, this site would be a great way to start organizing your content.  — Edudemic is an excellent resource for all things education technology related that teachers can really use. This website will bring teachers up to speed with resources such as: “The 20 Best Apps for Special Education” and “5 Apps for Organizing School Work.”  If you just don’t know where to start when it comes to integrating technology into your teaching practice, Edudemic is a great starting point. — Create speaking avatars and use them as an effective teaching and learning tool. Voki is a free service and also has a database of lesson plans, tutorials on how and why to use avatars in the classroom,  a teachers corner, a “Voki” classroom to create a manage students account, and much more. I visualize this as a opportunity for your students to have ownership over a project by managing a “Voki” project for your classroom. There is so much out there for teachers to learn, let’s flip the classroom and allow the students to teach us a thing or two!  — Textbook companies such as McGraw Hill are making the transition from paper and pencil to digital through a variety of resources, such as this website that features mobile apps for learning. If your school has invested in iPod carts, this would also be an excellent resource.

In this information age there is so much out there that it is difficult to know where to start when it comes to using technology for student achievement.  Choose one really helpful website as a reference point that includes resources you can blend with your existing technology tools.  Have your students be active participants in project-based learning that incorporates your favorite websites or apps. I hope the above sites peak your interest and give you a few creative ideas!

Summer Institute for Technology Integration Week in Review

The Summer Institute for Technology Integration (SiTi), sponsored by AVI-SPL and hosted by Florida Southern College in Lakeland July 11-15, welcomed eighty educators from as far away as Taiwan to this residential-based immersive professional development experience. Teachers spent the week creating engaging lessons using SMART Notebook Software, digital cameras, document cameras, and SMART Response Software.

The motivational Keynote address, led by Dr. Jennifer Brown King, professor and author of TechXtraordinary Integration inspired and prepared the audience to be HOT teachers; that’s right, as Dr. King stated, “You will all be smokin’ HOT teachers by end of the week!” She was referring to Bloom’s Taxonomy, which the SiTi instructors used to move attendees from teaching their students Lower Order Thinking Skills (LOTS) to Higher Order Thinking Skills (HOTS) through instructional technology best practices. By the end of the week, there were eighty smokin’ HOT teachers equipped with the knowledge and skills to implement technology effectively in their classrooms!

Sessions were led by eight extraordinary teacher teams (pictured below) from Hillsborough County Schools, who spent not just five days, but the evenings coaching and encouraging their students.

Florida Southern College; AVI-SPL; Summer Institute for Technology Integration; Professional Development for Teachers
L-R: Jenny Simmonds, Ora Tanner, Rachel Motomal, Kelly Derushia, Danny Lott (FSC), Dr. Jennifer Brown King (FSC), Michelle Clinton, Tina Hancock, Lisa Pennington, Lee Collier

Click here to watch an Animoto video of the SiTi week! >>

Florida Southern College staff generously provided beautiful accommodations at Nicholas Hall, with breathtaking views of Lake Hollingsworth. Attendees were also treated to delicious meals and scrumptious desserts in the dining hall and during session breaks. (No dieting that week!)

FSC Tech Buddies, students of Dr. King’s Education Courses, spent the week assisting attendees throughout the day and late into the evening with creating their final Showcase Project which the attendees presented on Friday morning. The closing ceremony on Friday featured Showcase Presentations where a few lucky attendees took home some cool new technology for their classrooms!

The Summer Institute for Technology Integration theme of partnership, friendship, community, education resonated throughout the week as attendees, coaches and tech buddies formed bonds through living and working together that will last long after the event ended.

We are looking forward to a continued partnership with Dr. Jennifer Brown King and Florida Southern College, and to take the Institute “on the road” to replicate in other areas of Florida and beyond!

For more information about Professional Development from AVI-SPL, click here >>

Meet Patti Palancia, AVI-SPL’s Education Consultant

Recently, AVI-SPL has had the pleasure of welcoming Patti Palancia to its team as education consultant. Palancia brings considerable experience to this role; prior to joining the company, she worked five years for SMART, the leading provider of interactive whiteboards and related technology solutions for the classroom.Patti Palancia

Palancia’s extensive background in the field of education includes 13 years as a teacher in Ohio and Florida. She’s also been a clinical educator, teaching classroom management skills to students from St. Petersburg College and the University of South Florida. In the near future, she plans to extend her impressive credentials even further by working toward a master’s degree in instructional design and technology.

During this discussion, Palancia talks about her work here at AVI-SPL and how she helps educators and school administrators add the latest technology to their classrooms to enhance learning objectives.

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Magic Planet Takes Visuals to a Global Level

Teachers and business execs alike have reason to be excited about the Magic Planet video globe. One look at the Magic Planet and its spherical digital screen, and you’ll understand why it’s so unique, capitivating and engaging.

When used in the classroom or a museum, Magic Planet makes scientific subjects — including the biosphere, weather patterns, history and more — come alive. Take it to the boardroom or tradeshow, and your presentations will come alive, offering the audience a 360-degree line of sight. It can also be integrated with third-paty applications so you can promote retail merchandise with this next-generation version of digital signage. 

Magic Planets range in size from 16 inches to several feet and come with a variety of software options, including ready-made lessons plans, as well as the ability to run interactive simulations, stream live media and play games in real time.

See more videos of the Magic Planet in action