Stop Staring At My Chest

Oh wait, he’s just checking out my name tag. Maybe he follows me, or maybe I follow him. “Hi I’m Damianne. I know you from twitter. How are you (insert name here).” Does this feel a little bit weird to anyone else? I’m giving myself pep talks and practicing with my friend, but when the moment comes, it still feels quite unnatural. Guess I need more practice in real life …

Constructing Modern Knowledge at ISTE 2010

Constructing Modern Knowledge

Gary’s Intro/Keynote

  • Why do we need to invent digital storytelling? There’s film-making and writing. Digital storytelling is a school invention to fit into our class periods.
  • Having agency over the computer is important but like dancing or singing or sports – anything you want to get good at, you have to build some fluency.
  • I am surprised when adults are surprised that kids do extraordinary things.
  • Craft vs Crap – kids make things that they want to keep and their parents want to keep.
  • Making things is better than being passive but making good things is even better.
  • Software determines what you do and what you do determines what you learn.
  • Give prompts that are not too big … if the prompt is too big, the range of experience that the kids can have is too small.

Resource recommendation

Presentation: Research Without Copying by Elizabeth Allen

  • introduce research and change the end product –> get them to synthesize rather than copy
  • work smarter, not harder

Why kids copy

  • limited reading ability
  • limited vocabulary
  • lack of research skills
  • lack of understanding of assignment
  • lack of motivation
  • a non-stimulating final poduct

Examples of activities to do using Tech4Learning activities

  • associative letter report (do research and use a thesaurus). Students can write sentences to describe why the word is related to the research topic
  • if, but report (compare and contrast using first person vs another person)
  • if report (cause and effect using three facts)
  • geography riddle
  • mystery report (10 facts about a topic presented to class in the form of a game – audience chooses number and audience guesses after each answer)
  • fact or fiction book (answer is behind the question)
  • tell me again (modeled after tell me again book for creating an autobiography)
  • never-ever
  • fortunately-unfortunately
  • attribute report
  • for rent
  • classifieds
  • wanted poster
  • 5 senses poem
  • top 10 (modelled after David Letterman’s top 10)
  • animation

Software Trials

  • Sylvia Martinez – TechYES mini kit coupon
  • Pat from SchoolKit with 3 months subscription to PD21
  • Intoclass for student class work
  • Microworlds EX software

Software demo

  • Frames
  • inspireData
  • Microworlds EX


  • Animation-ish
  • Microworlds EX – made a horse race … need to add cheering, can horse stop when it touches the red line, not when the middle of the horse get to the line?
  • Keep a count for best of 5 or 10 races

Wrap Up and Next Steps Panel at LBC10

Moderated Panel led by Chris Lehmann

Bud Hunt, Katie Morrow, ??, Chris Lehmann, Doug Johnson, Scott ??

Personal Takeaways of the panel

  • share information about PLN
  • important to have time to stop to process – often forget that when we are working with adults
  • Remember to put kids first (Katie Morrow)
  • Beliefs shouldn’t be pie in the sky – should be reflected in practice
  • Policies, not money, are keeping us from making progress – filtering, scare tactics etc. –
  • Personal beliefs may not be supported by our organizations/schools. What do we do then? Give up, be subversive, ??
  • Leadership is getting people to do what they don’t want to do to achieve what they want to achieve. quote from Tom Landry by Doug Johnson
  • We often design policies etc for the bottom third but we should create for the middle third instead (often includes people who need a reason) – Chris Lehmann
  • We can’t change people or make them passionate
  • Tools should support what is happening in the classroom. Don’t push tools but apply them WHEN USEFUL or when they can ADD VALUE
  • Have a conference to talk about how to make schools better, to dream how our schools can be – lots of great models like educon and lbc already exist to follow

Roundtable Discussion 2


  • Gifted kid uses skype to participate into a higher level math class
  • You can add safety measures to skype
  • Use skype to communicate between classrooms
  • Classroom observation tool – iste
  • Mcrel Walkthrough is another option.
  • Don’t be afraid of the journey. Be confident to figure it out.

Not a lot here because my brain is sizzling.

Communicating and Collaboration Practices at LBC10

Teaching and Learning Strand Focus with Doug Johnson

  • It’s as important to understand human beings as it is to understand technology
  • tech has grown in importance in education; tech administration is usually done by non-educator; there is a difference in values, priorities, knowledge amongst stakeholders –> range war
  • conflicts leads to less tech use, less reliable access, lack of cooperation/respect
  • have clear policies, teach, post and inform them
  • advisory committees should have participation from all stakeholders with regular meetings, good communication and defined responsibilities
  • don’t have a meeting just for disseminating information
  • have a formal communications plan – define audience, schedule communications, create a culture of transparency
  • How to build transparency
    • post it online
    • send out a newsletter
    • share the tech budget (e.g. in google docs)
  • Some schools are cutting librarians (from audience)
  • College humour video

See the presentation at