My PETE&C day started at 4:30 Am. The goal was to get to Hershey before 7 am so I could take part in the Pete-Lets. This was held each morning for presenters to get 2 min to sell their sessions. They were only allowing the first 20 presenters who showed up to present. I hit some traffic and got to the parking lot at 6:52. I ran into the building and found the room. I made it. 😉 the session started with a dance session led by PAECT Regional director Jason Heiser and PAECT President Mary Beth Hengelbrok. I must say Jason does a mean gangnam style. I did my short commercial and was pleased to find that Jason had changed his plans and was staying for our session The Creative Flip.
Now that my day was started I got some of that fantastic hot chocolate and the real whipped cream (one of the highlights of the trip ). I got my registration packet and was off to my first session. It was called Proven Practices for Quality Online Teaching. it was given by Michele Gill (VP of Performance Leaning Systems) and Christopher Harrington (Quakertown Community School District) . They emphasized that creating a successful online or blended learning program requires strong buy-in from teachers and a strong training program. The Performance Learning Systems has three phases: Survival Skills, Sharpening Skills, and Train the Trainer. They have found this very effective. One of the best take aways from the session had to be the discussion of how assessment is done online. In particular the dangers of using online quizzes to assess. Since it is so easy to cheat at such things assessment should be more performance based. One of the great tools they suggested was WeVideo. It is free to sign up and for the upgrade for teachers the price is minimal per year. It is a collaborative online video editing service. (Expect another post on that by itself in the future). They also suggested students could make graphic organizers and they could answer visual questions of the day. The emphasis was on creative responses and higher levels of Bloom.
My team and I spent some time getting ready to present our session The Creative Flip. I am so glad we did as we had some issues getting iPads and AirServer to play well with Windows 8 and PowerPoint 2013. With some work we got it working. Our session went very well except for a few technological hiccups that we had planed backups for in our practice session. One of the things I find difficult as a presenter is that the session moves so fast that I don’t really have time to assess how well it is going. Afterwards it is hard to even remember exactly what you said and how it went over. I believe in the future I need to start video taping these.
I ended my day with Lunch and an unexpected visit with the Discovery Education Team and late entry to the keynote by Randy Wilhelm, CEO of Knovation, “Igniting the Hope of Knowing.” The whole day was a fantastic experience and I hope to be able to do it again next year, maybe even for the whole conference.
P.S. A big thank you to Discovery for the Sweatshirt I am sporting in the picture.
Resources provided by Proven Practices for Quality Online Teaching
blogs to read
•http://blog.mrmeyer.com/ (dig deeply into this blog, there is much to find!)
•http://shawncornally.com/wordpress/ (specifically calculus, a comedy, but there is just soooo much great stuff here, it’s worth digging)