On February 11 the Charlotte-Mecklenburg School District initiated their 2010 DEPD training initiative by introducing 23 Directors and Specialists to the power of DE streaming. These educators, whose main responsibilities include supporting district classroom teachers with subject specific content, spent the day exploring the vast media library, teacher center and host of other resources available to them. The same group returned the next day to acquaint themselves with DE Science and DE Middle School Science. Meanwhile, across the hall, a second group of CMS educators, this time Reading Specialists and Coaches, were also being shown how DE can help them enrich the classroom experience for CMS students.
And so it began. Over the course of the following two months DEPD trainers Teryl Magee and Patti Duncan visited CMS four times to train selected teachers, coaches and specialists and prepare them to be the guiding force in their district for instructional change.
One “science lead” and one “site lead” per school, for a total of approximately 120 educators spent a total of four days each learning everything that they could about instructional strategies for using educational media to engage students and promote 21st century thinking skills.
The “site leads” trained with Teryl on DE streaming, multimedia presentations, student access and the DE Builders, and Web 2.0 tools. Patti guided three cadres of elementary level teachers and one cadre of middle school through DE Science, DE Science Assessment, student access and the DE Builders, and multimedia presentations. In addition, the reading coaches, directors and specialists all returned for a total of four sessions each to learn the same tools and strategies.
The experience was awesome for both trainee and trainer alike. CMS educators expressed a great deal of excitement about having access to these new tools and ideas for enhancing their curriculum. Teryl and Patti thoroughly enjoyed spending time with their attendees, getting to know them over the course of the two months and the wealth of “southern hospitality” they showed every day.
A foundation has been set in Charlotte-Mecklenburg for sweeping instructional change. These approximately 160 educators will be taking everything that they learned during this time back to their classrooms, their schools and their fellow teachers. The excitement is already spreading. Cadre members are reporting back that there is an increase in the use of DE by the faculty of their schools and that it is already effecting the way many of them teach.
We thank CMS for allowing us to effect such change in their district. With more trainings planned for later in the year we hope to reach even more educators and assist them in creating awesome learning environments across the area. DEPD and CMS… together we are blazing the instructional technology trail!