News from NECC

For those of you are like me – not lucky enough to be attending NECC in Atlanta – here are some updates from Kristin Hokanson.  She posted the following on her "The Connected Classroom" blog on Saturday.

Kristin also referenced the EduBloggerCon wiki.  Check it out if you have not already stumbled across it in your online travels. 



So I made it to Atlanta…my luggage unfortunately 🙂
I just HAD to get to Edublogger proconference and I am SO GLAD I did.  Will Richardson, Steve Dembo, Jeff Utecht, Chris Craft, almost my entire blogroll in the same room.

I got to attend 2 sessions this afternoon:  Roundtable forums…open discussions…tough topics

Julie Lindsay and Vicki Davis talking about what makes a successful international project…
Chris Lehman examining what we need to change about the "structures" of school 2.0…

Am furiously typing notes and PROMISE to get them up in less time than I last blogged.
Until then… check out the schedule on the wiki to see what you are missing

Boy I have missed this 🙂

What makes an effective international project?


What makes an effective international project?
was the topic of the first session I attended this afternoon at the
EdubloggerCon. I was really excited for this one as I had contact with
both Vicki Davis (who skyped into my PETE& C session this February)
and Julie Lindsay (who commented on our Latin American Wiki

Vicki Davis  is a 10th grade introduction to computer science teacher in rural Westwood GA
Vicki’s school…Curriculum is research / knowledge based –genuine
assessment—she has given up 250 question exams in favor of project
based learning.

Vicki Davis and Julie Lindsay connected through
k-12 Online Conference last year. Vicki ran online teacher wiki
workshop. She talked about having her students read The World is Flat
CQ + EQ > IQ
That’s “Curiosity Quotient” plus “Passion Quotient” is greater than “Intelligent Quotient.”

the conference, Julie emailed Vicki to say “I am on the other side of
this flat world…let’s connect our classrooms and talk about it…” and
that was how it all began. They wanted to make the project wikicentric.
Looked at tools–how they would link classes together, what would be
the best tools. Structured the project so that there was ongoing and
regular communication throughout. Individual and shared
work–assessment would be based on the shared work, but still
They were experiencing the trends and writing about the trends at the same time.

The next step was the Horizon Project
what college education is going to look like in the next 3-5 years. 5
classrooms, 55 students, whole new level of complexity in
communications. ie kids need to respond to emails when they are sent.
They established a project manager to manage the teams.
If we
continue to allow our students to be ethnocentric–thinking that US is
the center of the universe, we need to teach them to collaborate and
build bridges with these students in other areas of the world

students : in their classrooms: know how to tackle problems—won state
literary competitions, the students were achieving new goals—I was
really impressed with how much these students had achieved.
The discussion then moved
What defines an effective international project?
Consistency with both sides
Widen world for rural students
Make administrators aware of trends
Rethink stereotypes & communication: gaming
Must be part of curriculum: cultural awareness… NEED to be aware of it, see world through one another’s eyes

thought it was interesting that Vicki commented that —while classroom
is homogeneous IN the classroom= diverse because of the partners she
has created
The attendees were  a very diverse group and came up with amazing ideas

  • GenYes
  • Have to have hooks…
  • Clearly defined objectives and assessements

if you don’t have discipline in your classroom, you have no business
being involved in a global collaborative project
And this was just session 1….

talked about PROJECT BASED LEARNING and how defined curriculum is
putting a damper on initiatives—how can we work these initiatives into
the existing curriculum.
On a final note…the comment was made…
For a democracy our school system looks very communistic…
Your thoughts?

We teach KIDS not CONTENT


is the philosophy of Science Leadership Academy (SLA) in Philadelphia.
I had the opportunity to hear Chris Lehman speak about what fundamental
changes need to happen in schools based on the trends of web 2.0. In an
open forum, the following points were made:

We finally have the
tools to realize Dewey’s dream=they are available…do we all have them…?
If so, what are the top 2-3 structures that need to change?
These are the words / ideas of the many fantastic minds in the room…These are my notes…thoughts from around the room

Time: Change how we use our time: Streamline paperwork, give teachers
time to adopt new things. Cant do it on top of already packed curriculum
•    Use data differently
o    What we collect
o    The way we collect
o    The way we use

•    Planning has to change:  can’t just start a blog—expectations won’t be met
•    Need more models of that kind of planning. 5 point lesson plan doesn’t fit school2.0

Teacher attitudes not only about the structure of the day, but the
structure of the year: Jump into school year rowing as fast as you can
without the pre-preparation—paid teacher time during summer, end of
year, mid year. ONLINE CAN BE HUGE WITH THIS…C Lehman met with teachers
1 ½ hours in back yard then online in moodle—weekly chats, live talk
then threads etc…When we break down the walls of the schools, need to
think who we can invite in: F Institute Wed pm… every week have time to
meet and plan—be creative with common planning time

•    Vision of Principal:  Help learning
•    CURRICULUM: Spiral Curriculum needs to be ocneected UBD curriculum planning tool
•    GRADING:  Stop using grades and grade books as weapons against children:  learning and starting and stopping
•    Location: physical location?  Does it need to happen in building—What about the layout—want starbucks layout
•    Role of teacher / student:  Break down the wall between students and teachers—parent expectations & student expectation

Start in kindergarten
Squarely on our shoulders teachers being willing to learn from students
Tell the kids that we don’t have all the answers
Starts with vision
Can we create a school that is different for each student—end user experience—if you get out of
1:1 laptop initiative so kids have equity home / school

Part of school 2.0 is we teach KIDS before we teach subjects
How do you evaluate teacher performance?  Admin in every class every day…no evaluation of lesson plans  Goals based assessment
Not using evaluation as weapons
Teacher learning must = student learning
George Lucas site…Sherman oaks elementary school…time is built in every day to review what you learn
with the parents: Schools have been black boxes for years if you enter
a students id # in moodle, you get a list of HW, can see website,
If you make your school transparent, parents will get
involved 63 % of kids on free and reduced lunch—95 % have computer
access…when told parents progress reports are ONLY available online
they came flooding for tech help…
In SLA don’t make
available through tech as they want the teachers to come in the more we
can do when use the tools: we track attendance on line, hw,
The more we can teach….
More we can get the UPPER ADMIN to blog & put themselves out there…

is the WORST consequence of your BEST idea…what will happen if you let
kids blog? what if we don’t disable ichat? You tell me…


Related posts


  1. Mechelle De Craene said:

    Hi Jennifer, Where are you getting that 95% of students have access? Please provide your research citation. Thank you kindly, Mechelle

  2. Jennifer Dorman said:

    Mechelle, the content from this blog posting comes from Kristin Hokenson. Please visit the original site of her posting at It looks to me that the info Kristin posted about those stats are from a round-table discussion at NECC.

Comments are closed.