Perhaps you will make it to Hawaii another time? I am interested in learning more about edtuit and perhaps it is something we could share with educators in Hawaii at the upcoming Workshop. Let me know. I am assisting Steve in the coordinating of this event.
I'm sending out messages to everyone I know right now, and this classroom20 network is no exception. (I've also sent this out on other Ning networks you may be a part of.) My name is Alyshia Olsen; I am a 20 year old college student from Olin College of Engineering. I am a part of a group of 6 Olin College students (we're in Needham, MA, and engineering students) who has taken a year off to work on an education related project. Since you are in the 'connecting content and technology' group, I thought you might be interested! Our project is called AlightLearning, and this is our "short" project description:
Under the assumption that within ten years, the landscape of modern education will have fully integrated what we now define as new classroom media: video, online collaboration, open source curriculum and other web tools, we hope to pioneer a web software tool that acts as a platform for this new media, bringing the power of the web and its tools to students, teachers and parents in a secure, comfortable and innovative environment. Our goal is to have our free software at a pilot middle school by April 15th, 2009, continuing to develop and coordinate with our users to create a product that other schools want to pilot and use at their schools, while allowing individual teachers to implement this tool in their own classroom.
Our project, titled Alight Learning, is currently trying to win an idea competition on Ideablob.com You can find us at http://ideablob.com/3975 . We would love your support in the form of a vote within the next couple days, but more importantly we'd love your feedback and comments. Our description on Ideablob is short, and even the one above hardly gets at many of the issues we would like to take a stab at solving, but at least it's a start.
Feel free to email me back, check out alightlearning.com, anything you like!
I guess it's hard to describe how much time is spend on planning and teaching. I guess a good ratio would be 2:1. The time spent on planning makes the teaching part smoother. Also after each lesson is created and posted on the wiki, it can be adapted, tweeked and used again. Hopefully it will decrease planning time in the future. I also now have an on line tool called curriculumn crafter that allows me to look up grade level content expectations . This has been a huge time saver.
Grading 400 kids is very time consuming-setting up grading rubric's ahead of time helps, but the current need of parents to having 3 week progress reports means may late nights.
As a computer teacher, the other huge drain on my time is the role of tech support and technology helper to fellow teachers. I teach 6-8 classes everyday. I have a 45 minute lunch hour, a planning period on Thursday for 45 minutes and 1 hour of planning time on Friday. (The Thursday planning time is usually taken by a classroom that needs lab time-.)
So I try to use lunch hours and an additional 1 hour 1 1/2 after school to take care of tech support. (Cleaning out temp files, restoring programs, fighting virus, helping with their Excel grading programs, meeting with teachers to coordinate content for instructions) Teachers also drop by on their planning time (during my insructional time) to ask a quick question ect.As for grading, I take all the studentsprojects home on my flash drive. I usually grade between 9:00-11:00 pm each night.
I like to call it a high tech juggling game! So A typical day goes like this: Arrive at school at 7:30 a.m. Make sure I have paper, printer ink ect. Pickup work order from my mail box. Take care of as many work orders as possible before 8:00. 8:00-8:30 I have zer classes with the Junior high kids who do not have scheduled computer classes first sememster. I teach another three 45 classes and then have lunch. I usually each at my desk as teachers like to send students in to take AR tests. (Two days a week I leave the building for lunch so I can have a few kid free moments). After lunch 4 classes. 3:15-4:00 tech support for staff. Drive across town to pick up my own 10 year old from extened care after his school gets out. We gethome around 5:30. I sart dinner, laundry. from 7:00-9:00 I help my son with homework. He is off to bed at 9:00 From 9:00-11:00 I do school work. Update the wiki page. Post any completed student projects, grade, and get organized for the following day!
I know my teaching day is NOt typocal. As a computer teacher I have a unique role. I am both instructor to students, tech support, and the go to person for all thing tech.
As an aside my district still has no teching contract and we have not had a raise in 3 years, The most discouraging part of teaching right now is the fact the district wants us to pay % of our health insurance and we are told we have easy jobs since we only work 6 hours a day and have summers off! I love teaching, love my kids -but their are times that the lack of respect is disheartening!