That's when it started! The planning process started the next day through Google Meet (I'm super thankful for technology now more than ever). We immediately started a Twitter message group with anyone who expressed interest and invited them to join the conversation. Before we knew it, we were getting the ball rolling to start #EdcampRL (Remote Learning) through FlipGrid on 19 topics! It was a lot, but it worked out well for the first go-around (meaning, we will do this again)! You can still access all the grids if you sign up here. You will get the password and the link to our Flipgrid in the Google Form response message.
GOOGᒪE TIᑭs & TᖇIᑕKs ᐯIᗪEOs
I was the moderator on the Google Tips and Tricks grid. In this grid alone, there are 32 responses, 42 replies, 2517 views, and 50.0 hours of shared learning!
Here are a few ideas including videos from Pam Hubler (me), Greg Jung, Jared Johnson, and Alex Milton
Have you ever been to an Edcamp? If you haven't, you must check one out in your area! Yes, it's usually on a Saturday, but it's FREE! Not only is it free, you also get to meet other teachers with a growth mindset just like you! What do you have to lose?
You can find more information here and find an Edcamp in your area here.
Last year, I started using this model so we could add choice to our professional development and really try to encourage teacher leaders. Afterall, you know how enjoyable "mandatory" professional development can be! Yes, we still have to have those sometimes, but we try to mix it up a bit so teachers have some choice to make the day worth while. My favorite part is seeing how much other teachers enjoy learning from each other! I know that's how I was when I was in the classroom and I refuse to forget that! That's also what makes Edcamps so successful, so why not use the same method in our schools? Of course, I did not invent this model of Professional Development, this is just how we fit it into our set schedule.
Creating a Schedule
I start creating a schedule by asking teachers to present on something they would love to share. I may have to encourage some based on something I've seen while walking through classrooms. Once they agree to present, I add them to a Google Sheet (just a list) so I can use it for the schedule as well as a resource list
If you can't travel a lot to present, it's a great way to get some sessions in! When thinking about time, I wouldn't go shorter than 45 minutes per window. Another option I add is a "planning" time so teachers have some flexibility to do anything they need to. Sometimes you just need a minute to grade papers, make a phone call, or just breathe at your desk (and that is okay)!
You'll also notice a Twitter challenge on the right to encourage sharing and just to add some fun. Don't forget your #hashtag! I think I need to add a Goosechase option next time we do this for the competitive teachers! Check it out if you've never seen the app before!
Once I have my template filled out of all the sessions, I create a Google Form with multiple choice options of all the sessions so they can sign up for the ones they want to go to.
I do this especially for the teachers presenting so they know how many teachers to expect. This is also helpful if your administration needs some kind of accountability for teachers. When you make your form, make sure to have it set to recurve a copy of the answers automatically. It keeps you from having to tell them what they signed up for on the day of.
A sign-in sheet is also provided for each session so it can be turned in for PD credit hours. Click the image for a copy of the template!
After the schedule has been made and teachers have signed up, we chat about what the day will look like during a group lunch time. We do this for a couple reasons... It's really hard to get out of the building and back in an hour, and it's a great time for teachers to talk to their coworkers. We have a big building, so our
elementary and middle school teachers don't see each other much. It's an upstairs and downstairs neighborhood feel, so every once in a while we have to have a block party!
1. What is one thing you learned during this session?
2. What is one thing you will try in your class as soon as possible?
3. What is one question you still have?
4. Any additional feedback (praise, constructive criticism to improve the session, etc.)?
I get this form anonymously (to make sure the feedback is constructive), then pass the information along to the presenters . The feedback I've been given has been very positive!
We encourage choice with our students, it only makes sense to give our teachers choice to "model the model". Download the template to try your own PD Choice Board (created in Google Sheets) below and please share how it goes! ~Pam @specialtechie
- Twitter PD! Check out @PD4uandme on Saturday mornings at 8:30-9:00 am EST
I'm an Innovative Learning Coordinator in Berkeley County South Carolina and a Google Certified Trainer.
I have 25 years of experience teaching K-8 special ed., General Ed., and instructional & technology coaching.
Since I enjoy technology more than some, I started this blog for educators who love it too. Thanks for visiting!
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