Our recent PD session with Jeff Utecht is a direct result of Learning 2.008. A colleague and I came back from Shanghai and decided to shoot for the moon: we recommended that UNIS bring Jeff (and Kim Cofino, too, but not dice!) in for our in-house professional development weekend. Much to my surprise, they said yes and made it happen. Kudos to the admin team for that one!
We then decided to model our PD days after Learning 2.008: lots of hands-on sessions with time built in to reflect and play. While it wasn’t nearly enough time to reflect (seriously, is it ever?), I think the weekend was extremely successful.
I volunteered (was volunteered?) for four sessions. This is my recap and reflection of those four sessions, in four parts.
Session 1: Pimp My Tablet
From day one, teachers have not been very good at personalizing their tablets. A lot of that is due to the severe lock-down that we’re under. But there is so much that can be done to improve each teacher’s workflow. This was a chance for me to show others how I’ve made my tablet use more efficient and to give them an idea of all the settings, toolbars and shortcuts that they can utilize to make life a little easier.
Ultimately, I’m not very happy with how this session went. There is just too much to talk about and the needs/abilities of the audience were very diverse. Put those things together and that’s a tall order in 45 minutes. I did manage to show some how to utilize the customizable toolbar in Office 2007, how to turn on their bookmarks toolbar in IE7, and how to create shortcuts so that they can save directly to our portal in any Office application. Of course, as soon as our tablets get re-imaged all of these changes will disappear for everybody, but I didn’t have the heart to tell them all that.
Photo: pimpmytablet, by-nc-sa. I created this image from an MTV-based image. If they want we to take it down, I will comply.
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