Friday, April 11, 2014

eLearning days

I am writing this post as a mom and not as my typical edtech self.   The reason?  My kids have their first eLearning day tomrrow and I am really intrigued by the entire idea.   You see, in NE Indiana, we missed an average of 16 days of school to snow.  Schools around had to resort to numerous approaches to make up the missed days.  My school added thirty minutes a day to the rest of the year and we made back a lot of days.  At my kids school, the option was to do an eLearning day.  What does that entail?  From what my reading has shown me and what the district has shared, the kids have to work on their computers or on projects, but do so over the course of a weekend.   The teachers will be offering "office hours" where kids can contact them for assistance.  The district, which is East Noble in Kendallville, has been very proactive about teaching families how this program will work.   There has been a lot of social media, emails, letters and newsletters.  The teachers have also done a lot of work to assure the day is a success.

I am really excited to see how this works.  I would love to encourage my staff to consider doing this as a way of making up time missed.  I heard of several districts in the area that actually had kids prepared for the eLearning day and they did it the day school was cancelled.  It worked well.  I can't wait to see what happens.

My daughter brought her paperwork home a day early so we could look it over and see what we had questions about. There was a lot of neat iPad activities and the corporation assured us nothing would require the Internet.  My son has a few projects to do that are more "science fair" like.   He also has a computer from his classroom that he will have to use to watch flipped videos that were downloaded before the school day ended.

I am super intrigued and excited to see this process at work.  I am sure it is the make-up day of the future, happening NOW!

Friday, April 4, 2014

Confessions of a bad blogger

It's been several weeks since I have actually posted something here on my blog.  I am not sure if anyone has noticed, but, I needed to justify my reasons.   Grant writing.  My school library is in a major need of a renovation to make it clean, fresh and safe.  The only way that is ever going to happen is if we receive funding from outside sources so, that is what has hogged all of my time.  Some grant apps need videos, some need documents, some need images.  It is taking a lot longer than I ever imagined to create applications.  Many of them don't ask for the same thing some of them ask for the obscure.  It has been a challenge to say the least, but, we are hopeful that something will come out of it.

The process has been a long one.  We started a few months back with the Follett Challenge.  We have no chance in winning, districts with thousands of kids will get the votes, not a district with only 245 kids who can access.  But, it got the bug into us and we decided if we could do that one, let's start looking for more.  We have found some leads that could pan out, some are just mere dreams, but, regardless, we are hopeful something will come our way.

In the meantime, I am getting ready to start a Technology Specialist Certification training and I am sure I will leave the program with some amazing tools and tips for the trade.  I should be back into full swing again soon.