Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Sylvia Martinez: Professional Development 30 Years Later

Thirty years ago ISTE convened NECC with the same questions. What can we do to get people to use We need professinal development to help them get there.
What is the wall where teachers learn and where teacher teach? In workshops, in books, webinars, and yet what actually transfer ovet the wall into the classroom?
Community of Practice Research
The classrom is not a community of practice - how can we change that?
Tech Support
It is not just fixing hardware (all of it email, caeras, computers, and more) Fixing takes away from the time needed to learn. If you are fixing a problem, it is too late. Tech departments are now trying to mix tech support and tech integrators. Tech support is based on controlling and managing the hardware. Tech integrators are asking people to be resk takers, innovators, users of new programs and hardware. If they are working then there should probably be an upswing in the need for tech support.
Models of Professional Development
Using students as practitioners of technology. Teach students how to provide technology support for teachers. Why? Situated in their own classroom, models collaborative learning, allows students to play an important role provides support for technology use outside of formal professional development. Look at GenYES as the example.
The assumption that there is not enough is incorrect.
National Center for educational statistics 2000: Teachers said ther they were going
Stanford research Institiute 2002: 80% failure rate- teachers leaving professional development were leaving unable to implement the learning in their classrooms.
It is not lack of professional development but that the professional development is not working.

Professional Development time internationally happens in the classrooms hours per day. They have a PLN ready to access within their schol.
Online professional development Schlager and Fusco reported that participants were more focused in discussing with their global friends, yet it was not going back to practice in the classroom.
Seymour Pappert - Teachers teach the way they were taught until they SEE something different. Tachers need the kind of activity where they are learning at the same time as the kids and with the kids. The culture of going away to learn something until you are perfect at it and then you can use it in the classrom
Classroom-embedded Professional Development
We need professional developmen in our own classroom, modeled in other classrooms, peer-mentoring/coaching, reverse-mentoring, with experts all around.
It requres a Paradigm Shift- We have to talk about professional development to make it open, celebrate mistakes, collaborative, just-in-time, practice, process, constuctivist, inside the classroom.
Looking at the podcast video of CJ- He shows you all of the skills and the know how of how-to do a podcast. If you have a CJ (and everyone does) then why aren't we using them to teach and help teachers learn to use technology in their teaching.

A club of students headed by a lead teacher. The students are paired with teachers to create specific classroom lessons. The student and teachers plan, design and create. Students also learn collaborative skills to help them interact with their teachers. The research showed that 80-90% of the teachers who worked with the GenYES students said they would change the way they teach in the future. Who can say no to kids wanting to help out?
Teachers helping teachers get things done in their classroom. We don't all need to know everything. We can get help from each other. Develop experts in specific areas who will help others.
Constructivist Professional Development
Walking the walk in your professional development is key. It takes time. You can't magic wand this into your classroom or district. Change desn't come with a checklist, it comes with hard work.
Authentic involvement
Real benefits for students
Adult guidance
Challenge and growth
Cycle of learner empowerment Begins with Empowerment- doing something authentic, and then follows with engagement, independence, responsibility, and trust.

Bob Kolvoord on Google Spatial Technologies

Ever notice how people sit in rooms? We have the west coast (with outlets) and the east coast- a little more populated with quite a space/ocean in between.

The Case for Spatial Thinking
Recent national academy report learning to think spatially identified the need to help our students with this skill.
Spatial thinking is an ability to visualize and interpret location, distance, direction relationships, movement and change over space. (Sinton, 2009) We think in space all the time in our daily activities- where we are going, want to put things, find our way. We also think about space (science and geography) plate tectonics, cultural regions. We think with space (representations) periodic table of the elements
Issues and Areas
Key issues our students are facing- environmental issues- global climate change, global competition and the economy, transportation, sustainability , terrorism, nuclear war, water use and almost all of them rely on spatial geography. The two areas we rely on to teach those skills are earth and space science and geography that have minimal emphasis.
An Important Distinction
The ability to Visualize - show you stuff and Analyze- critically thinking about the data

Google Earth
You can go to a particular place and choose your view- bird's eye view or street view. Somewhere the ages of 10 and 12 students will develop the ability to conceptualize the bird's eye view. You can also stream real time data such as earthquake activity. Great way to visualize the patterns of earthquakes. But is doesn't allow you the ability to analyze them- count the number, compare the intensity. Offers the opportunity to go into the past, taking historical documents and laying them in their place. Allows you to make your own maps and trips. More and more things in the future are going to be location based with the ability to use GPS and the ability to find you and beam you information.
GIS- Geographic Information Systems
AEJEE - entry point into the GIS world- available and free for the Mac and PC with a growing catalog of activities.
ArcGIS is the professional tool which facilitates in-depth work available on the PC only. VA has a state-wide license.

Example - Elementary level activity
It is about making maps to ask and answer questions.
GIS is where the world of maps meets the world of databases. You can select a field to use to display on the map- such as the median age of each state population. Then ask a question- which states are younger? A hypothesis is formulated and then the map is displayed. According to the data- Utah is the one state comparatively with the lowest median age. Then we can ask further- why is that happening? You can put this software in front of fourth graders and they can make it hum. The challenge is getting them to think about what it means.
Example - Creating Maps with Lines of Longitude and Latitude
They can construct a map themselves putting the lines on the map themselves. The students can query the map- which cities have longitides greater than 0? Using spatial displays to think about space.
Example: Explore data about watersheds
GIS is about making layered maps. You can change the order of layers- turn them on and off starting with simpler maps. It is like rock, paper and scissors. What layers can do is cover other layers. Layer of water sheds covers the entire US while the layer of drainage systems can go on top allowing the watershed layer to still be visible.
Example with Election Results
Example Use of energy and production
Students are asked to analyze energy production and consumption- in 1984 the US was the largest oil producer in the world but we were also the largest consumers using 50% of what we producers. . Using the map layers, we can see that in the last 20years, our production has dropped when our use is 300% more than our production.

It's all about-
Building maps, understanding ther place in the world and asking questions about it.

GIS takes the map from Google Earth and allows you to sort, count, do statistics, makemeaning about the data, look for patterns.

Bricks and Mortar Classrooms?