Posted in education

#EmpowerBook #LeadLAP #ShiftThis

blog   This summer I was pumped at the idea of digging deep into my own professional development.  I started the summer by increasing my following of my PLNs and increasing my reading.  I also spent several days of learning at the ISTE conference.   You’ll hear more about my ideas from the ISTE later as I flesh them out.

I picked three books to read this summer.  Many people in my PLNs were excited about these books. I also knew the reputation of the authors and the subject area intrigued me.

All three books had a little different perspective.

SHIFT THIS CoverShift This is a look into how to make your classroom more student led.  This book gives really practical tips on how to help our students think.  It is so practical and uplifting.  If you are ready to make that shift into student-led instruction this is a great book to start with. Check out #ShiftThis if you want to read more about this book on Twitter.

LLAPLead Like A Pirate is look at leading with passion.  One thing that really stuck with me from this book is that “You never really achieve greatness, it’s a moving target.”  Improving my skills as a leader means I have to keep moving towards greatness.  I’m not there, I’m constantly learning, and I keep rowing the boat forwards.  As soon as the boat stops, I sink as a leader.  This book really resonated with me.  Check out #LeadLAP if you want to learn more about this book on Twitter.#Empower

EmpowerWhat Happens When Students Own Their Learning – Is the book I’m reading right now.  I know this book will take me a while to read because I keep going back to my personal journal and reflecting on it.  This book is a game changer for educators.  You can’t read this book and not get super-charged to make changes.  I think back to my education – I went to class, got A’s, rarely failed and went on to do exactly what I thought I would do.  Teach.  Today, we have no idea what jobs will be there for our students. This book is about empowering our students to own the learning process.  This allows them to be prepared for their future. #EmpowerBook is where you’ll find the buzz about this book on Twitter!

Again – This book is a game changer.  I wish all educators were reading this book at once!  Imagine what our schools would look like this fall!

More about my summer reading at a later time.  If you are interested in what I’ve been reading, check out my Goodreads Profile.

One new thing I’ve learned this week – #BookSnaps.  Why wasn’t this a thing while I was in the classroom?





Posted in education

#ISTE17 Reflections – Poster PL


This week my blog will be filled with reflections from the ISTE Conference in San Antonio.

My first reflection will be on the PosterPL.  While this session is just setting up, the more I look at this the more I can visualize the idea for a campus-wide Gallery Walk PL.

Below is how I can see PosterPL working on a campus.

The gist of PosterPL, is that teachers create a virtual or old school poster, describing something exciting going on in their classroom.  Once the poster is created, examples of student work, rubrics, check points etc. can be added around it as artifacts to help others see how this could be used in the classroom.

Eventually, teachers reflect on what they’ve seen on their Poster PL Gallery Walk in a blog or discussion board.  If two teachers want to follow up they can with learning walks or collaboration.

One huge benefit is that the amazing teachers who don’t feel comfortable presenting get to share ideas in a low pressure situation.  Teachers will also be able to have a sneak peak into multiple classrooms.

This is what how I envision Poster PL Working:

This is where the poster will be displayed.

Poster Displays

Teachers can display either a virtual poster or This is where the poster is displayed.  Teachers could choose either a digital poster or an old-school science trifocals to display what is going on in their classroom.  Behind the monitor the teacher could display student work, the table could hold artifacts like rubrics or directions.

Teachers rotate from one poster to the next.  They gather nuggets of brilliance from their peers and move on to the next poster.  In the end, teachers will get multiple snapshots of what is going on in other classrooms.



Choose Your Poster PL

Teachers would have a list of possible posters to go view.  This is one of the ISTE displays.

After the Poster PL, teachers can put their presentations in a discussion board for follow up.

This is just my take away from today.  I’ve had a great first day, connected with several people in my PLN.  I’ve also come up with several ideas for next year.


More from ISTE later.

I also met Susan Bearden, or @s_bearden.  The moderator of #EdTechChat.  She is  as interesting in person as she is during our Twitter chat.  Here is a picture of my sister coach Mandy and Susan.

Susan, Doris and Mandy