RSCON3 – Free PD in your PJs!

Want the chance to be inspired by education professionals from around the world while relaxing in your PJs?

RSCON3 is the third Reform Symposium e-conference for educators.

It is 100% free and is scheduled to be held on July 30th – August 1st, 2011.

RSCON3 will focus on interactive presentations that help teachers create engaging and motivating lessons, build relationships with students, engage parents, integrate technology effectively and much more.

This event is suitable for anyone with an interest in education.

RSCON3

My presentation – Connecting with Global Blogging Buddies

Time – 10:30am Saturday 30th July (GMT+10 time). Click here to find out what time this is for you.

Summary – One of the most exciting aspects of educational blogging is making global connections. In this presentation I will discuss how my grade two class came to have many blogging buddies around the world who we collaborate with regularly.

Five things you can do:

  • Visit the Reform Symposium website to register, check out the schedule, presenters and more.
  • Write the time for my presentation in your calender. Click here to find out what time this is for you.
  • Tweet about the conference using the #RSCON3 hashtag. Click here to follow #RSCON3
  • Get a badge for your blog, Facebook, Twitter profile or website to say you are attending RSCON3.
  • Let the staff at your school know about RSCON3. You could email them the link to this post or print off/email this flyer.

What are you looking forward to at RSCON3?

Keeping up with Blogs

I became a proud iPad 2 owner this week and it’s been a steep learning curve to learn as much as I can about my shiny new tool!

After getting my iPad I was inspired to work on updating the blogs in my Google Reader.

I know I’m not alone in being a little neglectful of my Google Reader from time to time, but it is a very useful tool.

If you are unfamiliar with Google Reader, you can find out more about it here. In a nutshell, Google Reader captures all of the new content from your favourite blogs and websites so you don’t have to be checking them all the time. Google Reader describes itself as a “personalized inbox for the entire web.”

One of the reasons I was neglecting my Google Reader is I had too many blogs in there and I guess it became a case of “I don’t want to look as I know how many unread items I’ll have!”

I have now condensed my Google Reader to include blogs that I have a particular interest in and connection with.

Using Flipboard and Reeder on my iPad, I hope to keep more up to date with all of my favourite blogs!

There are so many fabulous education blogs out there and along with Twitter, reading blogs is my top form of professional learning.

Image: 'Flipboard' http://www.flickr.com/photos/38305415@N00/4818276266

Image: 'Flipboard' http://www.flickr.com/photos/38305415@N00/4818276266


Blogs I Subscribe to via Email

I like these blogs so much that I don’t want to miss any of their posts. I have signed up get new content delivered to my inbox.

chrisbetcher.com – Chris Betcher is an ICT integration teacher in Sydney and always produces interesting and well written posts.

whatedsaid.wordpress.com – Edna Sackson is a Teaching and Learning Co-ordinator at a PYP school in Melbourne. Her posts are guaranteed to make you think!

langwitches.org/blog – American teacher/consultant Silvia Tolisano and I share a passion for globally connected learning and I have learnt a lot from her posts.

teachingliteracy.global2.vic.edu.au – I team teach with Kelly Jordan so I can’t miss any of her blog posts about literacy in junior primary.

ilearntechnology.com – Kelly Tenkely, an American teacher/consultant, never fails to be on top of the latest web 2.0 tools. Always something new to learn.

theedublogger.com – if you’re into blogging, this is a must read. Everything you need to know about educational blogging by Australian member of the Edublogs team, Sue Waters.

Blogs in my Google Reader

Blogs about Education and Technology – I prefer to follow blogs that are updated fairly frequently (but not daily!) and I enjoy following blogs from people I “know” on Twitter. It usually doesn’t take long to figure out whether a blog has a style and content that appeals to you.

Class Blogs – there are some class blogs I like to keep abreast of such as Mrs Yollis’ class blog, Mr Salsich’s class, Mr Avery’s classroom blog, Open the Door to B4 and A Peek Inside.

Student Blogs – Sue Waters has an excellent post about how to add student blogs to a folder in Google Reader. While I don’t have any current students blogging just yet, I do like to keep track of my former students who are still blogging such as Rhiannon and Bianca.

Vanity Alerts – If you’re active in the online world, you might like to set up vanity alerts to keep track of your name or sites being mentioned. This is good to form relationships, satisfy your curiosity and monitor plagiarism.  Sue Waters describes in this post how to set up these alerts using various online tools and Google Reader.

New bloggers – I like to support new bloggers where I can and Google Reader is a good way to do this. Two new blogs I have enjoyed lately are PrimEd by third year out graduate teacher, Kirby Goodey and An Aspiring Primary Teacher by student teacher, Ashley Azzopardi. Both Ashley (@ashleyazzopardi) and Kirby (@KirbyGoodey) are active on Twitter too.

Finding other Blogs

I have found that Twitter is a fantastic way to keep track of other “must-read” blogs. Popular blog posts are often retweeted and easy to find out about if you’re a regular Twitter user. Finding out about blogs via Twitter is a bit of a lucky dip but you can find some real gems As Sue Waters said, it is a bit like an (ever changing) buffet!

What blogs do you like to follow?

How do you use RSS feeds or email subscriptions?

What do you use Google Reader for?

Top 10 Ways to Engage in Professional Development

Not so long ago, professional development for teachers meant a one of excursion to an off-site location. Teachers were the passive recipients of professional development.

Times have changed.

A teacher no longer has to be the expert in the classroom and a teacher no longer needs an expert  to develop their skills.

Professional development for teachers can now be a self-motivated, anywhere, anytime event.

Change in education systems can be slow but the change from being a passive consumer of professional development to being an active seeker could determine how well teachers and students can perform at their best in a 21st century classroom.

My own personal professional development happens at any time of the day or night on any day of the week. The amount I learn each day often astounds me and exhausts me!

It is true that the more you know, the more you realise you don’t know!

Here are my top 10 ways to engage in Professional Development

1. Twitter – create a professional learning network (PLN) with other teachers. Share ideas. Give and receive advice. Find out more here.

2. Read blogs by educators. Use Google Reader to subscribe to blogs of interest. Find out more about keeping track of educational blogs here.

3. Subscribe to my Tech Tools for Teachers Newsletter!

4. Listen to podcasts. I like the Ed Tech Crew, EdPod and The Virtual Staffroom. You can find all of these in iTunes.

5. Talk to like minded teachers at your school or teachers around the world via Skype. Skype in Education is a great place to start.

6. Join a wiki or a Ning. Try English Companion for a great Ning for English teachers.

7. Watch a video on a topic you’re interested in. Try YouTube or TES Videos for Teachers.

8. Engage in webinars. Have you seen the Victorian Educators’ Guide to Innovation Ning for weekly PD via Elluminate? Classroom 2.0 is also an excellent place for personlised PD at your fingertips.

9. Write a blog – there is nothing like self-reflective writing to help you learn.

10. Lurk, explore search the web. Don’t be afraid!

    Consider…

    “If our teachers are still learning in traditional ways, they will continue to teach in traditional ways” Jeff Utecht

    Are you a true lifelong learner?

    Image: 'Sarah laboring under the misconception that partially+obscuring+her+face+will+slow+down+my+picture+taking...+seriously,+how+long+has+she+known+me?' http://www.flickr.com/photos/45842803@N00/3399410617

    Image: 'Sarah laboring under the misconception...' http://www.flickr.com/photos/45842803@N00/3399410617"

    Leave a comment. How do you learn?