Tech Talk Tuesdays and Classroom 2.0 LIVE

Last week, I posted about my top ten ways to engage in online professional development (PD). Tonight I participated in one of my recommended forms of PD (which I don’t get to as often as I’d like) –  the Victorian Education Department’s Virtual Conference Centre.

While there are a wide range of sessions every day in the Virtual Conference Centre, each Tuesday Anne Mirtschin moderates Tech Talk Tuesdays. These are online sessions about all things Web 2.0 in education. There is a different topic and presenter on Tech Talk Tuesdays each week. These sessions are open to everyone and I recommend you check them out!

Tonight the special guest presenter for Tech Talk Tuesdays was Peggy George from Arizona in USA. Peggy is one of the three co-organisers of the most popular online webinars available today – Classroom2.0LIVE.

This was basically a “PD about PD” and was a terrific learning opportunity.

Classroom 2.0 LIVE are online PDs held every Saturday at 12pm EDT about technology tools used in the classroom. While this time is 2am Sunday morning for us in Victoria (not the ideal time to do a PD!) all shows are recorded. You will find links to the recorded session and follow-up links under the Archive and Resource section of the website. You can watch the video of the recorded session or just listen to the audio. There is also now an iTunesU Channel. This 40 second video explains how to use the iTunesU Channel. I’ve already downloaded some interesting sessions which I’m looking forward to playing on my iPod.

Classroom 2.0 LIVE also has a Ning social network for educators to connect and collaborate.

If you want to see the recording of today’s Tech Talk Tuesday about Classroom 2.0 LIVE, click here.

Both Tech Talk Tuesdays and Classroom 2.0 LIVE sessions provide invaluable resources for teachers wishing to pursue free, focussed and anywhere-anytime learning. Give them a try!

classroom2.0 live

Have you tried Classroom 2.0 LIVE or Tech Talk Tuesdays sessions?

Do you have any questions about these forms of online PD?

Leave a comment!

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?

    Tech Tools for Teachers

    Since the beginning of 2010, I have been  collaborating with a fellow teacher, Simon Collier on a free weekly e-mail for teachers.

    With our 20th newsletter milestone approaching, this post is a reminder if you or someone you know has not yet signed up for the newsletters.

    Each week our email newsletter features a useful online tool or website for teachers to use in their classroom.

    The purpose of the email is to publicise and promote the use of ICT tools and web links to teachers who are not regularly sourcing the available information on the net.  This in turn, hopefully increasing the use of the wonderful education tools available online.

    The newsletter is suitable for both primary and secondary teachers and provides practical examples of how the tool or website could be integrated into the classroom curriculum.

    To access the previous newsletter, click here to visit the Tech Tools for Teachers page on my blog.

    SUBSCRIBE

    CLICK HERE to sign up online

    tech tools

    What topic would you like us to write a Tech Tools for Teachers newsletter on?

    The Reform Symposium

    reform

    Kelly Tenkely, who writes one of my favourite blogs, iLearn Technology, has been busy working with some fellow educators on a free worldwide e-conference. The conference, called the 2010 Reform Symposium is scheduled to be held on July 31st and August 1st.

    The focus of the 2010 conference is on innovative practices in education and what role these practices can play in educational reform.

    It is suitable for teachers, administrators, students, and parents.

    There is a great lineup of presenters from around the world and there looks to be some really useful presentations.

    Visit the Reform Symposium website to sign up, check out the schedule, presenters and more.

    Tweet about the conference using the #rscon10 hashtag

    Leave a comment.
    Will you be attending the Reform Symposium?

    Twitter from a Newbie’s Perspective!

    According to the website, http://www.whendidyoujointwitter.com I joined Twitter on 9 March 2009. It wasn’t until early 2010, however that I started really using Twitter. I had tried many times previously to get into this social networking phenomenon but, like all things technological, I needed to see how Twitter could enrich my life in order to commit to really using it.

    I started thinking more and more that Twitter might be of benefit to me when it became apparent that most of the writers of my favourite “ed tech” blogs are Twitter enthusiasts … I realised there must be something in it!

    Sue Waters gave me the great advice that when you start using Twitter you should give it a go (ie try to do something on it each day) for a month. After that time you can make an informed decision about whether or not Twitter is for you. Well, I did this and decided that Twitter is in fact something that can enhance my professional knowledge, skills and connections.

    I use Twitter solely to following teachers and people involved in technology and education (as well as a few news outlets). For me, it is more of a professional outlet, whereas I use Facebook to keep up to date with friends.

    I use the TweetDeck desktop client to run Twitter and would recommend it. Generally, I have TweetDeck running all the time but I just check in when I have a chance. The beauty of Twitter is that you don’t have to keep on top of everything. Every time you check it you are sure to find out something new from one of your friends.

    I use Twitter to give and to take. I like to share websites, videos, advice, articles, games etc with my followers and like to take the same in return. I also love how helpful Twitter can be. Numerous times I have put a call out on Twitter when I wanted advice on a tool or if I have a question about technology. I am always sure to find an answer and strengthen my connections with my PLN (personal learning network) along the way.

    Recently, I have also discovered how worthwhile Twitter can be when looking for news. Tweets seem to reach the Internet  so much faster than traditional online news sources. An example of this was when my Internet wasn’t working the other day. I went to Twitter Search, typed in the name of my ISP (Internet Service Provider) and lo and behold, there were already many tweets from people reporting that their connections with this ISP were also down (in case you’re confused, I have two ISPs which is why I was able to access the net when the net was down!).

    In my opinion, regular interactions with Twitter is one of the best professional development activities a teacher could embark on.

    Click on the image below to follow me!

    twitterfollow

    If you are new to Twitter, Sue Waters has an excellent wiki that has lots of information about getting started with Twitter http://suewaters.wikispaces.com/twitter

    Do you use Twitter? How has it changed your life?

    Not on Twitter? What do you think is holding you back?