(72 hours down, 48 hours to go)
My Brain is Full!
Today I had a district professional development day, with many of the MPS media specialists and building techs. Coincidentally the day was geared around research, which I've been dabbling with in all of my classes. The keynote speaker was Mary Childs, a media specialist from Bloomington Public Schools . She, along with a team, was part of reinventing what research looks like in their school system, essentially coming up with a k-12 model.
I never thought I'd say it but: I am excited to do research!
Seriously! I grew up hating research, because I didn't know how to do it and nobody ever taught me. It wasn't until college that I had to flounder my way through how to really get a handle on it (although today's technology and online databases definitely takes some guess work out of the process).
Then after that we all broke out into grade levels and came up with research projects to do at each level. Since I just finished a research project at the k/1st grade level I offered my project. It was great to get positive feedback from my group, many of them had never used some of the technology I used in the research, such as Comic Life and Voicethread (our finished product is shown highlighting what we would do as a class with kindergarten or first grade).
We also had a keynote speaker Mark Garrison who took us through his 50 Sites in 60 Minutes presentation which he shared with a standing-room-only crowd at the TIES conference in December. I seriously have a spinning brain with all the ideas he gave us, all the crazy-cool websites he shared. I can't begin to pick my favorites, but I'm thrilled that he is constantly updating his website with cool ideas.
And THEN (yes there is more), I attended a session on Scratch. which is a very cool free animation software developed by MIT. I've used scratch before, so I was a bit apathetic about going. I am so glad I did! I just wish I had some more older students (hmm. . . maybe middle school is in my future again?). I usually learn new software by experimenting, but I was a bit overwhelmed by all that was possible with Scratch. So most importantly I learned about LearnScratch.org which was created by a teacher who decided to share his lesson plans with the world (I LOVE being a global community; way easier to share ideas than constantly reinvent the wheel with every lesson). He has beginning to advanced lessons complete with tutorials. Love it.
I love days like this. I love that I'm in a district that has such an awesome media program. I am even more convinced that I made the right choice to work to get my media certification. I am definitely in my element (and I didn't even mention the great skit put on by our faithful leaders, or the awesome boxed lunch by Holy Land deli).
Yay for Librarians!