Sunday, February 27, 2011

Enabling Education Through Technology Symposium

Last week I had the chance to attend this symposium with a couple hundred of my IT and ET colleagues.  It was a great event to network, learn and reflect on what we are doing in each of our districts. 

Some of the things that I took away from this event:

1) Microsoft's Productivity and Future Vision

Is this what you see in the future?  When, how far away are we? I know I leaned over to IT Darcy a number of times and asked him when I could get this in our classrooms!
2) Digital Citizenship: Tania Sterling (@taniasterling) was great.  She shared this LiveBinder full of resources for digital citizenship in our schools. There were two ideas that I want to run with
  • Family Acceptable Use Agreement - Parents and students all sign them, but do they really know what they mean?  I want to make a serious effort in engaging our parents in this conversation and education.
  • Students involved in PD - students may be our best resource as we navigate 21st century skills.  It's time to enable and encourage them to become leaders.  During upcoming PD sessions I would like to use students as facilitators.
3) Google - Only Google could fill a room with a sessions that starts at 7:45am!!  The cloud seems to be the direction that PWSD is taking, although we still need to decide between Google Apps and Live@Edu, hopefully soon!
  • Google is in process of totally revamping Google Presentation, otherwise know as the ugly step child of Google Docs
  • Their motto is "Don't be Evil" when they look at doing things
  • 20% on innovation, that is the rule for all Google employees.  Each week one days is spent on something that is not work, can you imagine?
  • Will it stay free for education?  Each mail box cost approximately $1 to create and maintain.  Google charges business $50, keeping it free for education.
4) What are you most excited about in Alberta Education? (I will admit this was easier to answer before the budget announcement Thursday afternoon but...) I am most excited about the never ending possibilities there are in education right now.  It is truly an exciting time to be involved in teaching and learning as it continues to evolve.  More exciting are the amazing people that I get to work with and connect with.  It is not dull and I feel like I have an amazing support system no matter what happens!

1 comment:

  1. live@edu is available right now actually:) you will have to refresh me on the other productivity tools MS has that you wanted.

    the 20% time spent on 'not work' is not exactly true. it is 'work' but it is to be spent on innovation not on 'keeping the lights on' so to speak:)