Thursday, June 21, 2007

Google IT - PD on Steroids

I am at the last of the Google IT sessions put on by CTAP this summer, this three day program was designed to give teachers a fast-paced hands on training on all of the Google Tools and their application into the classroom. The four presenters: Jerome Berg (Google Lit Trips), Cheryl Davis, Kathleen Ferenz and myself took 40 teachers (20 in each session - Marin and Pleasanton) through Google Earth, Docs and Spreadsheets, Blogger, Reader and Picasa. The program was very well received by both groups and the comments dealt mostly with the fact that there wasn't enough time to get everything done. In the session I presented, Blogger and Google Reader, I felt rushed getting through the entire presentation in the three hours allotted. I wish there could have been more time to allow the participants the chance to synthesize the tools and their use in education. I do believe that this is the pathway to the future.

So... its the pathway? How are we going to light the path for them so they don't trip or stumble along the way?

Sessions like this are huge first steps. But follow up is needed for the teachers completing the program and more teachers need to be involved.

- More workshops like this to provide the skills to teachers!
- Follow up sessions for the participants to reinforce the skills taught.
- Training for Administrators. Administrators need begin the process of being able to evaluate teachers using the tools. (I think that the reason we don't have more teachers using 21st Century tools in the classroom is that there aren't many administrators who know what 21st Century learning looks like and how can they possibly evaluate something they don't have defined in their own mind. Most administrators I have talked to that think their staff is tech savvy talk about how their teachers use PowerPoint! Arrgh!)

Coming Events:
- Google IT to your Northern California District? Leave a comment on this Blog.
- CLHS/CUE Conference: Monterey, California - November 2007 - One Day Intensive Sessions with Kathleen, Jerome, Cheryl and myself!

The Google Group we used to house all of our material will go public on June 30, so that anyone can view it and look at the sessions. Until that time this link to it may be dead!

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