One of the highlights from my week was participating in a “mystery hangout”. This particular (Google) hangout had an interesting twist with teachers and students learning together and collaboratively.
The Plan:Heather Theijsmeijerleveraged her PLN twitter connections with Donna Fryand me todevelop a plan to give the G Suite (Google Apps) lead teachers in Rainbow DSB a hands on experience with Google Hangouts to demonstrate the learning, collaboration and problem solving that can occur in this setting. After a call for participants, we firmed up the the Rainbow DSB GAFE lead teachers as one team, and Tania Bumstead’sVista Hills P. S. class as the other team. Alison Bullock and I played an online support role in the process as fact checkers and communication with each team lead.
The task was for each team to determine the location of the other team through a series of yes/no questions.
The experience: When it came time for he actual event, Heather connected everyone into the Google Hangout, and we were ready for a 45 minute learning situation, beginning with some introductions. The Vista Hills class worked in groups to tackle the tasks – receiving answers from team Rainbow, interpreting them and tracking them on Google maps. Another team generated potential questions and determined which question should be asked next. A third team interacted with team Rainbow and posed the questions. The excitement in the room was high, and there was a steady buzz throughout the session.
I was fascinated with the ingenious yes/no questions asked by the two teams as they working through the process of solving the geography puzzle in front of them. Are you located
east of the Manitoba/Ontario border
in the eastern standard time zone
within 100 km of Algonquin Park
west of the GTA
located north of the 402/403 highway corridor
east of the escarpment
in a city with a population over 100,000
within 50 km of Lake Huron
and finally, team Rainbow asked: are you located in KW? Team Vista Hills pressed on and with a couple more questions and one hint, determined team Rainbow was on Manitoulin Island.
I experienced a wonderful virtual learning opportunity this week with some fantastic educators from ADSB. Donna Fry, who was leading the learning sessions on site, invited me to provide a kick off presentation to their day. My task was to ignite some change thinking by linking the areas of technology enabled learning, technology change and bringing collaboration into eLearning.
I loved the idea of doing a virtual keynote – what a perfect way to “walk the talk” in terms of connected learning and modelling what we need our students to do.
While there are a variety of tools one could use for this type of activity, we settled on Google Hangouts (GHO) for our session.
Of course, the technology all worked flawlessly <big grin!> – a good demonstration of technology creating a natural flow of sharing.
I really enjoyed being able to participate in a timed table talk opportunity following my presentation as Donna kindly relocated me from the “big screen” to the table.
I was certainly struck by the power of this. We collectively decided that this was a virtual F2F learning session.
Linking back to the theme of the day and my task with the opening kick off, I could envision a day when virtual F2F learning opportunities are normalized into learning environments. I look forward to learning with these educators as they develop their connecting and collaborating strategies.
Learn more about the background of the Futures Forum Project.
Today I had a chance to connect with OASBO IMPAC (Information Management, Privacy & Access Committee) co-chairs Lorie Hough and Sandra Vieira via Google Hangout (GHO). The provincial committee is examining school board privacy and records management considerations for business functions as they relate to cloud computing. Today we decided to document our initial discussion and thinking by live recording our session. There are many aspects to consider prior to transitioning to a full cloud solution in this area.
I want to acknowledge the work, learning and professional reflections of Lorie and Sandra in preparation for this session. I look forward to our next discussion.
Within the context of Connected Educator’s month, October 21-25 is digital citizenship week. After recording an earlier Google Hangout session on the topic of Digital Citizenship with staff, I thought it would be interesting to record a second hangout to gain a parent perspective on this topic.
Earlier today, I was joined by Susan Parr, a parent from our school board community and Chris Vollum, a social media consultant and parent to share some conversation on this topic. If the notions of online safety, openness, academic honesty, integrity and social success capture your interest, then this conversation is for you.
Many thanks to Susan and Chris for sharing their time and interest in supporting this important topic. Until next time …
After 2 days of being immersed in conversation about technology enabled learning, focusing on using technology to get to deeper learning, and engage the relationship aspect of the possibilities with George Couros, I was thrilled to hear how WRDSB teacher Ryan Wettlaufer is using Google Hangouts with his students.
To me, this is a perfect example of the SAMR model. Ryan has thoughtfully and skillfully created real life opportunities for his students by leveraging his personal learning network (PLN) giving his French language program a whole new meaning. I was able to connect with Ryan for an interview via Google Hangouts. Learn about Ryan’s insights in our interview.
Thank you Ryan for taking time to share your leadership and best practices, and a perfect topic for Connected Educators month.