Tag Archives: PLN

Open Space Technology for Teacher PD

CATC By the Water is our Board’s summer 3 day ‘computer camp’ for teachers.

Background: CATC is our acronym for Computers Across the Curriculum. ‘By the Water’ is our catch phrase for the location. We have found great success in running this event away from home and away from Board premises to allow total focus on the task at hand by maximizing the learning and minimizing the distractions. Each summer we make the trek from our southern Ontario base north to Barrie (2 hours drive) to Kempenfelt Centre where we have hosted the event for the last 18 years. 

Organizational Strategy: The camp is organized by, and designed to function based on the principle of Open Space Technology to frame the facilitated but self directed learning experience. The principles of Open Space Technology are:

 

  • Whoever comes are the right people
  • Whatever happens is the only thing that could have
  • Whenever it starts is the right time
  • When it’s over, it’s over
  •                                              – Harrison Owen, 1985

    Areas of Focus:  Based on the planning sessions for this year, areas of focus are: literacy, ISTE Standards, collaboration, technology integration, writing and presenting through the use of: SmartBoards, Blogging, Wikis, Rapid Web Designer for the FirstClass environment (RWD), Podcasting with Garageband, Comic Life,  multimedia with iMovie, Adobe Premiere Elements, Adobe  Photoshop Elements and iPhoto,  Smart Ideas, Band in a Box and Finale. Software titles listed in green have been licensed by the Ministry of Education through the work of the OSAPAC Committee (Ontario Software Acquisition Program Advisory Committee).

    This year, camp facilitating staff are collaborating via the CATC By the Water wiki. Have a look at camp details, follow our progress and enjoy the learning! I am set to enjoy another day of facilitating and learning at CATC By the Water.

    ~ Mark

    Missed the ‘noise’ today

    How ironic! – talk about 2 days of contrast.

    Yesterday my blog post was about managing the ‘noise’ from technology – keeping technology working for you while keeping your life balanced and avoiding information & technology use overload.

    Today, there was a big silence in technology land. I was initially puzzled by the quietness of Twitter. Hmm, my session seems to have timed out. I can’t log back in. Now I jump into trouble shooting mode.

    Maybe it is:

    – my browser: different browser, same issue
    – my computer: same results on another computer, checked 2 browsers
    – an access issue: try logging in through a Twitter client – no luck
    – our network: check with staff, everything is A-OK on our end

    Dig in a little deeper:

    – compare: try to access from my Blackberry – no luck
    – more comparing: can not connect using my Blackberry as a wireless modem

    Now I am convinced something serious is up. I contact a friend and fellow blogger who works in another Board. He was having the same experience but had learned that Twitter was experiencing a major Denial of Services (DoS) attack. Now the only plan of action is to wait! It is up to the staff at Twitter to sort through this mess.

    What did I learn from this?

    I learned I missed the tweets – the trickle of communication coming in from Twitter. I missed learning from the information posted through the tweets and related links. Perhaps more importantly, I recognized how much I learn each day through Twitter and other social media networks and how the people I interact with have become part of my PLN.

    It appears the DoS issue has been resolved – YEAH! I am happy to be connected to my online PLN group again and ready to learn and share.

    ~ Mark