Angela's ISTE conference notes:

Monday 8am: Model Lesson in a Model Classroom-Chat Rooms in the Classroom: Back-channeling for Increased Class Participation (Scott Snyder English Classroom Teacher) and Brandon Lutz )

  • Why Snyder used it: quiet kids no interaction; large class sizes (used Socratic Seminar in class of 30); unprepared for discussion (they then respond to the discussion)
  • What we get:
  1. engagement
  2. collaboration
  3. confidence enhancement

How Might be Used: as notetaking-discussion during videos and then outside circle with Socratic Seminar or a silent discussion
No competition between students in conversation

Definition: Discussion going on running parallel to a discussion occurring. "using networked computers to maintain... an online conversation alongside" a live discussion (Wikipedia)

Model Lesson: Abbreviated version, based on concept of a Socratic Seminar (question posed; participants formulate responses and respond)

Classroom Teacher expectations:
  1. Have read the passage
  2. Answer both discussion questions and Reflection question

Observer BackChannel

Can embed www.coveritlive or google site into a wikipage
Benefit of coveritlive:
  • Comments don't automatically go live-teacher or student moderator evaluates it first before it's posted for audience to see.
Teacher Instructions to Students:
  • Read passage and respond at least once
  • Use names-first only because good internet safety-no last names at most a last initial
  • Have 3-5 minutes to respond
  • Respect others with appropriate responses
  • Teacher Model before beginning
  • Reminds and informs students of how it is assessed
  • Let's students know he has accepted post and they will be visible soon (must be monitored and posted once at at time vs in mass)
  • Reflection questions posted-don't have to respond to all of them
    • time is given then reminder is given regarding time for reflection

Things to Remember
  1. There will be silence-collaboration/discussion is through reading and writing!
  2. If students post something inappropriate-teacher sends a private message to the student reminding them what appropriate is. Then, teachers can provide non verbal communication with use of proximity. If the behavior continues disciplinary procedures can be taken (dismissed from conversation, computer closed quietly by teacher after second interaction (reduces fanfare element), point deduction)
  3. While instructions are given or time for reflection is given, teacher can put 'hold' on student comments to reinforce need to listen
  4. Conversation is stored so that teacher can return and re-read, assess, and respond to students.
  5. Students can also review conversation as a study tool.
  6. Allows for RTI. Students who take longer still have opportunity to read and respond. Teacher can adjust assessment accordingly.

Audience Questions:
  1. How often use: not every day, once every couple of weeks to avoid dryness or avoid it become too routine
  2. When do you assess? Afterwards because of the monitoring during. First time will be frustrating-it will feel chaotic to you the teacher.
  3. Can students outside of the classroom be participants? Yes, homebound, other classrooms. (i.e. he worked with another Englilsh classroom to discuss rhetoric in presidnetion speech-two classrooms, 90 kids, two monirators. (lessons learned-reviewed student comments and approve own student comment)
  4. Do you have to review the comments to give grades or is a total supplied? You do have to review it is not provided. Some are not posted at the time because not up to par. Responds to student one on one.
  5. What about spelling and grammar? On this activity more open. Other on-line assignments requires absolute correctness.
  6. Cost? Free
  7. Time management? accessing and learning how to embed is most time consuming in set up within classroom
  8. Comment-important to do dry run before using.

Skype: Thespian70
twitter: Thespian70

2:00 Session Funding Your Dreams: Grant Writing in the Information Age

Introduction included several videos -Dan has already shared most of these with us in prior staff development. Dr. Sheryl R. Abshire, Chief Techonology Officer Calcasieru Parish Public Schools, Lake Charles, LA (Engaging speaker)

Her background in grant writing-5mil up to this point; she funds majority of her current staff with grants; former principal and every teacher wrote grants as part of their professional growth/development

The way we teach today collides with how our students learn-digital natives/......
Goal of Session: at the end we will know we can write grant and believe there's money out there.

Consider being a grant reader to see what is expected. (She has and this information is derived from some of those experiences.)

How to Get Money:
Keys to Great Grants-alignment is crucial
  • integrated program elements
  • aligned components
  • high quality and continuous improvement, professional development, evaluation
  • tied to high standards (how does this tie in with what you are doing? Connect what it is you want to do to standards then to improvement plan. Shows organization, strategy, and that you have a plan to use their money. The degree of alignment your grant demonstrates shows them that you will have the highest opportunity for success with their money.They never see you, so you sell yourself on this concept.)
    • Discuss where you were, are, and how you will get where you are going.
      • specifically reference how teachers will be trained if using specific equipment
  1. What do they want to fund? No one is giving money for textbooks. They don't want to see desperation. They want to see neediness but not desperation. If you have nothing and you have done nothing, it sends the message you aren't capable of taking their money and doing anything with it. They want to see people who can not only state what they want to do but also things they have done (think RTI). It shows you take what you have and do the best with it. Skin in the Game-you are investing in your own grant
  • innovation
  • coordination of resources
  • program ties to local needs
  • buy-in (do you have support? Letter from school, Superintendent etc. They need more than a form letter. Even if they don't ask for it-put it into the application somehow.)
Examples: math after-school mentor program for struggling math students is a goal. So, tell them you devedeveloped a pilot on the bus tutor program but the students need more.
3. Wwhen reviewers are looking at Proposals These are ideas that they are looking for
  • Does the proposal tie into school's overall plan?(team effort, support within school)
    • Meetings to talk about the grant are crucial to get this. Time pays big dividends.
  • How will the technology be used? (Team's vision for how technology will be used to improve student learning. Super specific. Create a visual image for the grant readers. What are they going to do? How will you tie this to difference in student learning? Discuss impact expected? Specific student audience. )
  • Will the proposal impact student learning? (team's plan to improve student learning beyond the norm, i.e. students three grade levels behind will end the year at grade level)
  • How will desired outcomes be developed? (describe specific indicators, how curriculum development might change; readers will look for the thread that connects the plan of action to the objective/s-evaluation or assessment included. For example, everything in the budget should be anchored and tied to objectives/outcomes/or expectations of what they will do. )
  • Does this initiative have the potential to be replicated or outreached to a larger community? (How might it have far reaching impact? Even if they don't ask at least include 3+sentence discussing this. Bigger return on their investment!)
  • Does the proposal tap creativity in tapping other resources already available in the community? (How are you tapping in to other resources? i.e. talk to retired teachers association (referring to aforementioned example) see if some of them might want to volunteer. Demonstrate in your grant that you are using other resources. Grant readers love to see these enhancements.)
  • Is the budget clearly defined? (People will not give you their money if you can not add! Make a case why private funding should be used. Proofread! Or, you send the message you are not detail oriented, not focused. If it's not your strength than find someone whose it is. If you are writing person, get someone else to be budget person.)
  • Who will benefit from this initiative? (be very clear about this-So What? Show why what you are doing is different than what others are doing and why it will make a difference. Defend your idea! Consider researching to develop this. Assume your audience doesn't know your topic-inform them. Writing can be strong but doesn't mean your idea is. Citations to support your idea never hurt. Again, you are detail oriented, informed, intelligent, practiced professional that can put this money into practice in ways they never imagined.)
  • How well does this proposal replicate what the grant funder is looking for? (how well do you know the funder, know the corporate goals-research your target audience; who and what have they funded? Where have they funded grants-geographical location. Spend your time on the most potential you can get-do your research. Speaker calls them to find out more about the grant. (LA schmooze)
  • How committed are you? (They want to see your passion in this proposal; they want to be partners. Don't use templates. They want to see teachers' writing about what their students need: clear expression of the depth of commitment that the educators have to make a difference in the depth of their students lives. )

A GrGrantwriter Should
  • Be a gambler--taking chances that what you produce will hit a jackpot somewhere.
  • Be somewhat of a masochist--resubmitting proposals after being rejected over and over again. You want to get a grant; you got to write a grant. Secret; once you write a grant; you will get a grant because you have the baseline for the next. (copy and paste) Do not give up!
  • Be somewhat of a diplomat--standing by quietly supportive, encouraging the grant team to "re-think" and "re-work" the proposal over and over and over. Not time for drama king or queen to surface.
  • Be somewhat of a squirrel--saving every article about grants and every scrap of paper which notes are written just in case they might be useful someday.
  • Be somewhat of an inventor--always seeing new way to solve the age-old problem of raising test scores and locating research that supports your ideas
  • Be somewhat of a rhinoceros--so that the refections you receive bounce off your hide. It will happen.
  • Be somewhat of a magician--crafting a proposal that appears to meet EVERY requirement of the RFP and just what the funder asks for.
  • Be somewhat of a butcher--always cutting, cutting, cutting the proposal making it more and more concise and to the point. Write everything first then cut.
  • Be somewhat of a financial wizard--stretching every dollar, doing more with less and garnering matching funds from every imaginable source. Get bids, give descriptions, pricing, license fees, etc show that you intend to spend their money wisely.
  • Be somewhat of a night owl--requiring very little sleep to work non-stop to meet numerous deadlines...NEVER missing one. Give an earlier deadline than actually exists. Always plan to submit two weeks earlier.
  • Be somewhat of a /part animal-always prepared to celebrate receiving someone else's money

School Grants (subscribe to this newsletter and bring home the bacon listserv-use another email because you will be busy not spam)
grants for k-12 hotline (West find)

Session 3pm Using Podcast in Your Classroom ISTE will post this information

How to develop course work: Very little provided for this
  • Consider target audience: will this be beginning lesson or at end of the unit thereby requiring demonstration of knowledge
  • One Lesson: creating multiple drafts of podcast script (left column what they will say-clear, concise, simple; right hand column-what images will be used to enhance your script could also incorporate "insert visual of....within the text)
    • draft to draft revision assessment of how they incorporated the teacher suggestions into final draft
    • also speaking side
  • Podcast Scripts/Podcast (links with examples will be provided also has included an excel sheet to calculate grades)
  • How to create
    • Will be using Mac began with "Garage Band": "audacity" is an alternative for non mac users
    • Provided links resources) a
  • -All handouts available here---

Empathy: Twenty Century Skill (Janet also went) Alan November

third world countries are paying attention to other countires and cultures
His anecdotes: bank president and anthro. Mark Wesch (see youtube) empathy the most important skill to engage in global society
History Teacher: Lexington Kentucky
Teaching am. rev had students research essays written by British students-analyze and compare the two perspectives, then sent to teacher of the students, arranged a skype debate between two classes. Consider what will the students prepare for: written exam or live debate with British students on "Whether or not Am. Rev was inevitable?"
Research to get to sources outside US: site: country code then sujbect (site: country code title of text reading)
  • Denmark story:
See Dane's notes my computer froze! Argh!

Session 12:30-1:30 Digital Writing Teaching writing effectively with digital age technology (sponsored session) Jeff Place (fast southern accent-difficult to take notes) Sponsored Session

Used Qwizdom to get audience involved. Used terms "Digital Native" and "Digital Migrant".

Our Need:
Effective monitoring
standards based

Check online ISTE for this.
How many essays did your students complete this past school year? On average English teachers have students complete 6 a year. He teaches 94 and completed 28 essays this year. Average time submit for grading per essay-6. Over 1500 drafts submitted in one year.

Do your student use electronic tools other than word-processing?
His weekly schedule:
Mon: grammar lessons, activities and review (when post standard also post prior standars to show how long they have been working on this) Uses you-tube videos to reveiw (pronouns-who's on is way to get through the filter at school), worksheets, quizdoms and smart board to assess constantly
Tues. grammar re teaching and enrichment (here is constant assessment with qwizdoms)
Wed. writing prompt provided, start brainstorming, planning, and first draft by hand (testing standard- Teacher floats and observes students. Uses Netsupport School 10 to look at thumbnails of what students are doing. Allows teacher control.
Thursday; type in computer (program Write to Learn), start revision, edit and peer review via the program
Friday; additional three feedback submissions for improvements, final submission to WritetoLearn, Publish-polish the text in some form, student final revisions and post final(photostory in microsoft is one way to publish others sent in their letters to government officials-reason to write)

How can this happen TOOLS
Classroom Management: Netsupport School 10

freemind (mind mapping software-Inspiration for grownups)
Word Choice and Usage

Online Assessment Tool
WriteToLearn-it is not a teacher; you are.
internet based (school or home based on teacher decision)

Why use it?
internet based
students submit and essay and receives a rubric (6trait) with an explanation, ways to improve, mentor texts to help students improve. Doesn't give specifics. That's where we come in.
over time students show improvement-they go from needing 6 submissions with help to only one without help (teacher can scaffold the use of the tools-by end of year the 'help' isn't there if chosen)
quicker feedback with direction for improvement
Useful Resources:
Pre Writing: ttp://

Tuesday Session 2:00-3:00 "The Six Faces of Digital Literacy" for backchannel or #gatesiste for twitter Jim Gates (find info on presenter link page)

took-"pole everywhere" gives you six polls for free and up to 30 responses

Definition of Digital Literacy: ability to locate, organize, understand, evaluate and create information using digital technology. (wiki)
(Posed the question and then we had choice to text, twitter, or answer poll our responses showed up onto the screen-_)

Where do students find these skills?
We will look at: copyright, document management skills, research skills (finding, evaluating managing online resources, understanding privacy,
  • Copyright- creative commons, flickr, google and yahoo images CC, (advance google search-choice to filter common images) Behold, wikimedia commons, comffight (?)- Still have to provide attribution to these commons.
    • how easy is it for my students to find copyright friendly material? (also available for podcast, sounds, etc.0 source to find images
  • Doc Management: google docs, bubble clouds ( creates bubble charts), (microsofts version of googledocs.)
  • research skills: site: .ir elections 2009 (not sure if period after site:) Now two (root to find country codes also wikipedia has alpha list) presenters talked about the imp of this. or in Google news oil spill source: new york times (you can specify a source and then assign different one per student to analyze different way write.) Google Guide-makes searching easier! Make sure students have gone through this. new app on google-latest and you will get most up to date information (think social studies during Iran elections-you can see things as they occur!) Wolfram Alpha it is a 'game changer' not great for English teacher it is a knowledge engine (for example second derivative of sine...and it gives derivative and plots it and show steps!) Goofram gives you both google and wolrfram sources (chart population of... or snickers vs. baby ruth)
    • Given this data that I can find easily how can it be applied...
    • managing sources
      • managing and sharing bookmarks-Diigo (can save sources, high light, and comment privately) As a teacher you can see daily what has been saved and commented on.
      • do they know bookmark and tags?
    • Having info come to you: RSS Aggregator (fetches new info on chosen topic and sources you've subscribed to) Show students this.
      • web apps: Netvibes, google has one,
  • understanding privacy and security, and digital footprint; When do our kids get their first talk on privacy on computer? Should be often and more than once. (Facebook is one example)
Find Session Resources Here:

Session 3:30 Just look what you can do with Google Docs. (

Google Spreadsheet and forms (Online free version of microsoft word)
Google Spreadsheet Basics: works similarly to excel; use it to create checklist; take attendance; you can duplicate sheets; automatically extends cell and wraps text for you; can change rules by going into format (She has google templates on her site) Google formulas for what you need; don't worry about writing your own.
Publishing Google Spreadsheet: Can choose which sheets of your spreadsheet you can publish; you can embed it into a blog or other site, too. should update when changes are made automatically wherever you have published; (So would this be considered a widget when embedded in your blog?) Can also share and collaborate on spreadsheet-different than merely publishing.

Google Forms: can create surveys that gather information that can then be moved into a spreadsheet via "see responses" (access tinyurl or snip url to create url that will then help you publish this) Wonder if this would work for beginning of the year Student Inventory? Capstone-students can create question and publish (twitter, facebook, etc) and survey large groups of people. Can then create function to analyze data and show summary via graphs. Go to form actions and you can choose to publish summary. Can create this for rubric to spreadsheet to assess individual students or classes.

10:30-11:30 Writing in the 21st Century Kristen K. Leclaire and Anne K. Smith (Arapahoe High School) Dynamic speakers-teachers
Purpose: Why am I here? Teachers are learners

What writing used to look like in Kristine's classroom
prompts: inspiring quote embedded in a question and students respond writing for an audience of one who would then assess essay only to then be returned to the writer to become a dead document.

Writing Looks like Now: (Will Roger's "Changing the Climate" refererred to)
According to NCTE-ask questions (refer to NCTE proficiencies.) Are you achieving these objectives? If so how? If not, what can you do differently?

Two Tools: Blogs and wikis
Why Blog?
  • differentiated learning
    • personalized learning (PLNs-personalized learning networks-they write on their own blog reactions to what they read online.): How to get kids to read things that are personally important?
      • They have to use RSS (this would work with Capstone research)
      • Questions they address for entire year:
        • what did you read? link to art
        • what matters from what you read
        • how does it relate to what we are doing in class or in your life
        • how does it relate to the world around us?
        • then on friday they present
  • extending classroom walls
    • fishbowl: (like Socratic Seminar using laptops) Allows time for all kids to participate. (She gets 238 comments online-not counting in class verbal conversation-this can continue outside of the classroom.) All kids contribute-class norm. Her seniors teach each other Hamlet.
    • Now they invite in experts: from school, from authors, from around the world. Has brought in 30 educators from around the world. Blogged with author of Daniel Pink a Whole New Mind. This becomes part of their digital portfolios.
  • anytime/anywhere
    • scribing-(not clear on this)
  • collaboration
  • thinking critically
    • ask provocative questions of each other (Fahrenheit 451-student reading Time magazine and reading an article about China and makes a connection to novel. Wants to share this with her class. All students have posting privileges.
How to?
  • Set up classroom blogging policy? Arapahoe has school policy. Anne creates one in her class with the students.
  • What happens when your authors are dead? Kristine's kids come from Anne. All books are by dead authors except for Kite Runner. No response from author but continued blog like Anne did. But hears from man who is a system analyst in Afghanistan who is willing to talk to her students. (he saw her class via Carl Fish's fish bowl) My Question: Are their blogs public? or for students only?
  • Expert helps turn the fictional characters into reality as they represent the actual culture (i.e. Hassan's mother ethnicity,) Discussion the third day after Rob had been drawn into the conversation the kids were asking him more and more questions. Rob began to answer and take pictures to support his answers.
  • Expert doesn't have to be the author. It could be an actore (Shakespeare) professor Greek Antiquity (Antigone)

Assignment idea:
  • Choose a banned book that has not been accepted by the school board then write a response and present to the school board to be accepted contradicting the policy. Kids began to contact authors.
Use Blog to help them develop their metacognition: post open question "how's it going?

Why Wikis ? No dead documents; it is a living document, provides authentic synthesis and inquiry, student generated learning, creating digital footprint, no limits to understanding, meaningful and authentic learning, collaboration.
  • Personal philosophy: projects that use limited skills (binder portfolios) soon become dead documents. They become
My Questions: one wiki for the class with each student having a page? or Does each student have a wiki page? Would like to see Kristine's assignment for wiki personal statement/philosophy.

Kristine's Use: Beginning of the year-ask students what one thing they want to investigate? They create a personal philosophy statement This is then what they research. Then she asks them to connect everything they have read in class: How does what we've read influence, contradict, etc what they believe? Ask what are some of favorite classroom activities and connection to personal philosophy? Final product: create a documentary using their wiki space as their framework. Does include work cited as part of ethical responsibility.(Tish-could this work for your literary journalism class? The kids actually researching and creating a documentary? Or might it replace personal essay?) On wiki space page that is reflection on wiki space and on the product/documentary and student learning.

Another use for Wiki: Anne
  • Students are asked to write collaboratively-create wiki-phied research paper
  • Students create study guides
  • My question-all on one wiki? Or one per objective? Or one per class?
    • looks like multiple pages per wiki one per text

Another Tool: Podcast
  • This I Believe essay not merely writing but creating podcast
  • Posted these on wiki and then invited community to do this
    • 9th grade students wrote and then collaborated with students in Dubai-publishing it online expands audience and opportunity
  • SAT vocabulary
    • write country western songs in the honor of Wonder Woman-write, sing, publish as Podcast
      • use SAT vocabulary and apply to this assignment (voice and authenticity)

Another Tool: Google Earth
  • Semester Project: What Matters: Read Into the Wild.(This is on Anne's Blog)
    • Pinpoint ten points of their life (does this with Odyssey, Inherit the Wind using Google Earth
    • What are the important points in your life?

Another Tool Voice Thread
  • Create own poetry
  • Collaboration: With second grade who created pictures of their favorite places, Anne's 9th graders wrote poetry for the images, Texas computer science teacher's students wrote music. Now tri collaboration!

Audience Questions:

Research Support
“Footprints in the Digital Age”- Will Richardson
“Fluid Learning”- Mark Pesce
“Rigor Redefined”-Tony Wagner