John Sowash teaches online like no other. He's cracked it and is forever improving, sharing best practice and getting others through the basic hoops. Once up and running we can all teach online.
There was quite a bit about badges during my MAODE back in 2010-13. Have they taken off? No trivial achievement but these are being given out for Google Educator and many others. I have picked up certification for Thinglink and will be able to add further badges from Screencastify and Planet eStream. They have more meaning and have been better tested than almost all the MOOCs I have done with FutureLearn and Coursera.
An aide-memoire for me. An link to an interesting resource for you! Ever mindful of my need and desire to take and pass a series of Google Educator Certification Exams (levels 1 & 2 and trainer) and needing to be on the pulse of what Google Education is doing (conquering every classroom on the planet), makes this of interest:
Hoping you can view this. I kind of interactive slideshow pinned to a map. In this case I roughly trace my grandather's war years, from growing up in County Durham (Shotley Bridge) to enlisting with the Durham Light Infantry, transfer to the Machine Gun Corps, then experience on the Western Front, surviging Neuve Chappelle, the Somme and Third Ypres.
On 27th December 1917 his transfer papers came through and he joined the Royal Flying Corps (his kid brother had joined as mechanic the summer before and had then gained a commission as a bomber pilot).
He then moved around from Hastings, to Bristol, and Uxbridge ending up with flight training out of RAF Crail, Fife from September 1918 to November 1918. He remaiend in Crail during the demob until May 1919.
Sadly his brother was killed that summer flying mail over Belgium to Germany.
Only in 1992 did Jack return to Ypres, retracing his steps with the author Lyn Macdonald and paying his respects to his friends who had died at the Menin Gate and Tyne Cot Cemetery.
Long ago I realised that my horizontal approach to learning was getting me nowhere. But that is ADHD me. Or just me.
One PhD would be better that three MAs.
Anway, at the opposite extreme, I am failing to gain my Level 1 Google Educator certificate. This reminds me of failing the paper exam for Level 1 Teaching Swimming 18 years ago. The first exam I had failed since my driving test. Give me a degree, course, an essay to write, even an A' level, or a paper for an MA, but don't test me with multiplechoice as my default mode will be to consider all possibilities feasbile!
I have also struggled with skiing, learning French, ballroom dancing, throwing a pot and climbing. My feet are still like lead when it comes to dancing, my hands are not better with clay (though I can draw a likeness and a nude). I cannot overcome the 12ft barrier with climbing - the top of a short ladder is as high as I want to get off the ground. The best part of two seasons working in the Alps and I finally cracked skiing to a standard that satisfies me. Skills take time with me, Like 100s of weeks. Amd after 40+ years of trying I am slowly mastering French (spoken at least), courtesy of regular dosages of LingVist (app) and twice a month meeting up with friends locally to spea in French at Rendez Vous a Lewes.
So failing Google Certified Educator Level 1 sees me instead going for Google Certified Educator Level 2.
The reality for me is what I am not doing, needing and thinking about, I forget. My brain is more Teflon than Velcro. Chucking stuff at my senses does not work unless I am immersed in it, drowning in it, challenged by and suffering it.
So wish me luck. Bored to tears by Google's own training I am looking for alternatives. What I really need is scheduled time 1 to 1 or in a class with a Google Certified Educator. There are not many of these in England. And it costs money that the institution I work for would need to pay.
What's your experience of a formal work appraisal? To what degree does setting objectivews for the next six months help or hinder? How much flexibility is there? And if the appraisal is sent up the chain what can someone say in summary who you rarely see and never work with say of value?
I've enjoyed the focus and hope to deliver on closer ties to creative industries, using platforms like Planet eStream and Thinglink, and even cracking on with Google Educator 1, 2 and Trainer certification - though NOT through much use of Google's own online learning (videos, text and multiple choice tests) which I find forgetable and confusing.
I fear that being required and assessed for mastery is the go to position too often. It doesn't result in buy in, or useful application of skills to solving learning problems.
Ha! if it isn't during a teacher's sessional hours when the stdents are on holiday the training won't happen. And in the holidays they are not paid to come in. So what is the incentive to learn new tech skills other than for personal satisfaction, curiosity and ambition?
Many schools are seeking out ways to support teachers with this shift in mindset. Popular support models include:
- Coaching model, where teachers work one on one with colleagues for lesson planning, technology skill building, and demo lessons. Large group workshops are held for entire school or district faculties.
- Trainer of trainers model, where selected teachers receive specialized training with the expectation they will train their fellow colleagues.
- Early adopters model, where early adopters of technology share best practices at any opportunity.
We have gone exclusively down the Trainer of trainers model - and not being hugely successful. As a Learning Technologist I am see as the early adopter. The regime and the way people are employed on a 'sessional basis' makes it difficult to bring teachers/tutors/profs in for training for the time it takes to get them up to speed and confident, let alone providing time to develop suitable materials.
I'm moving on to take the Google Educator Level 2 certificate - because I have failed twice to pass Level 1. They are different things. Both cover very familiar ground, but for me there is something overly finickity about Google Educator Level 1 that I can never get.
Of course, it isn't me who needs this knowledge, it is our eductors, our tutors and teachers. I cannot take it for them. I cannot create their coursework for them either. I can support them, but they have to come to the party ready to play.
Nearpod offers close integration with Google Educator Suite which makes this of interest; content is readily shared into a Google Classroom. So what benefits does it bring?
Why might, in some instances, Planet eStream be better than Nearpod? Some of the things I have to help educators fathom out.
The sales patter says that with Nearpod you can:
- Create interactive lessons in minutes
- Easily import existing lessons (pdfs, jpegs, ppts)
Add interactive features such as:
Virtual Field Trips,
Open Ended Questions
Download and customize ready-to-run lessons
Choose from thousands of free or paid lessons from expert educators and our educational partners.
Customize any lesson to fit your students’ needs.
Synchronize and control lessons across all student devices
Teachers share a live session, students enter a code, and the lesson is synced to all devices.
Evaluate student responses live or with post-session reports
View student answers individually or as a class and generate post-session reports with one click.
Give every student a voice
In an inclusive and immersive learning experience that allows students to participate actively in every lesson.
Students to take ownership of their learning which enhances their sense-making.
Increase students’ access to information, ideas, and interactions.
To test it and compare I need a real project, a teacher with students to teach and a lesson objective in mind. It is impossible to make a fair judgement simply by 'giving it a go' with some random content.
It is generally the case that when answering multiple questions the following occurs:
The flippant answer is the wrong one:
It is generally the case that when answering multiple questions the following occurs:
The longest answer is the correct answer:
The MAODE taken 2010-2013 has been rendered largelly theoretical given the onslaught of the likes of G Suite for Education. Why don't all institutions, schools and universities, move to Google Education tools and platforms. They are free. They have had vast sums of investment put into them. They do everything anyone was wishing and trying to achieve from 2000 onwards.
I started what was the MAODL in 2000! Things have changed radicaly ... and imperceptably? Dare you be away from it for long Dare you be freelance and not realise how fast, slick and connected we have become (and can be).
Just doing the learning to get my very modest Google Educator Level 1 I have been going through my own use of Google and am staggered at how willing I am to let Google do everything and assume everything - over 10 years at a swimming club I have assembled a vast amount of contacts for club officials, coaches and teachers, as well as the parents of swimmers - all of whom I must have contacted at some stage and have been listed, or grouped somewhere ever since.
So just now I knock together a Test class, as if I want parents of a group of swimmers to encourage their kids to view a carefully chosen video on a swimming technique. It is as quick as playing Chop Sticks on the piano ... one refrain.
Of course, the expectation is that teachers, tutors and associate lecturers are all a whizz at this. Some, circumstantially, if freelance, may not be aware of just how much things have moved on, nor will they be paid, necessarily, to take the time, to get on top of things.
As if it isn't tricky enough to pass my Google Educator Certificate Level 1 this week, now in Google's wisdom I am getting it all in French. Now, I have to admit, I did think doing all the practice in French would be a good challenge for my French Comprehension. Now I wonder if I mentioned this in conversation lately, Alexa picked it up, and told Google. Do you get this? When Google is one step ahead of you? I use the Gmail function whereby all my emails give me three optional responses that Google gleans from the content. I now use these are a starting point - they're always more polite that I would be, sometimes a bit chummy and American though.
The learning is dull. And entirely composed for a North American audience. Are we in Britain meant to be so closely associated with our US cousins now that we tolerate US English and in this instance US learning too? Tough if you are trying to qualify abroad, as whilst text is translated, it looks like the videos and case histories and in English. A case of American Imperialism?
Meanwhile, of note, are the number of platforms and Apps I am having to use and master:
While some have become second nature:
What are you going to learn this year?
I am supposed to master French in 2019. I continue with Lingvist and Tandem and want to keep a daily diary, old school, in book - but in French.
I have to pass my Level I & II Swim England Swim Coaching certificate - this is due by 10 Feb.
Then I can relax. Or not?
Delight at finding the OU has activated G Suite for education. I am well through training to be a Google Educator Level 1 (Certified). Its impact and benefits are huge, not least replacing most the of current platforms used by the OU.
This is my account - activated 9 days. I have been Google since the start, transferring to Docs, Slides and Sheets to rid my life of hideous Word, PowerPoint and Excel. It has grown gently from a basic and easy to use set of Apps, to a suite of simple to use, intuitive and connected tools that create the most versatile of learning set-ups.
'Sites' the blog platform could see off this environment I am working in now. This would be a mistake. I rave to colleagues about the affordances of this space because as well as being a blog, it is really a threaded conversation too.
You can always find someone to talk to
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